2023 has been a year we have dedicated to dispelling myths about different communities. AAPI month, held in May is a celebration of Asian Americans and Pacific Island culture.
We will unpack the model minority myth and offer some strategies for interrupting it. No community is a monolith. The AAPI community is rich in diversity. We want to celebrate that.
What is the Model Minority Myth?
The model minority myth is the stereotype that certain groups, like Asian Americans, are successful due to their cultural values and hard work.
This overlooks systemic barriers and can pit different minority groups against each other. Success is influenced by many factors, and this myth can perpetuate harmful stereotypes and obscure the need for systemic change.
Why is the Model Minority Myth Harmful?
- Erases the diversity of experiences within a cultural group
- Ignores the systemic barriers that many individuals still face
- Perpetuates harmful stereotypes of communities that don’t fit into the model minority
- Distracts from the need for systemic change by implying that hard work alone can overcome barriers to success
- Can lead to feelings of isolation and pressure to conform to the stereotype
- Can be used to justify discrimination against other groups or to downplay the need for social and economic support for under resourced communities.
What can we do to combat the Model Minority Myth?
- Learn about the different experiences of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities and the barriers they face.
- Celebrate the successes and contributions through an equitable lens
- Talk about how social and economic factors play a role in success
- Change language that reinforces stereotypes
- Support and include Asian American and Pacific Islander voices and communities
- Work together with other groups to fight against oppression
Celebrate AAPI Month With Us
Here are our 21 favorite AAPI owned businesses:
- Tower 28: Asian owned make up brand
- Live Tinted: South Asian owned makeup brand
- Blendily: Asian Owned Skin Care Brand
- CocoKind: skincare brand
- Hero Cosmetics: skincare and cosmetics
- Sandy Liang: Asian Woman Owned Label
- Christina J. Wang: Asian owned clothing brand
- Adeam: Japanese owned clothing brand
- Gentle Monster: South Korean owned sunglasses
- 808 Grinds: Pacific Isalnder owned Restaurant
- Bhuna: Indian owned Restaurant
- Burmese Delight: Burmese Owned Restaurant
- Choi’s Kimchi Co: Korean owned Kimchi company
- Mama Dut: Vietnamese Owned Restaurant
- Either/Or Cafe: Asian/Queer owned coffee and bar
- Et Fille: Japanese bi-racial-owned wine
- Friendship Kitchen: Vietnamese owned restaurant
- Teo Bun Bao: Asian owned Pho restaurant
- Cho Wines: Chinese owned wine