The Jade Peony

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Thesis: one’s personal culture and sense of tradition will always be a strong part of the self, regardless of external factors which can have a profound influence on one’s life.

Subtopic 1: one’s value, habits and loyalty to his culture and tradition are not easily changed.

Example:“ But we collect for the heart, Kiam-Kim,” Father said. “We help all the people of China.” I was puzzled. “Even those who kill other Chinese?” “Yes,” Father said. “Of course.”

“But never help the Japanese?”
“Never.”(Page 208)

Explanation: This discussion is between Kiam-Kim and his father, which is a Chinese family in Canada for a long time.At that time, there is just a war between China and Japanese, and Kiam-Kim, who is the main character in the novel, is collecting money for the donation of Chinese soldiers. Kiam-Kim thinks this money is for blankets, medical supplies, food for orphans but not for bullets or guns. Because at that time, Kiam-Kim just 9 years old, his child’s mind wants everyone in peace but not in war. But in fact, there are so many wars in China. Not only between Chinese people but also between China and Japan. When he asks his father about what these denotation is for, his father tells him that is for all Chinese people including the people who is fighting with another Chinese people. Because of the hatred of Japan, his father never wants to give anything to Japan. That proves that he will never help his country’s enemy because of his loyalty of China .

Subtopic 2: One’s culture can have a profound hold on one’s personality, gravity influencing a course of behavior.

Example: “Teach Jung-sum how to kick and pass the ball,” Father said to me. “Canada never need soldiers.” “Need soldiers in China,” Poh-Poh said, slapping the last bandage on my arm. She poured her stinging homemade lotion on one of Jung’s battle wounds. “Fight the warlords!Fight the Japanese!”(Page 230 )

Explanation: Poh-Poh is an old...
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