New Historicism and the Build Up To the Suicides
The story of “No Name Woman” by Maxine Hong Kingston is most defiantly built on its foundation of New Historicism. New Historicism situates texts as products of historical context (The Poetry Foundation). New Historicism causes readers to think of the real truth behind the story and interpret events as products of our time and culture (Tompkins). In simpler terms, New Historicism is a way authors can get readers to look back and read into the history of the context. History is a huge part of any culture today; it is the foundation of any good non-fictional and, in some instances, fictional stories of any authors. Knowing the backdrop of your context could get you more involved and interested in the story, instead of falling asleep. New Historicism helps me to take events and information from the past and in stories and tie them into examples from modern life today. For instance, in “No Name Woman” by Maxine Hong Kingston, New Historicism helps readers understand and make connections as to why No Name Woman actually committed suicide. With the help of a historical background of Chinese culture and information on female suicide rates in China, I was able to make my conclusion. Conclusion came up that No Name Women was emotionally beaten up inside by everyone around her. China’s society greatly looks down on those who commit adultery; therefore they are treated badly and lead to commit suicide.
In “No Name Woman” by Maxine Hong Kingston, mistakes were made and lives were taken. While her husband was away, No Name Woman became pregnant with another man’s baby. “She could not have been pregnant, you see, because her husband had been gone for years” (“No Name Women” par. 6). Unlike in America, this is a huge and dishonorable crime to commit for a woman in China. Committing adultery in China will ruin a women’s reputation for life. After this crime she committed, she was immediately looked down upon and...
Cited: • “China’s Suicide Rate among World’s Highest.” China Daily information Co..China Daily, 31 2012. Web. 31 Oct 2012.
• Hasija, Namrata. “Rising Suicide Rates among Rural Women in China.” Institute Of Peace & Conflict Studies. Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies, 26 2011. Web. 31 Oct 2012.
• Miller, Heidi. “China One Child Policy Results in High Female Suicide Rate.” LifeNews. LifeNews.com, 29 2012. Web 31 Oct 2012.
• Miller, Heidi. “Chinese Women are Killing Themselves at Astronomical Rates: is the One-Child Policy to Blame?” LifeSiteNews. LifeSiteNews.com, 03 2012. Web. 31 Oct 2012.
• “Woman and Suicide in Rural China.” World Health Organization. WHO, 12 2009. Web. 31 Oct 2012.
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