Yinghe Zhao

ENG 1121 (Prof.Scanlan)

Essay 3 First page


                                                                          Life Is a Long Journey

In Ha Jin’s A Good Fall, the central characters are Ganchin, Master Zong, Cindy, and Fanku and they belong to two main camps, the good and the evil. The good is to describe people like Ganchin, Fanku, and Cindy — Ganchin follows the rules to be a good monk and doesn’t want to hurt anyone, Fanku and Cindy tries their best to help Ganchin, and in the end Cindy brings everyone to help Ganchin.  The evil is to describe people like Master Zong — He was a selfish man who wanted to be wealthy, so he refused to pay Ganchin (and the monks who used to work in his temple) salary, kept his passport and forced Ganchin to go to the airport to send him home. In the short story it shows each character’s types of ethics for the specific things. At the same time, it also shows that the journey of life is so wonderful, one journey is not yet started, another journey is started, just like the main character Ganchin in this short story.

In Holly E. Martin’s article “Falling Into America: The Downside of Transnational Identities in Ha Jin’s A Good Fall”, documenting the hardships of immigrant life in the United States, especially on main street. On the other hand, Kera Bolonik writes in “Next Stop, Main Street; Ha Jin’s new stories go where the new immigrants do: Flushing’s Chinatown”, shows the rich source of writing material for writers (Main Street, NY). While Martin’s article satisfies readers’ attention to the life of the immigrants and types of ethics, Bolonik focuses on the writers, and this better shows that the new environment has different feelings for different people. In order to prove this, I will first explore how hard life can be for immigrants, and how these good (Fanku and Cindy) helped Ganchin successfully “shake off” from the evil Master Zong, and then each character’s types of ethics. Lastly, I will compare the different feelings for different people when they face the new environment (immigrants and writers). 


(355 words)