Type of Book: Memoir
Author: Amy Chua
Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother
Why I picked up this book: Daughter-Mother relationship. Parenting.
This book had a lot of hype, and because I am not a mom, I never read it. However, this year I added it to my reading list in the mix of reading of parental relationships. Also due to culture idea as well as a mixed-culture family view.
I found it to be pretty well written and a good read.
The moments reading about her screaming and often losing battle with a three year old and the differences of her two daughters was a big family “Yep, just like us” moment.
Reading something I may or may not disagree with is always something I am open to.
Though many of her idea’s of Chinese parenting and family are great…and also very American ideas of what Chinese parenting and culture is…the truth really came out in the fact that her own father was not that typical do as your parents say Chinese as only one example close in this book. That seemed to sort of go over the authors head. As much as she tried being non-American, she often ended up being just-like-American.
The idea of disciplined children of such strictness is great. And it has happened. But it is not just a change of Chinese to American culture as much as it is a change in generational culture.
However, I cannot speak for the Chinese.
I personally would be a strict parent (so I believe) I would not, however, be wasteful or forceful. Though a violin may get my child scholarship, in the end so would that energy into school and study itself. I would love my children to play an instrument, but I couldn’t see forcing it on them. Some strictness as all things can be a little lazily handled, even what we love and are good at. But sometimes a love has to be there to begin with. Do I wish my grandmother was more strict at my learning the piano growing up? Sure. I say that. But in all reality I likely would have put a thousand hours into something that now I would not even remember.
I guess I remember my mom screaming at me more than telling stories or singing sweet songs and doing things with us and in reading this I felt that will leave a bigger impression on the authors daughter as well. I also truly wonder at this marriage!
But I don’t think the mother did wrong either. She did what a lot of mothers would do. Have done. Or have tried to do. And she is there and more involved than a lot. She wasn’t perfect, and no mother is. The story is a true testament to motherhood of an example showing what a mother tries to do by trying to do it all right and pretty much as is typical, nothing goes according to plan. Such is motherhood. You can plan and drive and shape you children all you what but in the end they are their own people.
I most loved the essay her daughter wrote for school inserted in the book.
I do come away feeling that the book, though geared toward being a mother, lost itself completely on being a wife and a woman. But also, such is life as a mother I hear. I just wonder in that effect of role model for the two young girls. And likely we will see one girl be a strict mom one day herself and one be the total opposite. This is a great effect of same house-hold, different outcome.
For relationship reads, this is a good one to and to add the list. It is really well write and clear to read, mixed with the view of many other books, articles, essays and lessons from real life, it is a good twist on an ancient act of parenthood….that has yet to be perfected.
And an act that will always have mothers in an uproar…a way that they may not agree with, different than theirs and possible showing them a better way…or examples of their own wrong ways. Often parenting is learning what NOT to do by lessons of life rather than knowing the perfect recipe. It’s a million years and nobodys gotten it right yet. Mother’s are human. Even Tiger Mother’s. She shows great humility even on the front cover where it tells underneath the title that the book was supposed to be one way but instead “It’s about a bitter clash of cultures, a fleeting taste of glory, and how I was humbled by a thirteen-year-old.”
It is a well written, clear read, and inside is an essay by her daughter that is very beautiful. Most I would enjoy reading from this author again would be more insight to the marriage and I truly hope that one day there is a memoir written by one of her daughters to read and compare the mother-Daughter views.
A good read even for the non-mother. And even more so for a once daughter.
A little follow up article from Today