Barrio Boy And The Joy Luck Club

928 words - 4 pages

In both pieces of literature; "Barrio Boy," by Ernesto Galarza and "The Joy Luck Club," by Amy Tan; the authors portray five families and their friends’ struggle with language barriers, even within their own families, adapting to the customs and routines of the North American society, and how the younger family members succeeded in school, work, and relationships.

In Amy Tan’s book "The Joy Luck Club," the theme of the "American Dream," which is the belief that America is a guaranteed land of opportunity, of success and happiness is the main theme in the story. It is of women who set off on a journey because in their own country they were suffering through many hardships, like war and ...view middle of the document...

" She continued with the ritual but unfortunately the child died in the morning. These two situations that happened in the books has much to do with culture and traditions that the immigrants in the stories believe in and still practiced, no matter where they resided. Lena’s mother felt that having a house too high up could ward of good spirits and would not bring good luck to the family, which is commonly known as the practice of Feng Shui. In Ernesto’s case he witnessed a prayer ritual for those who are very sick, participated in this because his family members believe in a higher spirit and using the Virgin of Guadalupe as a median and symbol for spiritual enlightenment.

In Amy Tan’s book, the daughters experienced relationships with American men, and even married some. In Rose Hsu Jordan’s case she met Ted Jordan and started to date him. When Ted invited Rose to his family picnic, Mrs, Jordan took Rose aside and confided that Ted’s future did not include a wife who was a member of a minority race. Unfortunately Rose experienced racism even though her spoken English was perfect.

Ernesto experienced a racist situation in reverse. Ernesto wanted to send a letter to his mother but it was turned into a telegram in because it needed to be sent in English. As far as his signature at the bottom, he wrote "Little Ernie," but the clerk "refused to destroy my Mexican cultural image, returned the sheet and told me to sign Ernesto." Since Ernesto is living his young adulthood in a barrio: a neighborhood within a city...

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