What Happens to All the Asian-American Overachievers When the Test-taking Ends?

#Opinion

Wed, May 11th, 2011 16:11 by capnasty NEWS

Amy Chua shocked parents with her book The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, where she suggested that tough parenting is what gets children into Ivy Schools.

But, asks Wesley Yang of the New York Magazine, what happens to those kids when the test taking is over? Wesley tries to find out in his article Paper Tigers.

Millions of Americans must feel estranged from their own faces. But every self-estranged individual is estranged in his own way. I, for instance, am the child of Korean immigrants, but I do not speak my parents' native tongue. I have never called my elders by the proper honorific, "big brother" or "big sister." I have never dated a Korean woman. I don't have a Korean friend. Though I am an immigrant, I have never wanted to strive like one.

You could say that I am, in the gently derisive parlance of Asian-Americans, a banana or a Twinkie (yellow on the outside, white on the inside). But while I don't believe our roots necessarily define us, I do believe there are racially inflected assumptions wired into our neural circuitry that we use to sort through the sea of faces we confront. And although I am in most respects devoid of Asian characteristics, I do have an Asian face.

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