Essay on The Woman Warrior By Maxine Hong Kingston

Essay on The Woman Warrior By Maxine Hong Kingston

Length: 1349 words (3.9 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

The woman warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston is a collection of stories that blends between childhood memories, traditional Chinese stories and fictional stories. Maxine Kingston was born in the United States to Chinese immigrant parents. Growing up as a Chinese American woman, Kingston was exposed to gender roles defined by the traditional Chinese culture and the American culture. Thus, throughout woman warrior, Kingston portrays the conflict between the traditional Chinese gender roles and American gender roles and her viewpoint towards the issue. Particularly, the story white Tigers, in which Kingston portrays herself as a traditional Chinese warrior who goes to battle in absence of her father showcases an alternative to traditional Chinese beliefs towards women. In the story White Tigers, depiction of the character Fa Mu Lan as a powerful worrier and a sensitive mother demonstrates the author 's inherent defiance against the traditional Chinese gender roles in which women are seen “worthless” and her attempt to keep the balance between power relations and womanhood.
First, it is important to emphasize the effort Kingston takes to illustrate the traditional Chinese viewpoint towards women. Kingston initiates the first line of the story by stating, “When Chinese girls listened to adults talk-story, we learned that we failed if we grow up to be but wives or slaves….perhaps woman were once so dangerous that they had to have their feet bound” (Kingston 19). Starting the story with this rhetoric, Kingston appeals to the reader about the harsh traditional views towards Chinese women. Traditions where women were seen as worthless and as slaves. Furthermore, Kingston uses a story of an expert pole fighter to state her opposition against...


... middle of paper ...


...ility to take action against it even within the American society.
Maxine Hong Kingston’s woman warrior is a collection of narratives that blends between real life experiences, traditional Chinese fictional stories, and childhood memories. The story of Fa Mu Lan portrayed in the chapter White Tigers cleverly showcases Kingston’s expectations of the society where women are seen worthless. Within the story, Kingston provides the reader a contrast between her real life and her imagination to appeal to the reader about the frustration in her life. Furthermore, Fa Mu Lan was portrayed as a powerful warrior and at the same time a loving and caring mother. Portraying the character Fa Mu Lan with these qualities, writer was successfully able to demolish traditional Chinese beliefs about women in the society, while keeping the balance between power roles and feminine traits.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Impact of Chinese Heritage on Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior Essay

- Impact of Chinese Heritage on Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior "Haunted by the power of images. I do feel that I go into madness and chaos. There's a journey of everything falling apart, even the meaning and the order that I can put on something by the writing." —Maxine Hong Kingston It is true that some dream in color, and some dream in black and white. Some dream in Sonic sounds, and some dream in silence. In Maxine Hong Kingston's literary works, the readers enter a soundless dream that is painted entirely in the color of black—different shades and blocks of pigments mixing and clashing with each other, opening up infinite possibilities for both beautiful if frightening nightm...   [tags: Maxine Hong Kingston Woman Warrior Essays]

Better Essays
2366 words (6.8 pages)

The Woman Warrior By Maxine Hong Kingston Essay

- The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston portrays the complicated relationship between her and her mother, while growing up as a Chinese female in an American environment. She was surrounded by expectations and ideals about the inferior role that her culture imposed on women. In an ongoing battle with herself and her heritage, Kingston struggles to escape limitations on women that Chinese culture set. However, she eventually learns to accept both cultures as part of who she is. I was able to related to her as a Chinese female born and raised in America....   [tags: Family, Hong Kong, The Woman Warrior]

Better Essays
728 words (2.1 pages)

Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior Essay

- Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior Maxine Hong Kingston's novel, The Woman Warrior is a semi-autobiographical collection of short stories that chronicles her childhood in California. It gives the reader a feeling of how it feels like to be a Chinese American girl growing up with traditional parents in a world that is quite different from theirs....   [tags: Kingston Woman Warrior]

Better Essays
1314 words (3.8 pages)

