Amy Tan and Chinese American Literature India

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Asian American literature ensures that the voices of the Asian American are heard and. their experiences interpreted It proves the power of literature to break through barriers of. culture and national boundaries,The Chinese Americans. It is estimated that the Chinese Americans number more than 2 3 million Schaefer 2006. 334 The Chinese were the first Asians to migrate to America The severe drought that. destroyed the crops in the Canton province in 1847 1850 led to the massive influx of. labourers to build the transcontinental railroad in the 1860 s In 1882 the United States. Congress enacted the Chinese Exclusion Act which among other things prevented the. formation of Chinese families in the United States Since they intended eventually to. return to China and also because of the enormous expense of the journey most men left. their families behind The long and arduous separation often threatened the family unit. and made life difficult on both sides of the Pacific. The men were busy labouring eighteen to twenty hours a day to earn their livelihood and. were also troubled by their White tormentors and immigration officials The women who. were left behind had to shoulder the responsibilities alone and a few who risked. journeying alone to the United States were either kidnapped or sold to prostitution The. effects of this were not reversed till the Immigration laws in 1965. Spread of Chinese Americans, Chinese American is a term of recent coinage used to refer to the persons of Chinese. ancestry residing permanently in the United States In 1915 the Chinese American. Citizens Alliance was founded to protect their civil rights and this also indicated the. psychological shift of commitment and the importance of the American part in Chinese. Much of the creative energy had been consumed in the breaking away from Chinatowns. where the Chinese had all huddled together in the beginning and the rest had been. devoted to the pursuit of middle class American values financial and social status. The predominantly male labourers and the poorly educated peasants were engrossed in. supporting their families left behind in Southern China The gender imbalanced bachelor. societies in Chinatowns experienced physical and psychological hardships which were. coupled with limited schooling and this did not favour artistic creation. Later as they developed there was no dearth of Chinese American doctors lawyers and. engineers but writers were few,A Cultural Creation. Language in India www languageinindia com 412,10 4 April 2010. Sushil Mary Mathews Ph D,Amy Tan and Chinese American Literature.
The emergence of Chinese American literature labelled a cultural creation There were. few firsthand records left by the nineteenth century Chinese immigrants the first. generation Chinese Americans, A glimpse of its original cultural creation can be gained from the collection of folk. rhymes of Chen Yuanzhu and Hu Zhaozhong exhibiting harsh conditions forcing young. men to emigrate coupled with their wishes for success. Vestiges of the oral tradition of Chinese American can be found in the genre of the. wooden fish song or muyu which is a small percussion instrument These lyrics created. a crucible of folk sensibility, A few poems carved by immigrants into the wooden walls of the barracks on Angel. Island in San Francisco bay which was used as an immigration station between 1910 and. 1940 were preserved through community effort and collected in Island 1980 They. constitute the angry poignant voices of the early Chinese immigrants Songs of Gold. Mountain Cantonese Rhymes from San Francisco Chinatown 1987 by Marlon K Hom. who rendered selected poems from the1911 and 1915 volumes of Jinshangeji were songs. composed in written form by members of the San Francisco Chinatown They covered. topics of American hardships their triumphant return to China the pain of the separation. of family and the Republican Revolution of Dr Sun Yat Sen. The Second Generation of Chinese Americans, From the ranks of the second generation Chinese Americans who started writing. imaginatively about their experiences were Pardee Lowe with his Father and Glorious. Descendant 1943 and Jade Snow Wong who wrote Fifth Chinese Daughter 1945. The works of Lowe and Wong were autobiographical and charted Chinese American life. from tradition to modernity and from conformity to individual freedom Twenty years. lapsed before Virginia Lee published her semi autobiographical The House That Tai. Ming Built 1963 These works confirmed a stereotyped image of the Chinese and their. culture They portrayed the Chinese immigrant either withdrawn and totally Chinese or. quietly assimilated and unobtrusively American These books are however considered. landmarks in Chinese American Literature, C Y Lee s The Flower Drum Song 1957 catered to the white stereotypes of the Chinese. and earned great popularity This was followed by Louis Chu s Eat a Bowl of Tea 1961. which provides a tale of community renewal in the postwar period This novel departs. from the autobiographical and provides a narrative of community life in the New York. Chinatown after World War II Chuang Hua s Crossings 1968 is a sustained example of. high modernism in Chinese American literature picturing attempts to come to terms with. deracination and has affinities with Hualing Nieh s Mulberry and Peach 1981 where the. refugee woman unable to resolve her conflicts splits into two personalities. Language in India www languageinindia com 413,10 4 April 2010.
