Describe the setting of the story (time and place).
1952, San Fransisco, California In Ailin's husband's restaurant, in Chinatown
Describe Ailin.
She is a 19 year old chinese woman with unbound feet
Who is Liu Hanwei? What is his relationship with the main character?
He is a Chinese man who is part of the Liu family, he was supposed to marry Ailin but his mother broke off the marriage because Ailin's feet were not bound
Who are the Warners?
They are an American family that are missionaries and Ailin is their nanny
Why does Ailin feel bitterness towards Mrs. Liu?
because she broke off Ailin Tao's and Liu Hanwei's marriage because Ailins feet were not bound
How old were Ailin and Liu Hanwei when they first met?
She was five and he was seven years old
Describe the Compund. Who lives there?
Ailins family lives there, it has more than fifty rooms, all surrounded by wall, Grandfather the head of the family lives there with his wife and his to sons: Big Uncle and Father, and they live there with their wives and children
Who is Amah? How does Ailin feel about her?
She is a governess to replace Ailin's wet nurse. Ailin hates her constant correcting and teaching and tries to annoy her by talking back
Who visits the Tao family? What is the purpose of their visit?
Mrs. Liu and her son visit and they come to visit because they want to propose a marriage for Liu Hanwei and Ailin
How does Ailin feel about her Grandmother and Big Uncle?
She feels Grandmother lets her get away with anything and that her Big Uncle scares her the most out of all of her relatives and that he always criticizes little girls who are fresh
What does Ailin observe about the Liu boy (Liu Hanwei)?
That his eyebrows are higher on his forehead than usual, also he is a little chubby and a bit older than her
What is the difference between homeschooling and public school at this time in China?
Only boys can go to public schools and you learn Science, English, and Astronomy also you have lunch with your friends and it is taught by real teachers. At homeschooling it is at your house you hire a teacher and you learn myths and you have lunch without your friends
How do Ailin's parents' views differ?
Her father thinks that she is too young to get her feet bound but her mother thinks that she should bind them right away and that she should have gotten them bound long ago, also her father wants to wait a little longer and then have her get engaged but her mother wants her to get engaged right away to Liu Hanwei
Who is Ailin closest to in her family and why?
Second sister because she is honest and trustworthy with her and showed Ailin her bound feet and told her that the process hurts and that she will have a monthly bleeding
What was Ailin's reaction to seeing second sisters feet?
She was disgusted by second sisters feet and was curious how they fit in the pointy shoes
Why does Ailin feel Big Uncle dislikes children?
Because he hates when they talk and when they do not talk
Big Uncle and Father disagree on several issues. What are they arguing about?
They are arguing about Foreigners, the Opium war, traditions changing, and public school
What does Ailin find disgusting?
She finds second sisters feet disgusting because of the smell and the sweat
What vow does Ailin make at the end of Chapter 2?
She vows to never bind her feet
Why do Mother and Second Sister have a conflict?
Because Second Sister shows Ailin her feet which causes Ailin to run away and refuse to bind her feet
Mother said, "Someday you will have to pay a price for that." What does she mean by that? In Chinese culture, why was it so important for women to have their feet bound?
She means that if she does not bind her feet she will not get a husband or get married and will not be accepted by society. It was important for women to get there feet bound so that they would be married off to a wealthy family
Where does father work? Why has he been staying home?
He works at the customs office and he is staying home because of the revolution and there are bandits and the government is collapsing
Why does Ailin refer to Grandmother as "facing a stranger?"
Because her face is not kindly and she used to let her get away with anything but won't let her get away with not getting her feet bound
How does Father show he supports Ailin?
He defends her
What causes conflicts between Mother and Father?
Ailin not getting her feet bound and the marriage that was broken off by the Lius
How much time has passed? How old is Ailin?
Four years and she is nine years old
What announcement does Father make? How does Grandmother feel about his decision?
He decides to enroll Ailin in a public school and Grandmother does not support his idea
Why do Grandmother and Father have a conflict?
Grandmother wants to follow tradition but Father wants to break it and Grandmother is against public schools
How is the Compound different from the Macintosh school?
The Macintosh is different because it teaches different subjects and is run by foreigners (American missionaries) also lunch is served to you and you eat with other people and there are classrooms, the compound has nature and a courtyard and the teachers are hired
Who are Ailin's new friends from Chapter four? What impact do they have on her?
Mrs. Gilbertson inspires her to be a teacher and a writer and and Xueyan inspires her to be just like her and be liberal and keep her feet unbound and she doesn't depend on man
"I personally like the colored cocoons," said Second Sister, "but silk weavers hate them because they spoil the white uniformity. Whenever they see a colored one, they immediately take it out and burn it. Remember this." Why do you think Second Sister says this to Ailin? What is the deeper meaning of the comment?
She said this to warn her that she may not be accepted from society and that she is different because her feet are not bound
How did things change in the family right after grandmother's death?
Big Uncle became head of the family and his wives were confused because they were used to being told what to do by Grandmother
Why is there a concern about Father's health?
They think Father may have Tuberculosis, the sickness that killed Ailin's aunt
How were Ms. Scott and Ms. Gilbertson different?
Ms. Scott was a social studies who liked to correct people and she told wonderful stories she is American and she teaches at the Macintosh school. Ms. Gilbertson is the English teacher and Ailin likes her over all she is an American teacher that teaches at the Macintosh school
What ideas does Ms. Gilbertson give to Ailin? How does she inspire Ailin?
She gives her an American name and it inspires her to be different and at home to be a Chinese woman but at school to be an American woman, so she has two different personalities
Why is the family having financial problems? Why is Ailin's education in jeopardy?
Because there is no rent from the farmers and the country side is full of soldiers and bandits, you must pay a fee to go to a public school
"Why do mothers keep forcing this gruesome practice on their daughters? I asked. "Maybe they want their daughters to experience the same pain they themselves had to endure," said Xueyan. What is a response to this quote?
They are discussing why Chinese women had to bind their feet. According to Chinesse history one time in history you did not have to bind your feet
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