Amy Tan Two Kinds Cultural Analysis

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Everyone has their own unique cultural identity. Individuality is the genetic code for differences and individuality, and it allows people to perceive certain aspects of the world through a different lens. Everyone has different tastes in music, different behavioral attributes, and different facial features that set others apart. To a great extent, one’s culture informs the way they view others and the world. One example of how culture influences the perspectives of others is in the novel excerpt, “Two Kinds” by Amy Tan. On Page 23, Jing Mei’s mom becomes entranced by a young Chinese pianist on The Ed Sullivan Show, and immediately signs up Jing Mei for weekly piano classes. When Jing Mei finds out about these classes, her perspective on…show more content…
Jing Mei is signed up to perform at a local talent show in front of her family, despite having no interest in playing the piano. Her performance of a piece ironically titled “Pleading Child”, as expected, doesn’t go well, which only makes Jing Mei and her mom’s perspectives of each other more negative. Ultimately fueled with hatred on Page 27-28, Jing Mei has a meltdown, thinking to herself, “My true self had finally emerged. So this was what had been inside of me all along.” Feeling both pressured and embarrassed by her family, especially her mom, Jing Mei, musically, feels powerless, and all of her might to be a prodigy disappears after her performance. Regardless, her mother still is persistent on Jing Mei becoming a prodigy, despite her passionless performance and her family’s negative reaction. In return, Jing Mei becomes angry at her mother, and will do anything to change her mind. Screaming, “I wish I were dead! Like them.”, her mother freezes, disappointed in her daughter, and quits Jing Mei’s piano classes. On Page 28-29, Jing Mei’s perspective on the world becomes more apparent: “For unlike my mother, I didn’t believe I could be anything I wanted to be, I could only be me.” After Jing Mei’s cultural experiences, and her mother’s contrasted beliefs of Jing Mei’s musical power, Jing Mei feels more culturally and musically independent, as well as
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