Tan intended the book to be read as a loose collection of interrelated stories, but it is often referred to as a novel.
Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. The Challenges of Cultural Translation Throughout The Joy Luck Club, the various narrators meditate on their inability to translate concepts and sentiments from one culture to another.
The incomplete cultural understanding of both the mothers and the daughters owes to their incomplete knowledge of language. Additionally, the barriers that exist between the mothers and the daughters are often due to their inability to communicate with one another.
Although the daughters know some Chinese words and the mothers speak some English, communication often becomes a matter of translation, of words whose intended meaning and accepted meaning are in fact quite separate, leading to subtle misunderstandings.
Throughout the book, characters bring up one Chinese concept after another, only to accept the frustrating fact that an understanding of Chinese culture is a prerequisite to understanding its meaning.
The Power of Storytelling Because the barriers between the Chinese and the American cultures are exacerbated by imperfect translation of language, the mothers use storytelling to circumvent these barriers and communicate with their daughters.
The stories they tell are often educational, warning against certain mistakes or giving advice based on past successes. Another use of storytelling concerns historical legacy. By telling their daughters about their family histories, the mothers ensure that their lives are remembered and understood by subsequent generations, so that the characters who acted in the story never die away completely.
In telling their stories to their daughters, the mothers try to instill them with respect for their Chinese ancestors and their Chinese pasts. Suyuan hopes that by finding her long-lost daughters and telling them her story, she can assure them of her love, despite her apparent abandonment of them.
In many ways, the original purpose of the Joy Luck Club was to create a place to exchange stories. Faced with pain and hardship, Suyuan decided to take control of the plot of her life. The Joy Luck Club did not simply serve as a distraction; it also enabled transformation—of community, of love and support, of circumstance.
Stories work to encourage a certain sense of independence. The Problem of Immigrant Identity At some point in the novel, each of the major characters expresses anxiety over her inability to reconcile her Chinese heritage with her American surroundings.
While the daughters in the novel are genetically Chinese except for Lena, who is half Chinese and have been raised in mostly Chinese households, they also identify with and feel at home in modern American culture. Most of them have spent their childhoods trying to escape their Chinese identities: Lena would walk around the house with her eyes opened as far as possible so as to make them look European.
Jing-mei denied during adolescence that she had any internal Chinese aspects, insisting that her Chinese identity was limited only to her external features. Lindo meditates that Waverly would have clapped her hands for joy during her teen years if her mother had told her that she did not look Chinese.Vocabulary taken from the short story "Two Kinds" by Amy Tan Learn with flashcards, games, and more — for free.
Amy Tan: I actually started doing some other kinds of writing before I wrote the fiction. I was writing for businesses. I think my mother was a little skeptical in the beginning, but fortunately, as a free-lance writer I was successful almost immediately.
The story focuses on two themes: the American Dream and the tension between mothers and daughters.
Like many immigrants, Mrs. Woo believes in America's promise: With hard work and a little luck, Jing-mei can be anything that she chooses to be.
The story focuses on two themes: the American Dream and the tension between mothers and daughters. Like many immigrants, Mrs. Woo believes in America's promise: With hard work and a little luck, Jing-mei can be anything that she chooses 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”. Success and Failure in Two Kinds by Amy Tan - Amy Tan, a child of Chinese immigrants, wrote the story “Two Kinds”, telling the tale of a Jing-Mei’s rebellion against her mother’s desire to .