Monkey Bridge Character Analysis

1271 Words6 Pages

“What is beneath my skin. Inside my bones?” (Tan 40). This is a familiarly asked question by many Asian immigrants, and many find it difficult to answer. The rich historical culture of Asian assimilation is a complex and intriguing subject. The experiences related and recorded in the novels The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, Monkey Bridge by Lan Cao, and Obasan by Joy Kogawa give great insight to the internal and external struggles East-Asian immigrants face in the Western World, specifically Chinese-Americans, Vietnamese-Americans, and Japanese-Canadians. Although the situations have certainly improved since the mid twentieth century, many of the issues and struggles the characters in the novels face are still real and ever-expanding for over five percent of the U.S. population. To …show more content…

In Obasan, although many characters try to forget their past, characters like Aunt Emily give the Japanese-Canadians hope. Her hard work and perseverance for her heritage lead to true results. People like her formed the Co-operative Committee of Japanese Canadians who sent a formal appeal that stated, “the deportation of Canadians of Japanese racial origin are wrong and indefensible . . .” (Kogawa 297). This appeal lead to reinstatement of citizenship for Japanese-Canadians and a formal apology from the Canadian government. Throughout the novel The Joy Luck Club, Jing-Mei Woo struggles with her sense of identity and belonging in a community as she is often embarrassed of her heritage, and prefers to live her life in the shadows. However, at the end of the book, Jin-mei finds peace when she seeks her roots and sisters in China. She finally finds her inner Chinese that she described is “in your blood waiting to be let go” (Tan 306). This shows that although immigrants of the time period often struggled with self identity, deep down they wanted to find acceptance in their

Open Document