5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
The need to belong and the desire to escape,
This review is from: The Joy Luck Club (Cambridge Literature) (Paperback)
Focussing on a female dominated mother-daughter generation gap and a Chinese-American culture difference Tan mixes social and personality differences to create a broad and encompassing novel about change. TJLC shows, in its older generation, the huge amounts of reliance displaced individuals have on bonding with other alienated people and the human struggle surmounted to achieve happiness. The daughters in TJLC portray the difficulties sometimes endured being Chinese-American and seeming to be an outsider of each culture. So through these two different aspects of the novel Tan incorporates a “traditional” Chinese story at times in the vein of a less political Wild Swans and the cultural disparity of the modern world adds weight to the “emigrant” literature already established from writers such as Frank McCourt (Irish immigration to the USA) and Caryl Phillips (West Indian immigration to Britain).
Sometimes the tone of TJLC can be overly sentimental and meandering but in all Tan creates a moving tale of displacement, the need to belong and solidarity.