September 17, 2016
The Joy Luck Club Diction and Tone Literary Analysis
Amy Tan has a unique style to her writing. She writes with her voice, truly behind each and every word throughout the novel. A combination of English while incorporating Chinese words helps to set her apart from other writers. The use of foreign words demonstrates the struggle the Chinese mothers faced moving to a new country, with a new language. This novel and unique sense of writing style helps us to further develop our sense of Chinese culture and immigration.
Although the story has a much deeper surface than the summary on the back, page one begins with the club itself and the “Mah Jong Table” (page 19). Mah Jong is a game that comes from the Chinese culture played with four people at the corners to represent the spots from a compass (North, East, South, and West). Very little was said during the games between the club, Chinese words such as “pung” and/or “chr” were used. Tan's choice of choosing to incorporate Chinese words instead of simply saying they might have won gives so much more dimension to the story as a whole. Mah Jong is a game played by four women of Chinese origin, but symbolizes so much more for these women in the story. "Kweilin" (page 21) is a major part of Jing Mei Woo's culture in the story. Kweilin is a city located in the southern region of China, known for its breathtaking views. Kweilin is remembered by June in the story because she "thinks of Joy Luck Club as her Kweilin story" (page 21), as she makes her way to her own. June mother was the founder and starter of "Joy Luck" (page 19) when she first arrived to America. The club represents hopefulness for a better like and the goal to achieve happiness by other Chinese immigrants with dark pasts. Suyuan Woo was forced to leave China in hopes of a better life. Her first husband was an officer for the "Kuomintang" (page 21), which was a nationalist party in the early 20th century in China, which held power until the mid century. Once the Japanese took over, many Chinese refugees emigrated from China in search of a new and safer home. Suyuan was forced with a difficult decision; she chose to abandon her two daughters in China in hopes for a better life in America has a Chinese Refugee.
Tan weaving Chinese words throughout the text gives the audience a small glimpse of Chinese culture by choos...