Bridging generational divides
"The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates"
Another mother and daughter pair
If I was to read another mother and daughter pair in the novel, I would choose the Jong family pair. The story of this mother-daughter relationship begins with a flashback of Lindo Jong, the mother, and her arranged, loveless marriage she was forced into as a child. Although she manages to free herself from this, many years later when she has a kid of her own, they struggle to maintain a good relationship because of the cultural differences they face, making communication and understanding between the two of them difficult. I would choose this pair, because it is important for everyone to be able to have a say in what they want in life, including marriage, a say of which Lindo Jong was not given. I believe that Lindo should have been given the opportunity to decide her own future, and would like to read about Lindo's journey in fighting for her rights and self-worth. I would also like to read this, because of the distance between Lindo and her daughter. Mother-daughter relationships are a very important factor in life, and it's interesting to see how different cultures and beliefs between the two effect their understanding of each other.
Quotation from the novel
This quote stood out to me, because this is when Jing-mei finally came to realize that although she may not become the all-perfect, talented prodigy her mother desires her be, she is okay with who she is and refuses to let her mother change her "ordinariness." She believes that being ordinary is her true identity, and feels that this is what makes her, her. From then on, she refuses to let her mother push her to be something she's not, because she now sees that she has the free will to do what she wants to do, and be who she wants to be. I was moved by this quote, because it is hard for people to have this kind of self-confidence. Many people feel like they aren't good enough, and compare themselves to others, desperately wishing they could be anyone else. Amy Tan uses Jing-mei to show readers that it's important to be confident in yourself, and that your opinion of yourself is much more valuable than someone else's of you.