In the excerpt “Two Kinds,” written by Amy Tan, the author expresses her personal perception on cultural tradition along with the conflict of her mother’s opposing views. Upon travelling to America, the mother of Jing-mei continued to carry-out and force her culture onto her daughter in order to preserve their culture. Despite her seemingly increasing progress, rebellion and disobedience
The story “Two kinds” introduces the protagonist 's as young Jing-Mei, and antagonist as her mother. The story’s physical setting takes place in San Francisco, the city Jing-Mei’s parents resided after immigrating from china.
THEME The title of this short story “Two Kinds” is describes the theme of this story. The mother had stated that there are only two types of daughters. “Those who are obedient and those who follow their own mind.” (pg 412) Jing Mei did not understand the truth or meaning behind that declaration until after her mothers death. Jing Mei realized that her mother only meant that she could be an obedient child by listening to her mother while at the same time follow her own heart and want her own prodigy in life. The last paragraph in this story also indicates the theme of two halves being equal to one. The two songs “perfectly contented” and “pleading child” was actually two halves of one song. Despite Jing Mei and her mother’s differences
“Two kinds” is a story, a Chinese girl whose life is influenced by her mother. Her mother came to America after losing everything in China. Jing-Mei’s mother was immigrated early to America from China who has “American dream”. Her mother had high expectations on her daughter and did not care how it could affect her. It made Jing-Mei become a stubborn and rebellious person. “In the years that followed, I failed her so many times, each time asserting my own will, … for unlike my mother, I did not believe I could be anything I wanted to be, I could only be me. (104) She expressed her anger by going against her mother's expectations in ‘who I am’, it inferred that such tendency come from her childhood experiences. Jing-Mei was frustrated because she could not satisfy her mother.
She was my mother,” (31). Jing-Mei says this to her aunts after her mother had died, and she had to take your position in joy luck. She felt like she never really knew her mother because of their miscommunication. Suyuan Woo, Jing-Mei’s mother, had many hopes and good intentions for her daughter. While Jing-Mei wanted to be herself and still please her mother, Suyuan wanted her daughter to be a child prodigy. Always wanting the best for her daughter, Suyuan hoped Jing-Mei would one day become an extraordinary pianist. Although Jing-Mei played the piano, she never put forth much effort into the music because her best was not good enough for her mother. Nonetheless, she stopped playing the piano. “I could only be me,” (154). She could not be something that she was not; she could not live up to her mother’s expectations. This symbolized one of Jing-Mei’s songs, “Pleading Child.” Suyuan continues to put all the pressure on Jing-Mei so that she will not become like her mother for all the reasons she had come to America; hopes for a better life.
Jing-Mei feels differently though, “Unlike my mother, I did not believe I could be anything I wanted to. I could only be me,” (359/80) and she was correct for she had no natural musical talent. Jing-Mei has a desire to please her mother, but an even stronger one to choose her own life. She pacifies her mother by going to piano lessons but puts in no effort. Jing-Mei is “…determined to put a stop to her blind foolishness,” (356/48) but her mother’s desire to create a prodigy to compete with Aunt Lindo’s daughter, keeps her focused on the impossible. That is, until Jing-Mei escalates this conflict to its breaking point in rebellion. Stunning her mother, she shouts “Then I wish I’d never been born! I wish I were dead! Like them,” (359/77) referring to the twin daughters her mother lost in China. Sadly, the mother’s desire to have Jing-Mei conform to her expectations creates a constant battle between mother and daughter, and, in rejecting those expectations, seeing disappointment in her mother’s face all too often causes Jing-Mei to feel, “something inside me began to die” (353/18).
The title of this short story is called “Two Kind”. The title is referring to the two types of daughter Jing-mei’s mother talked about after Jing-mei refused to take piano lessons after she had failed at the performance show, “‘Only two kinds of daughters," she shouted in Chinese. "Those who are obedient and those who follow
sobbed Jing-Mei(Tans Stanza 66).”Only two Kinds of daughters,those who are obedient and those who follow their own mind!” shouted Suyuan Woo ,which was the cause of the title of the novel “Two Kinds”(Tans Stanza 67).Jing-Mei shouted back “Then I wish I weren’t your daughter,I wish you weren’t my mother” which made her feel good that at last she showed this side of her.She felted the disappointment of her mother especially on how she failed her many times ,but she didn’t believe she can be anything she wanted to be ,but can only be herself. This goes against her mother 's belief on how she can become anything she wanted to be in America ,but the daughter wants to go her own way.
