Write an evaluation of how Chapters 8 and 9 explore the connection between tradition, food and group The interdependent connection between culture, food and group is pivotal within the demonstration of the importance Vietnamese custom in Paradise of the Blind. Chapters eight and 9 concentrate on the importance of tradition through household particularly evident in the method in which meals acts as an expression of this tradition. Food is also used to ascertain a sense of group, which is an important facet within the Vietnamese culture.
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Food is presented as a direct reflection of a person’s wealth in Vietnamese tradition. Limited in other types of power, ladies like Aunt Tam can rely on materialistic objects, corresponding to food, to be able to show their wealth and earn respect. This is evident as one of many guests at the feast exclaims, “What a pleasure this evening has been. A luxurious meal adopted by such spellbinding stories. This is a blessing from heaven.” The use of words with strongly constructive connotations, corresponding to “sumptuous” and “spellbinding” displays the great degree of appreciation and thus importance that food has on Vietnamese tradition.
This concept is further emphasised with the reference to the Gods and ancestral beings by way of the utilization of the word “heaven”. Another example of meals reflecting the thought of wealth is when one other visitor says, “A sticky rice flavoured with rose-apple juice! Why, it’s beautiful.” Aunt Tam responds to the compliment, “Oh please, will you cease it?” The use of the word “exquisite” once more highlights the significance of food and its inherent effectiveness in delivering praise.
The means during which Aunt Tam replies, almost rehearsed and clichéd, suggests that there was an unstated expectation of reward and subsequently respect within the unique intention of the feast. The simple connection between food and wealth reflects the material-focused culture of Vietnam.
Another concept that connects meals to tradition is the concept of the sacrifice, particularly in relation to meals. Selflessness is a significant part of Vietnamese tradition and a sure quantity of gratification could be achieved via sacrifice, which is shown in these chapters as sacrifice of food. Hang observes that Aunt Tam “ate nearly nothing as if watching me gave her greater pleasure.” Aunt Tam’s sacrifice of her personal wellbeing displays the cultural concept that the strongest link between folks is in family. Aunt Tam is prepared, even joyful to sacrifice her personal well-being in order to cater for Hang.
This thought of sacrifice can be linked to the cultural thought of worship and destiny, whereby it’s believed those that carry out good deeds in the current shall be rewarded in the future. This thought of selflessness has evidently also affected Hang as she says “I played the part of the successful niece… I smile dutifully at everyone. My lips stiffened right into a everlasting smile.” Although Hang is obviously uncomfortable, which could be seen via using phrases such as “dutifully” and “stiffened”, she continues to put on a façade of happiness to please her Aunt. This reinforces the cultural thought of the power of familial ties in addition to the significance of sacrifice in solidifying these relationships.
The practice of meals preparation establishes a way of neighborhood in the chapter. Food preparation seems to have a rehearsed, methodical quality which is evident in the line “The scene was lively however well-ordered as if all of the feverish exercise was directed by the iron hand of some invisible conductor.” The simile of the conductor attracts a comparison of meals preparation to an orchestra, thereby highlighting the significance of group collaboration. Furthermore, the juxtaposition of the “feverish activity” and its “well-ordered” nature suggests the idea of managed chaos. Thus the good amount of exercise that’s required in the apply of meals preparation can only be accomplished with the cooperation of each individual party.
Finally, the unchanging nature of culture is shown to trigger battle within Hang’s character as she is caught in her want to turn into a contemporary woman and her family’s robust links to cultural traditions. Hang describes the countryside as “Everywhere, an indescribable backwardness hung in the air, immaterial yet terrifyingly current: It would be like this for eternity.” This line suggests not only in restrictive nature of tradition but additionally reveals how tough it’s to shake culture. The use of the phrase “terrifyingly present” highlights the inescapable nature of custom and the robust bond to which each individual within the book is tied to their traditions.
The ideas of food, tradition and group are discover in chapters eight and 9, significantly by way of the ideas of family relationships and its sturdy links to conventional Vietnamese tradition.