January 15, 2011

"If you’re going to be a diva, then own it."

Says David Lat:
Was this lesson was lost on Yale law professor Amy Chua, the author of an incendiary essay in last weekend’s Wall Street Journal, Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior, and a new book about Eastern versus Western parenting styles, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother?...

After her controversial essay about the superiority of Chinese mothers and hard-ass Asian parenting set the blogosphere on fire — and sent her book rocketing to #5 on the Amazon bestseller list — Chua backtracked a bit, instead of defiantly standing her ground....
Lat read the book and says the WSJ piecce is "a collection of the book’s most inflammatory, anti-Western-parenting portions, collected from far-flung chapters" that "lacks the nuance and the narrative arc of Chua’s full memoir." Nevertheless, the WSJ piece got the book immense attention (including the attention she's as she remakes her image), so how can she complain?

What troubles me about the book is the idea that other parents, with less good sense and less naturally talented children, will extract advice that will lead to child abuse... or something close to it. Children need to play to develop their minds. They need to find intrinsic delight in their experiences. What good is hyper-achievement for its own sake?

66 comments:

Coketown said...

I found Chua to be far more moderate and agreeable in her follow-up column than in the excerpts of her book. But I disagree that this style of parenting is singularly "Chinese." A lot of parents fuse strict discipline with expectations of high achievement.

The only thing characteristically "Chinese" about Chua's prescription is the extraordinary rate of suicide among children subjected to this type of parenting. She should focus more on the loving and nurturing part coupled with high standards, and less on criticizing parents who don't call their kids fat, lazy, and worthless.

XWL said...

"What good is hyper-achievement for its own sake?"

Bragging rights.

Which, for some, is the main reason to have children.

edutcher said...

Every parent wants their kids to succeed and most believe theirs are special, but even an exceptional child may not have the ability to excel in an area the parent would like.

Thus, Ann's opinion, "Children need to play to develop their minds. They need to find intrinsic delight in their experiences. What good is hyper-achievement for its own sake?", sounds like very good advice.

HT said...

She said it's not really about achievement for its own sake but mastering something difficult and once that is accomplished one begins to truly enjoy it.

Bruce Hayden said...

Let me suggest that her parenting may have something to do with a different culture and view of man than most of us have. China has been traditionally Confucian, with its ancestor worship, with a layer of socialistic communitarianism now grafted on top. On the other hand, many of here in the U.S. believe in a more individualistic view of man.

So, the question becomes, why toil in an area where you have little interest? Especially, when that is not going to be where you spend your life. It makes little sense, in a culture that puts the individual first. But, I think that it makes a lot more sense, in one that puts the family, extended family, and now nation, before the individual.

Just some thoughts.

write_effort said...

My daughter figure skates regularly just for fun. We see a lot of Asian girls at the rink. The ambitious skaters, whatever their race, are at the rink 5-6 days a week. What I observe especially among the Asian families is that mom is there hour after hour with her daughter and sometimes, during the after-school practice time, brother is there, too, doing his homework while sister skates. I see close, warm families. This formula of parental involvement and shared affection is what Amy Chua addressed in today's WSJ article. I'm glad she stepped forward, 'cause believe me Caucasians are always looking at the Asian kids and going, "How do they do it?!" This isn't the complete answer or only answer, for sure, but most of us parents are fascinated.

Big Mike said...

One of my son's friends in middle school was Asian. He had to work hard for good grades, and they were never good enough for his parents.

He killed himself when he was in college.

Synova said...

Even the most inflammatory and anti-western parts weren't that bad. Yes, it seemed pretty extreme but she had a point, several good points.

Self-esteem is built on accomplishment, not on praise when the child knows that they haven't done anything particularly praise-worthy. Even a parent with unrealistic expectations is communicating the belief that the child is capable. Yes, of course, anything can go far too far, but I don't think that piano, in particular, is something beyond any person who puts in the time. It's not like voice or something that requires a very good ear or extremely fine motor control. Okay, maybe not three hours of time, but time.

My kids are good kids, smart kids, capable kids, but I'll be honest... they don't have habits ingrained so that certain things are effortlessly automatic... like picking up or putting away or rinsing a dish... because I didn't figure it was that important. I was far more interested in encouraging their creativity. Well, they're creative. Fabulously so. But they aren't particularly studious or... self-propelled.

I'm not worried about it. They'll figure it all out. It's just that it's going to be harder for them this way than it would have been.

