Whisper of the Wind: Literary Analysis of a Passage from Rules of the Game by Amy Tan

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  • Topic: Chess, FIDE, Chess tournament
  • Pages : 2 (626 words )
  • Download(s) : 1567
  • Published : April 22, 2007
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In this passage of Amy Tan's story, Rules of the Game, the author uses many literary features to develop the climax of Waverly's career as a young chess champion. As Waverly faces her first opponent of the chess tournament, she continusouly reminds herself of the art of invisble strength. She reptitively gets advised by the "wind", as she carefully makes her moves towards victory, where her talent is recognized once again. However, a friction between Waverly and her mother arises as more trophies were brought home, beginning to show an end to her triumph. The climax is emphasized by the diction and personification as the conflict is introduced.

The diction of the passage gradually sets up the climax of the story. ¡°It was her chang, a small tablet of red jade which held the sun¡¯s fire.¡± (line 4) Waverly¡¯s mom brings her ¡°chang¡± and hands it to her as a lucky charm for the competition. The color red represents luck and wealth in the Chinese culture. It also symbolizes passion and adventure - reflecting precisely upon Waverly¡¯s position. Another connotation is when Waverly only saw her ¡°white pieces and his black ones waiting on the other side.¡± (line 8) Black and white are exact opposite colors and they contrast, establishing the tense rival relationship between Waverly and her first opponent. The absence of color furthremore dramatizes the importance of that particular scene as it usually conntates to freezing of time. The gradual intesification is implied by the line "a light wind began blowing past my ears."(line 8) The wind represents the invisible strength and Waverly's tactics of winning this chess game. The word "began" also implies the rise in climax.

Personification not only sets the tone of the climax, it also characterizes the characters. "The color ran out of the room,"(line 7) shows the cold nature of the competition, to a degree that it forces the color out of the room. It also indicates Waverly's seriousness towards this chess...
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