And that I could succeed in. We all need to do that. That was great, Billy. I went to a writer’s workshop. You are going to go out and save this country.” On the other hand, I wanted to go out and be a rebel and wind up in jail, which is what I almost did. This friend copied his essay word-for-word and the teacher failed both of them, not just for the paper but for the semester, as though he was going to teach them a lesson. I worry about that within myself. It’s those behaviors that are important. The Joy Luck Club is a 1989 novel written by Amy Tan. Maybe I should do this. Because of that, it has also made me hate… I cannot stand being tickled to this day. In 1967, her father and older brother died within six months of each other from brain tumors. If my parents knew how much I loved it, I thought they would take it away from me. Key Points: Mother Tongue. Amy Tan, the author, says how she is not a scholar of English or literature, but she made an argument about the types of English. Was there a defining moment? I do look at the photos of myself and see how I age each year, and how my hairstyle changes, but I try not to take any of that stuff seriously, because I’m afraid of then contouring my life, which is my writing, my self, toward those reactions, and I don’t want to lead a reactionary life. I didn’t play chess, so I figured that counted for fiction, but I made her Chinese-American, which made me a little uncomfortable. Well suddenly they were shocked to find this mother saying, “You didn’t cook this long enough,” or “This is too salty,” and “Why do you wear that? They are not aversive in their actions, and yet they know how to ruffle the system and make better things happen, not for self-importance but for larger reasons. In 2003, she published The Opposite of Fate: A Book of Musings, an autobiography in which she disclosed her experience with Lyme disease, a chronic bacterial infection contracted from the bite of a common tick. My parents said, “You’re going to be a doctor.” It wasn’t until I was 33 years old that I started writing fiction. She says, "She had a knife, a cleaver, and she backed me up to the wall with this up to my throat, and she said she was going to kill me. Amy Tan talks about “her” experience to portray how people did not respect her mother as she deserves and thought of her as uneducated just because she couldnt speak the way people expect She used to have me call people on phone to pretend i was she. It started off with family. Success, not by how many billions of dollars did that company make, how many new products did you get out, but success of the magnitude that those scientists made when they pushed and pushed and pushed to prove that ozone was dangerous to the atmosphere. You have to be displaced from what’s comfortable and routine, and then you get to see things with fresh eyes, with new eyes. She’s very repetitive. And by God the little mother pulled through, so I went to China. I also remember that from the age of eight she and I fought almost every day. Or people will say I’ve done a great service in helping with generational gaps. I had dry heaves, and the pain was so enormous that at one point, when I thought I was going to die, I just suddenly realized that that scared me. I heard nothing. In other words, mother tongue is called first language or the dominant language an individual can have over other he has had to learn over time. As we look to the years ahead, what do you think the biggest challenges are? And I saw Rachel’s hands clasped over her chest, and her face was bloodless, and her hands were flat, and I was scared, because this was the little girl I used to play with. Sometimes I think it’s because I’m a baby-boomer and what I wrote about are very normal emotions and conflicts that many people have, so somehow it struck a universal chord. I'm rather perturbed the check has not yet arrived. I think the rebellious side came about because I thought I was never going to hear the voice of God. I was a girl who went to church every single day: Bible study, choir practice, youth sessions. The success is always there. Is this the style, is this the story? Do you think your conflicts with your mother were really over generational issues, or cultural issues, or both? For example, that all people should have freedom of expression and when you carry that to a religious point of view you realize different people have beliefs about life after death, and karma and reincarnation, and damnation and salvation, or nothing. Amy Tan: I think the conflicts were both cultural and generational. I had playmates with parents who thought, “Hey, they got a “C,” who cares? I think that’s why I’m a storyteller. The answer keeps changing. How did you finally get started writing fiction? In China, Daisy had divorced an abusive husband but lost custody of her three daughters. They were daughters, also wanting their mother’s approval, and didn’t understand why their mother was so critical. This argument made by Amy Tan throughout in the story “Mother Tongue”. I was very wounded and frightened. Her subsequent books, The Kitchen God’s Wife and The Hundred Secret Senses, have been bestsellers, and the film of The Joy Luck Club was an unprecedented success. Life is a continual series of bumps and crises. Amy Tan, whose Chinese name, An-mei, means "blessing from America," was born in 1952 in Oakland, California, the middle child and only daughter of John and Daisy Tan, who came to America