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Article: Prologue – Life-Writing as a Journey to Myanmar (formerly Burma)

TitlePrologue – Life-Writing as a Journey to Myanmar (formerly Burma)
Authors
KeywordsAmy Tan
Burma
Journey
Irony
Adventure
Issue Date2015
Citation
The Contour, 2015, v. 1 n. 3, p. 7-31 How to Cite?
AbstractSaving Fish from Drowning, the most recent book of Amy Tan, once came to the 7th position as the bestseller in 2006 (Paperback, Best-Seller). ‘This is the first time Ballantine published Amy Tan in trade paper first; in the past, the publisher did her books initially in mass market, then in trade. It worked – there are 290,000 copies in print after 8 printings… These brought huge turnout and great sales. While previous works of Amy Tan focus on mother and daughter relationship– issues that are more intimate and personal Saving Fish from Drowning ‘branches out with a broad plot and dynamic digressions with political motifs. The broad plot itself is intriguing, for it invites readers to engage in an unforgettable experience in expedition to Burma. In the journey to Burma, digressions are dynamic. American tourists are missing one by one. They ‘vanish without a trace in the Burmese jungle. What is so unique about this book is that the tone of the work is “ghostly”. ‘Ghosts are a dominant symbol’, as stated in the news article entitled ‘Bumbling down the Burma Road’. The overall style of the fiction is subversive. A novel based on real-life, this work mocks at the ‘ironies of modern life. How can Amy Tan, a renowned AsianAmerican writer born in America with the Chinese descent, write the foreigners’ adventure in the largest country in Mainland Southeast Asia in such an exotic way? These paradoxes: ‘East and West, ‘America and China, ‘new and old ‘memory and forgetting, ‘truth and myth’ intertwine, turning the story into an uncanny story. By uncanny, I mean readers will find all these - ‘East and West, ‘America and China, ‘new and old, ‘memory and forgetting, ‘truth and myth’, unfamiliarly familiar. Readers’ attachment to the story and withdrawal from the story makes the story incredibly fascinating. It is such a marvelous journey! As Carol Memmott notes, it is ‘a game of Survival Burma style conflated with adventure, humor, tragedy and politics (Memmott, Carol). This essay will discuss the representation of adventure in Burma and its possible effects upon readers to demonstrate how insightful this masterpiece is.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/225415
ISSN

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorLo Lai, CC-
dc.date.accessioned2016-05-11T09:30:28Z-
dc.date.available2016-05-11T09:30:28Z-
dc.date.issued2015-
dc.identifier.citationThe Contour, 2015, v. 1 n. 3, p. 7-31-
dc.identifier.issn2349-6398-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/225415-
dc.description.abstractSaving Fish from Drowning, the most recent book of Amy Tan, once came to the 7th position as the bestseller in 2006 (Paperback, Best-Seller). ‘This is the first time Ballantine published Amy Tan in trade paper first; in the past, the publisher did her books initially in mass market, then in trade. It worked – there are 290,000 copies in print after 8 printings… These brought huge turnout and great sales. While previous works of Amy Tan focus on mother and daughter relationship– issues that are more intimate and personal Saving Fish from Drowning ‘branches out with a broad plot and dynamic digressions with political motifs. The broad plot itself is intriguing, for it invites readers to engage in an unforgettable experience in expedition to Burma. In the journey to Burma, digressions are dynamic. American tourists are missing one by one. They ‘vanish without a trace in the Burmese jungle. What is so unique about this book is that the tone of the work is “ghostly”. ‘Ghosts are a dominant symbol’, as stated in the news article entitled ‘Bumbling down the Burma Road’. The overall style of the fiction is subversive. A novel based on real-life, this work mocks at the ‘ironies of modern life. How can Amy Tan, a renowned AsianAmerican writer born in America with the Chinese descent, write the foreigners’ adventure in the largest country in Mainland Southeast Asia in such an exotic way? These paradoxes: ‘East and West, ‘America and China, ‘new and old ‘memory and forgetting, ‘truth and myth’ intertwine, turning the story into an uncanny story. By uncanny, I mean readers will find all these - ‘East and West, ‘America and China, ‘new and old, ‘memory and forgetting, ‘truth and myth’, unfamiliarly familiar. Readers’ attachment to the story and withdrawal from the story makes the story incredibly fascinating. It is such a marvelous journey! As Carol Memmott notes, it is ‘a game of Survival Burma style conflated with adventure, humor, tragedy and politics (Memmott, Carol). This essay will discuss the representation of adventure in Burma and its possible effects upon readers to demonstrate how insightful this masterpiece is.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.relation.ispartofThe Contour-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subjectAmy Tan-
dc.subjectBurma-
dc.subjectJourney-
dc.subjectIrony-
dc.subjectAdventure-
dc.titlePrologue – Life-Writing as a Journey to Myanmar (formerly Burma)-
dc.typeArticle-
dc.identifier.emailLo Lai, CC: laichun2@hku.hk-
dc.identifier.authorityLo Lai, CC=rp01886-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.volume1-
dc.identifier.issue3-
dc.identifier.spage7-
dc.identifier.epage31-
dc.publisher.placeIndia-

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