Subscribe to our Newsletter and get informed about new publication regulary and special discounts for subscribers!

ILSHS > Volume 69 > Third-Space Encounters and Unexpected Forms of...
< Back to Volume

Third-Space Encounters and Unexpected Forms of Resistance in Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club

Full Text PDF


This paper sets out to investigate Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club, a liminal work written in-between cultures, in the light of Homi Bhabha’s concept of the third space as a site of transformation and transvaluation. It is argued that Tan’s novel is implicated in unexpected forms of resistance as a result of its placement in the borderland of cultures. Thus, exploring the discursive fissures and ideological ruptures inscribed in the novel, the authors seek to bring to fore how the very mainstream accounts of Chinese culture and orientalist archive of knowledge in which the work is embedded are contested in the third-space enounters between subjects of different cultures. Orientalism, Western feminism, American Dream, and multiculturalism are some of the major discourses whose truthfulness and serenity are shown to be precarious and open to questioning, hence the recuperation of the subaltern’s voice through this contrapuntal reading.


International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences (Volume 69)
A. Borhan and A. Anushiravani, "Third-Space Encounters and Unexpected Forms of Resistance in Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club", International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences, Vol. 69, pp. 107-118, 2016
Online since:
May 2016

[1] B. Adams, Asian American Literature, Edinburgh U P, Edinburgh, (2008).

[2] J. Baudrillard, Simulacra and Simulation, Michigan U P, Michigan, (1994).

[3] H. G. Baynes, Mythology of the Soul, Routledge, London and New York, (2015).

[4] H. K. Bhabha, The Location of Culture, Routledge, London, (1994).

[5] H. K. Bhabha, The world and the home, Social Text. 10. 31-32 (1992) 141-53.

[6] H. Bloom, (Ed. ), Asian-American Writers, Infobase, New York, (2009).

[7] H. Bloom, The Anxiety of Influence: A Theory of Poetry. Oxford U P, Oxford, (1997).

[8] Y. Chae, Politicizing Asian American Literature: Towards a Critical Multiculturalism, Taylor & Francis e-Library, New York, (2007).

[9] K. Cheung, Words Matter, U of Hawai'i P, Honolulu, (2000).

[10] S. M. Darraj, Amy Tan, Infobase Publishing, New York, (2007).

[11] P. Duncan, Tell This Silence: Asian American Women Writers and the Politics of Speech, U of Iowa P, Iowa City, (2004).

[12] S. During, Cultural Studies: A Critical Introduction, Routledge, London and New York, (2005).

[13] Ch. Heap, Slumming; Sexual and Racial Encounters in American Nightlife, 1885–1940, U of Chicago P, Chicago, (2009).

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226322452.001.0001

[14] G. Huggan, The Postcolonial Exotic, Taylor & Francis e-Library, New York, (2003).

[15] F. Kral, Critical Identities in Contemporary Anglophone Diasporic Literature, Palgrave Macmillan, New York, (2009).

[16] N. Lucy, A Derrida Dictionary, John Wiley & Sons, New Jersey, (2008).

[17] B. Mikkelson. Inscrutable cookie, Snopes. (2015). Information on http: /www. snopes. com/food/origins/fortune. asp.

[18] S. Mills, Michel Foucault, Routledge, London, (2005).

[19] O. Schell, Your mother is in your bones, New Yorker Times. (1989). Information on https: /www. nytimes. com/books/01/02/18/specials/tan-joy. html.

[20] E. Said, Consolidated vision, in M. Bal (Ed. ), Narrative Theory, Routledge, London and New York, 2004, p.69. 87.

[21] A. Tan, The Joy Luck Club, Putnam's, California, (1989).

[22] E. J. Teng, Chinese diasporic literature, in Ch. A. Laughlin (Ed. ), Contested Maternities in Chinese Literature, Palgrave McMillan, New York, 2005, pp.61-80.

[23] S. C. Wong, Reading Asian American Literature: from Necessity to Extravagance, Princeton U P, Princeton, (1993).

[24] J. Yin, Constructing the other: a critical reading of The Joy Luck Club, The Howard J. of Communications. 16 (2005) 149-175.

DOI: 10.1080/10646170500207899
Show More Hide