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PinkMonkey.com-MonkeyNotes-The Woman Warrior, by Maxine Hong Kingston




PinkMonkey® Quotations on . . .

The Woman Warrior

By

Maxine Hong Kingston

QUOTATION: My job is my own only land.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 2 (1976).

QUOTATION: The Revolution put an end to prostitution by giving women what they wanted: a job and a room of their own.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 3 (1976).

QUOTATION: The sweat of hard work is not to be displayed. It is much more graceful to appear to be favored by the gods.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 3 (1976).

QUOTATION: The idioms for revenge are “report a crime” and “report to five families.” The reporting is the vengeance—not the beheading, not the gutting, but the words.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 2 (1976).

QUOTATION: ...I’ve learned exactly who the enemy are. I easily recognize them—business-suited in their modern American executive guise, each boss two feet taller than I am and impossible to meet eye to eye.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 2 (1976).

QUOTATION: No husband of mine will say, “I could have been a drummer, but I had to think about the wife and kids. You know how it is.” Nobody supports me at the expense of his own adventure.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), U.S. author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 2 (1976).

QUOTATION: To shut the door at the end of the workday, which does not spill over into evening. To throw away books after reading them so they don’t have to be dusted. To go through boxes on New Year’s Eve and throw out half of what is inside. Sometimes for extravagance to pick a bunch of flowers for the one table. Other women besides me must have this daydream about a carefree life.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), U.S. author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 3 (1976).

QUOTATION: When we Chinese girls listened to the adults talk-story, we learned that we failed if we grew up to be but wives or slaves. We could be heroines, swordswomen. Even if she had to rage across all China, a swordswoman got even with anybody who hurt her family. Perhaps women were once so dangerous that they had to have their feet bound.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 2 (1976).

QUOTATION: I learned to make my mind large, as the universe is large, so that there is room for paradoxes. Petals are bone marrow; pearls come from oysters. The dragon lives in the sky, ocean, marshes, and mountains; and the mountains are also its cranium. Its voice thunders and jingles like copper pans. It breathes fire and water; and sometimes the dragon is one, sometimes many.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 2 (1976).

QUOTATION: ...I am useless, one more girl who couldn’t be sold. When I visit the family now, I wrap my American successes around me like a private shawl. I am worthy of eating the food. From afar I can believe my family loves me fundamentally. They only say, “When fishing for treasures in the flood, be careful not to pull in girls,” because that is what one says about daughters. But I watched such words come out of my own mother’s and father’s mouths; I looked at their ink drawing of poor people snagging their neighbors’ flotage with long flood hooks and pushing the girl babies on down the river. And I had to get out of hating range. I read in an anthropology book that Chinese say, “Girls are necessary too”; I have never heard the Chinese I know make this concession. Perhaps it was a saying in another village.
ATTRIBUTION: Maxine Hong Kingston (b. 1940), Chinese–American author. The Woman Warrior, ch. 2 (1976).



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