Tiger Moms

Chinese kids are so successful, says Amy Chua (who also wrote a book on the subject), because their mothers are willing to browbeat, shame, and control their children in the pursuit of perfection.  And, she argues, this is a good thing.

Chinese parents can get away with things that Western parents can’t. Once when I was young—maybe more than once—when I was extremely disrespectful to my mother, my father angrily called me “garbage” in our native Hokkien dialect. It worked really well. I felt terrible and deeply ashamed of what I had done. But it didn’t damage my self-esteem or anything like that. I knew exactly how highly he thought of me. I didn’t actually think I was worthless or feel like a piece of garbage.

As an adult, I once did the same thing to Sophia, calling her garbage in English when she acted extremely disrespectfully toward me. When I mentioned that I had done this at a dinner party, I was immediately ostracized. One guest named Marcy got so upset she broke down in tears and had to leave early. My friend Susan, the host, tried to rehabilitate me with the remaining guests.

The fact is that Chinese parents can do things that would seem unimaginable—even legally actionable—to Westerners. Chinese mothers can say to their daughters, “Hey fatty—lose some weight.” By contrast, Western parents have to tiptoe around the issue, talking in terms of “health” and never ever mentioning the f-word, and their kids still end up in therapy for eating disorders and negative self-image. (I also once heard a Western father toast his adult daughter by calling her “beautiful and incredibly competent.” She later told me that made her feel like garbage.)

Chinese parents can order their kids to get straight As. Western parents can only ask their kids to try their best. Chinese parents can say, “You’re lazy. All your classmates are getting ahead of you.” By contrast, Western parents have to struggle with their own conflicted feelings about achievement, and try to persuade themselves that they’re not disappointed about how their kids turned out.

via Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior – WSJ.com.

The “Tiger Mom” allows no playdates or sleepovers, demands hours of piano or violin practice (and no other instruments), and insists on perfection in all endeavors.  Western mothers, by contrast, are more like kitty kat moms, sheltering their children from all consequences and nurturing their self-esteem.

Read the whole article, which gives more of the Chinese rationale and approach to child-raising.

What do you think of this?  Can we find a Golden Mean here?

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    One needs to read this book as a confessional. the author is not advocating this approach. Indeed she confesses that her young daughter and her husband showed here the error of her ways.

    Here is the problem:

    The mother stressed the practice of virtue (this is called mortification in the bible) until virtue becomes a habit.

    God does demand this. And it requires self-sacrifice. That is why none of us will do it unless the Law (the bible calls this our conscience) literally kills us into doing it (mortification is latinate meaning “deathing”).

    Here is what is missing from this picture that the woman says she learned , because the Law (her nagging conscience) taught her this:

    Virtue is God´s way of making love happen in the world. The point of virtue is the production of love (the bible calls this daily bread).

    So here is a metaphor that will help see how this all works out:

    Think of Vocation as a factory that is made to hum like a finely tuned instrument by an industrial Metric Called the Law (aka conscience). Without the factory, driven by the metric, the purpose of the factory (philosophical term “teleological purpose”) remains unrealized. That purposes is to ship out “products” in the form of goods and services (aka love/daily bread) that makes the lives of those the factory is intended , teleologically, to serve, better (philosophical term “flourishing” biblical term “loved”).

    So the evidential proof that Vocation (factory) and the Law (industrial metric) are doing as they should is the evidence that a) love is being done and b) that the Judges of that love (those being served) find that their creaturely lives look better.

    Now I will use the same metaphor to show how our Old Adam sees all of this:

    There is a Communist Commisar (aka God), who is handing down divine Metrics to factories in the form of production quotas. The purpose of the factory then becomes to conform to that metric.

    So the factory , under the direction of Old adam, produces lots of shoes . They are all size 6. This is because less materials can be used and more can be made (which is to say our heart is not in this process, and we seek to follow the letter of the Law in this not the spirit, and further we are only producing, resentfully, out of fear that we will be sent to siberia if we fail at meeting the metric (ie we will go to hell).

    What then is missing is that it does not really matter if the intended persons to be served are being served or not. We are doing lots of shipments and so well tell people to take it up with the Commisar if they find our service to them to be the opposite of useful. We are conforming to the Divine Metric. That is what matters. If you happen to wear size 6, then we are very happy for you. If not, you are wrong to complain.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    One needs to read this book as a confessional. the author is not advocating this approach. Indeed she confesses that her young daughter and her husband showed here the error of her ways.

    Here is the problem:

    The mother stressed the practice of virtue (this is called mortification in the bible) until virtue becomes a habit.

    God does demand this. And it requires self-sacrifice. That is why none of us will do it unless the Law (the bible calls this our conscience) literally kills us into doing it (mortification is latinate meaning “deathing”).

    Here is what is missing from this picture that the woman says she learned , because the Law (her nagging conscience) taught her this:

    Virtue is God´s way of making love happen in the world. The point of virtue is the production of love (the bible calls this daily bread).

    So here is a metaphor that will help see how this all works out:

    Think of Vocation as a factory that is made to hum like a finely tuned instrument by an industrial Metric Called the Law (aka conscience). Without the factory, driven by the metric, the purpose of the factory (philosophical term “teleological purpose”) remains unrealized. That purposes is to ship out “products” in the form of goods and services (aka love/daily bread) that makes the lives of those the factory is intended , teleologically, to serve, better (philosophical term “flourishing” biblical term “loved”).

    So the evidential proof that Vocation (factory) and the Law (industrial metric) are doing as they should is the evidence that a) love is being done and b) that the Judges of that love (those being served) find that their creaturely lives look better.

    Now I will use the same metaphor to show how our Old Adam sees all of this:

    There is a Communist Commisar (aka God), who is handing down divine Metrics to factories in the form of production quotas. The purpose of the factory then becomes to conform to that metric.

    So the factory , under the direction of Old adam, produces lots of shoes . They are all size 6. This is because less materials can be used and more can be made (which is to say our heart is not in this process, and we seek to follow the letter of the Law in this not the spirit, and further we are only producing, resentfully, out of fear that we will be sent to siberia if we fail at meeting the metric (ie we will go to hell).

    What then is missing is that it does not really matter if the intended persons to be served are being served or not. We are doing lots of shipments and so well tell people to take it up with the Commisar if they find our service to them to be the opposite of useful. We are conforming to the Divine Metric. That is what matters. If you happen to wear size 6, then we are very happy for you. If not, you are wrong to complain.

  • Jimmy Veith

    Can we find a golden mean? What we need is some kind of a hybrid. Humm …, like maybe a Lion Father and a Tiger Mom. Yes! We should be Ligers. (They really do exist!)

    – From this wisdom of Napoleon Dynamite.

  • Jimmy Veith

    Can we find a golden mean? What we need is some kind of a hybrid. Humm …, like maybe a Lion Father and a Tiger Mom. Yes! We should be Ligers. (They really do exist!)

    – From this wisdom of Napoleon Dynamite.

  • Mary Jack
  • Mary Jack
  • Jimmy Veith

    Thanks Mary Jack for pointing us to that great article. The author is clearly a Liger.

  • Jimmy Veith

    Thanks Mary Jack for pointing us to that great article. The author is clearly a Liger.

  • Porcell

    By lovingly and firmly holding her daughters to the highest standards of behavior and achievement, Amy Chua is telling them that they are inherently worthy people. In a WSJ follow-up interview, she remarked in response to the question of whether strict Eastern parenting helps children lead happy lives as adults : When it works well, absolutely! And by working well, I mean when high expectations are coupled with love, understanding and parental involvement. This is the gift my parents gave me, and what I hope I’m giving my daughters.

    Amy Chua: By contrast, Western parents have to struggle with their own conflicted feelings about achievement, and try to persuade themselves that they’re not disappointed about how their kids turned out.

    The above gets to the heart of the matter. Americans have a hard time demanding the sort of excellence that distinguishes people. While we are certainly equal before God and the law, there is no good reason not to aspire to the highest standards of behavior and vocation.

    Americans would do well to pay careful attention to this tiger mother. In earlier times many Americans had no problem demanding the highest standards of vocation and behavior including Christian formation. Today mediocrity or worse tends to rule.

  • Porcell

    By lovingly and firmly holding her daughters to the highest standards of behavior and achievement, Amy Chua is telling them that they are inherently worthy people. In a WSJ follow-up interview, she remarked in response to the question of whether strict Eastern parenting helps children lead happy lives as adults : When it works well, absolutely! And by working well, I mean when high expectations are coupled with love, understanding and parental involvement. This is the gift my parents gave me, and what I hope I’m giving my daughters.

    Amy Chua: By contrast, Western parents have to struggle with their own conflicted feelings about achievement, and try to persuade themselves that they’re not disappointed about how their kids turned out.

    The above gets to the heart of the matter. Americans have a hard time demanding the sort of excellence that distinguishes people. While we are certainly equal before God and the law, there is no good reason not to aspire to the highest standards of behavior and vocation.

    Americans would do well to pay careful attention to this tiger mother. In earlier times many Americans had no problem demanding the highest standards of vocation and behavior including Christian formation. Today mediocrity or worse tends to rule.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    This mom is the dream mother for any teacher! :D

    I say this because too many parents lean towards indulgence.

  • http://enterthevein.wordpress.com J. Dean

    This mom is the dream mother for any teacher! :D

    I say this because too many parents lean towards indulgence.

  • http://theobservationtree.blogspot.com Louis

    Somehow I get the impression that there is some gross generalisation here….

  • http://theobservationtree.blogspot.com Louis

    Somehow I get the impression that there is some gross generalisation here….

  • David Carver (in Wuxi)

    As someone who is in China and has had the opportunity to speak to both mothers disillusioned by the totalitarian system of Chinese education and children scarred by it, I can say that Amy Chua is not an exemplar of, as Porcell put it, the “highest standards of vocation,” but rather a brutal, small-minded, and unjust mother.
    It is a function of American squeamishness to imagine that demanding great things of our children is necessary. No – what we are asked of God to do is to expect good from our children. Threatening to burn their stuffed animals or withhold Christmas presents is not indicative of good parenting, but of ego and tyranny.

    (As an aside, the reason Chinese people have limited social skills and undeveloped independence of thought is precisely because of the kind of education advocated by Chua. In other words, they might be a much more tolerant country if they learned that virtue at home. So conservatives should severely restrain themselves before coming out on her side.)

  • David Carver (in Wuxi)

    As someone who is in China and has had the opportunity to speak to both mothers disillusioned by the totalitarian system of Chinese education and children scarred by it, I can say that Amy Chua is not an exemplar of, as Porcell put it, the “highest standards of vocation,” but rather a brutal, small-minded, and unjust mother.
    It is a function of American squeamishness to imagine that demanding great things of our children is necessary. No – what we are asked of God to do is to expect good from our children. Threatening to burn their stuffed animals or withhold Christmas presents is not indicative of good parenting, but of ego and tyranny.

    (As an aside, the reason Chinese people have limited social skills and undeveloped independence of thought is precisely because of the kind of education advocated by Chua. In other words, they might be a much more tolerant country if they learned that virtue at home. So conservatives should severely restrain themselves before coming out on her side.)

  • http://farnham.tumblr.com Will

    One of my other favorite bloggers, The Last Psychiatrist, has a great piece on Chua:

    http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2011/01/why_chinese_mothers_are_not_su.html

  • http://farnham.tumblr.com Will

    One of my other favorite bloggers, The Last Psychiatrist, has a great piece on Chua:

    http://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2011/01/why_chinese_mothers_are_not_su.html

  • Porcell

    Mr. Carver, at 8, you didn’t pay attention to Amy Chua’s emphasis. not only on the highest of expectations, but on love, understanding and parental involvement. The best of the Chinese people, in many ways following the best of Confucian tradition, know how to balance excellence and strictness with love and care.

  • Porcell

    Mr. Carver, at 8, you didn’t pay attention to Amy Chua’s emphasis. not only on the highest of expectations, but on love, understanding and parental involvement. The best of the Chinese people, in many ways following the best of Confucian tradition, know how to balance excellence and strictness with love and care.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    the mom in question says that what she did she was broken out of doing. this is clear from the subtitle of her book.

    but the porcell idea is what clings to americans, regardless of the press.

    it is selling more books and so is great publicity for the mom. I hope people read the book, because it will tell them to strike a balance.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    the mom in question says that what she did she was broken out of doing. this is clear from the subtitle of her book.

    but the porcell idea is what clings to americans, regardless of the press.

    it is selling more books and so is great publicity for the mom. I hope people read the book, because it will tell them to strike a balance.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    phew! off the hook on this one – Sure glad I’m a father!

    And anyway I prefer the Mythbusters motto: “Failure is always an option!”

  • Bryan Lindemood

    phew! off the hook on this one – Sure glad I’m a father!

    And anyway I prefer the Mythbusters motto: “Failure is always an option!”

  • David Carver (in Wuxi)

    Porcell,

    The best of the Chinese people are probably akin in their intentions and method to the best of the Western people, so that point doesn’t really exonerate either Chua or the Chinese system.

