This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Minority Predicament: An Analysis Of Asian American Success And The Model Minority Paradigm

2053 words - 8 pages

The Minority Predicament: An Analysis of Asian American Success and the Model Minority Paradigm

My grandmother sent me a letter from home, telling the success story of her old Chinese tenants who, through hard work, had become very wealthy in the 9 short years they lived in America. My grandmother embraces the belief that "with hard work, patience and a little help from the model minority stereotype, someday Asians will gain full approval of white America". She believes that Asian Americans are inherently smarter, more diligent and thrifty than other racial minorities of our time. I, on the other hand, am skeptical towards this assumed advantage that other minorities have perceived as "elevators to the ladder of success" in American society. While Asian Americans are able to achieve acculturation by gaining material success, despite this economic advancement, they are unable to assimilate socially into mainstream America because of prejudice and discrimination.

Prejudice and oppression by whites underlies the discourse used to describe Asian Americans as the "model minority". According to Eric Liu, Asian Americans have been called the "New Jews," a label "meant to accentuate the many parallels between these two groups of immigrants: Jews started out as outsiders; Asians did too… Jews climbed the barriers and crowded the Ivies; Asians did too. Jews climbed faster than any minority in their time; Asians did too". The difference between these two racial groups asserts Liu, is that in America "the very metaphor of ‘the Jew’ now stands for assimilation", but Asians are unable to blend into white American society as Jews did half a century ago.

The model minority paradigm first emerged during 1960’s in response to the civil rights activism, alleging that success depended on one’s own efforts—not a welfare check—to reach America’s promised land . This paradigm suggested that it was possible for racial minorities like Asian Americans to overcome discrimination so harsh that it would "shock those now complaining about the hardships endured by today’s Negroes" . The model minority paradigm suggested that the failure of other minorities, therefore, due to a lack of initiative, and not something systemically racist within society. While the model minority paradigm glorifies the accomplishments of ethnic Asians and their traditional values of hard work, thrift and morality, Gary Okihiro asserts that it still "assigns Asian Americans places of subordination within social formations and oppresses them . One example of this repressive discourse can be seen in Juanita Tamayo Lott’s narrative,"Growing Up, 1968-1985". Lott asserts that the implications of this "racist love" can be seen in the workplace for example, as upper class whites have purposely created the model minority stereotype to assert their superiority over "exotic, Oriental, friendly and thus submissive" minorities. Asians are exhibited, writes Lott, "as model employees, and model...

Find Another Essay On The Minority Predicament: An Analysis of Asian American Success and the Model Minority Paradigm

Model Minority Stereotype Essay

1253 words - 6 pages after the act was enacted when he published an article in the New York Times Magazine titled, “Success story: Japanese American style”. Soon thereafter, all Asians were being portrayed as the most successful minority. Statistics have shown that the East Asian population in America has higher successes in education. By using statistics from the United States Census Bureau and Microsoft Excel, on average as of 2012, about 91.2% of Asian students

"Using Assessment in Higher Education to Improve Success for Minority Students"

1811 words - 7 pages population are projected to be minority and by 2060, 60% of school-age youth will represent minority groups (American Council on Education, 1988).Though higher education is not solely to blame for the lack of ethnic minority students completing baccalaureate, graduate and doctoral degrees, nor can it eliminate the barriers to ethnic minority student success in education and in society, colleges and universities must take aggressive action to

"The Homeless: An Invisible Minority"

1398 words - 6 pages society as a whole and our economy. For example, there are simply not enough jobs to go around and not enough affordable housing units. Poverty, low wages, and public assistance cutbacks also contribute to homelessness on the macro-level (Morrell-Bellai et al. 582).Morrell-Bellai and Ralph Nunez concur that becoming homeless as a child increases the chance of being homeless as an adult. Nunez studied homeless families in New York City. He found

Film Analysis: The Minority Report

1954 words - 8 pages prediction of a course came through a more modernize computer that dropped out balls with the names of the victim and the suspect. The Minority Report film and novel became a success when it was transformed. Transformed from a pre-crime of all crime, to a pre-crime of murders that hunt the teens that predict them. The film made The Minority Report a success also because it brought more attention and viewers a course because more people watch movies

