When Being Good is Good… and Bad: The Dilemma of Asian Americans as the Model Minority in the United States
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Psychology Honors Theses; 2005
Two experiments addressed the discrepancy of holding Asian Americans as a “model minority,” while maintaining negative attitudes towards them. The hypothesis was that individuals feel Asian Americans constitute a realistic threat because they possess too many positive qualities (Ho & Jackson, 2001). The first study surveyed factors related to Asian Americans, including positive stereotypes, negative attitudes, and threats reported by participants, adapted from Stephan et al (2002). The second study used scenarios to place participants in a situation to test the effects of realistic threat in a classroom context. Realistic threat proved to mediate the relationship between positive stereotypes (i.e. too good) and negative attitudes (i.e. threatening) in the first study. Consequently, when being “too good” becomes equivalent with competition, it may predict negative attitudes.
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