Great Books Discussion: The Joy Luck Club
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
Four mothers, four daughters, four families whose histories shift with the four winds depending on who's "saying" the stories. In 1949 four Chinese women, recent immigrants to San Francisco, begin meeting to eat dim sum, play mahjong, and talk. United in shared unspeakable loss and hope, they call themselves the Joy Luck Club. Rather than sink into tragedy, they choose to gather to raise their spirits and money. "To despair was to wish back for something already lost. Or to prolong what was already unbearable." Forty years later the stories and history continue. With wit and sensitivity, Amy Tan examines the sometimes painful, often tender, and always deep connection between mothers and daughters. As each woman reveals her secrets, trying to unravel the truth about her life, the strings become more tangled, more entwined. Mothers boast or despair over daughters, and daughters roll their eyes even as they feel the inextricable tightening of their matriarchal ties. Tan is an astute storyteller, enticing readers to immerse themselves into these lives of complexity and mystery.
About Great Books Discussion Style
The Great Books discussion is structured so that the evening’s selected reading is discussed in a think tank environment with the intention of gaining insight from other readers that one would not have by reading alone. The seminar facilitator asks questions of the participants about the reading selection and helps the discussion stay focused. Our main goal is to have fun and take many interpretations from the group in order to enjoy a greater understanding of a selected reading.
Discussions are open to everyone and free of charge. For a list of past and future discussion books and to contact the group visit, http://mail.salticid.com/mailman/listinfo/forbes_great_books_salticid.com.
About the facilitator:
Hilary Caws-Elwitt has her BA in English & American Literature from Harvard, MLS from University of Arizona, and ran Susquehanna County Reads for its first 4 years. But mostly she loves reading and discussing the books!