Mrs Spring Fragrance (Eaton)

Mrs Spring Fragrance (Eaton)

author of Mrs. Spring Fragrance
Edith Maude Eaton (pen name Sui Sin Far)

-an English merchant who met his wife, (her Chinese mother) while on a business trip to Shanghai, China.
– Her father struggled to make a living and the large family went through difficult times.
-In the early 1870s, her family left England to live in Hudson, New York, United States, but stayed there only a short time before relocating to Montreal, Canada.
-Because of their poverty and social status, Far left school at a young age to work in order to help support her family.
-She continued to write and although her appearance and manners would have allowed her to easily pass as an Englishwoman, Far and her sister valued their Chinese heritage and created literature that told what life was like for a Chinese woman in white America.
-Chinese immigrants, perhaps worse than many others, often faced heavy discrimination and were forced into back-breaking, low-paying jobs, such as railroad construction.

–the first person of Chinese descent in the United States to write and publish work about Chinese-American life”
–Forceful advocate for the race she chose to adopt in a nation that was xenophobic* about the Chinese

*Xenophobic:
having or showing a dislike of or prejudice against people from other countries
Mrs. Spring Fragrance summary
-a collection of linked short stories originally marketed as a novel.
-The work is considered by some as the earliest book of fiction published in the United States by an author of mixed Chinese and white descent,
-The stories of Mrs. Spring Fragrance are divided into two-halves: “Mrs. Spring Fragrance” for adults, and “Tales of Chinese Children” for children.
-Set in Seattle and San Francisco, they reflect the struggles and joys in the daily lives of Chinese families in North America, specifically Canada and the United States.
-Throughout her work, Far’s stories bring to light the cultural conflicts of Eurasians and recent immigrants during the modernist era.
quotes
“‘The truth of the teaching!’ echoed Mr. Spring Fragrance, a little testily. “There is no truth in it whatever. It is disobedient to reason. Is it better to have what you do not love than to love what you do not have?”

“The subject was ‘America, the Protector of China!’ It was most exhilarating, and the effect of so much expression of benevolence leads me to beg of you to forget to remember that the barber charges you one dollar for a shave while he humbly submits to the American man a bill of fifteen cents.”

Chinese American
Americans who have either full or partial Chinese ancestry
Chinese Exclusion Act
An act signed in the spring of 1882 by Congress
-Suspended Chinese immigration for 10 years, declared them ineligible for naturalization
-Renewed in 1892, made permanent in 1902
-Effectively led to the decline of the Chinese population
Allusion
An expression designed to call something to mind without mentioning it explicitly; an indirect or passing reference
Subjectivism
Is the doctrine that our own mental activity is the only unquestionable fact of our experience, instead of shared or communal, and that there is no external or objective truth.
Americanization
The process of an immigrant to the United States becoming someone who shares American values, beliefs, and customs, and is fully assimilated into American culture
Preserving Tradition vs. Embracing Change
Conflict faced by immigrants

Adhere to traditions, or assimilate into new society in order to achieve social acceptance?

Please follow and like us:
Haven’t found the essay you want?