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How The Mother Of Jing-Mei Evolves In The History Of The Oriental World (Term Paper Sample)


The paper examines How the Mother of Jing-Mei Evolves in the history of the oriental world


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How the Mother of Jing-Mei Evolves
Mothers play an essential role in raising children to become whom they aspire to be. From the early stages of childhood development, many children spend most of their times with their mothers who teach them the essentials of life including how to eat, walk and talk. Mothers are any person's greatest supporter because every mother would like to see their children succeed. They are shoulders we can always lean on when we have nowhere else to turn to. At times mothers overstep their call to motherhood, and the children react accordingly in a manner that asks them to accord them some space. Such is the case in “Two Kinds” by Amy Tan. Jing-Mei is raised by a mother who harbors overwhelming expectations for her child. Her daughter's reaction to her coercion changes her as the story progresses. The change in her mother from that of pushing her towards greatness changes her as well, and she finally realizes that her mother only wanted the best for her.
The story sets off with an introduction to the mother's interpretation of the American dream. Like the author, whose mother left China in 1949, the narrative reveals to the reader that the Chinese mother lost her young family while living in her native country. The mother comes out as a woman experiencing reformation and hopes to capture part of the lost life through the life of her daughter. At the beginning of the story, the daughter seems to follow in the line of her mother but later rebels against them inspiring her mother to say there are two kinds of girls, those who follow what they are told and those that follow their heads. The mother and her daughter develop strong conflicting ideas about having the sense of self, in words “you don't need the talent to cry”. One of the factors that shape the mother's conception of the self is her childhood in China. The Chinese culture offers the mother an entirely different cultural experience compared to that of her daughter. The American experience to where she escaped offers her daughter a world of opportunities. The mother's conception of the American dream is that anyone can be anything provided he or she puts his or her minds to it.[Amy Tan. "In the Canon for all the Wrong Reasons." Harper's Magazine, 1996: 1-4.] [Tan, Amy. "Two Kinds." 1989.]
Over time, the mother's perception of what is best for her daughter changes based on how her daughter reacts to her push to greatness. The mother wants the best life for her daughter. She collected magazines from the houses of people whose houses she cleaned so that she could read them to her daughter and show her what she needed to be. She hopes her daughter will grow to become a kind of prodigy and live a better life that she did. The story is focused on two leading themes, which are the tension between a mother and her daughter and the idea of the American dream. The mother is a firm believer in the promise of the American dream. She believes her daughter can exert her efforts toward her goals and she would not have to endure the hardships she endured in China. Some of the challenges that change the mother into a firm believer in the promise include the difficulty of settling in a new culture, the pain of losing her twin children and the terror that accrued from the privatization of war. Although at the beginning of the story the daughter cherishes the idea of becoming a prodigy, she grows out of the idea and threatens to run away from her mother.[Tan, Amy. "Two Kinds." 1989.] [Yalimaiwai, Davinia. "Women like and Unlike Us: A Literary Analysis of the Relationship between Immigrant Mothers and their Bi-Cultural Daughters." Indiana University 1, no. 1 (2010): 1-122.]

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