Readers discuss a column asking, “Why are Asian-Americans so successful in America?”To the Editor: Re “The Asian Advantage,” by Nicholas Kristof (column, Oct. 11):I am deeply troubled by this column, which reduces Asians to a monolithic group and paints an overly positive picture of Asian success in America.
The joke that Mr. Kristof cites — that “an A- is an ‘Asian F’ ” — is actually a source of pain for many Asian students, who feel a relentless pressure to live up to the model minority image.
What gets overlooked is the enormous stress this need to “succeed” puts on the students’ family relationships, self-esteem, and physical and mental health.
MARGARET YEEOakland, Calif.To the Editor: Yes, we should celebrate Asian-Americans for their success in higher education and knowledge-based professions including engineering, medicine and law.
But, unfortunately, the “bamboo ceiling” is much more than an abstract perception for most Asian-Americans.