How bilingual author Christina Wu is raising the next generation of Taiwanese Americans

"Raising the Next Generation" aims to feature and connect stories of Taiwanese American parenthood, caretaking, and community-building across generations. We want to hear from our community on the unique challenges they navigate, the resources and tools they can share with each other, and the triumphs they want to celebrate with us all. We want to showcase and serve how Taiwanese American families are increasingly complex and diverse. They may include transcontinental relationships, intercultural…

Katrina Liu on Asian American Motherhood: “Mina Learns Chinese”

There are a lot of things that delight me about children’s books despite being a single, childless, young adult. For example, in Katrina Liu’s bilingual book, “I Love Boba,” I’ve found a new favorite bit of joyful dialogue: “但是你是叫它波霸奶茶, 珍珠奶茶, 還是泡泡茶呢? Do you call it boba, pearl tea, or bubble tea?”  That, and a sweetly illustrated girl wisely explaining why fat straws are more appropriate than skinny ones for drinking boba.    View…

An Interview with Eva Lou, Madeleine Editions

Editor's Note: Something we consider often is how language informs how we define and experience an ethnic or national identity. We wonder about the merits of raising bilingual, or even trilingual, children, and whether our mother tongues will ever find a place in communities that do not recognize them. Our contributors have discussed loss and mourning of such languages, but also learning and discovery. With language as vehicles in mind, Taiwanese American writer Eva Lou launched Madeleine Editions,…

Passing on the Taiwanese Language: A Personal Account

I was born in the US and, like many second generation Taiwanese-Americans, I grew up speaking first Taiwanese (台語), and then English at home. I recall visiting Taiwan as a child and people finding it quite odd that my brother and I understood only Taiwanese—not Mandarin Chinese. Although my level of Taiwanese never reached beyond that of a kindergartner's, if I hear Taiwanese being spoken around me, I will always turn my head, unable to refrain from eavesdropping on the conversation. With…

Five Ways I Understand my Parents Differently Since Becoming a Mom

By Evita Wong Reprinted with permission from her blog: Mom, Take One I’ve pretty much always been close with my mom and my dad. I never really went through a notable rebellious phase in my teen years, and my mom has always described my personality as a kid as “xi nai,” or “adorably affectionate” in Taiwanese (I may be adding the “adorably” part). So, of course, I’ve always known that they love my sister and me. But, since having Emmy and experiencing how my heart comes close…