The Liberty Goddess (the Statue of Liberty) symbolizes Kim’s hope that, regardless of the obstacles and issues she and Ma face, New York still holds opportunities for success. At several points throughout the novel, Kim describes how New York is thought of in Hong Kong: a sparkling paradise where the Liberty Goddess watches over the city and where anything is possible—a place that is equated with success. Notably, though Kim finds herself disillusioned with much of her life in New York, including the city itself, the Liberty Goddess is the one thing that holds up to her idealized hopes and dreams. When Matt takes Kim and Ma to see it for the first time, about three years after their arrival in the U.S., Kim is in awe of its size and the goddess's beauty.
The Liberty Goddess Quotes in Girl in Translation
I held my breath when we finally got a good view of the Liberty Goddess. She was so close and so magnificent. Ma and Matt were right next to me. Ma squeezed my hand.
"How long we've dreamed of this," she said.
"We're here," I said. "We're really in America."