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The Daily Princetonian: Should I go by my American sounding name or Asian name?

AsianIt’s a question faced by many Asians and Asian Americans in the United States. Do I go by the name my parents gave me or do I Americanize my name because its easier for people to pronounce?

It’s also a question asked and answered by Princeton first year student Jiyoon Kim in her blog for The Daily Princetonian.

The answer the student from Tokyo gave may be different from yours and there really is no right or wrong answer.

People have to make their own decisions based on their own reasons.

Jiyoon has gone by that name as long as she can remember, yet her official name is Laura Jiyoon Kim.

Should she introduce herself as Laura because its easier for most Americans to pronounce?  Or should she stick with the names her friends and family have called her for life?

I don’t face this issue because I am a third generation Chinese American with a typical American first name and a one syllable last name. I’m embarrassed to say I have a terrible memory for names and foreign names are even more difficult for me to remember. But that’s my problem and no one else (at least until you get ticked at me because I forgot your name).

People should go by the name that makes them feel the  most comfortable.

Read Kim’s blog in The Daily Princetonian and share the reasons that went into your own decision if you faced a similar circumstance.



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