The Model Minority

Essay by AJ056College, UndergraduateA-, October 2009

download word file, 7 pages 5.0

Have you ever wondered where the term "Model Minority" came from? Do you know what it means, and what it applies to? "Model Minority" refers to a minority ethnic, racial, or religious group whose members achieve a higher degree of success than the population average. The term Model Minority was coined in the Mid-1960's by William Peterson, a social demographer who believed through hard work and determination that this minority group has risen above the ranks of "problem minority." The term Model Minority mostly applies to Asian Americans that portray the hard working, musically talented, and mathematically brilliant Model Minority. Even though it's meant to be a good thing, the Model Minority has created a false perception of Asian American success that is different in reality and has negatively affected the Asian Americans.

After all the Model Minority in the eyes of Americans is seen as a good thing, but many Asian Americans resent the label of Model Minority and see it as another attempt to stereotype a minority group.

The Model Minority causes an identity problem with other Asian ethnic groups; the label homogenizes all Asian American and hides their differences. The label also causes everyone to think all Asian Americans are college educated and a wealthy middleclass citizen of America. The Model Minority label also causes a big problem with Asian Americans. It often pits them against other minority groups. I think The Model Minority is just a myth in which there is a good side of it and also a bad side of it. The myth was made with good intentions however, not every Asian American is what it describes as and Asian Americans should be treated like any other group.

In "The Harmful Myth of Asian Superiority," he talks about the...