Review of "Jeremy Lin: The Reason for the Linsanity"



Amidst the Linsanity, Timothy Dalrymple wrote one of the more poignant blog posts on Jeremy Lin and the Soft Bigotry of Low Expectations. Now he's written a book titled Jeremy Lin: The Reason for the Linsanity.  If you're suffering from Linsanity withdrawal, then this book may be just what you need to tide you over until Jeremy returns.

Like Jeremy, author Timothy Dalrymple is a Christian.  So much of the book has a Christian perspective on Jeremy's rise to stardom.  This was off-putting at times for an agnostic reader such as myself.  Ultimately, however, if you want to truly understand Jeremy Lin and his life, then you've got to understand his devotion to Christ.  The author does a good job of putting the Christian influence in the context of other factors which contributed to Jeremy's success. 

Dalrymple cites a confluence of factors which resulted in Linsanity, one of which was Jeremy's Taiwanese upbringing.  The Confucian culture, which stresses hard work and discipline, cultivated Jeremy into a better player.  Sounds very Tiger Mommy, doesn't it?

In fact, Dalrymple quotes Amy Chua on a couple of occasions in the book.  But he does quote a number of other Asian Americans as well and talks about how Asian American culture helped Lin become the person and player that he is, and how the AA community supported Lin through the good times and the bad.

Dalrymple covers all of the major angles and issues that arose out of the Linsanity phenomenon: the racist media coverage, the Asian male's struggle for respect and how the "pervasive and insidious nature of racism" kept people from noticing Jeremy's talent.

"Many Asian American men have long felt as though they stand on the outside of mainstream society looking in, and have suffered the indignity of receiving racist taunts and bigotry while being told they could not object because they did not have it as hard as others.  The sight of Jeremy not only succeeding on the basketball court but leading his teammates and dominating his opponents has proven powerful."

"Jeremy Lin was becoming a touchstone and a torchbearer, a leader of underdogs, and a folk hero for a community that has ling felt ignored and excluded."

Overall, the book does an excellent job of chronicling the life of Jeremy Lin and analyzing the many elements that led to his success.  It's a thoughtful and inspirational read on an inspirational young man.

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