Comparison of Rocking Horse Winner and Two Kinds

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In comparing the character of the mothers in the stories Rocking Horse Winner and Two Kinds which featured a theme of motherhood, Chinese Immigrant who came to America in 1949 after losing everything in China .Suyuan having survived the untimely death of her first husband, and two daughters, twin baby girls, in China, she knew there were so many ways for things to get better (Tan, Two Kinds 1), according to Jing-Mei narration in the story Two Kinds, she saw her mother as an overbearing and controlling mother, Suyuan a Chinese immigrants who came to America with a lot of hope and dreams, believing that with hard working, honesty and integrity, you can follow the path of greatness in America and become a prodigy. Jing-mei narrated the story in such way one could emphasized with her mother's past, Suyana who had a rough past would go to any length to see her daughter becomes prodigy, the expectations of Suyuan turned her to become over ambitious, authoritarian and relentless cruel to her daughter, which invariably turned Jing-Mei into a rebellious and disobedient child, who just want to find herself and become a person she wants to be.

The author was inconsequential in her characterization of Suyan as a perfectionist, a mother who believes in Chinese tradition and culture that daughter must command excellence in her life. Tan symbolize the piano into metaphor of how Jing-mei was able to confront her past and future, at the same time became an independent woman of a true self. the piano also symbolises an identity that the mother wants her to be a genius pianist and a good musician. a subtle extension of the theme that dominated the narration throughout the story. After her mother's death, Jing-Mei had become a dynamic and principled individual in which the rhythm of the music she plays was in contrast to her names Pleading Child and Perfectly Contented (Tan, Two Kinds 10) and in their melodyone short and slow, the other fast and long, Jing-Mei really shows her personality, her independence and a replica of her mother , She realizes that, just like the songs in the piano book, her mother and she "were they were two halves of the same song" (Tan, Two Kinds 10).

The Rocking Horse Winner story was a complete contrast to Two kinds, the main themes in The Rocking-Horse Winner are greed, luck and the pursuit for love; where the horse symbolises a tradition, the journey of the soul which often regarded as an omen of death, while the pursuit for luck was revealed as the love Hester could not give to her children according to story by Lawrence. Hester was a self-cantered individual who is very materialist and flamboyant in her spending. Lawrence narrated the story in such a way that we could see Hester as an antagonist, a greedy beautiful lady whose only purpose is centered around money and acquisition of material things. There must be more money. (Lawrence 1).

There's always whispering of more money in the house a situation that got Paul into horse racing gambling, Lawrence narrated the story in such way that shown Hester was a mother without empathy and without true affection for her children. The closest thing to love that comes to her she rejects. The opening of the story by Lawrence showed that Hester married for love but the love faded, although she gained children from her marriage, but she could not love them because she believes the is not lucky. To her luck is something that brings money; if you are lucky you can keep the money. The characterisation of Hester shows a woman that was covering her inadequacies by living a made believe and expensive life despite being poor-she could not love anyone but herself.

In The Rocking Horse Winner, Lawrence pointed towards the fact that Hester always considered his husband to be unlucky and thought that he never did things that he should be doing and that He never would be able to do anything worth doing (pg 382). Basically, in her eyes her husband was a worthless, unlucky person. The mother's thinking forced Paul to go in search of luck. Moreover, insulting nature and disrespect was another property that played a role in affecting their families In The Rocking Horse Winner, Hester did not show affection towards her children and love towards her husband. Instead she explained his finally, the last element is Theme. Money isn't everything. Be thankful for what you have before it’s gone forever. A person’s life is more important than material things. Thus, Tan through Suyana in the Two Kinds and Lawrence through Hester's nature in The Rocking Horse Winner showed how their dominating, disrespectful and rude nature had affected their family's life and resulted in Suayana strange relationship with her daughter and not seen the best in Jing -mei while Hestler in the end received 80,000 pounds but lost without knowing Pual waned acceptance and love for her.   

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Comparison Of Rocking Horse Winner and Two Kinds. (2019, Jul 23). Retrieved September 24, 2023 , from

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