The Joy Luck Club

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It has been said that America has no single tradition but rather is a melting pot of people from various backgrounds and ethnicities. During the 20th century a new wave of immigration to the United States took place bringing with it a new classification of American. However due to the intimidating cultural and social standards of the United States assimilation was inevitable. In reading Amy Tan's thought provoking novel "The Joy Luck Club," I am reminded of what has been termed for many decades as the "American Dream." Based on the foundations of the Declaration of Independence, this dream entails the idea that we are all, regardless of race or creed, entitled to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." Every human has the right and the drive to pursue a better life. This ideal is more or less the way America is viewed by immigrants who come to this country fleeing hardship. However, the stereotypical American sentiment is often portrayed as one of laziness. American's are often considered to be selfish, unappreciative, and unaware of the vast resources available to them. In Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club, Tan gives an objective account of Asian assimilation in to American culture. Tan renders the native-born Asian American daughters in a stereotypical manner regarding their lack of appreciation for their opportunities and the lack of respect or interest they exhibit regarding the tradition and cultural values of their mothers. In America, there is a great deal of tolerance, but very little acceptance. In the beginning of The Joy Luck Club, Jing Mei Woo is an Asian American woman who is asked to travel to China to fulfill her recently deceased mother's wish for reconciliation with her lost twin daughters. Jing Mei Woo will be responsible for telling her lost sisters the story of her mother's life. Jing expresses doubt when asked to complete this task because she feels she does not really know her mother. Her aunts are shocked by this response proclaiming,...
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