Minority Languages of the Pyrenees

2569 words - 11 pages steel and iron industry (Keating 36). Catalunya is one of the Four Motors of Europe (Keating 35), establishing an international Catalan reputation and distinguishing it as a productive and developing region within a larger European community. This success being experienced by these autonomous communities contributes more to divisions in identity among people in these regions, especially considering Spain’s recent economic crisis. I hypothesize

The Experiences of Rural Areas and Culture of Minority Groups

1882 words - 8 pages The experiences of different groups in rural settings are of significant importance to the study of rural geography itself. In particular, the experiences of both young people and travellers, often labelled as "others", are important in the way they provide a different perspective on rural spaces and cultures from the common `productivist' and `idyllic' cultural views. However, because they are minority groups and "different" from the "normal

The Ending of White Minority and Nelson Mandela

2550 words - 10 pages The Ending of White Minority and Nelson Mandela In 1948, the Apartheid system officially started. A Dr. Malan introduced it. He established the structure of Apartheid because he exclaimed different races could not live amongst each other in harmony and needed to live separately. Some might argue it was because he wanted to secure the supposed superiority of the White minority. It ended within 50 year of starting

Black and minority groups in the media

975 words - 4 pages minority characters were included just to make a point, rather than as an integral part of the plot - and did not represent real life for black and Asian people in the UK. One interviewee pointed at former EastEnders' characters Gita and Sanjay, saying that they "are Asians, but they don't show any religious ceremonies or relatives and stuff like that. What's the point in having ethnic minorities and not portray them in an honest way?" The report said

The Absent Voice of Minority Educators

966 words - 4 pages of education provided a network of information necessary for the success of future educators. Dilworth’s analysis of minority educators and their success in the classroom institutes flaws of HBCU education programs of the past. Low retention and turnover rates of minority educators and the absence of these individuals in the classroom support Dilworth’s position. According to Bower-Phipps, Homa, Albaladejo, Johnson, and Cruz, minority educators

Minority Women and the Glass Ceiling

1162 words - 5 pages collected and analyzed, the research will show the issues facing minority women in the workforce. The research will also show how minority women can and have broken through "the glass ceiling" into positions of power and respect in today's business world. As the country changes into an even more diverse melting pot, the importance of diversity in the workforce is instrumental to the continued success and longevity of every organization. The glass

Turkey's Internal Conflict and the Kurdish Minority

1269 words - 5 pages Turkey's Internal Conflict and the Kurdish Minority Turkey's key internal conflict centers on the role of its large Kurdish minority, ethnically and linguistically distinct, in a state that constitutionally consists of Turks. This issue has been with Turkey almost since the foundation of the Turkish State in 1923. The Kurds were promised the creation of an independent state as part of the treaty of Sevres in 1920 but this part of the

Similar Essays

The Model Minority Essay

1682 words - 7 pages above the ranks of "problem minority." The term Model Minority mostly applies to Asian Americans that portray the hard working, musically talented, and mathematically brilliant Model Minority. Even though it's meant to be a good thing, the Model Minority has created a false perception of Asian American success that is different in reality and has negatively affected the Asian Americans.After all the Model Minority in the eyes of Americans is seen

The Model Minority Theory: The Cause Of An Overlooked Culture?

2401 words - 10 pages Asian Americans (Fong 62.) While the theory might appear to give Asians praise for their hard work and success, in reality it covers up and marginalizes the real experiences Asian Americans face. For example, one of the ways the Model Minority theory harms the Asian American community is that it hides the fact that there are many Asian Americans living below or at the poverty line (Fong 62.) When it comes to academics it covers up the fact that

Model Minority Essay

1252 words - 5 pages nonexistent. Their problems are not seen and therefore those who are in power don't think that Asian Americans have struggles. The dangerous assumption that the whole speaks trivializes bigger issues for that it “ignores their needs”. ("Model Minority Stereotype") Americans have “exaggerated Asian-American "success" and have created a new myth” (Wu) that all other minorities must be able to follow and to achieve at their level of knowledge and success

The “Model Minority” Label And Intergenerational (Nisei/Sansei) Conflict

1874 words - 8 pages . A quiet American speaking in political activation of Japanese American youth. …Sh, h, h…! A Quiet American is speaking… As the Black and Brown communities push for changes in our present system, the Oriental is set forth as an example to be followed…[Journal of Social Issues, Vol. 29, Number 2, 1973 - Gidra, 1969, p. 6] The children are challenging their parents criticizing the model minority and their parents tell them: “you have to