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Two Kinds

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Bailey Skarda

on 9 December 2013

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Transcript of Two Kinds

Two Kinds
by Amy Tan

Two Kinds is set in America 1950s and early 1960s.
Her mother immigrated from China for opportunity.
Being in America gives her mother the high expectations and hopes that pushes her to the limit.
Lived in Chinatown, California.
They live in an apartment building where they also meet "Old Chong", a retired piano teacher.

Jing Mei- main character, based on the author, Amy Tan. She is a dynamic character. After her mom pushes her too far, she loses her motivation.
Jing Mei's mom (no name)- antagonist of the story, forces Jing Mei to learn piano and play in the talent show. After the talent show she gives up on Jing.
Old Chong- piano teacher, deaf, and old. Can't hear Jing's terrible piano playing.
Lindo Jong- "Auntie Lindo"; stuck up, flaunts her daughters skill.
Waverly- prodigy at chess. Aunt Lindo's daughter.
Two kinds is narrated by Jing Mei and is constantly struggling with her mom and her identity
The short story is set up with section breaks
There is a lot of rhetorical shifts like "but" and "and then"
We think the framework of this story is Old Chong. Even though he is deaf he assumes what Jing Mei plays on the piano is somewhat good so he is always applauding her. Which keeps some of Jing-mei's hopes up.

Problems: Mom wants her to be a prodigy but she doesn't really care for it. She does not try at all especially during piano lessons.
Issues: She doesn't want to try, so her mother gives up hope
Morals: Try your best at anything new but also do it because you want to not because someone is pushing you to do something.
Theme: Daughter going against her mom about what the mom wants the daughter to be
Abstract concept: the abstract concept in this story is that Jing Mei is in limbo, she is stuck in the middle she really doesn't know what she is. Her mom wants her to be one thing and Jing Mei wants to be another. She is having an identity struggle.
Message: Be who you want to be not what someone else wants you to be.
The Life of Amy Tan
Born in America on February 19, 1952 in Oakland, California and is still living today
Her father, John Tan, was a minister and a electrical engineer
Her mother, Daisy Tan, left behind a secret past in China with 3 daughters and a deceased mother when she came to America
Amy seemed to think that her life was harder than others because her mother was pushing her to be things she did not want to be
Her family belonged to "Joy Luck Club", which is the name of her book that "Two kinds" comes from
At age 16 she got into drug problems
She then recovered and attended a various amount of colleges
Later she married Lou Demattei and they are still together to this day
In 1985 she started writing fiction as a hobby
Then went on to write the "Joy Luck Club"
Amy Tan's Background in Relation to "Two Kinds"
Amy Tan's parents pushed her to be something she didn't like.
Jing Mei was also pushed by her mom to be something else.
They wanted Amy to be a piano player which was the same thing that happened in the book.
Amy's mom came from China with a secret past just like Jing Mei's mom
Amy's mom past away before Amy was successful.
This also happened to Jing Mei
Both of there families were in the Joy Luck Club
1. What was the main problem between Amy Tan and her mother?
a. Amy's mom kept her past a secret from her
b. Her mom wanted her to be something Amy didn't like
c. They couldn't agree on the same shopping place

Oates, Joyce Carol.The Oxford Book of American Short Stories. Oxford: The Ontario Review, Inc., 1992.

Amy Tan Author of
Two Kinds
Jings mom lost everything in China and that pushed her to move to America, where "all my mothers hope lay"
The mother pushes Jing to be a prodigy, like Shirley Temple, a pianist, and like the three-year-old boy who knew all the capitals of all the sates.
"Old Chong" taught Jing to play piano, but he was deaf so, he didn't have knowledge that she was terrible.

Her Life Continued
When she was a child the Tan family moved around almost every year from one mixed neighborhood after another
After Amy's brother and father died, her mom took her and her younger brother to Europe to see the world.
Amy Tan started writing fiction stories when she was 33.
She had taken 15 years of piano classes which came in handy because she wrote the libretto for the opera The Bonesetter's Daughter
Amy's School Life
After being arrested at 16 she went on to winning an American Baptist Scholarship to attend Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon.
Amy then went to San Jose City College, then to San Jose State University, where she earned her B.A., as a President’s Scholar, with a double major in English and Linguistics.
She attended both the University of California at Santa Cruz and San Jose State University for her Master’s Degree in Linguistics in 1974.

Amy Tan and her mother Daisy
2. What happened when Amy was 16?
a. She got into drug problems
b. Her brother and father died of brain tumors
c. Her mother passed away from Alzheimer's Disease
3. What book of Amy's is "Two Kinds" taken from?
The Kitchen God's Wife
The Bonesetter's Daughter
The Hundred Secret Senses
The Joy Luck Club
4. When was Amy Tan born?
a. October 28, 1951
b. May 21, 1951
c. July 12, 1952
d. February 19, 1952
5. What social club was Amy's family apart of?
a. The Social Society
b. The Joy Luck Club
c. The Family Luck Club
b. Her mom wanted her to be something she didn't like
a. She got into drug problems
The Joy Luck Club
b.The Joy Luck Club
d. February 19, 1952
Amy and her husband Lou Demattei
Jing didn't learn how to play piano properly. Her mom enetered her into a talent show because she wanted to show off Jing's new skill to Aunt Lindo (stuck up aunt). Jing failed to impress her audience and herself. Jing loses motivation and doesn't want to participate in anything else her mom wants her to do. Since her mother was embarrassed and disappointed, Jing no longer tried to succeed.
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