Chinese Cinderella

Describe the rivalry that existed between the various groups of fathers children

chapter 3

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Adeline recollects a story of Big Brother’s mischief until Third Brother congratulates her for the medal. Prompted by the praise, Second Brother punishes Adeline, the “ugly little squirt” (9), for her excellence. Soon after, Father, Niang and Big Sister arrive, forcing Second Brother to stop punishing Adeline. The meal commences and family as a whole ignores Adeline, when Father surprised everyone by commenting on her medal. This was “the first time anyone could remember Father… saying anything to [Adeline]”(11). After the meal in their jealousy, the siblings steal Adeline’s dessert. The structure of Adeline’s family reflects societal standards and values, with Ye Ye and Nai Nai representing traditional Chinese people, the older siblings representing the younger, but just as looked down upon, Chinese population and Niang and the youngest siblings representing the Eurasian population and their deferential treatment.

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