In the short story, "Two Kinds" by Amy Tan, a Chinese mother and daughter are at odds with each other. The mother pushes her daughter to become a prodigy, while the daughter (like most children with immigrant parents) seeks to find herself in a world that demands her Americanization. This is the theme of the story, conflicting values. In a society that values individuality, the daughter sought to be an individual, while her mother demanded she do what was suggested. This is a conflict within itself. The daughter must deal with an internal and external conflict. Internally, she struggles to find herself. Externally, she struggles with the burden of failing to meet her mother’s expectations. Being a first-generation Asian American,
In the story Two Kinds by Amy Tan it tells the tale of conflict between a mother Suyuan and her daughter Jing-mei over piano lessons. Two Kinds deals with a clash between a mother’s belief of hard work and persistance and a daughter's belief that being a prodigy is unachievable.
"Two Kinds" by Amy Tan is about the intricacies and complexities in the relationship between a mother and daughter. Throughout the story, the mother imposes upon her daughter, Jing Mei, her hopes and dreams for her. Jing Mei chooses not what her mother wants of her but only what she
The biographical connection that the author “Amy Tan” draws in her short story “Two Kinds” with her main character Jing-mei, crosses in more than one side. First of all, they both are Chinese American whose struggle in their identities with their Chinese immigrant mothers. “Due to a cultural conflict and lack of proper understanding of each other’s perceptions” (Priya 1), and as a big gap developed between the two daughters and their two mothers, in which resulted a complex relationship between them.
Because this is a retelling of a mother-daughter relationship, Jing-mei is the protagonist and main character of this short story while her mother is the antagonist. Jing-mei is a dynamic character. At the beginning all she wanted to do was please her mother and accomplish her mother's version of the American Dream, but then her epiphany happened: she realized that this is not her dream, thus she rebelled and began to follow her own dream. On the other hand, Jing-mei’s mother is a static character. All her emotions, thoughts, and feelings surround one motive: for Jing-mei to become a prodigy. Although at the end she stops asking Jing-mei to do multiple hobbies, she still believed that Jing-mei had “natural talent [and that Jing-mei] could [still] be a genius if [she] wanted to” (Tan 48). In the end, Jing-mei’s mother realized that she no longer could control her daughter, yet that still did not stop her from hinting that her daughter still had the ability to become a
Furthermore, Jing-mei discovers, “Old Chong’s eyes were too slow to keep up with wrong notes [she] was playing,”(472). As a result, Jing-mei performs “Pleading Child” miserably at the talent show her parents and all of the members of the Joy Luck Club attended. Jing-mei saw the disapproval and shame on her mother’s face, and decided to stop practicing piano. If Jing-mei’s mother wouldn’t have looked so disappointed and been proud of her daughter Jing-mei wouldn’t have been so discouraged. Jing-mei would’ve still had faith in herself like she did before her performance. “When my turn came, I was very confident. I remember my childish excitement. It was as if I knew, without a doubt, that the prodigy side of me really did exist. I had no fear whatsoever, no nervousness. This is it!” (474). After seeing the dismay in her parents eyes Jing-mei changed her whole outlook on the situation, which weakened Jing-mei’s pride, causing her to fully rebel from being a prodigy. Furthermore, encouraging her to be who she wanted to be.
The short story “Two Kinds” written by Amy Tan is about conflict between a mother and daughter. A mother tries to live her life through her daughter and her daughter rebels. The prominent theme of this short story would seem to be "unfulfilled dreams”. After losing everything in China, the mother of Jing Mei comes to America with the dream that Jing Mei will have it all: fame, fortune, and most of all success unlike herself. Little does she know, her dream will be short-lived.