The Joy Luck Club
Amy Tan
Contributed by Vernita Mires
Section 2 - Parable
Summary

In this introductory part to the second section, the author presents a conversation between a mother and daughter. The mother forbids her child from riding her bicycle away from home. When the girl argues, the mother uses the book, The Twenty-Six Malignant Gates, to warn her daughter of the dangers of leaving home. The girl asks to read the book, but her mother tells her it is written in Chinese and is, therefore, out of her grasp. The girl rebels by riding her bicycle down the street, as forbidden by her mother. Before she reaches the corner, she falls from the bicycle. 

Analysis

This introductory passage introduces the themes of conflict and rebellion, which are carried throughout the second section of the novel. Like the girl who disobeys her mother, the daughters of the ladies in the Joy Luck Club fail to follow the rules set by their mothers and suffer the consequences of their actions. 

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