Maxine Hong Kingston is one of the many contemporary American novelists of non-European ethnicities and one of many women novelists who have found in mythology and folklore both stories and images which can transform the genre by providing “novel” patterns of order and “meronymic” language. These inclusive patterns and words help expand our perspective as they encompass both the linear and cyclical stories of the individual within the context of communal and social, mythic and historic, truths. In The Woman Warrior, the complex “frog knot” of her female heritage is untied for us not only to open up women's possible stories but also to offer her readers the variety which keeps us sane, freeing us from a dominant discourse which convincingly describes the inevitable tragedy of our common death but often fails to remind us of the simultaneous richness of our uncommon lives.

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