Amy Tan’s The Joy Luck Club brings forth many characteristics of new world and old world traditions into the reader’s sight. Old world traditions are the customs and beliefs practiced in one’s native country. The novel introduces the reader to the hardships that one encounters when the environment and the neighbors change. The American customs, or new world traditions, seem to prevail in the thoughts of the Chinese-American daughters; thus, encouraging the mothers to stress the old world traditions onto their children. The mothers also try to bring the best of both worlds to their children to make their children’s lives better. As the children mature, they realize the true worth of their Chinese heritage and try to retain to the Chinese characteristics that they have.
In The Joy Luck Club, old world and new world traits are gained and lost by the characters in the novel to benefit themselves and make their strength of mind stronger. The children in The Joy Luck Club gain many characteristics of the old world and the new world that compose new people. The novel introduces us to characters that have lost their inner soul spirits that contain their Chinese heritage. The mothers know that their Chinese traditions and language are a necessary factor in dealing with their everyday life. The mothers also know that the new American traditions are needed to succeed in their new home.
The mothers encourage English speaking, but also want to preserve their Chinese language. The major new thought that is gained by the children, and the mothers is the “American Dream.” They believe that anything is possible in America, and their dreams can be fulfilled trough their children. “My mother believed you could be anything you wanted in America… You could be instantly famous.” (Tan 141).
... the unexpected. I think this event has opened up Americans eyes and allowed us to realize that we have ... a fire exit there”. After September 11, 2001 the world has changed. In every decision we make we should ... could a tragedy like this have been avoided?The World Trade Center was built around columns that were closely ... On September 11, 2001, Americas World Trade Centers was attacked by a faceless enemy, ...
One has to accept their heritage and have pride for their heritage for other people to respect them. The mothers in the novel try to teach this lesson to their children. The minute our train leaves the Hong Kong border and enters Shenzhen, China, I feel different. I can feel the skin on my forehead tingling, my blood rushing through a new course, my bones aching with familiar old pain. And I think, My mother was right. I am becoming Chinese.
(Tan 306) The children also gain characteristics that are genuinely American. These American traditions usually prevail over their Chinese characteristics, making them outsiders among their own nationality. The mothers wanted to avoid this, but this is a characteristic gained by the environment, and could have not been prevented. It is like what happened when I went back to China last year, after I had not been there for almost forty years. I had taken off my fancy jewelry. I did not wear loud colors.
I spoke their language. I used their local money. But still they knew. They knew my face was not one hundred percent Chinese. They still charged me high foreign prices.
(Tan 304-305) These characteristics and traditions gained by the children lead them to live lives happy with the pride of both countries. Traditions and characteristics are lost by the daughters and replaced by other characteristics. Some of the daughters lose their native language, which is a devastating thing. The communication between mother and daughter is an essential factor in growing up. If one cannot communicate adequately with one’s mother, the traditions and characteristics of that generation are lost. The way that one speaks their native language also changes when English is the prevailing language spoken.
... with the mother. Three characteristics patterns were observed: (i) Group B - Secure Attachment relationships: These children use the mother as a base ... mothering and as a consequence of the temperamental characteristics of the child. However, the classification may vary from culture ... is learning the characteristics of human faces by tracking the face, the hairline etc. The child will also grin ...
Communication between mother and daughter led to conflict and the difference of opinions. The traditions were also lost as a result of the language barrier, and the generation gap. These characteristics that were lost were accompanied by the gaining of many others. The Joy Luck Club introduces the reader to Chinese and American traditions and characteristics.
The children go trough a sort of metamorphosis of their interests. They become stronger and cope with life’s problems much more easily. Their Chinese heritage and new American characteristics lead them to this life. They are strong beings, even though many of their Chinese customs were lost by lack of communication and generation gap. As the children grow up they appreciate their Chinese heritage and want to be in touch with all their Chinese ancestors.
This makes them stronger and prepared for their lives ahead.