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Bamboo Ceiling Thesis

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The Bamboo Ceiling In 1985, historian David A. Bell claimed that the triumph of Asian Americans was “America’s greatest success story” (Bell). While one might argue Bell is giving the success story of Asian Americans too much credit, no one can deny the advancement of Asian Americans in American society. Despite being exploited and subject to discrimination in the mid-1850s to mid-1950s, Asian Americans have become one of the richest ethnic group in America and have a higher percentage of individuals who have received a college education relative to other races. However, many Asian Americans suffer from the “bamboo ceiling” phenomenon, where Asians are unable to advance to highest level managerial, executive, or social positions. If the success of Asians is “America’s greatest success story,”…show more content…
The term “bamboo ceiling” was popularized by Jane Hyun’s book Breaking the Bamboo Ceiling: Career Strategies for Asians, which aimed to help Asians overcome the bamboo ceiling in American corporations. Based off the “glass ceiling” phenomenon, which is described as “the unseen, yet unbreachable barrier that keeps minorities and women from rising to the upper rungs of the corporate ladder, regardless of their qualifications or achievements,” (Federal Glass), the bamboo ceiling is described as “subtle bias and a perception by some White administrators that people of Asian descent are content with working hard and getting results, and either have no interest in leadership opportunities or simply won 't be good at it.” (Oguntoyinbo). “According to a recent study Asian Americans represent roughly 5 percent of the population but only 0.3 percent of corporate officers, less than 1 percent of corporate board members, and around 2 percent of college presidents. There are nine Asian American CEOs in the Fortune 500” (Yang). The statistic is alarming – the bamboo ceiling is
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