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Tan, Amy

  • By: Luca Prono
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

Amy Tan is a Chinese American novelist, essayist, and author of children's fiction. In her works, Tan has repeatedly explored the complexities of mother-daughter relationships. Such an exploration has caused Tan to become well-known beyond the circles of literary critics. She has even featured in episodes of the Simpsons, where Lisa tells her that she loves the ways she demystifies mother-daughter relationships in her fiction. Like Maxine Hong Kingston, Tan interweaves in her books biography, autobiography, history, myths, and folktales to construct complex and multilayered narratives that often disrupt chronological and linear storytelling.

Tan's oeuvre is set both in early-20th-century China and contemporary America, addressing the ways immigrants and their children attempt to construct a meaningful identity within American society.

Best-Selling Mother-Daughter Narratives

Tan was born in 1952 ...

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