Presentation on theme: "By Elizabeth Wong Struggle to be an All-American Girl."— Presentation transcript:
By Elizabeth Wong Struggle to be an All-American Girl
Understanding the Writers Ideas 1. They had to attend Chinese school unlike their friends who could play or do other fun things. We know they disliked Chinese school because Wong tells us they were kicking, screaming, or pleading to dissuade their mother who forcible walked them to school each day.
Uderstanding the Writers Ideas 2. She is exaggerating what she felt at the time was his meanness toward the children. They were afraid of being hit by him.
Understand the Writers Ideas 3. They attended to learn the Chinese language and culture. In regular school she learned American things: math (multiplication table); science (the satellites of Mars); English (book reports); all of which she felt were more important. These are books commonly read by schoolgirls.
Understanding the Writers Ideas 4. Chinese. 5. She was a fragile woman in her seventiesbut boisterous and raunchy. Wong was embarrassed by her Grandmother; she always wanted to dissociate …from the nagging loud voice that followed …
Understanding the Writers Ideas 6. Because she would be successful in the English- speaking world. 7. Her brother was even more fanatical about speaking English and treated their mother cruelly an impatiently when she tried to speak. Their father had played a cruel joke by giving her a name that is extremely difficult for Chinese speakers to pronounce properly.
Understanding the Writers Ideas 8. Make a mistake speaking. 9. As belonging to more than one cultural group. Tacos are typical Mexican food; egg roll are Chinese food; Cino de Mayo (5th of May) is a Mexican festival day. Because they belong to Spanish, no U.S. culture exclusively.
Understanding the Writers Ideas 10. You is the readeror, more specifically, those who are not Chinese; them is her own Chinese cultural group. We can surmise that Wong feels she has irretrievably lost her opportunity to learn about and integrate with her Chinese culturethat her young attitudes were naïve.
Understanding the Writers Techniques 1. All-American girl is a mocking cliché denoting a shallow, unthinking figure. The fact that she would struggle to be that implies the difficulties and sorrows in her experience. (ISR)
Understanding the Writers Techniques 2. Wong wants to show us her personal sorrow at having rejected her own culture, and by extension, to warn others not to do the same. Her narrative technique personalizes and thereby enhances her purpose.
Understanding the Writers Techniques 3. Pars. 8-9: her routine and daily life in Chinatown Pars. 10-11: her mothers problem with English and her brothers reactions to them. Pars. 12-13: the end of her Chinese school obligation These shifts are tied together by her various reactions to the uses of the language.
Understanding the Writers Techniques 4. The structure allows her to show, in a short essay, the various ramifications of language and culture differences and confusions. Another structure might have mandated a longer form.
Understanding the Writers Techniques 5. (AMV) Examples include: kicking, screaming, and pleading (2); our defiant tearful faces (3); he sways …his back (3); the various descriptions of smells in par. 4; nagging loud voices (8).
Understanding the Writers Techniques 6. Par. 3: (S) swayed on his heels like a palm tree; (M) a repressed maniacal child killer Par. 4: (S) room (like) Chinese medicine, ancient mothballs or dirty closet; (M)an imported faraway mustiness; crisp new scents (like) soft French perfume. (Continued)
Understanding the Writers Techniques 6. Par. 10: (S) a smattering of Chinese (like) chop suey Par. 12: (M) a cultural divorce
Understanding the Writers Techniques 7. She limits dialogue to call attention to the language: when it is recorded, we read it more carefully. Perhaps in examples of her grandmothers or mothers language difficulties.
Understanding the Writers Techniques 8. To draw sharp attention to them. 9. It is ironic because throughout the essay we are led to believe that she will harbors the same resentments against her culture which she writes about. Without sadly we would not know of her change in attitude. So, it is, in fact, the key word in the essay (see answer 2 above).
Understanding the Writers Techniques 10. Until the end, the tone is of resentment, which then turns to compassion and sorrow. It is in many ways similar to Maxine Hong Kingstons method and tone.
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Reference Websites Little Women: http://www.online- literature.com/alcott/littlewomen/http://www.online- literature.com/alcott/littlewomen/ Black Beauty: http://sewell.thefreelibrary.com/ http://sewell.thefreelibrary.com/ Nancy Drew: http://nancy- drew.mysterynet.com/http://nancy- drew.mysterynet.com/