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Sunday, January 16, 2011

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Jeannie Wong

Thank you for your thoughts on this, Katherine. I appreciate your sentiments.

I have to admit that part of me has been very reluctant to delve into this whole Amy Chua/"Chinese Mother" thing. To me, it's just been one more chance to resurrect the "Dragon Lady" stereotype and the Model Minority Myth, which so many of us have had to fight against all our lives.

Is education and ambition a valued part of many Asian kids' lives? Yes. Should it be? I believe so, yes. (What's the alternative? Ignorance and sloth?) But are all these kids also forced to forgo playdates and practice the piano for hours on end? No.

I wasn't.

In the end, I believe it's dangerous when parents start preaching one "best" way to raise a child. (For the record: I don't think any of the strident, anti-"Chinese Mother" challenges that we've heard in the last few days have been all that helpful, either.)

Don't all parents essentially want the same thing? For their kids to be happy, healthy, contributing stewards of this planet? How they get there is different for everyone -- and there's no one perfect way.


Miriam

thanks for being the voice of reason. I've been distressed by how many people seem to think that Amy Chua's goals were good ones. I would much rather that my daughter be happy than number one academically (though of course I want her to achieve). It's been distressing to see so little discussion of that aspect of the issue. Thanks for this post.

motivational speakers

I agree, maybe that method worked out well for Amy Chua's own daughters (they seem to be doing well) but I don't agree that this has to be a rule of thumb for every parent raising a child.

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