Huffpost College

The Problem With A Culture Of Excellence

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GRADUATION
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Speak with anyone about student success in America and race will either enter the discussion early or be the increasingly difficult-to-ignore elephant in a cramped room.

In 2011, when the Wall Street Journal excerpted Amy Chua’s book, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, trumpeting Chinese-style parenting (characterized as strict, harsh, and withholding) over permissive Western-style parenting, an avalanche of responses ranged from accusing her of being a bad mother to applauding her for speaking a difficult truth. Most subsequent research on Asian achievement has been covered in the press with catchy tiger-related headlines: “Revenge of the Tiger Mother”; “Poor Little Tiger Cub”; “Tiger Mom vs. Brooklyn Dragon.” Buried beneath the heated argument about parenting styles, however, lay a seed of cultural frustration that made Chua’s argument so compelling: Asian Americans excel at academics, and people want to know why.

Read the whole story at Pacific Standard