COVID-19 flips us from ‘model minority’ to ‘yellow peril’ yet again

“Corona Crisis,” Jyllands-Posten, Jan. 28, 2020. (Screenshot by Ho-Yen Tsang)

The screen lit up, and the audible notification woke me from an uneasy sleep. It was a routine I was just getting used to. Spring was here, and sorting out the junk lying around the house and jettisoning some of it through social media seemed a quick and easy way to reclaim some shelf space and square footage. Besides, there wasn’t much else left to do in the eighth long week of virtual house arrest during the COVID-19 shutdown, and I needed to distract myself from the disturbing stories of anti-Asian racist incidents that had begun appearing in the news…

Did anyone even read ‘Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother’?

“No one wants to be a pariah,” declares Yale law professor Amy Chua in her book “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother,” a memoir of her experiences parenting her daughters, Sophia and Lulu, as a traditionally strict Chinese mother set adrift in liberal New England.

Yet a pariah she became when excerpts from the book were published in the Wall Street Journal in 2011, a few days ahead of the book’s release. In the article, audaciously titled “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior” — a headline Chua denies writing, pointing a finger at WSJ editors — Chua describes how she forbade…

Ho-Yen Tsang


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