The Joy Luck Club Questions and Answers
by Amy Tan

The Joy Luck Club book cover
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In The Joy Luck Club, in "Rules of the Game," is Waverley's mother a metaphor to the "strongest wind" that "cannot be seen"? Please explain.

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In Amy Tan's novel, The Joy Luck Club, "Rules of the Game" tells the story of Waverly Jong as she becomes a chess champion. However, more important is the theme that Waverly learns from her mother:

I was six when my mother taught me the art of invisible strength. It was a strategy for winning arguments, respect from others...

To better understand Lindo Jong (Waverly's mother), it is important to refer to the preface to this section of the book (called "The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates"). 

A mother tells her daughter not to ride her bike around the corner because then her mother cannot see her when she falls, and will not hear her. The child argues with her mother:

"How do you know I'll fall?"...

"It is in a book, The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates, all the bad things that can happen to you outside the protection of this house."

The mother explains that these things are [mystically, it seems] written down in Chinese [somewhere], and that the child would not understand the words. The child, in a fit...

(The entire section contains 609 words.)

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