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Written by Aleksei Marchyn
How much abuse can you take?
Chueh-hui doesn’t understand why he should be a victim of his own family and old traditions. He doesn’t believe in absence of a choice, because he is able to determine his own happiness. Musing over his Big Brother’s unfortunate love story, the struggles of Ming-feng or the determination of Chin to change her life, he wonders how much abuse one can endure. The policy of non-resistance is not for him and he is going to put up with violation of his rights and dreams. Unlike his Big Brother and many other characters, Chueh-hui refuses to be downtrodden.
I never had any happiness, and I never will.
The story of Chueh-hsin is actual proof of the destructive effect of old traditions. As the eldest son of the eldest son, he is deprived of his youth. He has never had a right of choice, there are no wants in his life, there are only oughts. Chueh-hsin says that there is no a chance for him to be happy in the future and he is right, for he is just a slave of his family. Although his position is important, he has to comply with ridiculous wishes of the Venerable Master Kao and deal with constant quarrels between the members of the clan.
I am a person, the same as the rest of you.
Being a girl in a traditional patriarchal family may prove to be a rather difficult task; today, it could be even difficult to imagine a life of a Chinese girl of the previous century. Chio is lucky to be born in a rich family, which saves her from the fate of a maid, but that doesn’t mean that her life is all about happiness. When the society believes that you should not even be allowed to leave the walls of your house, it takes a lot of struggles to prove that you are a person, the same as the rest. School is Chio’s way to resist and make others notice that she is an equal.
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