The Woman Warrior

by

Maxine Hong Kingston

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The Quiet Girl Character Analysis

– A sixth-grade classmate of Kingston’s and a fellow Chinese-American girl who will not speak. Kingston bullies her into talking by calling her a “sissy-girl” and pinching her cheek. The girl has the ability to speak—Kingston claims to have heard her speaking, yelling even, in Chinese and English at her home, and the girl sometimes reads aloud in class—but she refuses social interaction. Her timidity and neatness annoy Kingston. The girl recalls Kingston’s own fears about being unable to speak, as well as her exasperation with all of the silences and secrets within her family.
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The Quiet Girl Character Timeline in The Woman Warrior

The timeline below shows where the character The Quiet Girl appears in The Woman Warrior. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
5. A Song for a Barbarian Reed Pipe
Gender Roles in Chinese Culture Theme Icon
Silence vs. Speech Theme Icon
The quiet girl was a year older than Kingston and in her class for twelve years. Her older... (full context)
Gender Roles in Chinese Culture Theme Icon
Silence vs. Speech Theme Icon
Kingston hated the quiet girl . Kingston hated that she was the last chosen for her team and that Kingston... (full context)
Gender Roles in Chinese Culture Theme Icon
Silence vs. Speech Theme Icon
Kingston examined the quiet girl ’s face. She had “baby soft” skin with “pink and white cheeks.” She seemed fragile,... (full context)
Gender Roles in Chinese Culture Theme Icon
Silence vs. Speech Theme Icon
Kingston became so frustrated with the quiet girl ’s refusal to speak that she began to cry and plead with her to speak.... (full context)
Gender Roles in Chinese Culture Theme Icon
Silence vs. Speech Theme Icon
...for eighteen months and could not go to school. When she did return, she saw the quiet girl again; she had not changed. She wore the same clothes and had the same haircut.... (full context)