The essay will be about the Novel Throwaway Daughter a fiction that is about a girl named Grace on a journey of finding her identity. The main story is about a young girl Grace Parker, who was abandoned in front of the orphanage by her mother and was adopted by a Canadian family. She is haunted by the fact why she was unwanted by her parents and she denied her heritage until she witness the death of protesters in Tiananmen square. As she continues to mature and grow she becomes more curious about her mother of what happened to her,thus her journey begins in china on a quest of finding the answers and herself.
Grace (Dong-mei’s) journey allows her to fully embrace her heritage, finally giving her an identity through her childhood, adolescence, and journey to China. When Grace was a child she denied to accept the fact she was Chinese and different from the rest of the family. Grace hated her Chinese name Dong-mei very much since she does not want to identify herself as a person of colour or Chinese background. An example quoted by Dong-mei in the novel “All I wanted was to have my Chinese name, Dong-mei,removed. ” (Ting Xing Ye 2).
It indicates how much dislike/hate Grace had to her Chinese name since it’s reminds her about her mother who abandoned her. Grace hated the idea of trying to understand why she was forced to be in touch with her roots. Specially by her adopted mother, Jane who continually forces her Grace responded “Why do I want their roots? I don’t want to be Chinese and I don’t want a Chinese name. ” (Ting Xing Ye 3). Grace despises the fact that she was to affiliate herself with her cultural heritage and continues to deny anything her adoptive parents told her about her heritage.
Her Mother Chun-mei is the source of her hatred, she does not know why she has to embrace someone who rejected her and did not even raise her. Grace asked the reason why Chun-mei gave her a name even though she discarded her “It’s a stupid name, I snapped. ” I don’t want to be a named after some dumb flower. Why didn’t this Chun-mei keep the baby and throw away the note? “(Ting Xing Ye 5). Grace is just in resentful and felt abandoned by her chun-mei that’s where her hate starts she wished that chun-mei shoulda have throw the note and just raised her as any other parents do.
To summarize these examples has shown that Grace is faced with complications about her identity as a Parker or someone else. At the same time, During the teenage years of Grace her curiosity for her heritage and about Chun-mei triggered. One tragic event in China, which was the Tiananmen square massacre sparked the curiosity of Grace specially for the safety of Chun-mei during that event. For the first time in her life she asked a question to Kevin her adoptive dad about Chun-mei. An example is a scene that happened in the book, “What about Chun-mei? ” | asked. “I’m sure she’s alright,too. ” our eyes met briefly.
I look away. It was the first time I had said the name Chun-mei without anger. Because of this tragic event, it was the very first time Grace thought about the safety of her mother Chun-mei. It also sparked her interest on what is happening in China even though she hated her cultural heritage when she was a child. A few years have passed, Grace started to learn how to speak and write Mandarin with the help of Mr. Frank. After years of learning she started to appreciate the idea of being able to speak in another language Grace quoted that “Many times, I basked in the sense of superiority it gave me. (Ting Xing Ye 121). Grace starts to appreciate the beauty and benefit of speaking Mandarin even though she abominated her culture when she was a child. She starts to feel superior of being able to speak Chinese since she is the only person in Milford that can speak it. Grace hated the idea of stereotyping other Asians saying they’re all the same and she classifies all of them are different, including herself.
Grace said, “By the time I was in high school, I was fed up with people need to label me in some way before they felt comfortable. Grace was tired of being labeled by others before they even know her. Grace is against the idea of people thinking all Asians are the same and the idea of of stereotypes depending on what your background is. In result Grace was able to encourage herself to embark on a journey to china that hopefully answer her question and find the pieces of her identity Lastly, Grace travels to china not to primarily go to college, but to find the answers she’s been looking for from Chun-mei and that she might find herself within this journey.
Grace feels that herself is uncompleted not knowing the truth of Chun-mei and her current state. An example “But I couldn’t stop seeing my life as a jigsaw puzzle with one piece missing. ” (Ting Xing Ye 132). It indicates that Grace was trying to find her answer hoping that she may at least see her mother’s face and understand truly of who she is. Grace has forgotten the past of Chun-mei’s action knowing the reason why Chun-mei did it and now she only has four days left to spend time with her.
“In a way I felt cheatedfinding my mother, finally, then realizing I had only four day before I had to Leave China. Grace does not care for the past anymore and now she only cares about spending much time with her mother Chun-mei. She wanted more time to compensate for those nineteen years of lost time. Grace accepted the reason why her mother deserted her it’s because she wanted to save her from a cruel life of being unloved by her Father Loyal and Grandfather Chen. Grace sees her mother as a hero now “I have met one hero in my life. her name is Chun-mei, and she is my mother. ” Grace was able to find the final piece of herself and all this time it was her mother Chun-mei.
Grace is now complete she was able to find the missing piece of her identity on this journey. In conclusion Grace was able to embrace her heritage was able to find her identity. Grace was able to find the answers of her questions. She was able to fully accept her cultural ancestry and the final piece of her identity which was her mother. That’s important because of this journey to China and the life changing events that has happened to her life she was able to solve her identity problem and finally be at peace knowing the truth from her mother