Essay about Red Scarf Girl, by Ji-Li lang

Essay about Red Scarf Girl, by Ji-Li lang

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Red Scarf Girl by Ji-Li Jiang is an inspiring true story about a young girl who is forced to make an agonizing decision of country versus family. In her story of joy, sorrow, lament, resentment, and countless other perplexing experiences, she must decide whether she is her family's child or Chairman Mao's. In Red Scarf Girl, Ji-li is faced with the heart-breaking decision of her future, and finally after years of confounding peer and family pressure, she resolves to love her family. Throughout the book she is a zealous supporter of Mao, though is constantly running into contradicting encounters in the beginning, middle, and end.
In the very beginning, Ji Li is confidently dedicated to the revolution, but then slowly starts to discover the despicable truth. Ji-Li thinks, " We thanked heaven that Chairman Mao had started this Cultural Revolution… otherwise we would not have even known we were in trouble. What a frightening idea." (38). This quote depicts Ji-Li's thoughts on Chairman Mao as she started off in the beginning; an exemplary student and daughter of Chairman Mao. Her first carefree opinion is quickly countered when she is told she cannot participate in the audition. "'Ji-Li, the fact is that our family will not be able to pass the investigation'…For a long time I did not speak. ‘Why?' I whispered at last." (9). When she is told at this early point in the revolution she would not pass the audition, she is only getting an insidious whiff of what is to come, but has not experienced anything that would be wrong with her family, the revolution, or otherwise the world up until then. Although small, her first glimpse at the tormenting trials that are to come start to penetrate into her oblivious mind, and make her start to think...


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...d that they needed her, and that she needed them more than anyone else.
In Red Scarf Girl, Ji-li is faced with the challenge of her life when she has to choose between her family, and a family figure, her country, although she really had known since the day she was eliminated from the audition she loved her family more than anything or anyone. She shows her diverging opinions forced by peer pressure throughout the book in the beginning, middle, and end. Her scrambled thoughts have to be pieced back together slowly, and are forced to make detours through the revolution, but finally are able to bubble up to the top and come out to the world. In this way Ji-Li discovers not the mind swept mind of Mao Ze Dong, but her true self, ,and is able to see that she could never do anything to hurt her family, nor break away from it, and that no one could take her family away.

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