Bruce Hayden said...

Let me add that I am a bit troubled by the whole debate. I really don't know the answers.

I say this as a father of a kid now in college, who is doing great scholastically, but maybe could be doing a little better, working a bit harder, instead of skating once in awhile on brains. Not, nearly as much, of course, as I did.

I look back, and think that maybe I used too much love, and not enough discipline, and that if my ex had done the same, maybe the kid wouldn't have turned out as well.

But, then, I look at a lot of people I know who spent much of their lives striving for their parents' approval, and this often included working long hours of school work. Sure, they often succeed in school and later, but at a cost of a certain lack of security.

I think that this dilemma may be part of why some Asian families seem almost schizophrenic to us here in America. The kids are pushed unmercifully, but then are also spoiled rotten when it comes to material goods. Might the material spoiling be an attempt to compensate for being so strict when it comes to academics and the like?

David said...

When I first read the article, I thought it was a satire.

David said...

Also, a great bit of marketing for her book, aided by the world class journalists at the NYT.

Bruce Hayden said...

Self-esteem is built on accomplishment, not on praise when the child knows that they haven't done anything particularly praise-worthy.

I would agree, to some extent. But, as I indicated above, someone can have all the accomplishments in the world, and if they don't know that they have the love of their parents, then they are liable to have self-esteem problems for that.

I have seen this with a lot of people through life, but most notably with my mother. She was an outstanding student. Phi Beta Kappa, etc. And, yet, her parents were self-absorbed, and I think that she thought that she could never be the boy she thought her father wanted, no matter how hard she worked, or how much she excelled. And, I think for her 80 years, this affected her and her self-esteem.

So, I would suggest that you need both love and earned accomplishments in order to develop self-esteem.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Child-rearing varies a lot from culture to culture. What works well in China might work better here, or worse. But I think we should be reluctant to call parenting "child abuse" unless it actually involves injuring a child.

My wife and I don't have children yet, when we do I think our children will be raised more in the Chinese style, tempered with the American. I think our kids should play a team sport, for example. Asian kids are expected to be supersmart and academic acheivement doesn't help them that much with college. And we both recognize that in this country A students work for C students.

Bruce Hayden said...

Self-esteem is built on accomplishment, not on praise when the child knows that they haven't done anything particularly praise-worthy.

As a bit of a side note here, this is one of the reasons that I was happy to send my kid to private school K-12. The good ones provide enough opportunities in enough venues that most, if not all, of the kids, find somewhere that they can work hard and excel. It is far, far easier to make varsity in a sport, or get a decent part in a play, get into a top singing group, etc., when you have 80 in your class, and not 1,000, and where sports and fine arts are mandatory. I think that it was money well spent in developing well earned self-esteem.

Itouchayoface said...

Should Chua tone down her advice so some parents don't commit the crime of child abuse? Sounds like the Loughner debate is bleeding into other stories. Oh no, blood! Violence!

William said...

Who here will admit that they would much prefer their son to be on the football team than on the honor roll?....Perhaps academic achievement has some correlation with success but such success has very little correlation with happiness. Maybe it's not the scholars or athletes but the prom committee dweebs who, because of their superior social skills, go on to have the most enjoyable lives.... As someone who spent his youth collecting Ann Margaret memorobilia, I can assure everyone that that way is not the path to true, lasting happiness and fulfillment. If I had it all to do over, I would not lavish such time on her fan club activities.

peter hoh said...

I think the Atlanta Falcons may be interested in hiring a Chinese Mother to run the team next year.

Sixty Grit said...

WSJ piecce? Sounds Italian, not Chinese. But I guess they have noodles in common.

WV: ressephi - cousin of the guy who wrote "Pines of Rome" and other piecces.

Beldar said...

I dunno about hyper-achievement, but I'll tell you the main utility of the Tiger Mom's WSJ essay, across all American ethnic and geographical variations:

Contrast -- in order to highlight for one's own grown or nearly-grown children just how reasonable one has been in rearing them.

Freeman Hunt said...

I read the book last Thursday. It was very good, humorous, and not as extreme as the excerpts.

I think the excerpts were good for selling books and getting people talking. I was hearing about this book everywhere. Last Tuesday some friends and I were talking about it, (They'd heard about it too because of the infamous excerpts.) and we decided we'd all read it and then get together to discuss it.

By the end of the book, Chua finds major, negative consequences to her mode of parenting taken to the extreme, and that causes her to dial it back a bit. She never, however, throws over the idea of pushing kids to stick with things, setting high expectations, and ingraining a hard work ethic.

