No Name Women by Maxine Hong Kingston

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+ The short story, “No Name Women”, was shocking, horrifying, and almost unfathomable for me. I cannot imagine any person, much less a community, that would punish a family in such an inhumane manner as the raid described in the story. I am amazed by the dramatic differences that time and culture impose upon attitudes toward adultery. I found the rituals performed during this raid to be interesting. For example, the woman who waived the broom in the air to release spirits. I am curious about the strong, beliefs shared by this Chinese culture. I was surprised that the villagers blessed themselves with sugar and oranges as they returned to their homes following the raid. Obviously they felt no guilt from their actions, and seemingly did not hesitate or hold back during the attack. On the contrary, I assume they felt that their higher power or spirits had commanded them to take this sort of action. - I had difficulty understanding how the narrator could describe her aunts appearance and actions in such detail. The story was told almost as if she were a first hand witness to the events. I was under the impression that her Mother had only briefly mentioned the story to her once. Where then did all of these details actually come from? ? Was the story a factual account of the events which took place in a Chinese village during 1924? Or, did the story reflect the narrator’s best guess, or imagined ideas of how this tragedy unfolded? Also, Why did the villagers chant “pig…ghost…pig” as they destroyed the home of the adulteress? PART II:

1. “Some man had commanded her to lie with him and be his secret evil. I wonder whether he masked himself when he joined the raid on her family” pp. 45 “The real punishment was not the raid swiftly inflicted by the villagers, but the family’s deliberately forgetting her.” pp. 53 2. Do you think if the identity of the father of the unborn baby had been revealed, that he and his family would...
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