The most intriguing character in The Jade Peony Essay

1350 Words Dec 7th, 2013 6 Pages
In the Jade Peony of Wayson Choy, poh-poh or the grandmama seems to be the most intriguing character. Her character is complex for her grandchildren who are the narrators of the novel and therefore complicated for the reader of the novel; but not so complicated for their neighbour Mrs. Lim or even Father and stepmother who are from the generation in between. Even though Poh-poh’s character is not the narrator, she is present throughout the story even after her death. In each of the three stories, she is mentioned, described, or quoted by the narrators. She has a huge impact on all narrators. Poh-poh like any other grandparent likes to teach her culture, traditions, and language to her grandchildren. The only difference is that her …show more content…
Even though it seems that Poh-poh discriminates between girls and boys, there are factors that can make this judgment wrong. Beside Kiam whose childhood is not so much mentioned in the book, there are three children that are raised in the family and between them only Liang had a normal life. Jung, the second brother, was adopted from a home where the father used to hit him with a belt and the mother either committed suicide or was murdered. He had enough of hardship in his first four years of life that could make Pho-poh decide not to be anymore harsh on him. And the other brother, Sekky, was weak and sick from the beginning of his life. Again, this may be another factor that could stop Poh-poh from being tough on him as well. Another reason that makes life for Liang harder is that she as a girl should spend more time at home while other boys might have more chance to get more freedom outside the house while helping the father or doing manly jobs.
There is no doubt that Poh-poh is a traditional person. She obviously differs and distinguishes between boys and girls. For example, Liang should help Poh-poh in cleaning and taking care of the new born baby, Sekky, while boys are playing. On the other hand, boys, like Kiam and Jung, should help their father in collecting the

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