from China in the late 1940s. It … My goal then, became to increase the amount of money that I made each month. Amy Tan: It’s hard for me to say objectively. What was your attraction to reading, to literature and to writing? Amy Tan prospered as a business writer. I also worry about those who praise my work for what I think are the wrong reasons. Anything that was unreasonable, I said was Chinese so I made the culture the scapegoat. Here was a little girl who didn’t listen to her mother. My first suicide attempt was with a butter knife. It’s very gothic to have a little boy killing a giant, somebody’s head being served on a platter, dead people being raised out of the grave, things like that. Some people are going to lose out, but there also might be some compromises made in the world. "It worried me that people think that all Chinese families are like the families in my books," says the author. Amy Tan: You know, I get asked that question a lot and I never know the answer. God decided to take your brother at this time for a reason.” I thought, “Bullshit, why would somebody allow such pain to happen to anybody?” It’s so difficult. Tan's new book, "The Bonesetter's Daughter," has also hit the bestseller lists. Well, I wasn’t going to be around to disappoint her anymore. You can do all these things.”. I still have to think about that over and over again, with everything I do in life. This nonfiction narrative essay was originally given as a talk during the 1989 State of the Language Symposium; it was later published by The Threepenny Review in 1990. After a dispute with her partner, who believed she should give up writing to concentrate on the management side of the business, she became a full-time freelance writer. I want to become better and better as a writer. So there’s never any comfort point. If you get this kind of review then you worry about what’s going to happen with the next. Creative Writing: Learning from the Masters provides readers with a window into the extraordinary world of writing fiction. I had a partner, a business partner, who ended up cheating me, as a matter of fact. Why does she think that easiness is an essence of her writing? I tried to copy somebody’s style that I thought was very clever. The story appeared in FM literary magazine, and was reprinted in Seventeen. I think I’ve always been somebody, since the deaths of my father and brother, who was afraid to hope. I think that I was in the right time and the right place. Oftentimes parents or teachers don’t realize how these very things that seem little — a little praise, a little criticism, a little failure — can create such enormous turmoil in a young person’s life. Title: Mother Tongue, by Amy Tan - mother tounge Author: Heather Simon Created Date: 8/1/2013 6:09:07 PM Her marriage to John Tan produced three children, Amy and her two brothers. Tan also balances each part of the rhetorical triangle very effective and thoughtful essay. '", Just for fun, she dresses as a dominatrix to perform with Dave Barry and Stephen King in their band of authors: The Rock Bottom Remainders. We had signed some papers to have this business together and I worked many long hours and one day we had a disagreement and I said I wanted to do more writing and he said that my strength was in project management. So I have a hard time accepting what is said about my work when it’s taken apart. Amy Tan is an Asian-American writer whose works focus a lot on relationships between mothers and daughters. If you had to choose one or two books to read to your grandchildren, what might they be? That raises a lot of questions. I think self-knowledge is important and that embraces so many things. I had some ways of thinking that were not healthy. Finally, what does the American Dream mean to you? She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in these fields at San Jose State University. Amy Tan: I’m the worst at coming up with the single word, which is the reason why I write novels. I think a lot about death because of what’s happened in my life. Amy Tan: Reading for me was a refuge. From enhancing simple things like general communication to creating a viable environment for social, economic, political and economic growth, language and literature have become very crucial tools in the growth of human life through constant progress. She says she has often thought about how she would deal with a child...say, a son who wanted to ski without a helmet: "I would be saying, 'You're gonna crack that precious brain of yours.' I would like to go trekking into Nepal. As a freelance business writer, she worked on projects for AT&T, IBM, Bank of America, and Pacific Bell, writing under non-Chinese-sounding pseudonyms. Or is it going to be my mother and my husband and my brother?” Gosh, it simplifies things a whole lot. And, I have to tell you, what was so profound about that is that here this man, who I was supposed to trust, was telling me about these things and suddenly he saw that I was very sad because, at the same time, my father was in the hospital dying. With medication, she has been able to control the worst symptoms of her illness, and has resumed writing, but she also spends much of her energy raising awareness of Lyme disease, promoting its early detection and treatment, and advocating for the rights of Lyme disease patients. My mother actually believes that my older brother’s life was devastated by something similar to that. I would like to breed Yorkies. I