The Woman Warrior, by Maxine Hong Kingston Essay

- The theme of “voiceless woman” throughout the book “the woman warrior” is of great importance. Maxine Kingston narrates several stories in which gives clear examples on how woman in her family are diminished and silenced by Chinese culture. The author not only provides a voice for herself but also for other women in her family and in her community that did not had the opportunity to speak out and tell their stories. The author starts the book with the story of her aunt. This story was a well-kept family secret being that her aunt’s actions were of great disappointment to the family....   [tags: Maxine Kingston]

Better Essays
1032 words (2.9 pages)

The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston Essay

- The Woman Warrior is a compelling novel written by Maxine Hong Kingston. The novel won National Book Critics Circle Award for nonfiction after receiving a great deal of praise from critics. In her novel, Kingston utilizes various literary elements to reveal the theme. Through the use of conflict, symbolism, and characterization, the message behind the theme becomes prominent to readers. The use of conflict gives readers a vivid screening of the role women played in the Chinese society. The symbols that are portrayed in novel, make the message of the theme more evident to readers....   [tags: talk story, no-name woman]

Better Essays
1064 words (3 pages)

Essay on The Woman Warrior By Maxine Hong Kingston

- The woman warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston is a collection of stories that blends between childhood memories, traditional Chinese stories and fictional stories. Maxine Kingston was born in the United States to Chinese immigrant parents. Growing up as a Chinese American woman, Kingston was exposed to gender roles defined by the traditional Chinese culture and the American culture. Thus, throughout woman warrior, Kingston portrays the conflict between the traditional Chinese gender roles and American gender roles and her viewpoint towards the issue....   [tags: Gender, Gender role, Woman, Femininity]

Better Essays
1349 words (3.9 pages)

The Woman Warrior, By Maxine Hong Kingston Essay

- In order for an immigrant to survive in a new country they have to be able to adapt to a new community and expand their self concept. There is great plasticity in the self perception and identity of immigrant offspring. The memoir, The Woman Warrior, by Maxine Hong Kingston, does a good job in highlighting this statement. Her memoir shows the struggle of the older generation to adapt to American culture after migrating, it shows how the second generation contends with their dual identity, and how their unique perceptions emphasize the gap between the two generations....   [tags: China, United States, Overseas Chinese]

Better Essays
1669 words (4.8 pages)

Essay on The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston

- In the novel The Woman Warrior Maxine Hong Kingston uses ghosts to represent a battle between American and Chinese cultures. The two cultures have different views of what a ghost is. The Chinese believe the ghost spirits may be of people dead or alive. Chinese culture recognizes foreigners and unfamiliar people as ghosts because, like American ghosts, they are mysterious creatures of the unknown. Americans view ghosts as spirits of the dead that either help or haunt people. American ghosts may or may not be real....   [tags: Kingston Woman Warrior]

Better Essays
1199 words (3.4 pages)

Women Empowerment Depicted in Maxine Hong Kingston’s Autobiography The Woman Warrior

- As newer generations take on the responsibility of passing down their people’s history and culture, ancestral costumes are maintained but altered to suit current social standards. Through Maxine Hong Kingston’s autobiography The Woman Warrior, a memoir of myths and her mother’s narratives, the author is given a sense of empowerment as she discovers her own identity and, thus, her place in the world. Growing up, Kingston struggled with her dual heritage, not knowing whether to follow her family’s Chinese customs or live up to American society’s cultural and social norms....   [tags: the woman warrior]

Better Essays
1791 words (5.1 pages)

Maxine Hong Kingston's Woman Warrior - No Name Woman Essay

- Maxine Hong Kingston's Woman Warrior - No Name Woman The excerpt, "No Name Woman", from Maxine Hong Kingston's book, Woman Warrior, gives insight into her life as a Chinese girl raised in America through a tragic story of her aunt's life, a young woman raised in a village in China in the early 1900s. The story shows the consequences beliefs, taught by parents, have on a child's life. Kingston attempts to figure out what role the teachings of her parents should have on her life, a similar attempt for many of us in the world....   [tags: Woman Warrior Kingston Essays Papers]

Better Essays
735 words (2.1 pages)