Woman Warrior Reflection

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In the novel The Woman Warrior written by Maxine Hong Kingston, we are being told about the stories of five women and their lives. Throughout the novel there is a story told for each of these women. Kingston writes throughout the novel almost exclusively of her own family. Her main focus is on her own mother, Brave Orchid. Kingston originally learnt the tradition of talk story from her mother and she spends most of her time judging the dynamics of each female role in her family. Each story and thoughts that are told are being passed from one generation down to another throughout their family. Kingston learns throughout the novel how to come to terms with each of these stories and she creates memoirs in order to make herself feel better about…show more content…
Fa Mu Lan trains to become a warrior from the age of seven years old. She continues to lead an army of men into battle, pretending to be a man herself. Once the battle is over she returns home to become a wife and a mother. Kingston begins to think about the mythical warrior’s life and how it contrasts with her own. Kingston can’t stand up to her own bosses in America due to their racist beliefs. This is hugely related to the theme of self as listening to this story is helping Kingston grow as a person. She believes if the mythical warrior can pretend to be a man, as women were not allowed to fight, in order to fulfil her hopes and duties then Kingston believes that it may be possible for her to stand her ground too. She soon realises that instead of being at battle with weapons, her weapons soon become her words and this is how she will fight for herself. “The swordswoman and I are not so dissimilar. May my people understand the resemblance soon so that I can return to them. What we have in common are the words at our backs. The idioms for revenge are "report a crime" and "report to five families." The reporting is the vengeance—not the beheading, not the gutting, but the words. And I have so many words—"chink" words and "gook" words too—that they do not fit on my skin.” This also relates to the theme of society as Fa Mu Lan has to pretend to be a man in order to lead them into battle. She had to go to extreme lengths and continue to change her whole identity in order to fight for her country. This shows that the society had very strict rules on gender roles that weren’t to be crossed. Heather Lindskold, owner of ‘between the covers blog’, stated that “When Kingston tells us the story of the legendary woman warrior, Fa Mu Lan (Hua Mulan), she does so in the first person, as though Kingston is the woman warrior in the story. Throughout the book, we learn that each
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