    Please tell me if you think that calling your child garbage, and saying so without shame in public, is part of love and understanding, and I will grant you that Chua upholds this in her approach. Also I’d like to know whether threatening to remove Christmas presents squares with your idea of love and understanding, because if not, Chua can use the words but they are in practice hollow. Otherwise it is difficult for me to reconcile that charitable notion of “parental involvement” with an attitude in which an inability to learn a song on the piano meets with threats, screams, and viciousness.

    I say all this with some amount of wonder. When I was younger I had to learn to play the piano; I was allowed a minimum of TV and computer; when I had nothing to do I was given chores or told to go outside; and these sorts of disciplines contributed to my character later on. But my mother never resorted to calling me garbage. She didn’t have to, because my mother, for really important things, was willing to employ what Chua, strangely enough, does not mention: corporal punishment.

  • David Carver (in Wuxi)

    Porcell,

    The best of the Chinese people are probably akin in their intentions and method to the best of the Western people, so that point doesn’t really exonerate either Chua or the Chinese system.

    Please tell me if you think that calling your child garbage, and saying so without shame in public, is part of love and understanding, and I will grant you that Chua upholds this in her approach. Also I’d like to know whether threatening to remove Christmas presents squares with your idea of love and understanding, because if not, Chua can use the words but they are in practice hollow. Otherwise it is difficult for me to reconcile that charitable notion of “parental involvement” with an attitude in which an inability to learn a song on the piano meets with threats, screams, and viciousness.

    I say all this with some amount of wonder. When I was younger I had to learn to play the piano; I was allowed a minimum of TV and computer; when I had nothing to do I was given chores or told to go outside; and these sorts of disciplines contributed to my character later on. But my mother never resorted to calling me garbage. She didn’t have to, because my mother, for really important things, was willing to employ what Chua, strangely enough, does not mention: corporal punishment.

  • Mockingbird

    I enjoyed the article, as well, and what I got out of it was not “You should make your children practice piano and do homework 3 hours every day,” but “If you want successful children, you need to be involved in their lives.” That means if I want my child to be successful at math, I need to sit down and do her multiplication tables with her, not assume she will learn them in school. If I want her to be successful at piano, I need to sit and listen to her practice, not assume she will learn it at her lesson. I need to show her the high standard she can achieve, then help her get there. And then each time she achieves it to praise her for her hard work and tell her how proud I am of her.

  • Mockingbird

    I enjoyed the article, as well, and what I got out of it was not “You should make your children practice piano and do homework 3 hours every day,” but “If you want successful children, you need to be involved in their lives.” That means if I want my child to be successful at math, I need to sit down and do her multiplication tables with her, not assume she will learn them in school. If I want her to be successful at piano, I need to sit and listen to her practice, not assume she will learn it at her lesson. I need to show her the high standard she can achieve, then help her get there. And then each time she achieves it to praise her for her hard work and tell her how proud I am of her.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    The end of the article Mary Jack’s link goes to is really quite nice. Still not the Gospel, though, which always seems to be missing from parenting advice.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    The end of the article Mary Jack’s link goes to is really quite nice. Still not the Gospel, though, which always seems to be missing from parenting advice.

  • http://thefragrantharbor.blogspot.com Catherine

    This reminds me of my time in Hong Kong. The children we worked with there all had more of a work ethic than I ever did in school (I was not a fan of doing homework, let’s just say). There’s so much pressure applied to children there to learn English, get good grades, and get into university (much harder in Hong Kong than in America, or even Mainland China). It’s definitely a VERY different parenting culture than what I’m used to. The GEO missionaries there would say mothers would come in and talk to them and even if a child was doing very well, the mother would put the child down, saying, “Oh, she’s lazy,” whether or not the child was within hearing distance.

  • http://thefragrantharbor.blogspot.com Catherine

    This reminds me of my time in Hong Kong. The children we worked with there all had more of a work ethic than I ever did in school (I was not a fan of doing homework, let’s just say). There’s so much pressure applied to children there to learn English, get good grades, and get into university (much harder in Hong Kong than in America, or even Mainland China). It’s definitely a VERY different parenting culture than what I’m used to. The GEO missionaries there would say mothers would come in and talk to them and even if a child was doing very well, the mother would put the child down, saying, “Oh, she’s lazy,” whether or not the child was within hearing distance.

  • Porcell

    FWS, as far as I can tell, Chua’s book has no subtitle. What are you talking about?

    Mr. Carver, Amy Chua made it clear that, while she felt deeply ashamed when her father called her “garbage,” for having been rude to her mother, she well understood how highly he thought of her. There is a way of squaring rude or lazy children away with deservedly harsh language and at the same time let them know that you think highly of them and expect much better.

    Actually, I respect Chua for threatening to remove Christmas presents, though refraining from corporal punishment of children, something for which I have no respect

    From what I gather, Chua’s daughters have turned out rather well. Personally, I’m very glad to have been brought up by a mother and father very similar to Chua, both of whom were exceedingly strict, though from the perspective of time underneath full of love and care.

    Most Marines go through a seemingly harsh and cruel process of discipline and training, for which in the end they are very grateful. The Corps demands the best and usually gets at least an approximation of it.

  • Porcell

    FWS, as far as I can tell, Chua’s book has no subtitle. What are you talking about?

    Mr. Carver, Amy Chua made it clear that, while she felt deeply ashamed when her father called her “garbage,” for having been rude to her mother, she well understood how highly he thought of her. There is a way of squaring rude or lazy children away with deservedly harsh language and at the same time let them know that you think highly of them and expect much better.

    Actually, I respect Chua for threatening to remove Christmas presents, though refraining from corporal punishment of children, something for which I have no respect

    From what I gather, Chua’s daughters have turned out rather well. Personally, I’m very glad to have been brought up by a mother and father very similar to Chua, both of whom were exceedingly strict, though from the perspective of time underneath full of love and care.

    Most Marines go through a seemingly harsh and cruel process of discipline and training, for which in the end they are very grateful. The Corps demands the best and usually gets at least an approximation of it.

  • Cincinnatus

    My Chinese students are my “best” students, but my least thoughtful. In my experience–which is from a slightly different angle than David Carver’s (whose testimony I find to be interesting, and corroborative of my own)–the Chinese “style” of parenting teaches one to jump through hoops and achieve tangible, quantifiable goals without providing sound justifications (or, really, any justifications) for doing so. A recent critique (I think it was on Slate, but I can’t find it at the moment) of Chua’s piece notes that Chinese children are being forced to learn Bach, for example, because the excellences of Western culture are regarded as prestigious, etc., without actually learning to love and appreciate Bach’s music. It’s about status and achievement in themselves. It seems a rather impoverished model of parenting and accomplishment to me I might also mention that my Chinese students appear, at least to my feeble eyes, to be my least happy and balanced.

    Don’t get me wrong, Porcell: the American style of parenting is intensely problematic, and I have a disproportionate degree of loathing for many of the young parents around me (you note accurately their utter incapacity to discipline in any way), but I think we ought to pause for a long time–forever, preferably–before elevating Chua as an exemplar.

  • Cincinnatus

    My Chinese students are my “best” students, but my least thoughtful. In my experience–which is from a slightly different angle than David Carver’s (whose testimony I find to be interesting, and corroborative of my own)–the Chinese “style” of parenting teaches one to jump through hoops and achieve tangible, quantifiable goals without providing sound justifications (or, really, any justifications) for doing so. A recent critique (I think it was on Slate, but I can’t find it at the moment) of Chua’s piece notes that Chinese children are being forced to learn Bach, for example, because the excellences of Western culture are regarded as prestigious, etc., without actually learning to love and appreciate Bach’s music. It’s about status and achievement in themselves. It seems a rather impoverished model of parenting and accomplishment to me I might also mention that my Chinese students appear, at least to my feeble eyes, to be my least happy and balanced.

    Don’t get me wrong, Porcell: the American style of parenting is intensely problematic, and I have a disproportionate degree of loathing for many of the young parents around me (you note accurately their utter incapacity to discipline in any way), but I think we ought to pause for a long time–forever, preferably–before elevating Chua as an exemplar.

  • Cincinnatus

    Ah, here is the article: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703959104576082434187716252.html

    No wonder I couldn’t find it: it’s actually in the Wall Street Journal, which, I’m pretty sure, is on an entirely different part of the internet than Slate :-P

    I don’t agree with everything in the editorial, but I think she makes some valid critiques. In short, there is a healthy medium.

  • Cincinnatus

    Ah, here is the article: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703959104576082434187716252.html

    No wonder I couldn’t find it: it’s actually in the Wall Street Journal, which, I’m pretty sure, is on an entirely different part of the internet than Slate :-P

    I don’t agree with everything in the editorial, but I think she makes some valid critiques. In short, there is a healthy medium.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    cincinatus @ 18

    there it is cincinatus. The Lutheran confessions point to the Virtue Ethics of Aristotle for those who ask how to do “Lutheran Ethics” and they add that “nothing more can be demanded “. Apology IV (II) 14b]

    so if you know the differences between aquinas and aristotle , you will also know exactly where the Lutherans reject aquinas theories of Natural Law etc. it is those differences they reject.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    cincinatus @ 18

    there it is cincinatus. The Lutheran confessions point to the Virtue Ethics of Aristotle for those who ask how to do “Lutheran Ethics” and they add that “nothing more can be demanded “. Apology IV (II) 14b]

    so if you know the differences between aquinas and aristotle , you will also know exactly where the Lutherans reject aquinas theories of Natural Law etc. it is those differences they reject.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    cincinatus @ 18

    my comment is because you referred , obtusely, to the golden mean. This is aristotle´s ethics isnt it? so it is also, exactly, the Lutheran ethic.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    cincinatus @ 18

    my comment is because you referred , obtusely, to the golden mean. This is aristotle´s ethics isnt it? so it is also, exactly, the Lutheran ethic.

  • DonS

    As is always the case, Christ’s example is relevant. His ministry on earth was full of exhortation, instruction, expressed disappointment, and even an angry outburst on occasion, but the underlying message, the basis for His sojourn on earth, was rooted in love. That love, the ultimate in sacrificial love, communicates value and worth to each and every one of us, and provides the context for His instruction and exhortation.

    The balance is this — that whatever you desire to convey to your child in the way of expectations must be done in the context of love. The child must be secure in his self worth and value and must know that you love him unconditionally. In that environment, he can fully respond to your exhortation and the requirements you impose on him, and will excell, to the best of his abilities, and probably beyond what he can imagine.

    The fault of the Chinese culture is that the individual is not valued, but rather subsumed by an emphasis on the collective state. This fact is communicated no more clearly than by the mandated abortion policy if a family has more than one child, but it manifests itself in many other ways as well. On the other hand, in the U.S. we often confuse love with acceptance of any kind of behavior, achievement, or lack thereof, hesitating to impose requirements or expectations on the individual.

  • DonS

    As is always the case, Christ’s example is relevant. His ministry on earth was full of exhortation, instruction, expressed disappointment, and even an angry outburst on occasion, but the underlying message, the basis for His sojourn on earth, was rooted in love. That love, the ultimate in sacrificial love, communicates value and worth to each and every one of us, and provides the context for His instruction and exhortation.

    The balance is this — that whatever you desire to convey to your child in the way of expectations must be done in the context of love. The child must be secure in his self worth and value and must know that you love him unconditionally. In that environment, he can fully respond to your exhortation and the requirements you impose on him, and will excell, to the best of his abilities, and probably beyond what he can imagine.

    The fault of the Chinese culture is that the individual is not valued, but rather subsumed by an emphasis on the collective state. This fact is communicated no more clearly than by the mandated abortion policy if a family has more than one child, but it manifests itself in many other ways as well. On the other hand, in the U.S. we often confuse love with acceptance of any kind of behavior, achievement, or lack thereof, hesitating to impose requirements or expectations on the individual.

  • Cincinnatus

    fws@19 and 20: No, I wasn’t intentionally referencing Aristotle’s “golden mean.” I was actually answering Veith’s question: I think there is a “happy medium” between the soulless, eviscerated, tyrannical parenting typical of Chinese families and the undisciplined, chaotic, egoistic parenting typical of contemporary American families. Both extremes are intensely problematic, but I think a balance of both would be ideal. And the way to get there is not to swing the parenting pendulum over the Chua’s extreme.

  • Cincinnatus

    fws@19 and 20: No, I wasn’t intentionally referencing Aristotle’s “golden mean.” I was actually answering Veith’s question: I think there is a “happy medium” between the soulless, eviscerated, tyrannical parenting typical of Chinese families and the undisciplined, chaotic, egoistic parenting typical of contemporary American families. Both extremes are intensely problematic, but I think a balance of both would be ideal. And the way to get there is not to swing the parenting pendulum over the Chua’s extreme.

