Character Development In Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club

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In Amy Tan’s Joy Luck Club, the different stories show how the different characters develop and progress. Rose Hsu Jordan begins “Half and Half” as someone who clearly lacks of conviction as she allows everyone but her to make decisions. Throughout “Without Wood”, however, Rose Hsu Jordan begins to learn, with the help of her mother, how to speak up. In both stories, Rose Hsu Jordan’s development transforms her from a timid and passive girl, to an assertive woman who doesn’t allow others to step on her. Nonetheless, this change was brought upon not by an event, but rather, it was brought upon by Rose’s mother. An-Mei is responsible for transforming Rose from a timid and passive woman into one with an actual “voice”.
Rose, an inherently timid and passive person, ends up letting her decisions be made by everybody else but her, making this character completely voiceless. In the beginning of “Without Wood”, Rose says that she “used to believe everything [her] mother said, even when [she] didn’t know what she meant” (Tan, pg. 185). As seen in this quote, Rose never really questioned anything her mother said, which seems …show more content…

After Ted visits the house in order to collect the divorce papers, Rose finds out about his new lover and she feels completely devastated. This new emotion leads something to click inside her head and, as she described, “And then for the first time in months, after being in limbo all that time, everything stopped” (Tan, pg. 194). Something inside Rose changes and she finally allows herself to challenge her husband. Rose realizes that she wasn’t actually seeing things for what they were and was allowing her ex-husband to continue controlling her, seeing as though she was going to simply accept the money and sign the papers. The shock of the affair is so big that Rose begins to see and decides to stand her ground and fight for what she wants in the

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