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MAXINE HONG KINGSTON THE WOMAN WARRIOR Maxine Hong Kingston is Senior Lecturer for Creative Writing at the University of California, Berkeley. The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts by Maxine Hong Kingston. \. When I went to kindergarten and had to speak English for the first time' I. The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts. Home · The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of Warrior-Woman: The Forging of the Legend. Read more.

The Woman Warrior Pdf

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Chinese culture and tradition and will, because The Woman Warrior is The subtitle of The Woman Warrior, Memoirs of a Girlhood Among. In her award-winning book The Woman Warrior, Maxine Hong Kingston created an entirely new form—an exhilarating blend of autobiography and mythology. Maxine Hong Kingston's The Woman Warrior () is a radical breakthrough in the development of American literary tradition. Asian. American literature has.

Her characters are not really fiction, but never entirely real. A most remarkable thing about this novel happens when Kingston herself admits, during her childhood, that it was difficult to perceive what was the memory of a Chinese culture, and what was the invention of villagers who left home long ago.

But because the parents refuse to tell the story in any detail, Kingston establishes a few plausible occurrences on her own. Without that knowledge she remains lost between cultures: Chinese, American, and Chinese-American. And throughout the entire book, there is the same restless ambivalence that is found in "No Name Woman": the yearning to reconcile a divided identity.

Also, there is the desire to simply embrace her heritage and China, and the anger at the injustices suffered by Chinese women and girls. There are also two other important aspects that will be significant throughout the book in this first chapter: the silence and the second-generation sense of rootlessness. Even though the Chinese immigrant community is familiar to the author, she does not feel at home there, because the cultural disconnect between first and second-generations appears impossible to overcome.

Kingston compares herself to the second-century poet and musician Ts'ai Yen, who was taken captive by barbarians, and is best known for her Eighteen Stanzas for a Barbarian Reed Pipe, a series of short songs about her life among her captors and her longing to return to her own people.

At the ending of the story [and of the book], Kingston only briefly notes the poetess lamenting over her separation from her native land and her eventual return to her homeland. Instead, focuses on Ts'ai Yen as she recognizes eventually the validity of the barbarians' culture. I believe this suggests an ability to live amicably in both American and Chinese [and Chinese-American] cultures.

That this story implies that as Kingston has accepted her Chinese past, so her family especially her mother, Brave Orchid learned to accept the American influence. There are some books that have been on there for months, and they feel like lead, useless paperweights on my bed stand, so heavy when I pick them up and try to pry them apart and read them.

Unfortunately, this is one of them.

I managed to get through it out of sheer determination. The only good thing is that it has been a rather effective substitute for sleeping pills. I'm sorry, Maxine. I really wanted to dig your boo October is going to be the month of clearing out my "currently reading" list. I really wanted to dig your book.

I can't quite figure out why I didn't, as yours was exactly the kind of book I was seeking when I bought it: I wanted a lyrical memoir, poetic nonfiction, something not linear, a true story but with imaginative language, pretty sentences, something that worked on an associative not merely a narrative level.

You gave me all of that, and yet, it didn't hold my interest. It struck me as too rambling, too disembodied, too grasping, yes, too ghost-like. As for the passages that did have a narrative thrust, well, the stories therein were kind of boring. More often than not they went on too long. I feel guilty for this review. Was it my fault?

Surely, I must take some responsibility for this. It takes two to tango, after all. Perhaps it was my lack of commitment, my hopelessly scattered attentions over these last few months, the fact that I cheated on your book with so many others while I was reading it. I was an undisciplined, neglectful reader.

It's true. In the end though, I just found it non-compelling. Narrative or no narrative, something in a book must build; if it doesn't build, it should at least accrue or accrete. Nothing of the sort happened here. The sudden appearance of the "I" at the end felt abrasive.

I have no idea who this "I" is I haven't ever met her, she has taken no time to introduce herself, and now she is yelling at me? Where are your manners? Maxine, you did show a level of awareness about what you were doing, when, at the end, you wrote: "And I don't want to listen to anymore of your stories; they have no logic. They scramble me up. You lie with stories. You won't tell me a story and then say, 'This is a true story,' or 'This is just a story.

I can't stand fever and delirium or listening to people coming out of anesthesia. I will concede that the problem could have been timing. Perhaps if I had picked this up a year earlier, under different circumstances, we could have made a connection. We could yet tango into the fog together, maybe a year from now, when things have settled down, and be able to exist mysteriously there together, pale and happy for a time. Really enjoyed the mix of Chinese folklore with biography.

