My response to “The Red Candle”

     “The Red Candle” of the novel The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan describes the tradition and culture of Chinese society. The story is about a girl who was promised to be married with one year younger boy when she was just two years old. Later, at the age of 12 she was send to her husband’s house where she was treated like a servant and was compelled to do household chores. She was bounded inside the house and should obey to her mother in law. She wanted to escape from that house but she had to bear it for her parents.

     This story reminded me of the girls in our society who are treated badly in their in-law’s house. Despite their sorrow that they had left their parents house, they torture them roughly. There are various causes for the misbehavior and one of them is not having children. In the story, the girl is condemned for not having children. Although it was her husband who was not interested in her, she was blamed for it. Fortunately, it was good for her because she could escape from the house due to this reason. However, for some people it is not fortunate. People in the society criticize the women who cannot have babies. One example of that is my mother herself. In the beginning years of her marriage, she didn’t have children. The society criticized her badly and even suggested my father to remarry. But he strongly opposed their decisions and supported my mother. After six years of her marriage, I was born and all the criticizers became silent.

     The story also explains the gender discrimination which we had read in our previous classes. It clearly shows the gender based stereotype followed in Chinese society. Girls are usually supposed to do household chores and boys are the head of the families. Married women should think their husband as Gods and should obey whatever their in-laws say. This Discrimination not only exists in Chinese society but also in most of the societies in the world. Is it really justifiable to do so and if no, then what can we do to eliminate this custom from the society?

Digya Shrestha


One Response to My response to “The Red Candle”

  1. tasnia says:

    Yes. You are right. In our Bangladesh these kind of discrimination is very common also. I think we women should be well educated to raise voice against these discriminations in this male dominated society.

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