Exploration of the Past

By Gabby Hall

Thematic Paragraph

In The Joy Luck Club, Amy Tan presents the idea that respect is necessary in a familial relationship although it can be a challenge at times. This is especially evident in the case of the Hsu family. An-Mei describes her childhood in China as the daughter of a concubine. Although she has trouble accepting that her mother's status, she learns that "this is how a daughter honors her mother. It is shou so deep it is in your bones" (Tan 48). An-Mei learns to always show shou, meaning respect, towards her family because it is necessary to maintain a loving relationship with them.