Learned a LOT about life in a totally foreign to me and fascinating culture. And I'm so glad I did. It is a poetic hybrid of memoir, myth and invention; set in contemporary California and Kingston's mother's China. Kingston creates her own version of family stories, inserts herself into Chinese folklore and beautifully describes the isolation of growing up female and Chinese-American.

The shifts between the past and present, be Last year, I read that "The Woman Warrior" was one of the books President Obama put on his daughter's Kindle and I resolved to finally read it. The shifts between the past and present, between the imagined and truth are sometimes disorienting but somehow work. At the end of the book she shouts to her mother: "You lie with your stories.

You won't tell me a story and then say, "This is a true story,' or "This is just a story. I don't even know what your real names are. I can't tell what's real and what you make up. I read this in college in an Asian-American Literature class, and it was excellent. I enjoyed our discussions and writing an essay on it in class. NOW I am re-reading it! I know so much more about Chinese culture now than I did 20 years ago that this is even better the second time around!

These days, I tend to think of it pretty much as one of the very few crossover Asian American literary texts that are referred to in multiple critical circles. Max, you made it girl! The way Kingston blends Chinese folklore with her own memories as a first generation Chinese-American to tell the story of her childhood is absolutely beautiful and breathtaking. No description of mine can do justice to what Kingston has tried to weave.

Amazing, amazing read! Do Asian women think in aphorisms and have dreams about dragons? Do we all fancy ourselves as Mulan reincarnated? Do our mothers always woefully misunderstand us?

No, we don't. I bought it more than 10 years ago, read the first little bit and loved it, then put it down for some reason, and didn't get back to it until now. I really wish I had kept reading it back in the day because I feel like I might have liked it very much.

I just didn't feel the same today. The first thing I noticed about this book was the writing. Even when I was less than interested in the events of the book, the writing would draw me This book was a bit of a disappointment to me, I have to admit.

Even when I was less than interested in the events of the book, the writing would draw me in. Maxine Hong Kingston has a lovely way with words, and definitely enjoyed that part of the book. What got me, I think, was just the meandering nature of the narrative. There was no clear destination to any of the chapters, and I just found it hard to maintain interest. When I was reading the book, I enjoyed it, but I never really felt compelled to pick it up.

The format was also kind of confusing at first. I picked it up for a nonfiction read since it's technically a memoir, but it didn't feel at all like nonfiction.

A section would start with some basic facts and events, but before I knew it, it would meander into speculation or just straight-up fantasy. It made for a bit of literary whiplash, especially before I had adapted to it. I can't say I minded it as a technique, but it lent itself to that meandering quality that made it hard for me to stay focused on reading the book.

I did think it was interesting to see some of the issues that were explored. There's a lot of focus on Maxine Hong Kingston's mother, who is simultaneously interesting and completely annoying. I enjoyed learning about her past in China, but I found it hard to reconcile that with the way that she behaves in America.

I imagine that Maxine Hong Kingston does as well, given how much time she spends exploring her mother's character. I also liked the look at one experience of immigration, which is an issue I'm especially interested in at the moment. I've spent some time in Japan, so I feel like I understand a little bit of what it might be like, but this book brought it a bit clearer for me.

I could turn it into a strange kind of character study, seeing what I remembered, what I brought with me all these years later. I decided to re-read this because I watched Disney's "Mulan" and remembered having read a story about the Chinese version of her as compared with the Disney version. It was nice to reconnect with my high-school-English-class self and with my Chinese half of the family, though a It was interesting which parts of this book I remembered from when I read it in high school.

It was nice to reconnect with my high-school-English-class self and with my Chinese half of the family, though a couple generations removed. I wonder how my grandparents behaved at Chinese school.

I wonder if their parents made them translate things they were embarrassed about.

This is a good mix of fiction and non-fiction, and the line between the two is so skillfully blurred that you won't know when you crossed it. This is the memior of a Chinese woman growing up between two worlds.

Those of us who are first generation Americans will absolutely be able to relate. However, you don't have to be first generation to enjoy this book. The insights into Chinese culture and the almost lyrical style of the storytelling will keep you more than interested in this author's story. This collection of four memior is story-talk, narratives. Less linear, sometimes even some magical realism in "White Tiger".

I don'the always quite quite understand. I do know Kingston is working toward an understanding herself and her family as Chinese-Americans in writing these memiors. Even so, I appreciate MHK's genre-bending memoir. It provokes thoughts, questions and is interesting in both form and writing style.


I think that MHK succeeded in representing a China that is both true to her and beyond her. Told in 5 chapters, each section takes on a life of it's own and explains a different aspect of Chinese culture.

