Chinese Mothers Destroy Western Mothers

Amy Chua over at the WSJ (WTF?) says what most Asian parents know and believe, but haven't been able to say in a nationally distributed newspaper until now (via Farhad):

A lot of people wonder how Chinese parents raise such stereotypically successful kids. They wonder what these parents do to produce so many math whizzes and music prodigies, what it's like inside the family, and whether they could do it too. Well, I can tell them, because I've done it. Here are some things my daughters, Sophia and Louisa, were never allowed to do:

• attend a sleepover

• have a playdate

• be in a school play

• complain about not being in a school play

• watch TV or play computer games

• choose their own extracurricular activities

• get any grade less than an A

• not be the No. 1 student in every subject except gym and drama

• play any instrument other than the piano or violin

• not play the piano or violin.

It is difficult for me to emphasize how much insight this article provides into the Chinese parenting model.

2 comments :: Chinese Mothers Destroy Western Mothers

  1. Best part is:

    • be in a school play

    • complain about not being in a school play

    Hahahahaha.

    Close second is this:

    • not be the No. 1 student in every subject except gym and drama

  2. Dave, where do you fall on which model is 'better'?

    Maybe it's the psychology training in me, but the WSJ piece makes me want to throw bricks through windows. Anna Chu reminds me Barbara Hershey in Black Swan. Pushing her daughter for what's best for them.

    Then I read through the whole article and I understand what she's trying to get at (although brashly thrashing away)... and I find myself agreeing to an extend. Some children may respond better to her model - both in domains of performance and psychology.

    But it's not all. And it's not prescriptive.

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