Center Moriches High School, NY
Courage in The Joy Luck Club
"My idea was to have a gathering of four women, one for each corner of my mah jong table... Each week one of us would host a party to raise money and to raise our spirits... Hnnn! How could we laugh, people asked? It's not that we had no heart or eyes for pain. We were all afraid. We all had our miseries. But to despair was to wish back for something already lost . . . each week we could forget past wrongs done to us . . . We could hope to be lucky. That hope was our only joy."
Suyuan Woo was determined to keep things happy and joyful during the Japanese invasion. While everyone had lost all hope and took this defeat with heavy hearts, Suyuan and her three friends formed The Joy Luck Club. They looked toward the future instead of lingering on their pain. The quote, "The test of a courageous person is the ability to bear defeat without losing heart," is undoubtedly true. This statement defines the differences between the weak and the strong. A strong and courageous person is able to fall and stand back up to face the world again. However, a weak and cowardly person will fall, and remain in his own darkness. A great work of literature that supports this statement is The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan.
In The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan, many courageous people can be found throughout the book. The characterizations in this novel paint images of women with elaborate lives. Their traumatic experiences affected their outlook on life and made them courageous. Amy Tan characterized Suyuan as a desperate mother striving to carry her twin babies. "There was not one more step left in her body." Suyuan was defeated because her body could no longer support her and her babies. Her test of courage was to give up the babies in the hope that they would be found and taken care of by a kind-hearted person. Another courageous person in The Joy Luck Club was Lindo Jong. Amy Tan characterized Lindo as an extremely strong-hearted woman. This valor is shown when her mother orders her to go and live with her future husband. The language used in this scene was crucial to the effect it had on the reader. Lindo's mother says, "Obey your family. Do not disgrace us, act happy when you arrive. Really, you are very lucky." Her test of courage was to be obedient to her mother's words. When Lindo arrived at her new home, she wore her best dress and cooked the best meal. She was determined to honor her parents.
"The test of a courageous person is the ability to
bear defeat without losing heart," is a quote that is true in its entirety.
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan is a work of literature that supports
this quote. The defeats that Suyuan and Lindo had to bear indicate that
they are courageous people. They had high spirits even though they went
through a traumatic experience. A courageous person knows how to go on
and never look back because "to despair was to wish back for something