Talk about polar opposites, goodness.
In Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, Chua shares her experiences of growing up with first generation Chinese immigrants and then choosing the same parenting method (“the Chinese way”) with her own children. Chua is determined, focused, and ruthless when it comes to parenting her daughters. There are no such thing as sleepovers, play dates, or down time. Her girls practice their instruments (violin and piano) for five to six hours a day on top of Mandarin tutoring and their regular school work.
Chua’s parenting style can be called extreme and, maybe, a little crazy, but she has a sense of humor as she relays stories of hours-long fights and severe threats to burn all her daughter’s stuffed animals if she doesn’t practice her instrument.
The reader can’t help but cringe as Chua goes off the deep end with her Chinese way of parenting. But we also get to see her soft as her younger daughter rebels against this parenting style and Chua has no choice but to change her tactics.
I know this book sounds rough, but I really liked reading Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua. While I don’t necessarily want to employ most of her parenting choices, I enjoyed the contrast and discussion about parenting styles based on where on the globe we reside. The way Chua parents is not seen as harsh or bordering on abuse in China and I do think Western parents have something to learn from their philosophies. I really enjoyed this book and would love to hear what you think if you’ve read it before.