Where The Wind Leads: An Analysis

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In his memoir, Where the Wind Leads, Vinh Chung demonstrates the theme that times of despair and hardship will eventually pass, but it is the motivation to succeed which will make that time fruitful. While relaying the story of his family’s past, Chung gives an overall theme of success and prosperity which accompanies the distress and conflict brought about by the encompassing Vietnam War. As Chung stated, “[W]hat I do know is that the same pressure that can crush coal into dust can also turn carbon into diamond . . . Tough times produce tough people” (14). Though this theme of success can be grounded in one’s desire to prosper, Chung shows a deeper desire from which this success stems. Throughout his book, Chung reveals the strict, harsh love…show more content…
As Chung described, “The last one in bed and the first one up every morning – that was daily life for my mother . . . every day from May 1966 until our family left Vietnam in June 1979. . . . My mother’s desire was to be a good wife to her husband and a good daughter-in-law to my grandmother . . . To fail as a wife and daughter-in-law would have been to shame herself and her whole family as well” (50). As Grandmother Chung aged with time, Hoa was forced to carry the burden of all the household chores with no help whatsoever. Despite this especially large burden, along with caring for her own two children, Hoa complained little and persevered through this time of hardship. Out of love and respect for Grandmother Chung and the rest of the family, Hoa put her family as a priority, caring for them from dawn until dusk, so that the house could function and run smoothly during an already rocky time in Vietnam. At times, Hoa fell into a depression due to the exhaustion and pressure of this backbreaking and demanding work; however, she was motivated by her respect for family and continued to work through hardships, especially those within her own self, in order to care for those who lived in the same
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