China Boy Essay, Research Paper
Megan hinted that slapping children in the face was not Chinese.
“We are not in china, Megan,” Edna would say through her teeth. “That is precisely the point I am striving to make.” (Page 97)
Kai’s family moved to the United States to escape Communism from Shanghai China. After Kai’s mother had died, his dad remarried Edna, and she is trying to wipe all the Chinese Culture from the household. She had forbidden Kai and Janie speaking Chinese, and she burned all their old memories, including Kai’s old Calligraphy papers, and pictures of their mother. Edna had constantly slapped Kai and Janie in an abusive manner, and later Kai was being locked out of the house and forced to be in fights with the boys in his neighborhood.
Edna is completely the opposite of what Kay and Janie’s mother used to be. Mah-mee used to be gentle, and caring, while Edna was cruel and harsh toward the two children in the household. She threw Kai out the door and refused to let him come in until dinnertime, and then kicking him out the door again until bedtime. Edna despised the Chinese Culture, she hated it because she didn’t understand it, and she didn’t want to understand it either. She felt the children had no manners, or Kai has a hideous expression on his face every time he looks at her. What is ironic is the fact that she is the one lacked tolerance and manners. She often slapped the children and takes away their toys for no apparent reason. While she called them little savages, and as Janie had clearly stated, Chinese people do not slap children, therefore indicating Edna is the savage.
Through all this, Janie was the one showing a strong character and standing up to Edna, while Kai decided he deserved all the bad things that had came to him. He accepted the fact that he is the one that should be beat up by the crowd, and he accepted her stepmother’s abusive behaviors. It was until he had joined the YMCA that he realized and learned that it is okay to fight back.