Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir

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“It’s not as though I want to change the past. It’s really trying to understand how these things come together to bring you where you are.” Amy Tan speaks about her creative process in this video from PBS and American Masters previewing her documentary Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir directed by James Redford.

Examining The Joy Luck Club

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“Tan speaks to anxieties that plague many immigrants, who often feel both alienated from their homeland and disconnected from their adopted country.” In this TED-Ed animated film, Sheila Marie Orfano breaks down the themes of Amy Tan’s first novel, The Joy Luck Club, and the lessons learned from the intergenerational relationships of the characters.

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Amy Tan on Memoir Writing

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“Our lives don’t happen chronologically in memory, and a good memoirist has to know how to structure that memoir in a way that you can see the shaping of a life....” Amy Tan, whose second memoir, Where the Past Begins: A Writer’s Memoir (Ecco, 2017), is featured in Page One of the November/December issue of Poets & Writers Magazine, talks about the genre and about Mary Karr’s memoir writing.

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