The book was a breath of fresh air amid the so-constant-it's-nearly-smothering advice to make every activity "child led."

Freeman Hunt said...

Is there any evidence that Chua desires to be a "diva?"

Gack.

Beldar said...

I don't have another comment, but I can't resist my next-pending WV:

"ismsonst": Of all the "-isms" Professor Althouse sought to smite with her blog, the single sonst-most -ism was "hooliganism."

Beldar said...

@Freeman Hunt: There is, I believe, a rebuttable presumption that all Yale Law professors, male or female, are divas until proved otherwise.

Akeitay said...

Yeah, own it, like Palin, the most annoying and self-centered diva in America today.

Freeman Hunt said...

What good is hyper-achievement for its own sake?

I think Chua would argue that it opens up more opportunities in adulthood.

Freeman Hunt said...

Another thing missing from the WSJ excerpts was the obvious adoration Chua has for her daughters. There is clearly a lot of love in their house.

Synova said...

"So, I would suggest that you need both love and earned accomplishments in order to develop self-esteem."

Oh, certainly. And it's important to recognize successes.

Chua had said something about how disheartening it was to be praised for nothing, and that I agree with. It's horrible to have successes ignored, but it's sort of horrible to have your lack of success praised as if it was the best you could do.

fivewheels said...

I sort of said this in the other thread, but what the Chinese model gives a kid for the future is not really useless piano proficiency, but these two useful things, IMO:

1) It makes hard work seem routine, and moderately hard work seem easy.

2) Work habits as life skills. Practicing your instrument helps teach a scatterbrained kid the value of being on time, putting in your time, and doing it right the first time. This can be applied to everything, and having those skills really can enhance any activity from studying to baking to online Halo firefights.

Mark Ledwith said...

She's a child abuser and some of you are apologists for the abuse. Shame on you.

Freeman Hunt said...

Shame on you for commenting on a book you haven't even read, Mark.

Mark Ledwith said...

I don't read bad books.
Freeman, how do you treat your kids?

Freeman Hunt said...

Freeman, how do you treat your kids?

Excellently.

If you haven't read the book, what evidence do you have to support that she's a "child abuser?"

Mark Ledwith said...

She screamed at them, manhandled them, called them "garbage" in public, isolated them from their community, threatened to withhold food and threatened to throw away their cherished possessions. No "context" in the book excuses that behavior. Hopefully your "excellent" treatment of your kids includes none of that.

PatCA said...

Chua is following David Brooks' advice in Bobos in Paradise, on how to become a breakthrough author/pundit: say something controversial and completely wrong, and you're in the game!

She then backpedals a little, sells a million books, and all is right with the world.

Freeman Hunt said...

Screaming is now child abuse? I'm not a screamer myself, but I hardly think that parents who yell are abusers.

I didn't read anything that indicated she "manhandled" her children.

She did not call them "garbage" in public. She called one of the daughters "garbage" after the daughter said something extraordinarily disrespectful to her (disrespectful enough that she didn't share it in the book.)

She didn't isolate them. They both had lots of friends.

There was no withholding of food.

The stuffed animal thing was shared as an absurdity said in the heat of an argument. And the dollhouse thing was a bluff that didn't work when her daughter called her on it and taunted her.

The charge of child abuse is serious and shouldn't be tossed around just because we disagree with someone's parenting style.

By the end of the book, she doesn't even agree with her own extreme behaviors and has altered her style. But to call it "child abuse" is, I think, reaching.

Mark Ledwith said...

So where is the line between "Tiger parenting and child abuse? Where is the line between expecting a child to fulfill your expectations (e.g. you have to be an engineer even though you want to be an artist) loving a child selflessly?
Where is the line between acceptance and cultural relativism on the one hand and believing your lyin' eyes? When the child commits suicide?

Freeman Hunt said...

(e.g. you have to be an engineer even though you want to be an artist)

She doesn't do this, so I don't know what you're talking about.

You seem to be grafting other stereotypes about Chinese parenting onto Chau. Her daughters are teenagers and free to pursue their own interests. I've seen no indications that her daughters are suicidal.

You can't say, "Some Asian parents push so relentlessly and lovelessly that their kids kill themselves, therefore Chau is a child abuser."

Freeman Hunt said...

What troubles me about the book is the idea that other parents, with less good sense and less naturally talented children, will extract advice that will lead to child abuse... or something close to it.

