The “Tiger mother” vs. the Jewish mother: The dangers of stereotypes

Amy Chua’s article in The Wall Street Journal last week, “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior,” has stirred up a firestorm of comment, with literally thousands of mothers and their friends weighing in on Chua’s harsh treatment of her daughters—an approach Chua defines as “Chinese” as opposed to a more permissive “Western” strategy. Inevitably, a comparison to the famed Jewish mother arises, and for good reason.

At the outset, the similarities between Chua’s audacious, coldly demanding, punitive “Tiger Mother” and the familiar archetype of the overprotective Jewish mother seem apparent.


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