The Joy Luck Club



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Background

  • In 1949 four Chinese women drawn together by the shadow of their past begin meeting in San Francisco to play mah jong, invest in stocks, eat dim sum, and "say" stories. They call their gathering the Joy Luck Club. Nearly forty years later, one of the members has died, and her daughter has come to take her place, only to learn of her mother's lifelong wish-and the tragic way in which it has come true. The revelation of this secret unleashes an urgent need among the women to reach back and remember... In this extraordinary first work of fiction, Amy Tan writes about what is lost-over the years, between generations, among friends-and what is saved.

Notes To Be Copied:

  • I. The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
  • A. series of interrelated short stores about Chinese immigrant mothers and their American-raised daughters

B. Point of view in The Joy Luck Club shifts from narrator to narrator.

  • B. Point of view in The Joy Luck Club shifts from narrator to narrator.

C. Setting: San Francisco in the 1980s and China in the 1920s-1940s

  • C. Setting: San Francisco in the 1980s and China in the 1920s-1940s

II. Main Characters:

  • A. Suyuan Woo—founder of the Joy Luck Club whose recent death has left a space at the Mah-Jong table.

B. Jing-mei Woo—daughter born in America who takes her mother’s place at the Mah-Jong table. She has difficulty understanding her mother. She is the protagonist.

  • B. Jing-mei Woo—daughter born in America who takes her mother’s place at the Mah-Jong table. She has difficulty understanding her mother. She is the protagonist.

C. Lindo Jong—cleverly opted out of an unfortunate arranged marriage in China. Came to the US on her own, married and had three children.

  • C. Lindo Jong—cleverly opted out of an unfortunate arranged marriage in China. Came to the US on her own, married and had three children.

D. Waverly Jong—daughter who became a chess champion and an attorney. She has achieved much but still fears her mother’s disapproval.

  • D. Waverly Jong—daughter who became a chess champion and an attorney. She has achieved much but still fears her mother’s disapproval.

III. Important Themes

  • A. Sacrifices Made for Love

B. The Relationships between Mothers and Daughters (or Older and Younger Generations)

  • B. The Relationships between Mothers and Daughters (or Older and Younger Generations)

C. The Immigrant Identity/ Cultural Identity

  • C. The Immigrant Identity/ Cultural Identity

D. Misunderstandings and Reconciliation

  • D. Misunderstandings and Reconciliation

I.                    The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

  • I.                    The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
  • a.      A series of interrelated short stores about Chinese immigrant mothers and their
    • American-raised daughters
  • b.      Point of view in The Joy Luck Club shifts from narrator to narrator.
  • c.      Setting: San Francisco in the 1980s and China in the 1920s-1940s
  •  
  • II.                 Main Characters:
  • A.    Suyuan Woo—founder of the Joy Luck Club whose recent death has left a space at the Mah-Jong table.
  • B.     Jing-mei Woo—daughter born in America who takes her mother’s place at the Mah-Jong table. She has difficulty understanding her mother
  • C.    Lindo Jong—cleverly opted out of an unfortunate arranged marriage in China. Came to the US on her own, married and had three children.
  • D.    Waverly Jong—daughter who became a chess champion and an attorney. She has achieved much but still fears her mother’s disapproval.
  • III. Important Themes
  • A.     Sacrifices made for Love
  • B.     The Relationships between Mothers and Daughters (or Older and Younger Generations)
  • C.     The Immigrant Identity/ Cultural Identity Misunderstandings and Reconciliation


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