Summary of the chapters...

Topics: Marriage, Family, Culture of China Pages: 7 (1998 words) Published: February 27, 2003
The Joy Luck Club

1/6/03

Ch1

Jing-Mei Woo: The Joy Luck Club

In this chapter we are introduced to the Joy Luck Club which originated all the way back in China when Jing-Mei Woo's mother Suyuan was in the city of Kweilin. At the Joy Luck Club a group of old Chinese women sit around and eat and after that they sit down in a table to play a friendly game of Mah-Jong. At the Joy Luck Club there are 4 major members, Lindo Jong, Ying-ying St. Clair, An-Mei Hsu, and Suyuan Woo. In the beginning of the chapter we learn that Suyuan has died and Canning Woo, Jing-Mei's father and Suyuan's husband has asked Jing-Mei to take her mothers place at the Mah-Jong meeting. In this chapter we learn of how Suyuan had lived in China and during the war as the Japanese were slowly invading China, she had to take her family and leave for the city of Kweilin while her husband, Suyuan's first husband that is, goes off to Chunking to fight the Japanese. In this chapter we learn about the other Mah Jong players, Lindo Jong, mother of the young girl Waverly, Ying-ying, a woman married to a white man and An-Mei Hsu. In the end of the chapter they old ladies tell Jing-Mei how they have contacted her long lost sisters and they want to send her to China to meet them.

The story is quite interesting so far, its interesting to see how the women in this story resemble the way my own Chinese grandmother acts. Its quite funny too actually be able to know what Mah Jong is although I have been so white washed. I was born here in America so all I've ever known is American culture and although I look 100% like a Chinese kid would, when I went to visit China for the first time I felt so different from them.

Ch2

An-Mei Hsu: Scar

We learn how An-Mei's father is long gone and that her grandmother who has been a predominant figure in her life is slowly dying. While An-Mei is describing her dying Grandmother (Popo), she talks about her real mother who had dishonored the family by going off to marry a man with many wives thereby getting herself disowned by her own family. As the grandmother is dying, An-Mei's mother comes back and as a last resort, tries to save grandmother by cutting off a piece of her own flesh and sticks it into a soup that she tries to feed to her mother (the grandmother).

I thought it was interesting to see an example of an old Chinese remedy for something. I kind of wonder if that was even a real remedy, rather harsh and repelling if you ask me.

Ch3

Lindo Jong

The Red Candle

In this story Lindo, the mother of Waverly Jong, the National Chess Champion talks about her own struggles. In China Lindo was forced to marry a man named Tyan-yu whom she didn't love at all. When she was finally married to him, she would avoid him and the groom's mother realized this and hired a marriage counselor type of person to help fix things. The marriage counselor lit a candle and said if it was still lit the next day without going out then the marriage will last forever and even if the groom dies, Lindo may never remarry again. Upset, Lindo tries to blow out the candle and succeeds but the next day the servant lies about the candle not going out. Lindo now becomes desperate and tries to devise lies to help her get out of there and finally succeeds and the husband eventually marries one of the pregnant servants and Lindo is sent to America.

The odd part of this story was how I was able to empathize with the other characters in their discussions of their hardships when they were younger while I couldn't with Lindo. Maybe I'm biased because of how Lindo is so harsh and headstrong towards the other characters in this story. She in my mind seems to be a great description of the family members in my own life, for they are all harsh and headstrong towards each other.

Ch 4

Ying-ying St. Clair: The Moon Lady

In Chapter 4 we learn about Ying-ying. As a child Ying-ying came from a wealthy family. Unlike she is now Ying-ying...
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