The Woman Warrior
by Maxine Hong Kingston
The Woman Warrior Family Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)
Marriage promises to turn strangers into friendly relatives – a nation of siblings. […] The frightened villagers, who depended on one another to maintain the real, went to my aunt to show her a personal, physical representation of the break she had made in the "roundness." Misallying couples snapped off the future, which was to be embodied in true offspring. The villagers punished her for acting as if she could have a private life, secret and apart from them (1.36-37).
The village acts against No Name Woman to punish her for not thinking of the village's greater good. But who was looking out for No Name Woman?
The real punishment was not the raid swiftly inflicted by the villagers, but the family's deliberately forgetting her. Her betrayal so maddened them, they saw to it that she would suffer forever, even after death (1.48).
The family's reaction to the villager's raid was a selfish act of pride and not at all in their relative's best interest.
"But I'm happy here with you and all your children," Moon Orchid said. "I want to see how this girl's sewing turns out. I want to see your son come back from Vietnam. I want to see if this one gets good grades. There's so much to do" (4.219).
Though Brave Orchid insisted that Moon Orchid return to her husband, maybe Moon Orchid didn't come to America for her husband but for her sister's and daughter's families. Maybe Moon Orchid was more interested in a family that cared for her than a long-lost husband who didn't show her love.