Tiger Mother’s daughter valedictorian, delivers graduation speech

Laura Donovan | Contributor

Growing up under “Tiger Mother” can be rewarding. Sophia Chua-Rubenfeld, the eldest daughter of “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother” author Amy Chua, recently gave the commencement address at her high school graduation.

Confirmed by someone in the audience, Chua-Rubenfeld was valedictorian and made several jokes during the speech, poking gentle fun at her mom, who has been the subject of immense criticism and praise this year for her parenting methods.

A source told The Daily Caller that Chua-Rubenfeld opened the address with a joke about her mom’s New York Times bestselling memoir.

“Instead of writing her own speech, she [told audience members] that she was going to read from her [favorite] book…’Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother,'” the source told TheDC of Chua-Rubenfeld’s address.

According to the source, Chua-Rubenfeld’s school only chose one valedictorian for the class of 2010-2011, and students determined who had earned that title.

“The only other student speaker was the class president who spoke as salutatorian,” says the source.

(TheDC Interview: ‘Tiger Mother’ Amy Chua speaks out, wins teaching award)

Earlier this year, Chua-Rubenfeld started a personal blog to chronicle her daily life and “set the record straight” on rumors about her family. The teenager, who applied to Harvard, Yale, and the University of Virginia, hinted in an April blog entry that she’d decided on Harvard.

During a Q&A post about the university she’d picked, Chua-Rubenfeld wrote, “Somewhere wicked awesome,” using a popular word among Massachusetts residents.

Earlier this year, Chua made Time magazine’s 2011 list of the world’s most influential people and brought her husband and girls to the gala. Chua, a Yale law professor, came under fire after the January release of her book, which was intended to be a satirical take on rigid Asian parenting. In January, an excerpt of Chua’s memoir appeared in the Wall Street Journal and readers almost immediately went after the academic scholar with pitchforks for promoting strict child-rearing techniques.

In the piece, Chua said her daughters were forbidden from having sleepovers, participating in play dates, and earning anything less than an “A.” Chua later explained to TheDC that she’d intended for her book to read like a self-deprecating David Sedaris memoir rather than a parenting guide as some assumed.

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