Asian-Americans And The ‘Bamboo Ceiling’

Deborah Amos in for Tom Ashbrook.

The “Tiger Mom” mentality has pushed Asian-Americans to dominate in schools, but how do they perform in the real world? We’ll take a look.

Asian-Americans students watch a news report during a class at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania. (AP)

Asian-American students watch a news report during a class at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania. (AP)

When an Asian-American mother wrote a memoir recounting the tough love of Chinese-style parenting, the “Tiger Mom” was defined: A demanding mother driven to produce successful, goal-oriented children.

But what happens when the test-taking ends and the meritocracy of test scores gives way to American-style competition at the top?

There is a “bamboo ceiling,” says an Asian-American writer who describes the limits of the lessons.

This hour, On Point: What your Tiger Mom didn’t teach you and why it matters.

– Deborah Amos


Wesley Yang, Korean-American writer. His cover article for New York magazine was “Paper Tigers: What happens to all the Asian-American overachievers when the test-taking ends?”

 Jeffrey Yang, Asian Pop” columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle. He is co-author of “I am Jackie Chan.”

Gene Cajayon, filmaker and director of  “The Debut,” a groundbreaking indie film about a Filipino American family

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