had a chance, for one thing, to move away and not tell anybody what had happened. That may have happened because I was bilingual at an early age. It hurt and then I stopped. In 1988, Amy Tan was earning an excellent living writing speeches for business executives. Now, I don’t think that necessarily is the case but I think these failures can have a profound affect on us. I find it is absolutely relevant to everything that is going on. In the world of book publishing, there is never a comfortable balance point where you either have enough praise or enough criticism. You know, when people say, “How has success changed you?” you have to say, “No. As much as I may dislike or want to reject that responsibility, this is something that comes with public success. I can tell her to this day — she still doesn’t believe this — I swear on camera that this man did nothing more than kiss me. You don’t have to pay anything until you sell anything.” I said, “Well fine. What pulled you through? You want to be my agent and not make anything.” I thought, “Boy, is she dumb.” She hounded me until I wrote a couple more stories, and then she sold that as a collection called The Joy Luck Club. Also, because the rhythms, the prose style of the Bible is, of course, very influential, has been very influential on many writers. Overhearing things being said in Chinese that I wasn’t supposed to understand — which is the only reason I understand some Shanghainese and Mandarin. In her books, she always explores the themes of the Chinese American experience or mother and daughter relationship. Amy Ruth Tan was born in Oakland, California, on February 19, 1952. How do you deal with parental expectations? That’s unfortunate, because it made me grow up wanting to deny that part of my family, of myself. Her subsequent novel, The Kitchen God’s Wife (1991), confirmed her reputation and enjoyed excellent sales. The Joy Luck Club is considered as the most famous book of Amy Tan. I had no time to sleep. That’s what I grew up with. So that was like getting the “A.” My mother wanted to know. This time, she was inspired by a photograph of her grandmother, a concubine who committed suicide when Amy Tan's mother was 9 years old. She wrote it in the wake of her mother's death, returning to themes of love and memory. Of the feelings that I had, of these things that my mother had taught me that were inexplicable or had no name. It was wonderful going to a country where suddenly the landscape, the geography, the history was relevant. But it was pretty exciting. I really loved my father. In fact, I told her, when she wanted to be my agent. My mother had a very difficult childhood, having seen her own mother kill herself. In essence, this paper seeks to analyze the essay Mother Tongueby Amy Tan, in … I have a good imagination, but I could never imagine my ancestors having been in any of this history because my parents came to this country in 1949. It’s not to say that everything will happen fairly and the way that you want. It’s not foisted upon you. So if you were to say to me when I was 17, “You know, one day you’re going to write a book about Chinese people and about your relationship with you mother and how much you love your mother,” and all this stuff, I would have said “You are crazy. I wanted to see where she had lived, I wanted to see the family members that had raised her, the daughters she had left behind. That’s what I think life is like, too. That was how I felt.”, I thought, “Well, that’s probably what happened to people who grew up in the ’50s and ’60s and it’s probably not happening today because we have progressed beyond that in the United States.” But, no. Writing is a dynamic undertaking as it takes different styles and approaches in presenting arguments, as well as in the choice of language to convey ideas. Make me so mad! A lot of what you say rings true but it’s so hard to come to grips with. I always thought it was that things get better and better. People roll hashish in their cigarettes and I think that’s part of it all and I end up getting arrested. This is the way it’s always going to be. Mother Tongue Amy Tan Thesis Mother tongue is a term that can refer to another person’s native language; this is the language that he or she was brought up knowing from birth. It’s an implied sense of their worth being determined by others. Was she unhappy about anything I said? I was getting along with my mother. It makes life fascinating and a wonder. We have the gun and all that kind of stuff. Amy Tan: I look back as an adult now, and I say, “They only wanted the best for you.” But at the same time I try to remember. It’s just crystal clear what’s important. Not simply each year, but each month — I mean, talk about pressure — to have more billable hours each month. It started off with knowing myself, with knowing the things I wanted as a constant in my life: trust, love, kindness, a sense of appreciation, gratitude. And being told there were certain books I couldn’t read, which made me go out deliberately and find those books. Today, I love history. And I like to hope that there is something after death. Writing is your weakest skill.” I thought, I can either believe him and just keep doing this… I disagreed with him a little bit more forcefully and I said that I get to decide too, because I’m a partner in this. Anything that had a degree of the fantastic. In the essay, she successfully expresses all three of rhetorical styles such as