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The episode in which Moon Orchid reluctantly confronts her Americanized husband demonstrates how essentially voiceless a Chinese woman is who lives in a traditionally patriarchal society. Again, Kingston, by writing Moon Orchid's story, puts the voice back into Moon Orchid's life.Facing her husband after decades apart, Moon Orchid is unable to voice her years of rage and grief: "But all she did was open and shut her mouth without any words coming out." Later in the scene, Moon Orchid's husband explains to her, "I have important American guests who come inside my house to eat. In the memoir's last chapter, "A Song for a Barbarian Reed Pipe," Kingston relates her own search for a personal, individualized voice.
Brave Orchid forces Kingston, as the oldest child, to demand "reparation candy" from the druggist, a chore that Kingston finds embarrassing.
"You can't entrust your voice to the Chinese, either," Kingston writes; "they want to capture your voice for their own use.
If she finds that traditional Chinese society silences women, she also discovers that well-behaved females in American society are equally expected to be quiet. Most of us eventually found some voice, however faltering." Despite this whispering, Kingston, even as a child, knows the consequences of being voiceless.
In order to feel even partially accepted in American culture, young Kingston retreats behind an emotional wall and loses her voice: "We American-Chinese girls had to whisper to make ourselves American-feminine. In one poignant and painful episode, she describes the hatred she felt for another Chinese girl who refused to speak and the physical bullying she meted out to get this silent girl to talk.
Apparently we whispered even more softly than the Americans. Ironically, her hatred for the girl is all the more vivid because this silent girl is so much like her — physically, emotionally, and socially.
She fears becoming exactly like this voiceless (and nameless) girl, who serves as Kingston's alter ego.For the many women who are voiceless, Kingston supplies the language these silent women need if they are to discover viable, individualized identities.Beginning with the first chapter, "No Name Woman," Kingston breaks the family-imposed silence that surrounds the secret of an aunt, whom she names No Name Woman, who became pregnant by someone other than her husband.After the incident, she goes on the radio to protest the IRA’s injustices.Dillon saw the face of one of the assailants, which then makes him a target.Talking about her past becomes her cure for silence, her method of achieving an individual voice and a personal place as a Chinese-American woman in society.Removing #book# from your Reading List will also remove any bookmarked pages associated with this title.Are you sure you want to remove #book Confirmation# and any corresponding bookmarks?Brian Moore’s 2009 novel, Lies of Silence, is a story about factionalism in Irish politics, poverty, and infidelity.Ironically, however, this process of voicing women's experiences threatens Kingston's own self-esteem, especially in her relationship with her mother.For example, when a delivery boy mistakenly delivers pharmaceutical drugs to the family's laundry business, Brave Orchid is livid: Certainly, she thinks, the drugstore purposefully delivered the drugs to bring bad luck on her family.