Fish Cheeks Amy Tan ppt

Fish Cheeks.
Amy Tan.
Year 10 identity unit.
10 minute writing starter:
Have you ever been ashamed of
your family, language, culture or
identity? What happened?
Fish Cheeks.
• Point of view:
• First person to show Amy’s
• Negative at the beginning.
Negative words- e.g clamor,
despair, grimaced, stunned.
Then a more positive view
when Amy realizes her
• Cultural versus national,
family identity.
• Type of identity- positive or
• Type of identity.
Fish Cheeks.
• Why do you think Amy Tan wrote this? What lesson do
we learn?
• Amy wants to teach us to be proud of who are and to
appreciate diversity (being different).
• Amy wants to show us that we don’t have to fit in
with others around us- her mum gives her a skirt so
she can fit in on the outside, but says on the inside
she’ll always be Chinese.
• She wanted to introduce us to Chinese customs.
• She wants to show what it is like to be a teenager
growing up with multiple identities and the shame of
being ‘different.’
Theme. With a partner, come up with
a quote for each of these themes.
• When we’re younger, we don’t always
understand things like we do when we’re older.
• Culture is an inextricable part of identity.
• Pride.
• The consequences of having different identitiese.g national (American) versus ethnic or cultural
• That identity is often many things.
• Celebrating diversity (being different)
• Food imagery. This is important because food is
cultural. What we eat or how we eat often says
a lot about our identity.
• How does Amy Tan describe food? What does
that say about her opinion towards her culture
at the beginning of the short story?
• Can you find any metaphors, rhetorical
questions, personification, similes or emotive
language? What is their effect? Can you link this
language use back to the theme?
Imagery and its effect on the reader.
• ‘A slimy rock cod with bulging eyes that pleaded not to be
thrown in to a pan of hot oil.’ – Personification, because
rock cod cannot plead. Shows us Amy’s horror or disgust
and makes us feel uneasy like Amy does, and her guests do.
• A plate of squid, their backs crisscrossed with knife
markings so they resembled bike tires. – personification
and metaphor.
• Tofu- ‘like stacked wedges of rubbery white sponges.’
Simile, and very unappetizing.
• ‘Shabby Chinese Christmas’- emotive language to reinforce
Amy’s shame.
• Irony: Amy’s favourite foods are described so negatively.
• Rhetorical questions at the start show Amy
wondering what others would think of her. We
see her questioning her identity. We also see
an embarrassed, image-conscious teenage girl
who wants to be someone else and fit in.
‘What would Robert think..’ ‘What would he
think of our noisy Chinese relatives…’ The
repetition of questions show Amy’s shame
and worry about her family and their cultural

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