That could definitely happen. But then, the world isn't moron proof. I would have been annoyed while reading if there had been constant, patronizing warnings against misunderstanding throughout the book.

Freeman Hunt said...

Additionally, the entire narrative of the book leads to a warning. There is even much foreshadowing leading up to it.

SPOILER ALERT...
...
...

The younger daughter rebels, reclaims her independence, and Chau learns to dial it back.

Youngblood said...

Mark (as well as a few others) demonstrate that everybody's an expert at raising other people's kids.

Revenant said...

The bit that really gets me is making her kids study piano and violin.

... WHY? I mean, seriously: why? I can't imagine a bigger waste of time than forcing your kids to learn piano and violin if they don't actually enjoy it. It will provide them with exactly zero useful skills later in life.

At least if they went out for sports they'd get some exercise.

Revenant said...

There was no withholding of food.

"We worked right through dinner into the night, and I wouldn't let Lulu get up, not for water, not even to go to the bathroom."

How is that not withholding food and water?

Freeman, because her 7 year old daughter wanted to give up after working "nonstop", for a week, to learn an extremely difficult piano piece, Chua screamed herself hoarse, called her daughter lazy, cowardly, self-indulgent and pathetic, refused to let her get up to use the bathroom, threatened here with all manner of punishments, and, yes, withheld food and water.

The "happy ending" is that her daughter hugged her when this was all over. Because I guess no seven year old ever loved their abusive parents.

If this story is true then Chua is absolutely a child abuser. You do not treat a seven year old like that. You do not, ever, scream yourself hoarse telling your seven-year-old daughter that she's pathetic and cowardly. Who the FUCK ever heard of a "cowardly" second grader? Only a profoundly evil human being could even dream of treating such a young child like that. It is completely inexcusable.

Anne B. said...

Let's wait a few years,until the girls are grown up and independent of their parents, and then ask THEM what it was like. Without Mom hanging around to inhibit conversation.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Ann Althouse:

Children need to play to develop their minds. They need to find intrinsic delight in their experiences. What good is hyper-achievement for its own sake?

In China it never WAS for its own sake and it's not now for Chinese parents. In China for thousands of years education was the only chance for social mobility. Any low-status family that had any extra money devoted that to producing a son who could pass the civil service exam and get a government job (the infamous "eight-legged essay").

Nowadays, for Chinese in the US--and let me qualify that this my personal observation and not a statistic--hyperacheiving kids who get into top-tier colleges are a status symbol. It's the Chinese equivalent of "keeping up with the Joneses". That's not the sole motivation; among the Chinese families I know producing a supersmart kid who got a really good education means you did your job as a parent.

Harvard Girl, for example, was a huge best seller in China and has spawned countless imitators.

Published in 2000 in Chinese by the Writers Publishing House, the book details the rigorous lifestyle that Liu led and includes advice from Liu's parents on how to raise children to gain acceptance to top-tier universities; it has been described as a "manual" for child-rearing and early education.

In the US where social mobility is high and it's easy to make money without connections and bribery, we have the luxury of telling our kids that whatever makes them happy is what we want them to do. My parents told me I could be a garbage collecter if I wanted. In the US you can have a pretty decent life if you just stay out of jail, finish high school, and don't get knocked up. It's a lot tougher in the rest of the world, and maybe we shouldn't be so quick to think that other cultures' child-rearing is just obviously wrong, or that the things they value are necessarily silly.

My wife and I do not intend to raise our children in this way but they will be getting more discipline and higher expectations than most American kids. If my wife wanted Chinese kids raised in the Chinese way she'd have married another Chinese. And her parents are not your typical Chinese either, and are not so hung up on outward indicators of success--though I do wonder sometimes if they'd have been as accepting of me if I hadn't had a Ph. D.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Revenant: Chua screamed herself hoarse, called her daughter lazy, cowardly, self-indulgent and pathetic, refused to let her get up to use the bathroom, threatened here with all manner of punishments, and, yes, withheld food and water.

It's not going to hurt a kid to miss a meal, and most parents have screamed at their kids from time to time. And if you tell me you never did I am just calling bullshit.

Calling a kid cowardly and pathetic is not nearly as bad as accusing someone of child abuse based on an editorial written years after the fact and edited by a third party to be as inflammatory as possible with the context removed. We're getting into the Andrea Dworkin "all sex is rape" level of hyperbole and trivializing what real child abuse is.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Mark: So where is the line between "Tiger parenting and child abuse?