To me it was mostly a book about a mother daughter relationship, and how women are treated in China. Incredibly eye opening and empowering. I did feel a little lost and confused at times during the book since some parts have such a lyrical and fantasy prose. All in all, this is a very important book abou This is a very feminist book about growing up as a young Chinese girl in America. All in all, this is a very important book about identity and family.

It combines and intertwines categories beautifully; I cannot clearly define it but it's something between Chinese and English writing, something between fiction and nonfiction, modern and traditional writing, a novel, made up of short stories. The setting in the story is some of the Chinese history story, and the writer is not very believe that.

Also in this story you can know the difference between the Chinese history and Americans history. But there is a lot of part I am not very understand it. Kingston was born on October 27, Kingston isn't only a Chinese American author but also a professor at the university of California, Berkeley. The stories she wrote in her book are based on stories told by her mother. The story of the "No-name woman" takes place in the new society village in China.

The rest of the stories takes place in Stockton, California. The woman warrior focuses on stories about five Chi Maxine Hong Kingston the author of "the Woman warrior published her book in The woman warrior focuses on stories about five Chinese women.

One of the stories talks about a female warrior called fa mu lan. In the chapter "white tigers," fa mu lan trains to be a warrior even though she is not a man.

Later in the story she leads a ray of men to go after a corrupted emperor. After all her but,Es were over she went back to being a mother and wife. Some of the themes are the role of women in traditional Chinese society and the individual vs. I think that this is a great book. In one of the stories it talks about a woman who proves to others that women can do the same thing men can do. It also lets you feel as if you where living the life of a traditional chides woman.

For me this book took a slow pacenot read. The movie "Mulan" is similar to one of the chapters called "White Tigers. The both also lead there amry full of men. Anyone who is interested in Chinese cultures should read this book. I think they will enjoy this book because it talks about historical Chinese traditions and the traditional stories that were told to each other. I think that the book is important because it helps the reader understand Chinese traditions and the type of stores they told.

I had to read it for a school assignment, and my teacher made it out to be some big scary literary monster that I would lose my head to. But I actually really enjoyed this one. I thought Maxine Hong Kingston's writing style was going to be dense and confusing, but it was shockingly easy to understand, yet fun to read as well. This book is very well thought out and purposeful, and I was not bored once in this book.

The Woman Warrior

Okay, she did go on and on a bit at one part, but This book really surprised me. The Refiner's Fire: The Memoirs of a Survivor. Memoirs of a Cavalier. Memoirs of a Gaijin. Memoirs of a Fruitcake. Memoirs of a Survivor. Memoirs of a Geisha. Forgotten Land: Journeys Among the Ghosts of East Prussia. Memoirs of a Hoyden. Houses of Study: A Jewish Woman among Books.

Memoirs Of A Physician. She never felt that her parents encouraged her to do well in her academic studies, in part because in the conservative Chinese culture, women often are not expected to have careers outside the home.

Her negative childhood experiences are reflected in The Woman Warrior, in which she exhibits a certain bitterness leveled at her parents, The Woman Warrior 4 as well as at American and Chinese cultures. After having excelled in her high school studies, Hong won eleven scholarships that allowed her to attend the University of California at Berkeley, from which she graduated in That same year, she married Earll Kingston, an actor. Two years later, she returned to Berkeley to pursue a teaching certificate, which she received in For the next two years, she taught English and mathematics in Hayward, California, and then in , she, her husband, and their son, Joseph, moved to Hawaii, where her great-grandfathers first had worked when they immigrated to America.

In China Men, Kingston describes the experiences of her forefathers working on the rough plantations of Hawaii, which they called Sandalwood Mountain. In Hawaii, Kingston taught English at the state university and at Mid-Pacific Institute, a private school; in her spare time, she wrote. When The Woman Warrior was published in and became an immediate and unqualified success, she retired from teaching and devoted her energies to writing fulltime. In , she published Tripmaster Monkey: His Fake Book, her first traditionally structured novel, in which she tells the fictitious story of Whitman Ah Sing, a Chinese American living in Berkeley, California, during the counterculture s, with its hippies, tie-dyed tee-shirts, and drug addiction.

The Woman Warrior

Kingston, who currently resides in California, is a frequent commentator and guest speaker at academic conferences and cultural events across the country. She also has found it necessary to write articles defending The Woman Warrior, explaining herself and rebutting some critics who feel that the famous autobiography focuses too much on exotic Chinese history and not enough on the day-to-day racism that Chinese Americans face in American society.