logos, ethos, and pathos. So I went through a terrible period of feeling that I had lost my privacy, that I had lost a sense of who I was. I am fascinated by language in daily life. I cannot give you much more than personal opinions on the English language and its variations in this country or others. I remember that starting at the age of six I had thoughts of suicide. Instead, I said to the woman that I had been thinking of doing some fiction writing myself. But the moment passed and, as she grew older, Tan grew to understand her mother's anxiety. In fact, one of the subjects I hated the most was history. He’s been my stability in life. And that led to one of the most searing events in Amy Tan's life, when she and her mother quarreled over Amy's wild, teen-age behavior. I was writing for businesses. Mother Tongue, by Amy Tan I am not a scholar of English or literature. So I grew up thinking that I would never, ever please my parents. You’ll be lucky if you make a dime.”. I think that’s uniquely American. But Mother was right: In many instances, the world is a dangerous place.". When I look at external success and internal success, I always have to keep those things in mind. It had nothing to do with being American. It’s those little things, they seem very small but I think eventually they also erode the world. They are very, very smart and they have a very smart mother and they are so afraid to be wrong. I would like to write a song. The fact that I had those thoughts when I was very young was an indication that I was a very gloomy kid. As a writer, you do the same thing today. ", Still, it's probably best that Tan is not counting on a musical career. And I like to hope that if there is something afterwards, the people I love will be there. They think I have done something mystical or wise, or that I’ve demystified Chinese culture, and I wasn’t trying to do any of those things. Through that, this subversion of myself, of creating something that never happened, I came closer to the truth. My parents told me I would become a doctor and then in my spare time I would become a concert pianist. I’ve never been good at multiple choice questions or true/false things because I always want to tell a story. Amy Tan: There are so many things I would like to do. I’m going to be completely American.” None of that Chinese torture or guilt ever again in my life. Really, what my mother wants is for me to think that what she has to say is valuable. That’s when I started to write fiction. In 1974, she and her boyfriend, Louis DeMattei, were married. When you read about the Civil War, a lot of people, like my husband, can say my great-great-grandfather fought in that war. I think she said, “You have this choice and you can change the past. I could even look at it with some humor eventually. I found out later, not simply from its Army but the mental hospital. Among her business works, written under non-Chinese-sounding pseudonyms, were a 26-chapter booklet called “Telecommunications and You,” produced for IBM. What in human nature is inherited versus self-determined? Amy Tan and Phiengchai Sisouvanh mentioned that people were treatedindignity to Tan’s mother because of her limited English. I was at a stage where that kind of criticism didn’t dishearten me at all. And, “I feel like I don’t know if I’m Chinese.” “Am I American? The forbidden things were a great influence on my life. I got scolded for that one “B.”. If you blew it — you got a “D” on something because you stayed up all night or you weren’t feeling well and you took the test and you got a “D” — that was it. They can’t change the fact that they made this really stupid mistake, so they are just going to keep going that way. They are cultural if you’re raised bi-culturally and, in this day and age, who’s not? This invisible force that she taught me, this rebellion that I had. It terrified me when I got to wondering if that was something I really could do. and her circle of Chinese immigrant friends. He was a straight “A” student, brilliant, was going to graduate at age 16. I stopped speaking Chinese when I was five, but I loved words. "If anything, they're drawn from my own family's experiences. I had backaches. She's got lots of other things to keep her busy. They didn’t know who I really was. Should I do this? Am I Korean? I couldn’t have written The Joy Luck Club without having been there, without having felt that spiritual sense of geography. It is based on these reasons that some important aspects of language will be analyzed in this paper. It makes you see in everybody you meet, no matter how much you respect or disrespect them, that their life is uniquely theirs and deserves some consideration too. I ask people now and they say, “You were a great kid, you were so well-behaved.” That’s because now I have achieved a certain kind of success so they remember things differently. It’s like cat pee on the pillow, you just can’t get it out. ", "It's funny," says Tan. Anything that was Chinese about me made me feel ashamed. In Amy Tan’s ‘ Mother tongue ’, we are taken through matters of linguistics as we join Tan in her description of ‘broken English’; this she further compares to the standards English. She wasn’t a perfect mother, but a lot of the things she did, she really did do out of love. How did you get in a position to do something with your life? Amy Ruth Tan is an American National born to Chinese parents. By the time it came to the second book, I was so freaked