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Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother Hardcover – January 11, 2011
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Top Customer Reviews
Ms Chua claims herself a representative of Chinese mothers. I'm a native Chinese and came to this country with an advanced degree earned in China -- I'm no stranger to educating children the Chinese way. Yet I don't treat my children as she does and I know that most of the Chinese in the US (and in China, for that matter) don't "educate" their children in that extreme fashion. From reading the book I believe that her philosophies and behaviors are largely due to her seriously flawed personality. I list some revealing examples below. Since I don't have the paper copy handy, my quotes are not accurate to every word.
* When she learned that her dog was not among the most intelligent breeds, she felt "nauseated". To her, everyone, everything is a tool for competition.
* She bitterly criticizes the American "shopping mall" materialism. Yet she herself is a huge spender. To celebrate her daughter's Carnegie Hall debut, she threw a party that cost the family's winter AND summer vacations. How she spends her money is her own business. But condemning others for going to the mall? That sounds hypocritical to me.
* She has a strong sense of superiority that shows here and there throughout the book. She says some white men have "yellow fever". They would date any Asian woman, "no matter how ugly she is and what part of Asia she is from". That's deeply racist and offending.Read more ›
You also get to go along with Chua as she raises her two daughters. They had incredibly strict rules to follow: no play dates, no sleepovers, and two hours a day of instrument practice. You see that her parenting isn't perfect in their achievements: the oldest played in Carnegie Hall at the age of 14 and the youngest...well I don't want to give away one of the best parts of the story but lets just say they had different paths. You live her struggle with a parenting style that's seen as extreme in America.
Even though I'm deeply implanted in the "lax" Western style of parenting, I still related deeply to the struggles of raising children. The book is hilarious and shocking in places. The kind of book you can't put down. The transformation Chua moves through is powerful. Her writing still is brisk and lively and you're sure to empathize with her struggles and her dreams. The book is striking a chord with so many because it hits hard at the questions we all must answer for ourselves in life: love, achievement, self-esteem, ambition, pride...Read more ›
I found the book to be poorly written, full of prejudiced generalizations about groups of people, offensive and boring. She seems really narrow-minded and shallow, despite her high level of education. For example, she talks about the kids she didn't get along with and how it's ok because "those kids are janitors now" (I'm paraphrasing since I don't have the book in front of me). What a horrible thing to say. My Asian immigrant parents would never have said something like that - what I learned from them was that there is nothing wrong or shameful about an honest job and hard work, no matter what you do.
This woman clearly thinks she is better than everyone else, and that "success" can be measured only by playing at Carnegie Hall, studying with a violin teacher who has had students "perform at the White House," having a reception with shrimp and lobster and steaks and etc. etc. (manically long list of foods she bought for her daughter's reception) or visiting France and Spain and Germany and England and South Africa and Zimbabwe and Japan etc. etc. (manically long list of countries where she's taken her kids). She takes a very superficial knowledge of the music world and violin and piano pedagogy and uses it to show off how knowledgeable or cultured she is. Reading those passages, as the wife of a professional musician and music teacher (who deals daily with parents like this) I was honestly embarrassed for her.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book was a delightful read. I recommended the book to a new and old parents. It was great to learn about the philosophies of Chinese parenting. Read morePublished 20 days ago by AmazonFanZach
I found the book funny and entertaining. I think a lot of people took this book too seriously, which led to a lot of negative reviews. Read morePublished 29 days ago by YoYo
This book gave us the motivation to get our kids into gear real fast. Thanks for the inspiration!Published 1 month ago by Natasha
This book was a boring rant about how Chinese parenting is better than American parenting.
This woman should go into politics as she knows how to bamboozle and bulls***... Read more
I felt like she justified any bad behavior on her part because in her view it was for the "greater good" of her children.Published 2 months ago by tina
Fantastic book with great life lessons and fun humor. Some people may not appreciate the hard-line attitudes or push-hard tactics, but I thought they were refreshing in this day... Read morePublished 2 months ago by brown