  • Porcell

    Amy Chua would be the first to acknowledge that the freedom in America that allowed her father and herself to do very well in their fields of engineering and law would be the first to acknowledge that America is better place than China. Her basic point is that for most people to do well they have to be hard working and disciplined from childhood on. I business, for example, most people need to put in twelve-hour days to do well.

    Charles Murray in a generally complementary AEI article does point out a caution as follows:

    Guess what. Amy Chua has really smart kids. They would be really smart if she had put them up for adoption at birth with the squishiest postmodern parents. They would not have turned out exactly the same under their softer tutelage, but they would probably be getting into Harvard and Princeton as well. Similarly, if Amy Chua had adopted two children at birth who turned out to have measured childhood IQs at the 20th percentile, she would have struggled to get them through high school, no matter how fiercely she battled for them.

    Accepting both truths—parenting does matter, but genes constrain possibilities—seems peculiarly hard for some parents and almost every policy maker to accept.

  • Porcell

    Amy Chua would be the first to acknowledge that the freedom in America that allowed her father and herself to do very well in their fields of engineering and law would be the first to acknowledge that America is better place than China. Her basic point is that for most people to do well they have to be hard working and disciplined from childhood on. I business, for example, most people need to put in twelve-hour days to do well.

    Charles Murray in a generally complementary AEI article does point out a caution as follows:

    Guess what. Amy Chua has really smart kids. They would be really smart if she had put them up for adoption at birth with the squishiest postmodern parents. They would not have turned out exactly the same under their softer tutelage, but they would probably be getting into Harvard and Princeton as well. Similarly, if Amy Chua had adopted two children at birth who turned out to have measured childhood IQs at the 20th percentile, she would have struggled to get them through high school, no matter how fiercely she battled for them.

    Accepting both truths—parenting does matter, but genes constrain possibilities—seems peculiarly hard for some parents and almost every policy maker to accept.

  • Cincinnatus

    Here’s the thing, Porcell (and I’m glad you posted that link, as it seems to be getting slightly closer to an acceptable medium): when I said that my Chinese students are my “best” students, I meant best in a very particular way: they know, again, how to achieve externally and arbitrarily selected goals, to jump through hoops, to satisfy quantitative measures, to say what needs to be said, to read the texts carefully and vomit them back out on exams, to kiss up to authority figures. These are the things needed, indeed, to be superficially “successful.” But there is no imagination there. There is no joy there. There is no sense of vocation there. More often than not, there is a tremendous fear of what will happen if they do not achieve these arbitrary accomplishments. What these Chinese students are taught to do–and what they positively excel at doing–prepares them for bureaucratic management, for the insipid, banal, prosaic skill of the managerial personality. They’ll be great corporate lawyers, but not great judges; they’ll be great account executives, but not entrepreneurs; they’ll be great technical writers, but you’ll see none of their names on the next great novel or poem. They perform Bach; they’ll never be Bach.

    This signals a decided lacuna in the educational and parental “styles” in China. They are taught to succeed according to the standards of others because…well, because what? Because success is good. Why? They can provide no answer. Success is good because…it just is! This isn’t the stuff of a happy life, and, if nothing else, it is a wonderful feature of the Western philosophical (and thus educational, social, political) milieu to prioritize the pursuit of the happy life, though we may differ on how that might be achieved. The Chinese approach is not in the least eudaemonic.

  • Cincinnatus

    Here’s the thing, Porcell (and I’m glad you posted that link, as it seems to be getting slightly closer to an acceptable medium): when I said that my Chinese students are my “best” students, I meant best in a very particular way: they know, again, how to achieve externally and arbitrarily selected goals, to jump through hoops, to satisfy quantitative measures, to say what needs to be said, to read the texts carefully and vomit them back out on exams, to kiss up to authority figures. These are the things needed, indeed, to be superficially “successful.” But there is no imagination there. There is no joy there. There is no sense of vocation there. More often than not, there is a tremendous fear of what will happen if they do not achieve these arbitrary accomplishments. What these Chinese students are taught to do–and what they positively excel at doing–prepares them for bureaucratic management, for the insipid, banal, prosaic skill of the managerial personality. They’ll be great corporate lawyers, but not great judges; they’ll be great account executives, but not entrepreneurs; they’ll be great technical writers, but you’ll see none of their names on the next great novel or poem. They perform Bach; they’ll never be Bach.

    This signals a decided lacuna in the educational and parental “styles” in China. They are taught to succeed according to the standards of others because…well, because what? Because success is good. Why? They can provide no answer. Success is good because…it just is! This isn’t the stuff of a happy life, and, if nothing else, it is a wonderful feature of the Western philosophical (and thus educational, social, political) milieu to prioritize the pursuit of the happy life, though we may differ on how that might be achieved. The Chinese approach is not in the least eudaemonic.

  • kerner

    This post raises a question we debated some time ago when it was noted that Asian-American students, on average, score higher on standardized tests than any other US ethnic group. One argument was that Asians were inherantly smarted than other people.

    Is it possible that Asians are not smarter, per se? But could it be that the reason Asian students excel in academics is that Asian parents drive their children to apply themselves so mercilessly?

    If training is at least a cause of Asian American academic excellence, does that mean that other ethnic groups could also excel if they were similarly trained?

  • kerner

    This post raises a question we debated some time ago when it was noted that Asian-American students, on average, score higher on standardized tests than any other US ethnic group. One argument was that Asians were inherantly smarted than other people.

    Is it possible that Asians are not smarter, per se? But could it be that the reason Asian students excel in academics is that Asian parents drive their children to apply themselves so mercilessly?

    If training is at least a cause of Asian American academic excellence, does that mean that other ethnic groups could also excel if they were similarly trained?

  • kerner

    Cincinnatus @25:

    A very interesting set of observations. This is why I am not as afraid of the Chinese competing with us as some are. Like the Japanese before them, we will defeat them in a free market system that requires creative thinking.

  • kerner

    Cincinnatus @25:

    A very interesting set of observations. This is why I am not as afraid of the Chinese competing with us as some are. Like the Japanese before them, we will defeat them in a free market system that requires creative thinking.

  • Cincinnatus

    kerner@26:

    “If training is at least a cause of Asian American academic excellence, does that mean that other ethnic groups could also excel if they were similarly trained?”

    Sure, why not? How is this question relevant? I don’t think anyone here doubts that American students could achieve similar academic “excellence” (so-called) if Chinese-style parenting tactics were implemented, but the question we’re asking is whether we should implement these tactics.

    Of course, one critique pointed out, correctly I think, that, if Chua had given birth to unintelligent children, no amount of public humiliation, parental pressure, etc., could have made her children model students. But we’re talking about averages here. If you’re talking about whether there is such a thing as a genetically/naturally dull child, then my answer is yes, of course. If you’re talking about whether the children of a particular ethnic group can tend, statistically, to be duller than those of other ethnic groups (per our previous discussion), perhaps so, perhaps not. But I think we would both agree that nurture is the real question here. Would your children achieve more relative to what they have achieved or could potentially have achieved if you had implemented Chua’s methods? I think there is the probability that they could have (not even knowing your children); I probably could have achieved “more” if my parents had mimicked Chua. But, more to the point, would your children or mine (0r myself) be better and happier? Ah, now there’s the rub.

  • Cincinnatus

    kerner@26:

    “If training is at least a cause of Asian American academic excellence, does that mean that other ethnic groups could also excel if they were similarly trained?”

    Sure, why not? How is this question relevant? I don’t think anyone here doubts that American students could achieve similar academic “excellence” (so-called) if Chinese-style parenting tactics were implemented, but the question we’re asking is whether we should implement these tactics.

    Of course, one critique pointed out, correctly I think, that, if Chua had given birth to unintelligent children, no amount of public humiliation, parental pressure, etc., could have made her children model students. But we’re talking about averages here. If you’re talking about whether there is such a thing as a genetically/naturally dull child, then my answer is yes, of course. If you’re talking about whether the children of a particular ethnic group can tend, statistically, to be duller than those of other ethnic groups (per our previous discussion), perhaps so, perhaps not. But I think we would both agree that nurture is the real question here. Would your children achieve more relative to what they have achieved or could potentially have achieved if you had implemented Chua’s methods? I think there is the probability that they could have (not even knowing your children); I probably could have achieved “more” if my parents had mimicked Chua. But, more to the point, would your children or mine (0r myself) be better and happier? Ah, now there’s the rub.

  • Cincinnatus

    kerner@27: I agree with you, even aside from the economic reality that China is an unsustainable bubble waiting to burst.

    Also, why is everything I’ve written in italics?

  • Cincinnatus

    kerner@27: I agree with you, even aside from the economic reality that China is an unsustainable bubble waiting to burst.

    Also, why is everything I’ve written in italics?

  • DonS

    Cincinnatus @ 25: That’s about as articulate an observation as I’ve seen, and strikes me as being quite correct. Well said. As I have posted before, I agree with both you and Kerner that China is not a nation we should be particularly worried about — it is at its zenith right now, in my opinion.

    As for the italics thing, once when I forgot to close my own italics it affected all of the following posts until an administrator (I think it was tODD) fixed it. Probably Kerner forgot to close his italics.

  • DonS

    Cincinnatus @ 25: That’s about as articulate an observation as I’ve seen, and strikes me as being quite correct. Well said. As I have posted before, I agree with both you and Kerner that China is not a nation we should be particularly worried about — it is at its zenith right now, in my opinion.

    As for the italics thing, once when I forgot to close my own italics it affected all of the following posts until an administrator (I think it was tODD) fixed it. Probably Kerner forgot to close his italics.

  • DonS

    italics experiment

  • DonS

    italics experiment

  • DonS

    didn’t work — I tried closing them prior to my phrase, but no use.

  • DonS

    didn’t work — I tried closing them prior to my phrase, but no use.

  • DonS

    Even our names are italicized — this is true italics purgatory :-)

  • DonS

    Even our names are italicized — this is true italics purgatory :-)

  • DonS

    test test

  • DonS

    test test

  • DonS

    Nope. Oh well.

  • DonS

    Nope. Oh well.

  • Grace

    maybe this will work -

  • Grace

    maybe this will work -

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “They’ll be great corporate lawyers, but not great judges;”

    Really?

    Considering the imaginative tom foolery that has at times passed for appellate decisions in the highest courts in the USA, I am willing to give them a shot. Our judges are a little too creative now and again.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “They’ll be great corporate lawyers, but not great judges;”

    Really?

    Considering the imaginative tom foolery that has at times passed for appellate decisions in the highest courts in the USA, I am willing to give them a shot. Our judges are a little too creative now and again.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Help, I have been italicized!

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Help, I have been italicized!

  • Porcell

    Kerner, according to Murray in his book The Bell Curve, East Asians on intelligence tests average about fifteen points higher than American people of European heritage. The Jews similarly score about fifteen points higher.

    Both Asians and Jews have been literate much longer than Europeans; this has had a large cultural influence and possibly even a genetic effect, though this hasn’t been proved.

  • Porcell

    Kerner, according to Murray in his book The Bell Curve, East Asians on intelligence tests average about fifteen points higher than American people of European heritage. The Jews similarly score about fifteen points higher.

    Both Asians and Jews have been literate much longer than Europeans; this has had a large cultural influence and possibly even a genetic effect, though this hasn’t been proved.

  • Grace

    Kerner – 28

    “This is why I am not as afraid of the Chinese competing with us as some are. Like the Japanese before them, we will defeat them in a free market system that requires creative thinking.”

    China is becoming stronger everyday, India is right behind. Banking understands the situation, I can see it too, but most in the U.S. are blind to the lazy indulgences of their citizens. If you’ve noticed, the same goods that we could purchase only one to three years ago, either don’t exist, OR they are much more expensive, and the quality is half or less than it once was. Furniture is an excellent example, and so are many other things such as cashmere, and other items that were once very inexpensive. It either doesn’t exist, being imported from China, or the quality is poor. So what are they importing? Energy, oil, gas, scrap metal, pulp, technology, precious metals, etc.

    What the Chinese buying? – they are buying up homes, office buildings, autos…. they are buying what Americans cannot afford keep, or cannot buy in the first place, now that they have spent their money.

    “Creative thinking” ? – it doesn’t take a great deal of thought to understand one cannot spend more than one makes. Add to that, buying more than one needs.

    As Porcell points out in post # 40 Asians grade scores, and that of Jews is higher than the west. The difference I see is that Asians are much harder, and down right tough, on their children, the Jews on the other hand, accomplish the same thing using a loving spirit towards their children, but expecting them to study and excel.

  • Grace

    Kerner – 28

    “This is why I am not as afraid of the Chinese competing with us as some are. Like the Japanese before them, we will defeat them in a free market system that requires creative thinking.”

    China is becoming stronger everyday, India is right behind. Banking understands the situation, I can see it too, but most in the U.S. are blind to the lazy indulgences of their citizens. If you’ve noticed, the same goods that we could purchase only one to three years ago, either don’t exist, OR they are much more expensive, and the quality is half or less than it once was. Furniture is an excellent example, and so are many other things such as cashmere, and other items that were once very inexpensive. It either doesn’t exist, being imported from China, or the quality is poor. So what are they importing? Energy, oil, gas, scrap metal, pulp, technology, precious metals, etc.