out, I broke out in hives. Amy tan mother tongue Pages: 2 (300 words) Analysis Mother Tongue Amy Tan Pages: 2 (297 words) Analysis of "Mother Tongue" by Amy Tan Pages: 1 (179 words) Reading Journal For Mother Tongue Pages: 2 (359 words) Questions on Tan's, Mother Tongue Pages: 2 (449 words) For myself, it’s very personal. And she said, 'No. Mrs. Tan regained her health, and mother and daughter departed for China in 1987. He is a very sweet man. November 2, 2020 by Essay Writer. I met the right people, who were passionate about my work and, thus, able to get it in front of people who would sell the book in bookstores, readers who would pass the word along to their mothers or daughters or friends. "She couldn't have loved me more," she says. For example, external success has to do with people who may see me as a model, or an example, or a representative. At first I tried to write fiction by making up things that were completely alien to my life. I don’t get along with my mother and I’m the only kid in an all-white community. No, I must write something completely different. Amy Tan: I would say first, you are not alone. I’m not advocating disobedience to authority in general — because that doesn’t necessarily lead to anything — but knowing the difference between your own intelligence and somebody handing you a set of things you should believe. Former Poet Laureate of the United States. That’s the scary thing. I found out later that he had seduced a young girl, left his wife and ran off with a 16-year old. You know, “Bad things happen for certain reasons. Fortunately, I didn’t. I’m not writing biography.” Writing is an extreme privilege, but it’s also a gift. I was trying very hard to see if I understood the whole book, because it had a lot of big words in it. So many people feel this way. So that by the end of my third year of being a freelance writer, I was billing 90 hours a week. Go get a candy bar.” If I came home with one “B,” I didn’t get anything. You’ve spoken of another turning point. I had no life. Some people would say that was psychosis but I prefer to say it was the beginning of a writer’s imagination. I worry about ethical ones, moral ones, the kinds of compromises that are constantly being made for pragmatic reasons. What should I be? I said, “This is the kind of person my father was.” Four years later I married Lou and we have been together ever since. It’s important to understand their motivations, their intentions, where those beliefs derive from and then having a set of questions to make sure that what they give to you is equally important and meaningful to you. How would you describe yourself? It took me a long time to get over that, and just finally being able to breathe again and say, “What’s important? You know? And I did see all of those things, and even more. My friend said that I could meet this woman and tell her how to make some real money. Upon its publication in 1989, Tan’s book won enthusiastic reviews and spent eight months on The New York Times bestseller list. So he said, “Cheer up, it’s not that bad.” And he threw me on the bed and he started to tickle me. 1 extremely important: She thought he was a good eater, that he liked Chinese food.". It was people discouraging me that got me into writing. And then my brother, and then herself, and then everything would be finished. Amy Tan: I loved fairy tales when I was a kid. Stream CBSN live or on demand for FREE on your TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone. No one in my family was a reader of literary fiction. Those beliefs influence what we do, not simply in those larger issues but what we think we’re contributing to the world, for what period of time and for whom. I’ll give you an example. The success took me by surprise and it frightened me. I had an agent who, by luck, read my stuff in a little magazine and wanted to be my agent. I am fascinated by language in daily life. "And I asked her how she felt. Amy Tan’s case went undiagnosed for years before she received proper treatment, and she suffered intense physical pain, mental impairment and seizures. ", "I said yes, thinking that it would be a chance to wear a silly costume, not realizing until later I'd actually have to sing and make a complete fool of myself. DeMattei, an attorney, took up the practice of tax law, while Tan studied for a doctorate in linguistics, first at the University of California at Santa Cruz, later at Berkeley. In part, I would say it’s people I don’t even know. I would still like to have that luxury, to be able to just sit and draw for hours and hours and hours. It’s a wonderful way to observe life, because so much of life is not simply getting from step to step, but it’s the things you discover about yourself and others around you and your relationships. "She never objected to him," Tan replies. I was only about 10 years old. There was a lot of storytelling going on in our house: family stories, gossip, what happened to the people left behind in China. Amy Tan: I reached a point where I had infuriated my mother so much we nearly killed each other. I hate that kind of thing. It’s only later that you see what the connections might have been and how it led to something. Her first story, “Endgame,” won her admission to the Squaw Valley writer’s workshop taught by novelist Oakley Hall. Received her bachelor ’ s so many things done a great service in helping with generational.. 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