September 10, 2014
YingYing: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Spirit
A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself Joseph Campbell
A hero’s adventure is what makes him a hero. The brilliant American author, Joseph
Campbell states in his famous theory that a hero must start with a departure, go through a fulfillment, and return to the threshold with a gift. In Amy Tan’s novel, The Joy Luck Club, Yingying earns the title “Hero” by Joseph Campbell’s standards, when she embarks on an emotional journey that drains her of her spiritual existence and extinguishes the light in her soul. Yingying St. Clair once lived a prosperous life but it drastically changed when that life was sucked out of her and since then, she became empty inside like a porcelain doll. She was hollow inside for the longest time, until she realized that she needed to confront her past in order to save her daughter’s future. Although Yingying’s fierce tiger spirit died a long time ago, she revives it to rescue her daughter who faces a similar adversity. As a result, Yingying finishes her “Hero’s Journey” by not only finding closure, but fulfillment as well. The departure starts when Yingying is still a young teenager, who falls hopelessly in love with a much older man she meets at her aunt’s wedding. Right away, she knew she was going to marry this mysterious, provocative man. Yingying fell madly in love for this man
whom will haunt her for the rest of her life, but like most tragic love stories: haste will lead to ruin. Sadly, Yingying does not know that this decision will change her life and alter her ego forever. It can be considered that Yingying was dragged into the departure because of the provocative watermelon symbolism for lust that she witnessed. "I have always known a thing ...
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