Amy Tan's theme is related to the re-identification with the motherland (China, her mother and half-sisters), but ironically the story's theme is weakened by Tan's focus on China's modernization.
"A Pair of Tickets" was among the first chapters submitted by Tan in order to get a $50,000 advance from G.P. Putnam's Sons. Though it is The Joy Luck Club's final chapter, it is the premise for the novel because it chronicles Tan's real-life trip to China with her ailing mother in 1987, a trip that was not only a cultural revelation, but a stylistic one as well.
Jing-Mei Woo imagines her older "identical sisters transforming from little babies into six-year-old girls" (269), half expecting them to arrive in rickshaw wearing peasant pineapple hats. When her aunt says, "Once you are born Chinese, you cannot help but...
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