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Function Of A Short Story Essay

894 words - 4 pages

In Amy Tan’s “Two Kinds,” she writes about a girl and her relationship with her mother. Amy Tan seems to write this story to show the reader the main character’s aha moment and how she reached that moment.
When Ford discusses short stories in his article, he seems to think that there is a moment in every story that changes the life of the main character. He believes that they “make us believe that entire lives can change…on account of one little manufactured moment of clear-sightedness.2” Whatever his opinions on short stories, one thing he said really stood out: moment of clear-sightedness. He believes that one moment in the story stands out more than the rest because of the effect it has ...view middle of the document...

By having her mother tell her she needs to continue and practice switched something in her and caused her to have an epiphany. She had, what Ford calls, her moment of clear-sightedness.
But one wonders what this moment means? The moment that everything became clear to her; what she wanted and what she didn’t, and what she was going to do about it, shows a switch in the story and in the character. She realized that she doesn’t want to do what her mother tells her and decides that she won’t. This moment changed her life because after this it seems, her mother left her alone. She was free to do be a kid and not have to worry about becoming a prodigy. That one moment of clear-sightedness really changed her whole life.
It seems that Ford is correct when he discusses the point of a short story: to show what is the main characters moment of clear-sightedness. While reading the story, the tension between Jing-Mei and her mother builds and builds. When it finally reaches the breaking point, Jing-Mei has her moment. After telling her mother that she wishes she were dead, like the “other” girls, her mother is left shocked and hurt. However, after this, the rest of the story seems to portray their relationship in a different light. Although it doesn’t seem strained anymore, it feels as though they have been tiptoeing around for the rest of their lives. The reader gets the sense...

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