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Subjugation of Women Exposed in Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club

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Subjugation of Women Exposed in Joy Luck Club

Is it fair to judge someone by their sex? In traditional Chinese culture, many judgments were made about a person just by observing their sex. The women was looked upon as an inferior being. They had little or no status in society, and little was expected from them. They were discriminated against when they tried to stand up for themselves. Chinese culture was customarily male dominated. The male was expected to do most of the work, and the woman was expected to stay at home with their mouth shut. This custom leaves an unwelcome feeling in a woman's heart. They feel like nobody cares, and it makes it much harder to live with an optimistic view on life.

In the novel, The Joy Luck Club, by Amy Tan, Ann-Mei Hsu, Lindo Jong, and Ying Ying St. Clair are all women who grow up in a traditional China, where there is sexism. They deal with serious problems that corrupt their lives. Through perseverance and the passing of time their lives return to normal.

Ann-Mei, Lindo, and Ying Ying subjugated by males because of their sex, and Chinese tradition. Ann-Mei is oppressed in many ways. Her mother is invited to spend time at the home of a wealthy merchant named Wu Tsing. During the night he comes into Ann-Mei's mother's room and rapes her. Despite emotionally scaring Ann-Mei this demonstrates the lack of respect for a woman in China.

Ann-Mei's mother is forced into concubinage because of her lack of power as a women. She becomes the third wife. As a third wife she maintains very little status in the home of Wu Tsing. Ann-Mei's family disowns her mother because by becoming a third wife she has brought shame to her family. "When I was a young girl in China, my grandmother told me my mother was a ghost". Ann-Mei is told to forget about her mother and move on in her life. The fact that Ann-Mei is told to forget her mother because she has become something she could not control, is preposterous. She was raped and forced into concubinage. The lack of appreciation for a female causes this feeling of shame for the Mei family. Since rape and polygamy is accepted in China, it makes it appear that what Ann-Mei's mother has done is wrong, and what Wu Tsing did was right or normal.
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