To these charges, The Woman Warrior 5 Kingston responds that she is not trying to represent Chinese culture; she is portraying her own experiences. Her unique literary skills, vision, and style have established her as one of the most significant American writers in the latetwentieth century. While many American autobiographical works, such as The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin and The Autobiography of Malcolm X, detail the struggles of their protagonists, who generally rise from a low status in society to achieve success, The Woman Warrior works differently.

The Woman Warrior

Kingston provides scant information about her post-college adult life and her successful career as a teacher. Absent from The Woman Warrior is a conspicuous and clearly defined episode of reaching a successful stage in life—be it financial, religious, or otherwise—typically seen in many other American autobiographies. Instead, Kingston presents the writing of her autobiography itself as her success, her cathartic act of making peace with her family and society, and gaining an understanding of herself, of who she is and where she fits in the world around her.

Readers who expect a story about achieving success as defined by standard American mythology—the American Dream—sometimes find The Woman Warrior disappointing. For her part, Kingston considers The Woman Warrior very much an autobiography in the American literary tradition. I was claiming the English language and the literature to tell our story as Americans.

She is intensely aware that her autobiography is very subjective and that she can present only her version of events, not a version officially sanctioned or approved by the entire ChineseAmerican community. As such, The Woman Warrior can be considered a postmodern work because of its self-awareness of presenting only one interpretation of truth, which is a tenet of the postmodern literary movement.

There was one knot so complicated that it blinded the knot-maker. Finally an emperor outlawed this cruel knot, and the nobles could not order it anymore. If I had lived in China, I would have been an outlaw knot-maker.

Whereas other autobiographers tend to present their life stories as factual, Kingston undermines her own authority as narrator, stressing her subjectivity. She provokes readers into stepping back from the text to reflect upon some deeper implication, or subtext. As a first-generation Chinese American, she struggles to reconcile her Chinese cultural heritage with her emerging sense of herself as an American.

This aunt, whom Kingston names No Name Woman because her real name is never spoken by the family, becomes pregnant while her husband is working in America. When No Name Woman no longer can hide her pregnancy from her family and her village, the villagers destroy her home as punishment for her adultery.

After giving birth in a pigsty, she kills herself and the baby by drowning in the family well. Like Fa Mu Lan, she imagines herself leaving home at seven years of age and being brought up by martial arts teachers.

She becomes a great warrior, triumphantly returning to her home to save her people. After giving birth to two children in China, Brave Orchid takes the unusual step of attending medical school, after which she works as a doctor in her home village and becomes a very successful healer.

Eventually, she gives up her career to join her husband in America. However, unable to practice medicine in America, she and her husband open a laundry business in California.

However, after many years of practicing medicine in Los Angeles, he remarried and abandoned Moon Orchid, who remained in Hong Kong waiting for him to send for her. Brave Orchid, determined to have Moon Orchid confront this irresponsible man, arranges for her sister to immigrate to America, but when Moon Orchid finally faces her husband, he again rejects her and chides her for disrupting his life and career.

Moon Orchid subsequently goes mad, ending her days in an insane asylum.

Shy, awkward, introspective, and intellectual, she describes her anguished childhood years and her coming to terms with two competing cultures, American and Chinese. Her name suggests a brave, resilient, resourceful, and sometimes harsh character. Unfortunately, her passivity does not help her survive after her husband abandons her in America. Brave Orchid ends up in a mental asylum. Historians do not agree on whether or not this Chinese Joan of Arc really existed.

As a child, Kingston fantasized about becoming Fa Mu Lan. In China your father had a sister who killed herself. She jumped into the family well.

We say that your father has all brothers because it is as if she had never been born. She tested our strength to establish realities.


Because of this realistic-magical aspect, a talk-story can be as confusing to its audience—Kingston and her readers—as it can be inspiring. Shunned by her family, the aunt gave birth in a pigsty, alone. The villagers are watchful. She knows that her mother is concerned that she not have premarital sex because her mother directly states that that is the reason for telling the story. How to reconcile this conflict between these two disparate cultures becomes her thesis, the problem she attempts to solve—and ultimately succeeds in solving.Shayla Gibbens.

When I was reading the book, I enjoyed it, but I never really felt compelled to pick it up. Hungry Minds, Inc. As an account of growing up female and Chinese-American. Every creature has a hiding skill and a ghting skill a warrior can use. The bird ew above me down the mountain, and for some miles, whenever I turned to look for them, there would be the two old people waving.

Walking erect knees straight, toes pointed forward, not pigeon-toed, which is Chinese-feminine and speaking in an inaudible voice, I have tried to turn myself American-feminine. Not once would I see a three-legged toad, though; you need strings of cash to bait them.