What did the daughters in The Joy Luck Club teach their mothers?

Expert Answers
Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that the daughters taught several elements to their mothers.  One of the most basic elements taught is the idea that there are certain "universalities" in being a woman.  While the conditions and circumstances might change, there are some constants that have to be grasped.  The assertion of voice, the ability to live with choices made and consequences received, all help to highlight this basic idea.  At the same time, the daughters teach their mothers that the choices that the previous generation of women made were the right ones.  When Ying-Ying sees Lena endure the same silencing of voice that she underwent, she recognizes that the choices she made were the rights ones, however painful they were, and that her daughter must make similar choices.  At the same time, I think that the daughters teach the mothers that there is a strength in displaying solidarity.  The mothers learn from the daughters that there is a value in being able to validate one's voice and the voices of others through collectivity and being able to relay these experiences to others.  One gets the impression that the daughters have demonstrated to the mothers that what has been formed with The Joy Luck Club is something that has to be transmitted to the daughters' children, the mothers' grandchildren.

Read the study guide:
The Joy Luck Club

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question