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The Model Minority Myth

popculturepooka
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5/1/2014 10:10:35 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
This is a good relatively short article on the subject. I know a lot of AA friends are tired of the myth being prepetuated.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com...

"Looking closely, one can see that the Asian-American model minority myth is simply that: a myth. While Asian Americans earn higher median household incomes than whites, blacks, and Hispanics/Latinos, these statistics obscure the fact that Asian-American families include multiple earners (white vs. Asian American per capita income is close; household income is not), likely the result of the many generations living under one roof and the retirement savings of elders. Southeast Asian Americans drop out of high school at an alarming rate; nearly 40 percent of Hmong Americans, 38 percent of Laotian Americans and 35 percent of Cambodian Americans fail to finish high school. These Asian-American subgroups, along with Vietnamese Americans, earn below the national average.

Believing that Asian Americans are the model minority diverts attention from past and existing discrimination. The stereotype renders racial inequity for Asian Americans invisible and unimportant. For example, the portrayal of the Asian-American woman as the servile "Lotus Blossom" or the domineering, deceitful "Dragon Lady" has been common for years. There's the 1958 movie "China Doll" and Lucy Liu's cunning character Ling Woo on the popular TV show "Ally McBeal". Before the cancellation of Margaret Cho's TV series "All-American Girl" in 1995, her producer hired an Asian consultant after claiming that Cho's acting simply wasn't "Asian enough." Nearly 20 years later, we still see incredibly sparse representation of Asian Americans in the media, as well as in other areas like government, journalism and high levels of business.

Perhaps the most poignant repercussion of the model minority label is the assumption that being "Asian" is an automatic guarantor of success, a mark of coming from a "privileged" racial group that has "achieved more and struggled less" than other minority groups. The model minority myth has thus undermined the formation of positive relationships among minority groups by preventing the recognition of the intersection among racial histories. It is more than simple chance that the appearance of the "model minority" term coincided with the rise of the African-American Civil Rights Movement and Chicano Civil Rights Movement. Why don't we acknowledge this? The model minority myth is a wedge that impedes solidarity, emphasizing differences in socioeconomic outcomes rather than commonality in the historic struggle for civil rights.

By being part of the model minority, I am expected to feel nothing less than gratitude and honor for being labeled through a "positive stereotype." Yet, focus on the upper echelons of the Asian-American population has rendered everyone else invisible. In grouping all Asian Americans as high achievers, avid students and career climbers, society fails to acknowledge the nuance and disparity. "Asian American" encompasses a diverse range of dialects and ethnicities (and, of course, a diverse umbrella of individual, personal, human experiences within those subgroups).

I am not a model minority and never will be. No such thing exists."
At 10/3/2016 11:49:13 PM, thett3 wrote:
BLACK LIVES MATTER!
RoderickSpode
Posts: 2,371
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5/1/2014 12:05:16 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I think the Model Minority Myth may be aimed more at Northern Asians (Japanese, Chinese, Taiwanese). It's the Northern Asians that are generally embraced as the honorary Whites.

And yes, it is a myth. The general idea is that Asian Americans have been incorporated into the White majority to where they are a part of the White American demographic. They are just not supposed to notice that Asians (particularly males) are subjugated in/to the media. The heroic White male is to represent the Asian male as a sort of equivalent, and the lack of Asian male heroes would be mere coincidence. The constant White male/Asian female love interests in the media is to be seen as coincidental, as well as the lack of Asian male/White female (or even Asian male/Asian female) love interest media portrayals.

The Black and Latino alpha-male characters are aimed at those respected demographics that are seen as separate from the White demographic. Since there supposedly is no Asian American demographic as they supposedly have been incorporated into the White demographic (as model minorities/honorary Whites), so supposedly there's no need for a positive Asian American presence (portrayals) in the media. Supposedly......Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone, Tom Cruise, Vin Diesel, etc. represent the Asian American male.
popculturepooka
Posts: 7,924
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5/2/2014 1:28:37 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/1/2014 12:05:16 PM, RoderickSpode wrote:
I think the Model Minority Myth may be aimed more at Northern Asians (Japanese, Chinese, Taiwanese). It's the Northern Asians that are generally embraced as the honorary Whites.

And yes, it is a myth. The general idea is that Asian Americans have been incorporated into the White majority to where they are a part of the White American demographic. They are just not supposed to notice that Asians (particularly males) are subjugated in/to the media. The heroic White male is to represent the Asian male as a sort of equivalent, and the lack of Asian male heroes would be mere coincidence. The constant White male/Asian female love interests in the media is to be seen as coincidental, as well as the lack of Asian male/White female (or even Asian male/Asian female) love interest media portrayals.

The Black and Latino alpha-male characters are aimed at those respected demographics that are seen as separate from the White demographic. Since there supposedly is no Asian American demographic as they supposedly have been incorporated into the White demographic (as model minorities/honorary Whites), so supposedly there's no need for a positive Asian American presence (portrayals) in the media. Supposedly......Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone, Tom Cruise, Vin Diesel, etc. represent the Asian American male.

Excellent post.
At 10/3/2016 11:49:13 PM, thett3 wrote:
BLACK LIVES MATTER!
RoderickSpode
Posts: 2,371
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5/4/2014 12:15:26 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 5/2/2014 1:28:37 PM, popculturepooka wrote:
At 5/1/2014 12:05:16 PM, RoderickSpode wrote:
I think the Model Minority Myth may be aimed more at Northern Asians (Japanese, Chinese, Taiwanese). It's the Northern Asians that are generally embraced as the honorary Whites.

And yes, it is a myth. The general idea is that Asian Americans have been incorporated into the White majority to where they are a part of the White American demographic. They are just not supposed to notice that Asians (particularly males) are subjugated in/to the media. The heroic White male is to represent the Asian male as a sort of equivalent, and the lack of Asian male heroes would be mere coincidence. The constant White male/Asian female love interests in the media is to be seen as coincidental, as well as the lack of Asian male/White female (or even Asian male/Asian female) love interest media portrayals.

The Black and Latino alpha-male characters are aimed at those respected demographics that are seen as separate from the White demographic. Since there supposedly is no Asian American demographic as they supposedly have been incorporated into the White demographic (as model minorities/honorary Whites), so supposedly there's no need for a positive Asian American presence (portrayals) in the media. Supposedly......Clint Eastwood, Sylvester Stallone, Tom Cruise, Vin Diesel, etc. represent the Asian American male.

Excellent post.

Thank you! Great thread!

I was hoping that others would contribute their opinions as well.
slo1
Posts: 4,318
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5/6/2014 3:06:54 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
I just saw a study today. It noted that Asians as a group would start to pull away academically from Caucasians at ages 10 to 12 years of age. When younger they were similar. The reason the study said they tend to pull away in academic achievement is that they try harder, which was due to parental pressure and engagement.

While clearly not all Asians fit the mold there is no denying that a good percentage of the Asian population are high academic achievers, moreso than the percentage of other races.

In a way, Asians who are offended from the stereo type are asking other Asians to stop trying so hard. Let me put it this way. It is better to be incorrectly stereotyped with a positive trait than a negative trait.