15. The Woman Warrior at 30

This post refers to the article from the Slate.

Young Kingston

Young Kingston

The novel Woman Warrior embeds different writing styles. Some identify the novel’s genre as memoir, some as autobiography, and some as a bridge between fiction and non-fiction. I, however, want to recognize this book as pleasantly unorthodox.

Kingston has a unique, talented voice. She knows how to show and express the events with delicate words. Her tasteful choices of dictions can be found from the very first chapter. When she describes Fa Mu Lan’s life in the mountains, her language is mesmerizing. She uses rich imagery and metaphors that connect the beauty of nature, characters of animals, and sensitivities of human senses. One example of the comparison is the dragon and the mountain. Kingston gives animalistic characteristics to the mountain, like the cloud represents the smoke from dragon’s mouth, earth as dragon’s skin, and trees as dragon’s hairs. 

Another unique aspect of Woman Warrior  is the spontaneously altering narrator’s perspectives. The narrative voice changes from Kingston to Fa Mu Lan in the first chapter. I was initially very confounded by this alteration, but now that I understand, I think this aspect added to her uniqueness and unorthodox behavior.


Old Kingston

Old Kingston

Just like the quote from the article:

The Woman Warrior stubbornly refuses to be either entirely fictive or entirely real.

Whether young or old, she will always remain as an enigma, an anomaly, and an exemplary writer.


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