Queen Mother of The Western Sky

We finished reading The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, a novel full of mythical stories, simile, metaphors, and symbols. If you understand these things, you can enjoy the novel literally. Therefore, I am going to explore the last parables of the novel, which help to understand the theme, climax, and character’s position in the next and final section.

In the parable “Queen Mother of Western the Sky” Amy Tan presents a short conversation between grandmother and her granddaughter. The old woman remembered about her life experience and belief, when she saw her granddaughter laughing without any reason. She said that she also had innocent and could laugh like the baby girl. As she grew up and started to realize that there was no value of innocence, she stopped laughing. Moreover, she gave the same lesson to her daughter. However, by watching the laughter of her grandchild, she understood that laughter is the symbol of hope and for a happy life human should laugh. Her hope is that, the baby will teach her hopeless mother that how to laugh forever.

The story signs that the mother could not have teach her daughter perfectly. She only believed on her on experiences and tried to teach her daughter. Now, her daughter is not happy, as she has no expectation from her life. Therefore, the mother will teach her daughter again that she should be hopeful. The mother always wants a better life for her daughter than her and thinks about her betterment. For example, in “Magpies”, we see that, An-mei told her daughter own life story for saying that if someone does not try to change his fate by utilizing opportunities, he should suffer in the long run. It is cowardly to curse own bad fortune, because it is happiness for others. Similarly, in “Waiting between the Wood”, Ying-Ying told her daughter about her struggle and sufferings in her life. As she did not give hope and observed everything, so deeply that she could manage her life again. It is her dream to give her sprit to her daughter Lena, so that she can be happy with her life.

The stories’ themes are similar to the parables. All mothers are trying to give their inner power to their daughters, as they do not want to see them unhappy. We can say that, if the parable was not presented, we cannot get the meanings, themes, and inner massages of the stories. Thus, we should realize the meaning of parables first. It is clear that Amy Tan wants to make understand the readers by using these parables.

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