    What the Chinese buying? – they are buying up homes, office buildings, autos…. they are buying what Americans cannot afford keep, or cannot buy in the first place, now that they have spent their money.

    “Creative thinking” ? – it doesn’t take a great deal of thought to understand one cannot spend more than one makes. Add to that, buying more than one needs.

    As Porcell points out in post # 40 Asians grade scores, and that of Jews is higher than the west. The difference I see is that Asians are much harder, and down right tough, on their children, the Jews on the other hand, accomplish the same thing using a loving spirit towards their children, but expecting them to study and excel.

  • trotk

    Porcell, must you bring up The Bell Curve again?

    What is your data for claiming that the Chinese were literate before Europeans? What do you mean by literate (is it just being able to sign your name? do pictographs count? etc.)? How big of a percentage of the population has to be literate before you consider the whole group literate? Are you just making stuff up?

  • trotk

    Porcell, must you bring up The Bell Curve again?

    What is your data for claiming that the Chinese were literate before Europeans? What do you mean by literate (is it just being able to sign your name? do pictographs count? etc.)? How big of a percentage of the population has to be literate before you consider the whole group literate? Are you just making stuff up?

  • trotk

    Porcell, the subtitle you were asking about that Frank referenced is the following:

    “This is a story about a mother, two daughters, and two dogs. 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”

    Like frank said, you have to recognize that the book is as much a confession as it is a proposed outline to follow.

  • trotk

    Porcell, the subtitle you were asking about that Frank referenced is the following:

    “This is a story about a mother, two daughters, and two dogs. 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”

    Like frank said, you have to recognize that the book is as much a confession as it is a proposed outline to follow.

  • Grace

    trokt 42

    Have you considered The Great Wall in China, is there anything else like it, and when was it built. ANSWER: The origininal, over two thousand years ago, it is the longest structure to be built about 221 BC.

    Or have you given any thought to the Bronze age, and what China was doing?

    There is much more, to learn about China!

  • Grace

    trokt 42

    Have you considered The Great Wall in China, is there anything else like it, and when was it built. ANSWER: The origininal, over two thousand years ago, it is the longest structure to be built about 221 BC.

    Or have you given any thought to the Bronze age, and what China was doing?

    There is much more, to learn about China!

  • trotk

    Yeah, Grace, I studied mandarin at a university in sichuan province, walked the great wall, ate great food, made interesting friends,visited their homes, etc, etc.

    But what in hades does that have to do with literacy or this article?

  • trotk

    Yeah, Grace, I studied mandarin at a university in sichuan province, walked the great wall, ate great food, made interesting friends,visited their homes, etc, etc.

    But what in hades does that have to do with literacy or this article?

  • trotk

    221 BC. Wow. That’s old.

    Did you know that the Assyrians had a 50 mile aqueduct in Nineveh in the 7th century BC? Not quite the great wall, but those non-chinese people sure disciplined well and were very literate. Plus, Murray in his serious work, The Bell Curve, noted that the ancient Assyrians scored 10 percentile points above the Egyptians and three above the Greeks. Not bad.

  • trotk

    221 BC. Wow. That’s old.

    Did you know that the Assyrians had a 50 mile aqueduct in Nineveh in the 7th century BC? Not quite the great wall, but those non-chinese people sure disciplined well and were very literate. Plus, Murray in his serious work, The Bell Curve, noted that the ancient Assyrians scored 10 percentile points above the Egyptians and three above the Greeks. Not bad.

  • Grace

    trokt-42 and 45

    TROKT – 42″Porcell, must you bring up The Bell Curve again?

    What is your data for claiming that the Chinese were literate before Europeans?

    trokt – 45

    “Yeah, Grace, I studied mandarin at a university in sichuan province, walked the great wall, ate great food, made interesting friends,visited their homes, etc, etc. But what in hades does that have to do with literacy or this article?”

    Read your post #42, that might give you a clue.

    Maybe you need to look at China again, with or without the food, LOL

  • Grace

    trokt-42 and 45

    TROKT – 42″Porcell, must you bring up The Bell Curve again?

    What is your data for claiming that the Chinese were literate before Europeans?

    trokt – 45

    “Yeah, Grace, I studied mandarin at a university in sichuan province, walked the great wall, ate great food, made interesting friends,visited their homes, etc, etc. But what in hades does that have to do with literacy or this article?”

    Read your post #42, that might give you a clue.

    Maybe you need to look at China again, with or without the food, LOL

  • trotk

    Grace, I love that I can count on you to make no sense. My post at 42 has the answer to the question I asked you in 45? Intriguing. A true premonition, I guess. Perhaps I should study my own blog comments more.

    Care to explain what you are talking about?

  • trotk

    Grace, I love that I can count on you to make no sense. My post at 42 has the answer to the question I asked you in 45? Intriguing. A true premonition, I guess. Perhaps I should study my own blog comments more.

    Care to explain what you are talking about?

  • Grace

    trokt – 48

    Porcell’s comment #40 started you off – - “Both Asians and Jews have been literate much longer than Europeans; this has had a large cultural influence and possibly even a genetic effect, though this hasn’t been proved.” – -

    trokt, you then countered with: – - – - “TROKT – 42″Porcell, must you bring up The Bell Curve again?

    What is your data for claiming that the Chinese were literate before Europeans?” – - – -

    Does it make sense yet? – perhaps not. You do love to mix it up and then claim “make no sense” – predictable trokt!

  • Grace

    trokt – 48

    Porcell’s comment #40 started you off – - “Both Asians and Jews have been literate much longer than Europeans; this has had a large cultural influence and possibly even a genetic effect, though this hasn’t been proved.” – -

    trokt, you then countered with: – - – - “TROKT – 42″Porcell, must you bring up The Bell Curve again?

    What is your data for claiming that the Chinese were literate before Europeans?” – - – -

    Does it make sense yet? – perhaps not. You do love to mix it up and then claim “make no sense” – predictable trokt!

  • Grace

    trokt – I understand your confusion, but this might help.

    Since you walked a bit on the ‘wall’ and tasted the food of China, (#45) perhaps now is a good time to educated yourself regarding “The Great Wall of China” –

    A good site below, not to hard to understand, pictures and everything. Sorry there is no food to accompany the history lesson, perhaps that’s a plus! :lol:

    The Great Wall Of China

    http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/the_great_wall_of_china.htm

  • Grace

    trokt – I understand your confusion, but this might help.

    Since you walked a bit on the ‘wall’ and tasted the food of China, (#45) perhaps now is a good time to educated yourself regarding “The Great Wall of China” –

    A good site below, not to hard to understand, pictures and everything. Sorry there is no food to accompany the history lesson, perhaps that’s a plus! :lol:

    The Great Wall Of China

    http://www.activityvillage.co.uk/the_great_wall_of_china.htm

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Hey, Grace (@44, 50), if you’d spent less time doing your learning from British children’s sites, you’d know that almost nothing remains of the Great Wall built over 2000 years ago, much of which was made out of rammed earth.

    The Great Wall in place today was built (this time from bricks and stone) during the Ming Dynasty in the mid-15th century.

    As someone once said, “There is much more, [sic] to learn about China!” As someone else once said, “perhaps now is a good time to educated [sic] yourself regarding ‘The Great Wall of China’”. I got my information from Wikipedia, which I also consider “not to [sic] hard to understand”.

    Oh, and a question. Is it possible to derive any thesis you want about a culture from any single architectural achievement made by their forebears several centuries earlier? Because I have this theory that Egypt is going to be the next superpower of the 21st century, because, you know, pyramids.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Hey, Grace (@44, 50), if you’d spent less time doing your learning from British children’s sites, you’d know that almost nothing remains of the Great Wall built over 2000 years ago, much of which was made out of rammed earth.

    The Great Wall in place today was built (this time from bricks and stone) during the Ming Dynasty in the mid-15th century.

    As someone once said, “There is much more, [sic] to learn about China!” As someone else once said, “perhaps now is a good time to educated [sic] yourself regarding ‘The Great Wall of China’”. I got my information from Wikipedia, which I also consider “not to [sic] hard to understand”.

    Oh, and a question. Is it possible to derive any thesis you want about a culture from any single architectural achievement made by their forebears several centuries earlier? Because I have this theory that Egypt is going to be the next superpower of the 21st century, because, you know, pyramids.

  • Grace

    tODD – 51

    ” if you’d spent less time doing your learning from British children’s sites, you’d know that almost nothing remains of the Great Wall built over 2000 years ago, much of which was made out of rammed earth.”

    Sometimes “British children’s sites” are a good choice, it makes it easy for those who might be having trouble understanding information such as ancient Chinese history.

    The Ming Dynasty was instrumental in the Great Wall of China building of the wall as it exists today was 1368 – 1644 – anyone who studies history should know this. No big deal tODD. However, the first building of the Great Wall of China was about 2000 years ago.

  • Grace

    tODD – 51

    ” if you’d spent less time doing your learning from British children’s sites, you’d know that almost nothing remains of the Great Wall built over 2000 years ago, much of which was made out of rammed earth.”

    Sometimes “British children’s sites” are a good choice, it makes it easy for those who might be having trouble understanding information such as ancient Chinese history.

    The Ming Dynasty was instrumental in the Great Wall of China building of the wall as it exists today was 1368 – 1644 – anyone who studies history should know this. No big deal tODD. However, the first building of the Great Wall of China was about 2000 years ago.

  • Porcell

    Trotk, at 42, literacy is usually viewed as the ability to read and write, something the Jews and Chinese accomplished long before the Europeans.

    I brought up The Bell Curve in response to Kerner’s question of the relative abilities of Asians and Americans. Do you have any evidence to disprove its analysis demonstrating that Jews and East Asians score about one standard deviation above those of European descent on intelligence tests? In relation to Amy Chua, Murray accepts her point that strict parenting matters, though he cautions that the constraint of genes also matters. Chua’s daughters likely have the advantage of superior intelligence.

  • Porcell

    Trotk, at 42, literacy is usually viewed as the ability to read and write, something the Jews and Chinese accomplished long before the Europeans.

    I brought up The Bell Curve in response to Kerner’s question of the relative abilities of Asians and Americans. Do you have any evidence to disprove its analysis demonstrating that Jews and East Asians score about one standard deviation above those of European descent on intelligence tests? In relation to Amy Chua, Murray accepts her point that strict parenting matters, though he cautions that the constraint of genes also matters. Chua’s daughters likely have the advantage of superior intelligence.

  • Tom Hering

    A report on education-crazy South Korea, and the price parents and students pay to rank near the top.

  • Tom Hering

    A report on education-crazy South Korea, and the price parents and students pay to rank near the top.

  • trotk

    Porcell, again, what’s your evidence that the Chinese were literate before Europeans? I have read all over the place and there doesn’t seem to be any conclusive proof. Again (I know what literacy is, but I don’t think you understand how complex the question is), is a pictographic alphabet literacy? Is 1% of a population enough to call a whole nation literate? Etc.

    We had the whole debate about The Bell Curve already, and I gave you loads of reasons why people have rejected it (bad founding assumptions, cherry-picked data, etc) and you ignored it, so why we would go through that again? You like its conclusions, and so the possibility that it is mistaken is impossible in your eyes?

  • trotk

    Porcell, again, what’s your evidence that the Chinese were literate before Europeans? I have read all over the place and there doesn’t seem to be any conclusive proof. Again (I know what literacy is, but I don’t think you understand how complex the question is), is a pictographic alphabet literacy? Is 1% of a population enough to call a whole nation literate? Etc.

    We had the whole debate about The Bell Curve already, and I gave you loads of reasons why people have rejected it (bad founding assumptions, cherry-picked data, etc) and you ignored it, so why we would go through that again? You like its conclusions, and so the possibility that it is mistaken is impossible in your eyes?

  • Porcell

    Trotk, any common periodization of the beginnings of literature shows Europe much farther behind that of China. For example German literature begins with the Medieval period from about 750 to 1050 AD. We have examples of Chinese literature dated to about 2800 BC.

    As to Murray, you didn’t answer my specific question as to whether you have any evidence to disprove his analysis demonstrating that Jews and East Asians score about one standard deviation above those of European descent on intelligence tests? Not having read the Bell Curve, you’re apparently relying on leftist critical articles of the book.

    At least as a start, you might try Murray’s Commentary article Jewish Genius including

    Assessing the events of the 1st century C.E. thus poses a chicken-and-egg problem. By way of an analogy, consider written Chinese with its thousands of unique characters. On cognitive tests, today’s Chinese do especially well on visuo-spatial skills. It is possible, I suppose, that their high visuo-spatial skills have been fostered by having to learn written Chinese; but I find it much more plausible that only people who already possessed high visuo-spatial skills would ever devise such a ferociously difficult written language. Similarly, I suppose it is possible that the Jews’ high verbal skills were fostered, through secondary and tertiary effects, by the requirement that they be able to read and understand complicated texts after the 1st century C.E.; but I find it much more plausible that only people who already possessed high verbal skills would dream of installing such a demanding requirement.

  • Porcell

    Trotk, any common periodization of the beginnings of literature shows Europe much farther behind that of China. For example German literature begins with the Medieval period from about 750 to 1050 AD. We have examples of Chinese literature dated to about 2800 BC.

    As to Murray, you didn’t answer my specific question as to whether you have any evidence to disprove his analysis demonstrating that Jews and East Asians score about one standard deviation above those of European descent on intelligence tests? Not having read the Bell Curve, you’re apparently relying on leftist critical articles of the book.

    At least as a start, you might try Murray’s Commentary article Jewish Genius including

    Assessing the events of the 1st century C.E. thus poses a chicken-and-egg problem. By way of an analogy, consider written Chinese with its thousands of unique characters. On cognitive tests, today’s Chinese do especially well on visuo-spatial skills. It is possible, I suppose, that their high visuo-spatial skills have been fostered by having to learn written Chinese; but I find it much more plausible that only people who already possessed high visuo-spatial skills would ever devise such a ferociously difficult written language. Similarly, I suppose it is possible that the Jews’ high verbal skills were fostered, through secondary and tertiary effects, by the requirement that they be able to read and understand complicated texts after the 1st century C.E.; but I find it much more plausible that only people who already possessed high verbal skills would dream of installing such a demanding requirement.

  • Cincinnatus

    Grace: What on earth are you doing? Would I be correct in deciphering your (fallacious) thesis to be the following? “China is the world’s next great superpower and will be tremendously dangerous to the United States because, over 2000 years ago, some other people who were also ethnically Chinese, built a wall that was pretty architecturally impressive.”

    If that’s the case, we’d better watch out for Egypt! We still don’t know how they managed to construct the pyramids. An Egypt-China power-axis would be unstoppable, presumably. How can we compete, Grace? What should we build?

    kerner et al.: See what you did by brining up ethnic I.Q.’s and The Bell Curve? Now the entire thread has been derailed by a gigantic red herring from which no interesting or insightful discussion can result.

  • Cincinnatus

    Grace: What on earth are you doing? Would I be correct in deciphering your (fallacious) thesis to be the following? “China is the world’s next great superpower and will be tremendously dangerous to the United States because, over 2000 years ago, some other people who were also ethnically Chinese, built a wall that was pretty architecturally impressive.”

    If that’s the case, we’d better watch out for Egypt! We still don’t know how they managed to construct the pyramids. An Egypt-China power-axis would be unstoppable, presumably. How can we compete, Grace? What should we build?

    kerner et al.: See what you did by brining up ethnic I.Q.’s and The Bell Curve? Now the entire thread has been derailed by a gigantic red herring from which no interesting or insightful discussion can result.

  • kerner

    it’s my fault. I admit it.

  • kerner

    it’s my fault. I admit it.

  • Porcell

    Cincinnatus, I agree that this has become a distraction and shall desist.

  • Porcell

    Cincinnatus, I agree that this has become a distraction and shall desist.

  • nbfzman

    Hard work, discipline, and perseverance can be taught by any parent. They don’t need to be Tiger Mother, nor do they need to threaten or name call.

  • nbfzman

    Hard work, discipline, and perseverance can be taught by any parent. They don’t need to be Tiger Mother, nor do they need to threaten or name call.

  • Stephen

    I read this the other night in the Large Catechism regarding keeping the 2nd Commandment. It might help to get the thread back on track.

    “Behold, thus we might train our youth in a childlike way
    and playfully in the fear and honor of God, so that the
    First and Second Commandments might be well observed and
    in constant practise. Then some good might take root,
    spring up and bear fruit, and men grow up whom an entire
    land might relish and enjoy. Moreover, this would be the
    true way to bring up children well as long as they can
    become trained with kindness and delight. For what must
    be enforced with rods and blows only will not develop
    into a good breed and at best they will remain godly
    under such treatment no longer than while the rod is upon
    their back.”

    Elsewhere, Luther suggests that the rod has a use, but here he seems to say that it is better to “catch flies with honey” as the saying goes. Going by a more behavioral model alone, I’m not even sure that this Tiger Mom thing bears out. Eventually, there will come a time when rebellion of some sort is in the offing it seems to me. I have no statistics to back this up, but in Japanese society for instance, where I know of a saying where “the nail that sticks up gets hammered down” the youth are known to go for some of the most outlandish expressions of rebellion in fashion as just one example.

    The bitterness of law gets things done, but it only sows resentment in the heart. This is what St. Paul teaches in Romans about the outward keeping of the law. I think that maybe this is what is reflected in Chinese children who can do things in all their particulars very well, but have no feeling for them. In other words, their heart is not in it. Love is missing for Bach, or whatever it is they have learned by brute force. It is all in vain.

  • Stephen

    I read this the other night in the Large Catechism regarding keeping the 2nd Commandment. It might help to get the thread back on track.

    “Behold, thus we might train our youth in a childlike way
    and playfully in the fear and honor of God, so that the
    First and Second Commandments might be well observed and
    in constant practise. Then some good might take root,
    spring up and bear fruit, and men grow up whom an entire
    land might relish and enjoy. Moreover, this would be the
    true way to bring up children well as long as they can
    become trained with kindness and delight. For what must
    be enforced with rods and blows only will not develop
    into a good breed and at best they will remain godly
    under such treatment no longer than while the rod is upon
    their back.”

    Elsewhere, Luther suggests that the rod has a use, but here he seems to say that it is better to “catch flies with honey” as the saying goes. Going by a more behavioral model alone, I’m not even sure that this Tiger Mom thing bears out. Eventually, there will come a time when rebellion of some sort is in the offing it seems to me. I have no statistics to back this up, but in Japanese society for instance, where I know of a saying where “the nail that sticks up gets hammered down” the youth are known to go for some of the most outlandish expressions of rebellion in fashion as just one example.

    The bitterness of law gets things done, but it only sows resentment in the heart. This is what St. Paul teaches in Romans about the outward keeping of the law. I think that maybe this is what is reflected in Chinese children who can do things in all their particulars very well, but have no feeling for them. In other words, their heart is not in it. Love is missing for Bach, or whatever it is they have learned by brute force. It is all in vain.

  • Grace

    57 Cincinnatus

    “Grace: What on earth are you doing? Would I be correct in deciphering your (fallacious) thesis to be the following?

    “China is the world’s next great superpower and will be tremendously dangerous to the United States because, over 2000 years ago, some other people who were also ethnically Chinese, built a wall that was pretty architecturally impressive.”

    Cincinnatus, you would be incorrect. I didn’t allude to that premise nor do I believe it, it’s laughable you even concocted such a theory. The two ideas, wrapped – a non sequitur.

  • Grace

    57 Cincinnatus

    “Grace: What on earth are you doing? Would I be correct in deciphering your (fallacious) thesis to be the following?

    “China is the world’s next great superpower and will be tremendously dangerous to the United States because, over 2000 years ago, some other people who were also ethnically Chinese, built a wall that was pretty architecturally impressive.”

    Cincinnatus, you would be incorrect. I didn’t allude to that premise nor do I believe it, it’s laughable you even concocted such a theory. The two ideas, wrapped – a non sequitur.

  • Porcell

    Veith’s question is the key one: Can we find a Golden Mean here?

    In my view Amy Chua herself answers it with her assertion in: When it works well, absolutely! And by working well, I mean when high expectations are coupled with love, understanding and parental involvement. This is the gift my parents gave me, and what I hope I’m giving my daughters.

    She, also, makes the salient point that Americans are conflicted about demanding excellence, somehow assuming that this contributes to dreaded inequality. Again, while we are equal before God and the law, when it comes to vocation and behavior it is best for us to excel. Most of us ordinary people need to be highly disciplined and hard working to excel. This discipline and hard work usually comes from strict and loving parents, teachers, preachers, et al.

    The truth is that America has become alarmingly soft. Among the evidence for this is the savage reaction by many to The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

  • Porcell

    Veith’s question is the key one: Can we find a Golden Mean here?

    In my view Amy Chua herself answers it with her assertion in: When it works well, absolutely! And by working well, I mean when high expectations are coupled with love, understanding and parental involvement. This is the gift my parents gave me, and what I hope I’m giving my daughters.

    She, also, makes the salient point that Americans are conflicted about demanding excellence, somehow assuming that this contributes to dreaded inequality. Again, while we are equal before God and the law, when it comes to vocation and behavior it is best for us to excel. Most of us ordinary people need to be highly disciplined and hard working to excel. This discipline and hard work usually comes from strict and loving parents, teachers, preachers, et al.

    The truth is that America has become alarmingly soft. Among the evidence for this is the savage reaction by many to The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

  • http://www.missyween.com missy

    After reading this post and the article, I was intrigued. I stopped at the bookstore, and looked at the cover. While I was picking up the book, a young Chinese lady moved in and grabbed three copies, we started talking, she said she has given this book to all her friends including her mother (with whom she has a warm relationship). After her mother read the book, she called her daughter to say “I’m really not as bad as that woman!” To which her daughter replied, “You were worse.” (She was laughing when she told me this.)
    She agrees that everything in this book is accurate. But she added that not all Chinese kids are able to “take it” some are more sensitive and do not respond to harsh treatment……and that most Chinese parents are sensitive to the particular personalities of their children, and in her view the Chinese parents are more tuned in to the abilities of their kids to handle strong treatment than are Western parents (we are in Toronto). It is her view that Chinese mom’s study their kids better than most, and that it gives them the strength to push them with as much force as they can handle.

    Oh, and I asked this woman what she does for a living…and she is a corporate lawyer with two young children.

  • http://www.missyween.com missy

    After reading this post and the article, I was intrigued. I stopped at the bookstore, and looked at the cover. While I was picking up the book, a young Chinese lady moved in and grabbed three copies, we started talking, she said she has given this book to all her friends including her mother (with whom she has a warm relationship). After her mother read the book, she called her daughter to say “I’m really not as bad as that woman!” To which her daughter replied, “You were worse.” (She was laughing when she told me this.)
    She agrees that everything in this book is accurate. But she added that not all Chinese kids are able to “take it” some are more sensitive and do not respond to harsh treatment……and that most Chinese parents are sensitive to the particular personalities of their children, and in her view the Chinese parents are more tuned in to the abilities of their kids to handle strong treatment than are Western parents (we are in Toronto). It is her view that Chinese mom’s study their kids better than most, and that it gives them the strength to push them with as much force as they can handle.

    Oh, and I asked this woman what she does for a living…and she is a corporate lawyer with two young children.

  • trotk

    Porcell (@56):

    You have revealed that you don’t know the history of literacy, nor have constructed a legitimate argument. The “writing” you refer at 2800 BC is not writing. It is pictographic symbols representing family names, or so it seems. It was put on objects to show ownership. Much like branding a bull. Hardly writing.

    And even if it were, it says nothing about whether China was a literate culture at that time. This is why I asked how large a percentage of a population has to be able to read before the population can be considered literate.

    Next, putting that example against a Germanic reveals that you are either trying to purposefully distort a true comparison (and thus create a deceptive argument) or you don’t know the history of Europe. There are loads of examples of European scripts that were well before that. Picking a late European culture to compare to ancient China is silly. Why not pick an early European culture?

    Look at the following graph:

    http://www.ancientscripts.com/ws_timeline.html

    The other interesting thing is that you take a story about raising children for excellence, and some how think it proves/evidences Murray’s thesis. His argument is that the differences are genetic, not a result of training. Your reasoning somehow missed that.

    As for balance, note that Chua subtitle includes the phrase, “how I was humbled by a thirteen-year-old.” Clearly she sees major flaws in what she did.

    I do think that it is possible to be firm, expect excellence, and yet not insult or threaten. I would never advocate what Chua describes, and I would never advocate modern American “self-esteem” building non-parenting. There is a balance possible, but Chua fell off as far on one side as Americans fall off on the other. I think that Cincinnatus’ point at 26 is worth rereading, because it bursts the bubble of anyone who thinks that the Chinese are more intelligent. They may be, but only in one very limited way.

  • trotk

    Porcell (@56):

    You have revealed that you don’t know the history of literacy, nor have constructed a legitimate argument. The “writing” you refer at 2800 BC is not writing. It is pictographic symbols representing family names, or so it seems. It was put on objects to show ownership. Much like branding a bull. Hardly writing.

    And even if it were, it says nothing about whether China was a literate culture at that time. This is why I asked how large a percentage of a population has to be able to read before the population can be considered literate.

    Next, putting that example against a Germanic reveals that you are either trying to purposefully distort a true comparison (and thus create a deceptive argument) or you don’t know the history of Europe. There are loads of examples of European scripts that were well before that. Picking a late European culture to compare to ancient China is silly. Why not pick an early European culture?

    Look at the following graph:

    http://www.ancientscripts.com/ws_timeline.html

    The other interesting thing is that you take a story about raising children for excellence, and some how think it proves/evidences Murray’s thesis. His argument is that the differences are genetic, not a result of training. Your reasoning somehow missed that.

    As for balance, note that Chua subtitle includes the phrase, “how I was humbled by a thirteen-year-old.” Clearly she sees major flaws in what she did.

    I do think that it is possible to be firm, expect excellence, and yet not insult or threaten. I would never advocate what Chua describes, and I would never advocate modern American “self-esteem” building non-parenting. There is a balance possible, but Chua fell off as far on one side as Americans fall off on the other. I think that Cincinnatus’ point at 26 is worth rereading, because it bursts the bubble of anyone who thinks that the Chinese are more intelligent. They may be, but only in one very limited way.

  • Porcell

    Trotk, at 65, His [Murray's] argument is that the differences are genetic, not a result of training. Your reasoning somehow missed that.

    Murray, in his AEI article, Amy Chua Bludgeons Entire Generation of Sensitive Parents, Bless Her, including:

    Both children turned out great and love their mother dearly.

    To get a little bit serious: large numbers of talented children everywhere would profit from Chua’s approach, and instead are frittering away their gifts—they’re nice kids, not brats, but they are also self-indulgent and inclined to make excuses for themselves. There are also large numbers of children who are not especially talented, but would do a lot better in school if their parents applied the same intense home supplements to their classroom work.

    The truth is that Murray cautioned that the reality of IQ needs to be considered, while thoroughly approving her strict, loving discipline.

  • Porcell

    Trotk, at 65, His [Murray's] argument is that the differences are genetic, not a result of training. Your reasoning somehow missed that.

    Murray, in his AEI article, Amy Chua Bludgeons Entire Generation of Sensitive Parents, Bless Her, including:

    Both children turned out great and love their mother dearly.

    To get a little bit serious: large numbers of talented children everywhere would profit from Chua’s approach, and instead are frittering away their gifts—they’re nice kids, not brats, but they are also self-indulgent and inclined to make excuses for themselves. There are also large numbers of children who are not especially talented, but would do a lot better in school if their parents applied the same intense home supplements to their classroom work.

    The truth is that Murray cautioned that the reality of IQ needs to be considered, while thoroughly approving her strict, loving discipline.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Wow. This thread got weird. Talented kids don’t need to be bullied to perform. They need discipline and clearly expressed expectations. Just today my son went to go see his friend’s little brother play at an exhibition of talented young musicians. The little boy does it because he loves it. My son can’t do what his friend can but I still have him practice and learn songs for his own enjoyment. I provide the structure and discipline of reminding (okay, nagging) and support and yes, even fun, by letting him play the simple melodies he and his brother enjoy. I do think it is good to let your kids know that you have confidence that they can achieve and reassure them that quitting and laziness are not going to lead to their own satisfaction. It is okay to insist that they do and try certain things. I think it is a matter of where we draw the line. Germany only recently extended the school day to be as long as it is in the US. The kids used to go from 8-1 instead of 8-3. Some would say the extra 2 hours make the day too hard on kids, but those here who have kids in school and extended day programs think that is it is okay. It is a matter of perspective in many cases. There are probably folks from many cultures that don’t think demanding parenting is wrong or damaging.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Wow. This thread got weird. Talented kids don’t need to be bullied to perform. They need discipline and clearly expressed expectations. Just today my son went to go see his friend’s little brother play at an exhibition of talented young musicians. The little boy does it because he loves it. My son can’t do what his friend can but I still have him practice and learn songs for his own enjoyment. I provide the structure and discipline of reminding (okay, nagging) and support and yes, even fun, by letting him play the simple melodies he and his brother enjoy. I do think it is good to let your kids know that you have confidence that they can achieve and reassure them that quitting and laziness are not going to lead to their own satisfaction. It is okay to insist that they do and try certain things. I think it is a matter of where we draw the line. Germany only recently extended the school day to be as long as it is in the US. The kids used to go from 8-1 instead of 8-3. Some would say the extra 2 hours make the day too hard on kids, but those here who have kids in school and extended day programs think that is it is okay. It is a matter of perspective in many cases. There are probably folks from many cultures that don’t think demanding parenting is wrong or damaging.

  • Stephen

    Maybe all this is some kind of cultural voyeurism into the Chinese because Americans are curious and a little scared. After reading missy @64 it would seem like Chinese moms may have some particular habits endemic to that culture, but they are not cranking out the robots we think they are. We want like nothing to toss every demographic in a box and get them all figured out, even our own.

    The best advice I received about raising kids is not to let someone else do it as much as possible, especially in the first few formative years. You can never get back on the back end what you fail to put in on the front end in terms of time and personal investment in your child no matter what your good intentions are and how much money and resources you pour on later. Other than that, here’s a couple verses from both the OT and NT, both law, both having to do with the conscience and what makes us get along well in the world:

    Proverbs 22:6
    “Train up a child in the way he should go; and even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

    Ephesians 6: 4
    “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”

    I’m going to work on those. It’s Catechism for the lot of you!

  • Stephen

    Maybe all this is some kind of cultural voyeurism into the Chinese because Americans are curious and a little scared. After reading missy @64 it would seem like Chinese moms may have some particular habits endemic to that culture, but they are not cranking out the robots we think they are. We want like nothing to toss every demographic in a box and get them all figured out, even our own.

    The best advice I received about raising kids is not to let someone else do it as much as possible, especially in the first few formative years. You can never get back on the back end what you fail to put in on the front end in terms of time and personal investment in your child no matter what your good intentions are and how much money and resources you pour on later. Other than that, here’s a couple verses from both the OT and NT, both law, both having to do with the conscience and what makes us get along well in the world:

    Proverbs 22:6
    “Train up a child in the way he should go; and even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

    Ephesians 6: 4
    “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.”

    I’m going to work on those. It’s Catechism for the lot of you!

  • Booklover

    Absolutely there should be some sort of golden mean. Ms. Chua got her daughter to play a piano piece by screaming until she lost her voice, withholding water from her, and keeping her from going to the bathroom. (!!) What! Risk a bladder infection just to learn a piano piece?! If Ms. Chua would have waited several months, her daughter probably could have played the piece with ease. Also, those I have known or read of who were truly music geniuses could just sit and play difficult musical pieces without being deprived of basic life needs.

    There are “western mothers” and others also who don’t require regular practice time from their sons and daughters, and instead allow them to play video games or watch TV. There are also those mothers who take their children to sports practice after school, followed by musical practice at the local community theatre, followed by a siblings ballgame. When all the children get home at 10:00 for supper (!) there is no time for piano practice. Yes, there has to be a golden mean.

    I’m a piano teacher and I’ve observed it all. I like the way my mother did it. She required regular daily practice from us, and watched her three daughters develop musically, without hovering and shouting. One, and only one time, we lied to her and said we’d practiced while she was out doing chores. The look on her face was so knowing and sad, that we didn’t pull that again.

    Today I play piano for school, community, and professional choirs out of love and joy for music and out of the love and joy that being with fellow music lovers brings. Some western mothers do it right.

  • Booklover

    Absolutely there should be some sort of golden mean. Ms. Chua got her daughter to play a piano piece by screaming until she lost her voice, withholding water from her, and keeping her from going to the bathroom. (!!) What! Risk a bladder infection just to learn a piano piece?! If Ms. Chua would have waited several months, her daughter probably could have played the piece with ease. Also, those I have known or read of who were truly music geniuses could just sit and play difficult musical pieces without being deprived of basic life needs.

    There are “western mothers” and others also who don’t require regular practice time from their sons and daughters, and instead allow them to play video games or watch TV. There are also those mothers who take their children to sports practice after school, followed by musical practice at the local community theatre, followed by a siblings ballgame. When all the children get home at 10:00 for supper (!) there is no time for piano practice. Yes, there has to be a golden mean.

    I’m a piano teacher and I’ve observed it all. I like the way my mother did it. She required regular daily practice from us, and watched her three daughters develop musically, without hovering and shouting. One, and only one time, we lied to her and said we’d practiced while she was out doing chores. The look on her face was so knowing and sad, that we didn’t pull that again.

    Today I play piano for school, community, and professional choirs out of love and joy for music and out of the love and joy that being with fellow music lovers brings. Some western mothers do it right.

  • Grace

    Children don’t thrive, when the instrument they are made to play is not what they choose, or one they aren’t interested in, or most importantly they are not GIFTED.

    Music is a special gift, it isn’t drummed into a child’s heart or fingers, it’s a GIFT, just as voice. My cousin was blessed with an operatic gift, a voice. All the voice lessons in the world would have had no effect, if she had not been gifted. She studied and used her gift to honor the LORD. She loves music, that’s what made/makes her sing and STRIVE to do her best. It’s the gift that God gives that makes all the difference, .. with the gift, the gifted individual will give any amount of time to shine, polish the diamond God has given them, they will devout the time to honor it’s precious office, which will honor Him. Gifted people are driven to use what’s given.

    Children who are not gifted musically waste their time when made to take music lessons. It’s an ego problem within the family. Just as those who willfully make a child study biology, who cringe at those things in jars, whose shape is not complete. You can’t demand a child do something >you should have done in your youth, or what your friends children are doing. God gifts every single one of us as He chooses, it’s up to us as parents to listen to our children very carefully. We may have observed gifts they aren’t interested in, and they may have interests in areas we don’t consider worthy of their talents, ….. who’s choice should be the winner? Talk it out, try not to have a contest, listen even when the music they speak sounds different then your wishes, unless of course it’s a moral, or Biblical issue…. that’s another subject.

    My mother loved the piano, I liked it, but had no interest, NONE. I wanted to play another instrument. For two years I took lessons, and was told I had great talent, the teacher who was the protégé of a famous pianist told my mother I could do much better and was talented. When the yearly recital came about, she chose me to play with her, four hands on one piano. I was so nervous, it was awful.. maybe I’m talented, but I didn’t want it. I disappointed my mother, and my great aunt who paid for my lessons. Total sham, and shame!

    I loved art, painting in oils, water color, design… all of it. I loved the Word of God, and church most of all. My desires were not predicated on anything my friends did. My pursuits in life are not what my parents ever dreamed, they had not one clue, until I became older. I cared more about ‘WHY’ than almost anyone else I knew, It was my favorite word. Throughout all the confusion, my parents endured, they watched as I stumbled along. It’s the bumps we suffer that bring us to the place the LORD would have us.

    Had my mother bullied me, it would have sent me further away. My fathers eyes centered straight at mine, when things were, or were not right, he had more effect than anything else. His eyes said it all, they either gave approval, or were the saddest, which gave me backbone to become the woman I am today. I’m not perfect, but without the parents God blessed me with, ….. well…… who knows. I was blessed!

    My parents nor I could have guessed that my desires were medicine, politics, history, – I wasn’t even sure, but if I had been in a regimented environment I would have never had the opportunity, given the time to explore.

  • Grace

    Children don’t thrive, when the instrument they are made to play is not what they choose, or one they aren’t interested in, or most importantly they are not GIFTED.

    Music is a special gift, it isn’t drummed into a child’s heart or fingers, it’s a GIFT, just as voice. My cousin was blessed with an operatic gift, a voice. All the voice lessons in the world would have had no effect, if she had not been gifted. She studied and used her gift to honor the LORD. She loves music, that’s what made/makes her sing and STRIVE to do her best. It’s the gift that God gives that makes all the difference, .. with the gift, the gifted individual will give any amount of time to shine, polish the diamond God has given them, they will devout the time to honor it’s precious office, which will honor Him. Gifted people are driven to use what’s given.

    Children who are not gifted musically waste their time when made to take music lessons. It’s an ego problem within the family. Just as those who willfully make a child study biology, who cringe at those things in jars, whose shape is not complete. You can’t demand a child do something >you should have done in your youth, or what your friends children are doing. God gifts every single one of us as He chooses, it’s up to us as parents to listen to our children very carefully. We may have observed gifts they aren’t interested in, and they may have interests in areas we don’t consider worthy of their talents, ….. who’s choice should be the winner? Talk it out, try not to have a contest, listen even when the music they speak sounds different then your wishes, unless of course it’s a moral, or Biblical issue…. that’s another subject.

    My mother loved the piano, I liked it, but had no interest, NONE. I wanted to play another instrument. For two years I took lessons, and was told I had great talent, the teacher who was the protégé of a famous pianist told my mother I could do much better and was talented. When the yearly recital came about, she chose me to play with her, four hands on one piano. I was so nervous, it was awful.. maybe I’m talented, but I didn’t want it. I disappointed my mother, and my great aunt who paid for my lessons. Total sham, and shame!

    I loved art, painting in oils, water color, design… all of it. I loved the Word of God, and church most of all. My desires were not predicated on anything my friends did. My pursuits in life are not what my parents ever dreamed, they had not one clue, until I became older. I cared more about ‘WHY’ than almost anyone else I knew, It was my favorite word. Throughout all the confusion, my parents endured, they watched as I stumbled along. It’s the bumps we suffer that bring us to the place the LORD would have us.

    Had my mother bullied me, it would have sent me further away. My fathers eyes centered straight at mine, when things were, or were not right, he had more effect than anything else. His eyes said it all, they either gave approval, or were the saddest, which gave me backbone to become the woman I am today. I’m not perfect, but without the parents God blessed me with, ….. well…… who knows. I was blessed!

    My parents nor I could have guessed that my desires were medicine, politics, history, – I wasn’t even sure, but if I had been in a regimented environment I would have never had the opportunity, given the time to explore.

  • Porcell

    Grace, you were obviously blessed with a caring father, as well as an at least insistent mother when it came to piano. That’s, also, true of the Chua girls

    I’m not sure that Amy Chua was as draconian as the WSJ article suggests. Her daughter, Sophia, wrote a remarkable article in the New York Post, Why I love My Strict Chinese Mom, including:

    You’ve been criticized a lot since you published your memoir, “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.” One problem is that some people don’t get your humor. They think you’re serious about all this, and they assume Lulu and I are oppressed by our evil mother. That is so not true. Every other Thursday, you take off our chains and let us play math games in the basement.
    But for real, it’s not their fault. No outsider can know what our family is really like. They don’t hear us cracking up over each other’s jokes. They don’t see us eating our hamburgers with fried rice. They don’t know how much fun we have when the six of us — dogs included — squeeze into one bed and argue about what movies to download from Netflix.
    I admit it: Having you as a mother was no tea party. There were some play dates I wish I’d gone to and some piano camps I wish I’d skipped. But now that I’m 18 and about to leave the tiger den, I’m glad you and Daddy raised me the way you did. Here’s why.
    A lot of people have accused you of producing robot kids who can’t think for themselves. Well, that’s funny, because I think those people are . . . oh well, it doesn’t matter. At any rate, I was thinking about this, and I came to the opposite conclusion: I think your strict parenting forced me to be more independent. Early on, I decided to be an easy child to raise. Maybe I got it from Daddy — he taught me not to care what people think and to make my own choices — but I also decided to be who I want to be. I didn’t rebel, but I didn’t suffer all the slings and arrows of a Tiger Mom, either. I pretty much do my own thing these days — like building greenhouses downtown, blasting Daft Punk in the car with Lulu and forcing my boyfriend to watch “Lord of the Rings” with me over and over — as long as I get my piano done first.

  • Porcell

    Grace, you were obviously blessed with a caring father, as well as an at least insistent mother when it came to piano. That’s, also, true of the Chua girls

    I’m not sure that Amy Chua was as draconian as the WSJ article suggests. Her daughter, Sophia, wrote a remarkable article in the New York Post, Why I love My Strict Chinese Mom, including:

    You’ve been criticized a lot since you published your memoir, “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother.” One problem is that some people don’t get your humor. They think you’re serious about all this, and they assume Lulu and I are oppressed by our evil mother. That is so not true. Every other Thursday, you take off our chains and let us play math games in the basement.
    But for real, it’s not their fault. No outsider can know what our family is really like. They don’t hear us cracking up over each other’s jokes. They don’t see us eating our hamburgers with fried rice. They don’t know how much fun we have when the six of us — dogs included — squeeze into one bed and argue about what movies to download from Netflix.
    I admit it: Having you as a mother was no tea party. There were some play dates I wish I’d gone to and some piano camps I wish I’d skipped. But now that I’m 18 and about to leave the tiger den, I’m glad you and Daddy raised me the way you did. Here’s why.
    A lot of people have accused you of producing robot kids who can’t think for themselves. Well, that’s funny, because I think those people are . . . oh well, it doesn’t matter. At any rate, I was thinking about this, and I came to the opposite conclusion: I think your strict parenting forced me to be more independent. Early on, I decided to be an easy child to raise. Maybe I got it from Daddy — he taught me not to care what people think and to make my own choices — but I also decided to be who I want to be. I didn’t rebel, but I didn’t suffer all the slings and arrows of a Tiger Mom, either. I pretty much do my own thing these days — like building greenhouses downtown, blasting Daft Punk in the car with Lulu and forcing my boyfriend to watch “Lord of the Rings” with me over and over — as long as I get my piano done first.

  • Porcell

    Sorry, the link above is Here

  • Porcell

    Sorry, the link above is Here

  • Dust

    This discussion reminds me of the kinds of comments and opinions you get from folks discussing whether or not memorization should be taught in school. Those against think it is cruel to make kids memorize endless, meaningless facts and dates, etc. and besides it doesn’t mean they know or learn anything from the exercise. Those in favor think it builds strong minds and brain development as well as exposing students to as much information as possible with eye toward preparing them for real life when some of it may prove useful? This battle is perhaps but a microcosm of what the Tiger Lady thought was best for her kids?

    Cheers!

  • Dust

    This discussion reminds me of the kinds of comments and opinions you get from folks discussing whether or not memorization should be taught in school. Those against think it is cruel to make kids memorize endless, meaningless facts and dates, etc. and besides it doesn’t mean they know or learn anything from the exercise. Those in favor think it builds strong minds and brain development as well as exposing students to as much information as possible with eye toward preparing them for real life when some of it may prove useful? This battle is perhaps but a microcosm of what the Tiger Lady thought was best for her kids?

    Cheers!

  • Cincinnatus

    Dust:

    Should we verbally insult our kids (call them “garbage” for instance) and withhold biological necessities like the restroom, as Chua did, if they fail to memorize facts, trivia, etc.? This “battle” isn’t one between pedagogical styles (organized practice time vs. anything goes, e.g.) but is rather about the appropriate, loving way to treat our children. Is it acceptable to treat them cruelly (in my opinion, anyway) so that they’ll be superficially excellent?

  • Cincinnatus

    Dust:

    Should we verbally insult our kids (call them “garbage” for instance) and withhold biological necessities like the restroom, as Chua did, if they fail to memorize facts, trivia, etc.? This “battle” isn’t one between pedagogical styles (organized practice time vs. anything goes, e.g.) but is rather about the appropriate, loving way to treat our children. Is it acceptable to treat them cruelly (in my opinion, anyway) so that they’ll be superficially excellent?

  • Grace

    Porcell 71 and 72

    Thank you for the link – much appreciated.

    My mother was determined, she taught me many things which I loved, we spent hours talking about the Bible, the LORD, the world and the news, (my father loved the news) She memorized every chapter of Hebrews except the last one. Before she went to be with the LORD we had started to go over the first chapter (by phone at night ) making sure she remembered….. she was amazing, she remembered the portions I listened to, almost without a flaw. Mother left me with a legacy that I can never repay her, and that of my father. Of course I miss them, but I will see them again in heaven.

    Blessings to you Peter

  • Grace

    Porcell 71 and 72

    Thank you for the link – much appreciated.

    My mother was determined, she taught me many things which I loved, we spent hours talking about the Bible, the LORD, the world and the news, (my father loved the news) She memorized every chapter of Hebrews except the last one. Before she went to be with the LORD we had started to go over the first chapter (by phone at night ) making sure she remembered….. she was amazing, she remembered the portions I listened to, almost without a flaw. Mother left me with a legacy that I can never repay her, and that of my father. Of course I miss them, but I will see them again in heaven.

    Blessings to you Peter

  • Dust

    Cincinnatus….yes, you are right, it’s just that in the abstract the two discussions had a lot of similarity for me, just not with the intensity of the Tiger Lady. But with regard to making the poor children sit down and learn meaningless amounts of memorization, am sticking with my theory…it’s just too hard and they lack discipline, not to mention the parents don’t see the need or value of it either. In that sense, one never knows just how something will pay off later….maybe that calls for some wisdom, another thing sorely lacking in the modern, instant gratification culture. Other than that, you are exactly correct :)

    Cheers!

  • Dust

    Cincinnatus….yes, you are right, it’s just that in the abstract the two discussions had a lot of similarity for me, just not with the intensity of the Tiger Lady. But with regard to making the poor children sit down and learn meaningless amounts of memorization, am sticking with my theory…it’s just too hard and they lack discipline, not to mention the parents don’t see the need or value of it either. In that sense, one never knows just how something will pay off later….maybe that calls for some wisdom, another thing sorely lacking in the modern, instant gratification culture. Other than that, you are exactly correct :)

    Cheers!

  • Grace

    Memorization is a valuable tool to instill within a child or anyone who is eager to learn. Without memorization one cannot go back and find the results they need, …. memorizing a date, location or conversation, is paramount to researching the past, especially if it isn’t ‘historial data’ – the act of memorization of facts trains the mind for further memory, without which one can’t retrieve needed material.

  • Grace

    Memorization is a valuable tool to instill within a child or anyone who is eager to learn. Without memorization one cannot go back and find the results they need, …. memorizing a date, location or conversation, is paramount to researching the past, especially if it isn’t ‘historial data’ – the act of memorization of facts trains the mind for further memory, without which one can’t retrieve needed material.

  • Grace

    Dust,

    Every parent who understands the importance of learning knows that they must endow/encourage/instruct their children with a quest to memorize. Without that credential they will not succeed, … you cannot go forward without memorization skills. Most often they are learned, not gifted.

    I was one of those children who was gifted with memorization, not so much ‘word for word’ but photographic memory, and that of ‘time and place’ and ‘specific details’ – it’s a gift. I’m grateful, and pray that I use it to glorify God.

  • Grace

    Dust,

    Every parent who understands the importance of learning knows that they must endow/encourage/instruct their children with a quest to memorize. Without that credential they will not succeed, … you cannot go forward without memorization skills. Most often they are learned, not gifted.

    I was one of those children who was gifted with memorization, not so much ‘word for word’ but photographic memory, and that of ‘time and place’ and ‘specific details’ – it’s a gift. I’m grateful, and pray that I use it to glorify God.

  • Deborah

    My son attended an arts school (high school) years ago with 3 Chinese-American sisters. All 3 girls excelled in academics and music. They were locally famous for their exquisite artistry on the piano. Two of them won the National Spelling Bee. I never thought about them after my son went off to college and began his career in the navy. About two years ago, I read an in-depth report in the local paper about these famous sisters. Two of them wrote a tell-all book (after graduating from Harvard) about the cruelties they suffered at the hands of their overbearing, driven mother. It was shocking and sad. The girls to this day do not speak to their parents.

  • Deborah

    My son attended an arts school (high school) years ago with 3 Chinese-American sisters. All 3 girls excelled in academics and music. They were locally famous for their exquisite artistry on the piano. Two of them won the National Spelling Bee. I never thought about them after my son went off to college and began his career in the navy. About two years ago, I read an in-depth report in the local paper about these famous sisters. Two of them wrote a tell-all book (after graduating from Harvard) about the cruelties they suffered at the hands of their overbearing, driven mother. It was shocking and sad. The girls to this day do not speak to their parents.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “It was shocking and sad. The girls to this day do not speak to their parents.”

    It makes you wonder what their reaction would be if they had lived in China and the other parents were like that. Would there be an audience for their commentary? Would they have even known that mom was tough? I mean if everyone’s mom is like that, no one would feel sorry for them.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “It was shocking and sad. The girls to this day do not speak to their parents.”

    It makes you wonder what their reaction would be if they had lived in China and the other parents were like that. Would there be an audience for their commentary? Would they have even known that mom was tough? I mean if everyone’s mom is like that, no one would feel sorry for them.

  • Grace

    Down the street there is a Chinese family with two daughters. They have lived here for about 4 or 5 years. My husband, while walking our dogs has often heard the eldest practicing the piano. My husband had become acquainted with her father. She invited us to her recital, held at the university, (we were not able to attend) Just a few days ago, the garage door was open with a sign, that read “Come in through garage, recital in progress” – That’s the first time, anyone has opened a garage door as an entry to their home.

    I have never seen either daughter outside doing anything, my husband has seen them on a few times with their father. Very strange when two young girls are tucked away inside their home, or attending school

    Most of the Asian families keep to themselves, their children do not play outside unless they are very young. There is a family (Korean) who have a young son, …. he used to play with his skate board all the time, but for the past year, as he became older, that ceased.

    One would never know that the Asians who live here have kids, you never see them. Only if they are accompanied by their parents sitting in the car. That is how most of us ever find out they have children.

    Insular lives, very sad.

  • Grace

    Down the street there is a Chinese family with two daughters. They have lived here for about 4 or 5 years. My husband, while walking our dogs has often heard the eldest practicing the piano. My husband had become acquainted with her father. She invited us to her recital, held at the university, (we were not able to attend) Just a few days ago, the garage door was open with a sign, that read “Come in through garage, recital in progress” – That’s the first time, anyone has opened a garage door as an entry to their home.

    I have never seen either daughter outside doing anything, my husband has seen them on a few times with their father. Very strange when two young girls are tucked away inside their home, or attending school

    Most of the Asian families keep to themselves, their children do not play outside unless they are very young. There is a family (Korean) who have a young son, …. he used to play with his skate board all the time, but for the past year, as he became older, that ceased.