Where's the line between ANY kind of discipline and child abuse? A lot of people think you should go to jail for spanking a kid and, based on these comments, for yelling at a kid.

HKatz said...

I haven't read Miss Chua's book, though it sounds interesting and I'll give it a look.

As for the discussion of child abuse, no, occasionally losing your temper or yelling stuff at a kid is not abuse. Abuse tends to involve a pattern of behavior over time. It doesn't have to be physical - if parents are repeatedly humiliating, belittling, threatening, neglecting, emotionally blackmailing and manipulating a kid, etc. then that's a corrosive and harmful (but non-physical) abuse (and when there is physical or sexual abuse, this kind of emotional abuse accompanies it too). But you have to be cautious about throwing this label around; even parenting that seems especially imperfect or strange doesn't necessarily mean abuse.

Freeman Hunt said...

My wife and I do not intend to raise our children in this way but they will be getting more discipline and higher expectations than most American kids.

Same. (Except husband instead of wife.)

authoress said...

To be the master of oneself and one’s passions, to understand the rightness of one’s moral law and to obey it out of a sense of inward affinity to what’s good and natural; to practice virtue as its own reward, freely; to view one’s sense of duty serenely and make it one with one’s will and desires; and to stand firm in the face of hardship or even annihilation, without bending to coercion from tyrants or losing oneself in any frenzied mob — this is the ideal of discipline that cuts against the grain of the Chinese method, which, despite the good intentions of many of its practitioners, must be recognized for what it is: i.e., the relic of an authoritarian and collectivistic, however stable, culture and a tool for the perpetuation of the same. The mettle to confront mortal danger, eagerly if principle requires it and always with composure, does not come from yielding in childhood to threats of starvation, corporeal punishment, sequestration of property, and the like. On the contrary, someone who values freedom and deserves it tries to teach himself and his child to be indifferent to such debasing stimuli; whereas a child raised to respond to them — and their lowest common denominator is always brute force — grows up to be a cowardly, obedient serf of his parents, elders, and dictators. The only form of discipline he learns is that of endurance, which is also the main virtue he is expected to practice throughout his life as the subject of an absolute external authority that can’t be argued or reasoned with. But said serf might learn to play “The Little White Donkey” at the age of seven, and that’s worth something, right?

Mark Ledwith said...

If you lived in the SF bay area you would see how rampant the abuse is and how devastated the children are. Every month a child in my local area commits suicide.
You are more concerned about hurting Chua's feelings than the damage people like her do.
You are apologists for child abusers.
May God help your children.

The Crack Emcee said...

What troubles me about the book is the idea that other parents, with less good sense and less naturally talented children, will extract advice that will lead to child abuse... or something close to it. Children need to play to develop their minds. They need to find intrinsic delight in their experiences. What good is hyper-achievement for its own sake?

I was serving an asian couple not too long ago who had two small children. One was old enough to walk and perfectly well-behaved. The other was bundled up so tightly she couldn't move. She also didn't scream, cry, or anything but watch the world go by.

It made me wonder, long before this article, about NewAge parenting and how much nonsense we've been fed about what children "need".

The Crack Emcee said...

Freeman Hunt,

Is there any evidence that Chua desires to be a "diva?"

Gack.


This is why I love ya, babe. Don't let the folks at GayPatriot get ahold of Amy's name or it'll be all over for her. Either that or she and Ann will get into some kind of celebrity death match for the top spot.

I'ma stop because, while the thought started out as a little funny, now it just all seems sad.

"Diva"? Whatever.

The Crack Emcee said...

Mark Ledwith,

If you lived in the SF bay area you would see how rampant the abuse is and how devastated the children are. Every month a child in my local area commits suicide.

The most liberal part of the nation - no wonder you sound like such a bed wetter.

I lived in SF for 23 years and all I saw was mostly liberal indulgence, so I'd think, with that example all around, it's likely that's what caused those kids to kill themselves - because it made the high achieving parents seem cruel. My take:

Let the parents do the parenting and if you think they're bad for it, get your own.

Mark Ledwith said...

Troll

geoffrobinson said...

I think the key insight is that kids need to be pushed in the initial stages when things are hard.

However, I'll add my anecdotal evidence too. I had a Korean friend who slept through a major test freshman year and got a zero on it. Really, messed him up and he never recovered from it. My friends and I had to intervene since we figured out he was going to commit suicide.

