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MonkeyNotes-The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston
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It is also important to remember that the book begins with a
warning to keep silent, a theme that Kingston will return to
again and again. Kingston is trying to establish her own voice as
a Chinese-American woman, which is difficult. She comes out
of a heritage, which silences women, and she is now forced to
straddle two very different cultures. She identifies with her
silent ancestor, who disobeyed the rules for women, and was
squelched for it. Kingston brings this forgotten ancestor to life
by creating different versions of the story to imbue the aunt with
motivation, personality, and power. She also defies her mother's
warning by telling the story.

Kingston intentionally includes several anachronisms in her
story. For instance, she describes the aunt cleaning a wound
with peroxide. It is very unlikely that in her country, her aunt
would have had access to peroxide. She also refers to origami, a
Japanese art form of folding paper that was unknown in the
aunt's time. The anachronisms, however, seem normal as
Kingston weaves the past and present together throughout the
chapter. She begins the first section of the book in the past,
when she was a young girl entering puberty, she then goes back
to scenes and stories from China, then she jumps forward to the
present when she is a mature woman writing her memoirs. In
this interweaving of past and present, she is able to show the
importance of her cultural past in her present life. She also sets a
structural pattern for the entire book

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MonkeyNotes-The Woman Warrior by Maxine Hong Kingston

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