I’m so behind. I still haven’t read the “Too Asian” article my own country’s weekly magazine published late last year and caused such a stir here and south of the border. But I read the most recent highly inflammatory article, Amy Chua’s WSJ piece, Why Chinese Mothers are Superior.
I read the article, linked from Angela Tung’s blog and even left a long comment–apparently I lurk or leave long comments–while also intending to address this article with my own blog post.
The WSJ article was posted two days ago, on January 8, has caused a stir on the Asian-American blogosphere, and garnered 2,501 comments to date. What a headache. I read the article, nodding, frowning, wincing, and noticed at the bottom of the article that it was an excerpt from Amy Chua’s forthcoming book, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. Huh. And if you read the cover, there is a long “subtitle” on the cover that reads: “This was supposed to be a story of how Chinese parents are better at raising kids than Western ones. But instead it’s about a bitter clash of cultures, a fleeting taste of glory, and how I was humbled by a thirteen-year-old.” It’s kind of an awkward cover, and I wouldn’t do that for my memoir. (!)
With that, I wasn’t going to take the article that seriously. I’ve read enough memoirs to know exaggeration is the spice to take an author’s story from the story-next-door to being published.
The article starts with a list of what Chua’s daughters were not allowed to do/attend: sleepovers, playdates, star in a school play, watch TV/play computer games, choose their own extracurriculars, get less than an A and not be the top student, play anything but piano and violin.
Continue reading Preview: Amy Chua’s Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother