Christina Jules 9/26/13 Not everyone can say that parenting is an easy Job. Parents work hard to focus their kids on a successful career path. A successful career path requires discipline which can come from various national backgrounds. Discipline creates a label of parenting, by either being critiqued or accepted by others. One parent in particular, Amy Chua, makes her own label as a strict parent. In Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior by Amy Chua, the main focus is to show how Chinese parenting leads to stereotypically successful kids.
A critic Victor Sherman assesses that “Chua’s premise hat Chinese mothers raise ‘stereotypically successful’ children hinges on a limited definition of success, and, ultimately, this undermines Chua’s argument. ” Sherman doesn’t offer an accurate assessment because Chua affectively supports her argument by using strategies such as personal parenting experience, statistics and contrast. This works because her points establish authority and illustrate a greater focus on academics than the Western method. In the beginning of the text Chua included a column with things she never allowed her own kids to do.
Things like sleepovers, attending in a school play or to watch television may be viewed as normal things to do when you are a kid, but in Chinese parenting it’s not the kids who decide what talent they want to cultivate, but the parents. There is no compromising in this kind of upbringing and the parents are in full control of everything the child does. According to Chua all these things are necessary if you want your child to succeed in life. Even though this may seem very rough to the most Western parents, it is what is best for your child and it will only have a positive effect.
As Chua explains, “What Chinese parents understand is that nothing is fun until you’re good at it. To get good at anything you have to work, and children on their own never want to work, which is why it is crucial to override the their preferences. ” Later on in the text, Chua argues the differences between the Chinese mentality on raising children and the importance on being the best at everything versus the Western mentality where we stress that everything that we try to accomplish should be fun.
Chua quotes a study where 50 Western and 48 Chinese mothers were polled. Seventy percent of Western women stated that stressing academic success is not good for their children and that learning should be fun. Zero percent of the Chinese mothers felt the same way. Chinese mother’s feel that it is only through hard work, complete dedication, and being perfect is when children realize what fun is. She states that most Chinese parents sacrifice everything for their children, and it is through these sacrifices that they Justify the reasoning for pushing their children.
She believes that Chinese parents feel that their children owe them everything due o their sacrifices and this is why their children should be the best. It Is oTten wonaerea wny cnlnese Klos stereotyplcally excel In wnat tney put tnelr minds to and why Western children aren’t as driven. Chua provides several contrasts between the two ethnic backgrounds. Many Western parents will say that they have succeeded as a parent if their children succeed in doing what really makes them happy. One observation that Chua makes is that “Western parents are extremely anxious about their children’s self-esteem.
They worry about how their child will feel f they fail at something”. Meanwhile Chinese parents “Assume strength not fragility and as a result they behave differently. If a child has any problem in his/her grades a Chinese mother spends plenty of time of her daily life to make their child superior in the class. In a Chinese mothers view giving up is not an option, whereas Western parents don’t want to put pressure and force their children to achieve or pursue things. Chua says that when she was young her father called her “garbage” in their language when she misbehaved to her mother.
She felt guilt from the bottom of her heart and agreed that she was rude to her mother. She also knew that her parents care about her and the word “garbage” will push her to improve her attitude. By contrast, she does the same thing to her daughter Sophia at dinner party in front of her other Western friends. Her friends thought that Chua’s behavior was really bad towards her. The difference between the Chinese parents and Western is that Chinese parents tell their children what’s on their mind, and disregard that it may affect their self-esteem.
There are many different ways to raise your child, and there are differences between ethnic backgrounds around the world. It is true that the ways the parents raise their children may decide how well the child will grow, since parents impact their children the most. By Amy Chua affectively supporting her argument, that the way Chinese mothers raise their children is the best way, shows that Sherman’s assessment isn’t accurate. Chua uses examples throughout her own life and observations to prove the effectiveness of Chinese upbringings.