The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts

Author: Maxine Hong Kingston

Subject: Autobiography

Publisher: Vintage (1977-01-02)

9780780736849

The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood Among Ghosts ebook cover

Amazon.com Review

The Woman Warrior is a pungent, bitter, but beautifully written memoir of growing up Chinese American in Stockton, California. Maxine Hong Kingston (

Review

Maxine Hong Kingston grew up in two worlds. There was "solid America," the place her parents emigrated to, and the China of her mother's "talk-stories." In talk-stories women were warriors and her mother was still a doctor in China who could cure the sick and scare away ghosts, not a harried and frustrated woman running a stifling laundromat in California. But what is story and what is truth? In China, a ghost is a supernatural being; in America it is anyone who is not Chinese. In addition, underlying even the most exciting talk-stories of Chinese women warriors is the real oppression of Chinese women: "There is a Chinese word for the female 'I' - which is 'slave.' " In an attempt to figure out her world, Maxine Hong Kingston finds herself creating stories of her own, filling in the blanks her mother has not told her because her daughter is, after all, not true Chinese and thus cannot be completely trusted. Can these new stories explain why she had trouble speaking in the American schools? Can they help her understand the aunt who committed adultery and whose existence is denied? The new stories refuse to fall into traditional forms, and the realizations that come from them often bring out a beautiful, passionate anger that practically burns through the pages. This is powerful, experimental writing, a combination of love, hate, frustration, and sheer beauty. -- For great reviews of books for girls, check out . -- From