How does June come to terms with her mother in Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I would say that June comes to terms with her mother when she has to assume the role of linking the past and the future together.  The purpose to her life and the understanding of her mother was something that eluded her grasp when her mother was alive.  Yet, when June becomes a part of the Joy Luck Club, she understands that the women in the club are dependent on their children to link both realms.  June recognizes that she has to do this for both herself and her mother.  In doing so, June comes to peace with her mother, understanding more about her identity and her mother's sense of self.  In reestablishing contact with the children that her mother was forced to abandon in China, a few elements emerge.  The first is that June has become at peace with her mother, almost to the point where she embraces the life her mother once led.  At the same time, June becomes the link between future and past that her mother searched for throughout her life, something that inevitably cast a shadow over the relationship between mother and daughter.  It is in this reclamation of both daughter's voice, and in some respects, her mother's voice, that June ends up coming to peace with her mother and the relationship that both women shared.

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