Model Minority Thesis

Model Minority Thesis - Although the deployment of Asian...

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Although the deployment of Asian Americans as a “model minority” was made explicit in the mid-1960s, its origins lay in the triumph of liberalism and the racial logic of the Cold War. The Cold War construction of Asian America as a model minority that could become ethnically assimilated despite what the U.S. News and World Report called its “racial disadvantage” reveals the contradiction between the continuing reproduction of racial difference and the process of ethnic assimilation. The representation of Asian Americans as a racial minority whose apparently successful ethnic assimilation was a result of stoic patience, political obedience, and self-improvement was a critically important narrative of racial liberalism that simultaneously promoted racial equality and sought to contain demands for social transformation. The term “model minority” was first used in print by sociologist William Peterson in an article titled “Success Story: Japanese American Style” published in the New York Times Magazine in January 1966. Peterson concluded that Japanese culture with its family values and strong work ethic enabled the Japanese Americans to overcome prejudice and to avoid becoming a "problem minority." A second article similarly describing Chinese Americans appeared in U.S. News and World Report on December 26, 1966. The model minority thesis gained acceptance throughout
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This note was uploaded on 05/20/2008 for the course AAS 20B taught by Professor Dong during the Spring '08 term at Berkeley.

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Model Minority Thesis - Although the deployment of Asian...

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