Sam Hall said...

I wish she had been my mother.

Revenant said...

It's not going to hurt a kid to miss a meal, and most parents have screamed at their kids from time to time. And if you tell me you never did I am just calling bullshit.

Now you're just moving the goalposts. She screamed at her daughter do much she lost her voice. If you think that's something "most parents" have done, well, I call bullshit.

Calling a kid cowardly and pathetic is not nearly as bad as accusing someone of child abuse

It is much, much worse than "accusing" someone of child abuse. Chua is an adult. Her daughter was seven years old. You do not treat a seven year old like that. Period. It is sick and evil.

based on an editorial written years after the fact and edited by a third party to be as inflammatory as possible

My exact words were "if this story is true then Chua is absolutely a child abuser". Responding "don't call her a child abuser, the story might not be accurate" is an odd response to that statement.

Tari said...

There are aspects of Chua's parenting approach with which I agree, but the overall tone just completely disgusts me. My own small experience with this kind of "parenting": my roommate my last year of undergrad was a 1st generation Korean woman. We'd both done fairly well at a fairly prestigious NE university, and were excited (obviously) when graduation day finally came. My mom, a typical 70's/80's empathetic, selfish, Western parent, said something benign to my roommate like "your parents must be so proud of you". Roomie's response "no, they expect this. They haven't even congratulated me, and they won't until I finish grad school." My mom immediately hugged the roommate, told her that SHE was proud of her - was proud of both of us - and roomie just melted into huge, ugly tears.

My husband and I are fairly strict with our boys (extra math drills at home, expecting A's in school, no TV during the week, etc), but if I ever inflict that kind of hurt on either one of them I'll never forgive myself. They know how much we appreciate their hard work, and they know our rules are there for a reason. That's a big difference from how it appears Chua and her ilk approach things.

The Crack Emcee said...

revenant,

Chua is an adult. Her daughter was seven years old. You do not treat a seven year old like that. Period. It is sick and evil.

My foster mother hit me with rocks, boards, broomstick handles, belts - you name it - plus she screamed at me, embarrassed me in public, and anything else should could to get me and the other 12 kids to straighten up and fly right.

You ever heard me say a bad word about my mother? And - until NewAge disrupted my life - I was successful.

I think the reason kids today are so bad is because parenting has been taken away from the parents.

Kiru said...

A few commentators here have touched on the issue, but none have come out and said it.

Chinese parents have a fundamentally "status and materialistic" view of their children's success. This might sound like I'm being harsh on this method until you realize that they firmly believe that status and wealth WILL make them happy long-term.

So great is the adherence to 'what do they WANT to do', that the stereotypical American parent barely manages to suggest that their child should not dance in the middle of busy streets. Although the stereotype isn't fair, I think the argument that we confuse long-term happiness and short-term happy moods has some validity.


Given that some 70% of American children under the age of 10 want to be some combination of rock/pop star, princess, and (more rarely) firefighter, we obviously don't follow their will in regards to education and job preparedness anyway. The 'chinese parent' has simply decided to approach the problem from the perspective of "teach them out to succeed at difficult things, they'll figure out the rest".

Stuart Buck said...

"Freeman" --

Have you read the book? I got it this week and read the whole thing by the evening. It was hilarious -- so tongue in cheek and self-deprecating.

Teri said...

My son has a friend from his elementary gifted program. She is Chinese and was raised by a crazy Asian mom. She is currently in prison for murdering her mother, stabbing her several times with a butcher knife.

WV: unnest=this girl certainly unnested herself.

pam said...

"What troubles me about the book is the idea that other parents, with less good sense and less naturally talented children" A Tiger Chinese mother would NEVER let those thoughts of inferiority cross her mind...when a culture is larger built on pride...the thought of one's own children to be less in any way than others is a big no no! The concept of 'Asian parenting' is built primary on the thinking that one's own children is an extension of one-self. Therefore, success is a must and happiness comes later. What if we as a society found a happy medium between the Eastern & Western parenting...just a thought! :)

pam said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Freeman Hunt said...

Have you read the book? I got it this week and read the whole thing by the evening. It was hilarious -- so tongue in cheek and self-deprecating.

Yes, I read it last Thursday, and I agree.

Freeman Hunt said...

Those dropping anecdotes about suicidal or murderous Asians raised by "Chinese mothers," you do realize that one could supply endless anecdotes about whites raised by permissive "Western mothers" don't you?