Sushil Mary Mathews Ph D,Amy Tan and Chinese American Literature. The Women Writers, The women writers of the Far East can be traced to the ninth century Chinese poet Yu. Xuanji who produced some of the finest lyric poetry in her language while writers such. as Murasaki Shikibu in her innovative novel written in the early eleventh century The. Tale of Genji and Sei Shonagon in her Pillow Book completed in the year 1002. recorded the flowering and decadence of the imperial court in Heian Japan around the. turn of the eleventh century Despite such literary accomplishments the essential social. and political status of women in the medieval period declined. By the twentieth century Asian American women writers had produced a rich body of. literature There are however very few who received literary awards and creative writing. fellowships like Gwendolyn Brooks who received the 1949 Pulitzer Prize for her poem. Annie Allen Alice Walker won the Rosenthal Award of National Institute of Arts and. Letters in 1973 for In Love and Trouble 1973 a collection of short stories about black. women and Maxine Hong Kingston won the national Book Critics Circle Award for her. The Woman Warrior in 1976, Despite these impressive achievements most minority women writers remained virtually. unknown Women in particular are now seeking a new understanding of their present. goals and life styles There is strength and diversity in their story each woman writer. writing from her own ethnic perspective often in a very American setting They have. something unique to share teaching what it was like to live in a country which always. viewed one as an outsider At the same time they share the universal tragedy of. loneliness facing anyone who leaves family and homeland and also many other issues. common for sisters of all colours that weave women together. Amy Tan s Art Focus on Women in the Face of Adversity. Amy Tan is an artistic member of the Chinese American women writers who addresses. the issues of inequality meted out to women in other cultures the different cultural. expectations of women abortion friendship generation gaps between mother and. daughter and the strength of women in the face of adversity The novels of Tan have. created an indelible mark on the literary scene depicting the lives of Chinese American. women with their generational and cultural differences and her novels has formed the. foundation of this study,Amy Tan s Own Story, Amy Ruth Tan was born to Daisy and John Tan in Oakland California on 19th February. 1952 her parents had emigrated from China in 1949 They had left behind three young. daughters planning first to find a place to live in and then to send for them This dream. was shattered with the Communist Revolution Tan s mother tried hard but failed to. establish contact with her children,Language in India www languageinindia com 414.
10 4 April 2010,Sushil Mary Mathews Ph D,Amy Tan and Chinese American Literature. Tan won a writing contest when she was eight mostly due to the influence of her father. Her engineer Baptist minister father told her Bible stories and innumerable fairy tales. When Tan was twelve she learnt of the existence of the sisters and could relate to the. pain which continued to haunt her mother At fifteen she lost her brother Peter a year. older than her to brain tumour The next year her father succumbed to the same disease. Her grief stricken mother believing that their house was imbalanced in feng shui wind. and water fled with her two remaining children to Switzerland where Tan attended the. Monte Rosa International College in Montreux, At sixteen Amy was arrested for drug possession and later tried to elope with an escaped. mental patient who claimed to be a German army deserter Her mother sent the police. after her and Tan was grateful for this help and began college at Oregon where she met. Lou De Mattei and married him in 1974 against her mother s wishes. She received a master degree in linguistics at the San Jose State University and she. started her Ph D programme in linguistics at the University of California but left school. after the murder of a close friend, She worked as a language development specialist for handicapped children and later. took up free lance writing and joined a writing group She was a workaholic and this led. to depression and Tan began seeing a psychiatrist but was soon disillusioned. In 1985 Tan read a novel Love Medicine 1984 by Louise Erdrich a set of interwoven. stories narrated by different generations of a native American family and this changed. her life she was captivated by Erdrich s images and voice. Another great influence on Tan s writing was her mother Daisy whom Tan refers to as. her muse and the tumultuous life that her mother led in China has served as an. inspiration for Tan s novels Daisy Tan was born to a wealthy Shanghai family After the. death of her father her mother Jing mei was raped by a rich man who wanted her to be. his concubine When she gave birth to a son one of the man s wives claimed him as her. own and Jing mei committed suicide by swallowing opium infused New Year cakes. Years later Daisy entered an arranged marriage with an abusive husband and had to. abandon three daughters in China to escape her marriage and came to the United States. All this led Tan write her novels with the suffering of women in the forefront and she. also projected the victory that the women strived for and often achieved. Today Tan lives in San Francisco with DeMattei her husband and her two Yorkshire. terriers The death of her mother was a very disheartening episode and she is at times. haunted by her mother s sense of doom and relies on antidepressants When she. Language in India www languageinindia com 415,10 4 April 2010. Sushil Mary Mathews Ph D,Amy Tan and Chinese American Literature.
experienced the loss of her mother she became totally involved with writing and voiced. forth her mother s story, Amy Tan wrote these novels The Joy Luck Club 1989 The Kitchen God s Wife 1991. The Hundred Secret Senses 1995 The Bonesetter s Daughter 2001 and Saving Fish. from Drowning 2005 All her novels were New York Times bestsellers and she was the. recipient of various awards She has also authored a memoir The Opposite of Fate. 2003 two children s books The Moon Lady 1992 and Sagwa 1994 and numerous. articles for magazines Her work has been translated into thirty five languages such as. Spanish French and Finnish Chinese Arabic and Hebrew She was the Creative. Consultant for Sagwa the Emmy nominated television series for children which has. been aired worldwide Tan has lectured internationally at universities and her essays and. stories are found in hundreds of anthologies and textbooks She also serves as the. Literary Editor for the Los Angeles Times magazine West. Tan s The Joy Luck Club received the Bay Area Book Reviewers Award and the. Commonwealth Gold Award It has been selected as the American Library Association s. Best Book for Young Adults and also selected for the National Endowment for the Arts. Big Read The Kitchen God s Wife was elected New York Times Notable Book and the. American Library Association Notable Book The Hundred Secret Senses was the finalist. for the Orange Prize and The Bonesetter s Daughter has been the New York Times. Notable Book and was also nominated for the IMPAC Dublin Award Saving Fish from. Dying was also nominated for IMPAC Dublin Award and was the Booklist Editors. Apart from fiction for adults Tan has branched out into other kinds of entertainment. Occasionally she indulges her rebellious side by performing with a literary rock band. called the Rock Bottom Remainders a band composed of best selling authors along. with writers Stephen King and Dave Barry She specially enjoys performing her signature. song These Boots Were made for walking She has joined the San Franci. Asian American literature ensures that the voices of the Asian American are heard and their experiences interpreted It proves the power of literature to break through barriers of culture and national boundaries The Chinese Americans It is estimated that the Chinese Americans number more than 2 3 million Schaefer 2006 334 The Chinese were the first Asians to migrate to America The

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