    One would never know that the Asians who live here have kids, you never see them. Only if they are accompanied by their parents sitting in the car. That is how most of us ever find out they have children.

    Insular lives, very sad.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    The Asian families on our street are nice and sociable and my son plays with the kids near his age. They seem about the same as any random group of neighbors. I do know some that play instruments but it is just as part of the usual school band program. One comes over every week to play games at our weekly games group. Another comes over several times a week to play in the back yard or ping pong. Probably a higher percentage of Asian parents are the Amy Chua type than among other Americans but I live in an area with tons of Asians and I really don’t see them as obsessively overbearing, more like just conscientious. About ten high school boys mostly Asian constantly play basketball on the next street over. Maybe Texas is just more laid back but they don’t seem like they are doing anything different from other kids.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    The Asian families on our street are nice and sociable and my son plays with the kids near his age. They seem about the same as any random group of neighbors. I do know some that play instruments but it is just as part of the usual school band program. One comes over every week to play games at our weekly games group. Another comes over several times a week to play in the back yard or ping pong. Probably a higher percentage of Asian parents are the Amy Chua type than among other Americans but I live in an area with tons of Asians and I really don’t see them as obsessively overbearing, more like just conscientious. About ten high school boys mostly Asian constantly play basketball on the next street over. Maybe Texas is just more laid back but they don’t seem like they are doing anything different from other kids.

  • Grace

    SG – 82

    The area where we live is very near some of the best, high schools in CA. and more than a just a few of the top universities. Asians move here to take advantage of the school system. They are very competitive, therefore they strive, no matter how difficult to succeed.

    The problem is; they are not citizens, they leave their homeland to come here to educate their children, MANY live here with only the wife/mother and children, leaving the husband/father in their homeland.

    The United States is one of the top countries for education, if it weren’t, families of Asian origin wouldn’t bother coming here. Think about the cost to Americans, the educational system, our tax dollars, etc.

    I can give you more sites, but check this one out:

    World’s Best Universities: Top 400 – US News and World Report

    http://www.usnews.com/education/worlds-best-universities/articles/2010/09/21/worlds-best-universities-top-400-?PageNr=1

  • Grace

    SG – 82

    The area where we live is very near some of the best, high schools in CA. and more than a just a few of the top universities. Asians move here to take advantage of the school system. They are very competitive, therefore they strive, no matter how difficult to succeed.

    The problem is; they are not citizens, they leave their homeland to come here to educate their children, MANY live here with only the wife/mother and children, leaving the husband/father in their homeland.

    The United States is one of the top countries for education, if it weren’t, families of Asian origin wouldn’t bother coming here. Think about the cost to Americans, the educational system, our tax dollars, etc.

    I can give you more sites, but check this one out:

    World’s Best Universities: Top 400 – US News and World Report

    http://www.usnews.com/education/worlds-best-universities/articles/2010/09/21/worlds-best-universities-top-400-?PageNr=1

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Students make the university. All a university really needs to be at the top is competent professors, and good facilities (for its academic programs, not luxury for students) and without exception, it must have the best students.

    No amount of good teaching and facilities will compensate for average students. However, a very average school can turn out plenty of Nobel Prize winners when the best students can’t afford to go anywhere else. It has already been done.

    “The United States is one of the top countries for education, if it weren’t, families of Asian origin wouldn’t bother coming here. Think about the cost to Americans, the educational system, our tax dollars, etc.”

    My grandfather used to tell me, “A good deal is a good deal for everyone.” That is it should be beneficial to all involved. Foreign students pay higher rates and don’t get public money for their university studies and thereby help underwrite the school. In return they keep academic standards high which benefits all students. No one benefits by keeping the brightest folks from getting the best education. As for non-citizen Asian kids enrolled in public k-12 education, they pay taxes for that through their rents or property tax. They also probably keep some good teachers sane and keep them in the profession. :-)

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    Students make the university. All a university really needs to be at the top is competent professors, and good facilities (for its academic programs, not luxury for students) and without exception, it must have the best students.

    No amount of good teaching and facilities will compensate for average students. However, a very average school can turn out plenty of Nobel Prize winners when the best students can’t afford to go anywhere else. It has already been done.

    “The United States is one of the top countries for education, if it weren’t, families of Asian origin wouldn’t bother coming here. Think about the cost to Americans, the educational system, our tax dollars, etc.”

    My grandfather used to tell me, “A good deal is a good deal for everyone.” That is it should be beneficial to all involved. Foreign students pay higher rates and don’t get public money for their university studies and thereby help underwrite the school. In return they keep academic standards high which benefits all students. No one benefits by keeping the brightest folks from getting the best education. As for non-citizen Asian kids enrolled in public k-12 education, they pay taxes for that through their rents or property tax. They also probably keep some good teachers sane and keep them in the profession. :-)

  • kerner

    So…your saying that imm9grants who live in a state support the school system through their rent and property taxes? I agree, but then why do anti immigrant groups always complain that immigrants burden the school system by getting “free” ducation?

  • kerner

    So…your saying that imm9grants who live in a state support the school system through their rent and property taxes? I agree, but then why do anti immigrant groups always complain that immigrants burden the school system by getting “free” ducation?

  • kerner

    oops…I mean “immigrants” and “education”.

  • kerner

    oops…I mean “immigrants” and “education”.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    kerner @ 86

    thazs ok kerner. we all ber knowin you iz a product of the public educashun sistum. you pore thang u. I still love you.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    kerner @ 86

    thazs ok kerner. we all ber knowin you iz a product of the public educashun sistum. you pore thang u. I still love you.

  • SaraC

    I’m not going to bother reading all the other posts because I can see from the last one they have veered far off topic.

    Amy Chua was on The Colbert Report this week discussing her book. It has been greatly taken out of context. Her purpose for writing it was as a witty memoir about how she tried to be that tough and was taught a lesson in humility by her daughters, ultimately backing down.
    Also, she didn’t strip her girls of all things fun throughout their entire childhood. She removed what she perceived as distractions from the ages of 9-13 (sleepovers, playdates etc) because they’re the best times to “train” (unfortunate but appropriate word) her daughters in music and academics.

    I am glad I heard the review of this book from the author herself. I’m interested to read it all, instead of just being shown one or two contentious paragraphs.

  • SaraC

    I’m not going to bother reading all the other posts because I can see from the last one they have veered far off topic.

    Amy Chua was on The Colbert Report this week discussing her book. It has been greatly taken out of context. Her purpose for writing it was as a witty memoir about how she tried to be that tough and was taught a lesson in humility by her daughters, ultimately backing down.
    Also, she didn’t strip her girls of all things fun throughout their entire childhood. She removed what she perceived as distractions from the ages of 9-13 (sleepovers, playdates etc) because they’re the best times to “train” (unfortunate but appropriate word) her daughters in music and academics.

    I am glad I heard the review of this book from the author herself. I’m interested to read it all, instead of just being shown one or two contentious paragraphs.

  • Grace

    SaraC – 88

    “Also, she didn’t strip her girls of all things fun throughout their entire childhood. She removed what she perceived as distractions from the ages of 9-13 (sleepovers, playdates etc) because they’re the best times to “train” (unfortunate but appropriate word) her daughters in music and academics. “

    You left out something very important, …. every child DESERVES to use the BATHROOM when needed, no one has the right to deny ANYONE from using the bathroom, it isn’t a “fun” thing, it’s a natural need, that everyone has.

    ____Excerpt from article “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior” by Amy Chua – -

    - – “I rolled up my sleeves and went back to Lulu. I used every weapon and tactic I could think of. 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. The house became a war zone, and I lost my voice yelling, but still there seemed to be only negative progress, and even I began to have doubts.” – -

    We watched Amy Chua on Night Line last night. We were not impressed. Children who are exceptional, don’t require parents who would think of denying a child going to the bathroom, they instill within the child a DESIRE to learn, rather than a police effort, and a “war zone” -

    “I’m interested to read it all, instead of just being shown one or two contentious paragraphs.”

    Using the “bathroom” and a “war zone” say it all – A child’s will can be broken, grades can be higher, but the cost of breaking the spirit of child is a tragic mistake, just to be the top of your _________ fill in the space!

    I enjoyed Booklover #69 comment above:

    –”keeping her from going to the bathroom. (!!) What! Risk a bladder infection just to learn a piano piece?! If Ms. Chua would have waited several months, her daughter probably could have played the piece with ease. Also, those I have known or read of who were truly music geniuses could just sit and play difficult musical pieces without being deprived of basic life needs.”

    Very well stated Booklover :)

  • Grace

    SaraC – 88

    “Also, she didn’t strip her girls of all things fun throughout their entire childhood. She removed what she perceived as distractions from the ages of 9-13 (sleepovers, playdates etc) because they’re the best times to “train” (unfortunate but appropriate word) her daughters in music and academics. “

    You left out something very important, …. every child DESERVES to use the BATHROOM when needed, no one has the right to deny ANYONE from using the bathroom, it isn’t a “fun” thing, it’s a natural need, that everyone has.

    ____Excerpt from article “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior” by Amy Chua – -

    - – “I rolled up my sleeves and went back to Lulu. I used every weapon and tactic I could think of. 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. The house became a war zone, and I lost my voice yelling, but still there seemed to be only negative progress, and even I began to have doubts.” – -

    We watched Amy Chua on Night Line last night. We were not impressed. Children who are exceptional, don’t require parents who would think of denying a child going to the bathroom, they instill within the child a DESIRE to learn, rather than a police effort, and a “war zone” -

    “I’m interested to read it all, instead of just being shown one or two contentious paragraphs.”

    Using the “bathroom” and a “war zone” say it all – A child’s will can be broken, grades can be higher, but the cost of breaking the spirit of child is a tragic mistake, just to be the top of your _________ fill in the space!

    I enjoyed Booklover #69 comment above:

    –”keeping her from going to the bathroom. (!!) What! Risk a bladder infection just to learn a piano piece?! If Ms. Chua would have waited several months, her daughter probably could have played the piece with ease. Also, those I have known or read of who were truly music geniuses could just sit and play difficult musical pieces without being deprived of basic life needs.”

    Very well stated Booklover :)

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “I agree, but then why do anti immigrant groups always complain that immigrants burden the school system by getting “free” ducation?”

    I am not aware of any anti immigrant groups, just those that oppose illegal immigrants because so many are criminals and abusing the social services system.

    If they are here legally, doing well in school, not involved in gangs or drugs, they are probably keeping the schools from being low-performing and keeping the graduation rates up. What is there to complain about? We let them in legally. They are in compliance.

  • http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/Contemporary-English-Version-CEV-Bible/ sg

    “I agree, but then why do anti immigrant groups always complain that immigrants burden the school system by getting “free” ducation?”

    I am not aware of any anti immigrant groups, just those that oppose illegal immigrants because so many are criminals and abusing the social services system.

    If they are here legally, doing well in school, not involved in gangs or drugs, they are probably keeping the schools from being low-performing and keeping the graduation rates up. What is there to complain about? We let them in legally. They are in compliance.

  • DonS

    Agreed with SG @ 90. Anti-immigrant groups are provincial and marginal. Anti-illegal immigration groups have a legitimate beef. We as a country should enforce our immigration laws, or change them to something we are willing to enforce, using an open, democratic process.

    To the extent, Kerner, that you are attempting to further the argument made by some that illegal immigrants pay their way through the property taxes they pay indirectly through rent, sales taxes, and perhaps some incidental payroll taxes (when they are not being paid under the table), I must disagree. At least in California, illegal immigrants typically live in small, rundown apartments, multiple families to a unit. They also tend to have significantly larger families than do citizens. On a per-family basis, they pay very little in property taxes, particularly given the fact that older apartment units, under Proposition 13, are assessed at very low levels unless they have recently been transferred to new owners. They also pay very little in sales tax, since food is exempt. The average illegal student pays only a minute fraction of the cost of his education.

  • DonS

    Agreed with SG @ 90. Anti-immigrant groups are provincial and marginal. Anti-illegal immigration groups have a legitimate beef. We as a country should enforce our immigration laws, or change them to something we are willing to enforce, using an open, democratic process.

    To the extent, Kerner, that you are attempting to further the argument made by some that illegal immigrants pay their way through the property taxes they pay indirectly through rent, sales taxes, and perhaps some incidental payroll taxes (when they are not being paid under the table), I must disagree. At least in California, illegal immigrants typically live in small, rundown apartments, multiple families to a unit. They also tend to have significantly larger families than do citizens. On a per-family basis, they pay very little in property taxes, particularly given the fact that older apartment units, under Proposition 13, are assessed at very low levels unless they have recently been transferred to new owners. They also pay very little in sales tax, since food is exempt. The average illegal student pays only a minute fraction of the cost of his education.

  • Pingback: Tiger Mothers vs. Vocation | Cranach: The Blog of Veith

  • Pingback: Tiger Mothers vs. Vocation | Cranach: The Blog of Veith


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X