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An Asian fetish is a strong sexual or romantic preference for persons of Asian descent, specifically East or Southeast Asian descent and sometimes South Asian descent. The fetishization of East Asians by people of other ethnicities is sometimes described by the derogatory term yellow fever. Asian women are often stereotyped as subservient, passive, and quiet. This portrayal persists today, along with the idea of Asian women—and, to a lesser extent, men—being exotic and submissive. In the afterword to the play M.
Butterfly , the writer David Henry Hwang , using the term "yellow fever", a derogatory pun on the disease of the same name , discusses " Caucasian " men with a "fetish" for east Asian women. The pun refers to the color terminology for race , in which persons of East and Southeast Asian heritage are sometimes described as "Yellow people". The term "yellow fever" describes someone who is inflicted with a disease, implying that someone with an Asian fetish has a sickness.
Hwang argues that this phenomenon is caused by stereotyping of Asians in Western society. Other names used for those with an Asian fetish are "rice kings," "rice chasers" and "rice lovers". In , after a two-year study on dating preferences among Columbia University students, researchers did not find evidence of a general preference among White men for Asian women. Furthermore, the study found that there is a ificantly higher pairing of European-American men with East Asian women because East Asian women are less likely to prefer African-American or Latino men.
The study took data from "thousands of decisions made by more than daters from Columbia University's various graduate and professional schools". An Asian fetish places a psychological burden on Asian women, who may experience doubt and suspicion that men who find them attractive are primarily attracted to features related to ethnicity and culture rather than other traits or characteristics.
Another effect of Asian fetish is that it may cause its targets to feel like an Other , because they are isolated and held to different standards of beauty. Because of Asian fetish, an Asian woman's racial difference is either seen as a failure to conform to mainstream Western standards of beauty, or as something that can be appreciated only on an alternative scale. Men with an Asian fetish are also affected by the stigma that accompanies the term.
NPR correspondent Elise Hu offers that this can be a source of insecurity in Asian women's dating lives, asking: "Am I just loved because I'm part of an ethnic group that's assumed to be subservient, or do I have actual value as an individual, or is it both? Writer Agness Kaku believes the mainstream Western culture undermines efforts to combat sexual harassment associated with Asian fetish. Noting how frequently women of Asian descent are subjected to verbal and online harassment, Kaku argues that Asian fetish "thrives on double standards that make light of racial bias against Asians" and states this downplaying leaves women vulnerable to stalking and violence.
Asian Americans' body dissatisfaction has been linked to the way they are often portrayed in the media as sexual yet innocent, nerdy, and emotionally inept  as well as the prevalence of White people in media. Asian Americans tend to have a wide range of body dissatisfaction, with some studies saying that they have less than White, Black, and Hispanic Americans while others say they range somewhere in between.
This tends to be attributed to the fact that Asian-Americans are viewed as " Forever Foreigners. This concept applies in different ways depending on the context. In this case, it means that the "true" American is considered to be the European American, and all other Americans are considered something else before they are considered Americans. So, to try to fit in, some Asian Americans may attempt to achieve traits they consider White. These girls specified that they tried to achieve these traits because they were things that they believed White men and boys found attractive.
Since the beginning of the twentieth century, the Westerner's image of the Asian woman has been seen as subservient , loyal , and family oriented. In preparation for a documentary on Asian fetish called Seeking Asian Female , Chinese-American filmmaker Debbie Lum interviewed non-Asian men who posted online personal exclusively seeking Asian women. Things that the men reported finding appealing in Asian women included subtlety and quietness, eye-catching long black hair , a mysterious look in dark eyes , and a propensity to give more consideration to how their partner feels than to themselves.
Lum characterized the stereotype associated with an Asian fetish as an obsession with seeking "somebody submissive , traditional, docile Asian women may be viewed by White men with Asian fetish as "good wives",  as in they are perceived to be able to properly take care of their children during the day and fulfill their partner's sexual desires at night. In interviews done by Bitna Kim, "Caucasian" men explain their fetish for Asian women. The Caucasian men interviewed fantasize that an Asian woman possesses both beauty and brains, that she is "sexy, intelligent, successful, professional, caring, and family oriented"; that she does not wear "White girl clothes" and heavy makeup, and that they are not high maintenance.
They all believed that Asian women have submissive sex. They believed that an Asian woman did not mind putting her partner's pleasure above hers. Since , marriages between Swedish men and Thai women have become increasingly common. Historically, the of Thai women marrying White men began to rise in the s and s as a result of Prime Minister Sarit Thanarat 's economic policies which attracted foreign investment and White men to Thailand. There is a social stigma in the country against Thai women marrying White men, but research published in indicated that an increasing of young middle-class Thai women were marrying foreign men.
A generation earlier, Thai women marrying foreign men had mostly been working class. Sources indicate that Sri Lanka is popular among Western "marriage bureaus" which specialize in the pairing of men who were "Europeans, North Americans and other westerners" with foreign women. Data published in indicated that an estimated , to , German men annually travelled abroad for sex tourism , with the Philippines, Thailand, South Korea, Sri Lanka and Hong Kong as their main destinations. This idea is based on the stereotype of "the Oriental woman" who is considered to be beautiful and sexually exciting as well as caring, compliant and submissive.
According to a article, a study focused on Hmong American high school girls reported that due to dominant popular culture, girls had internalized "the image of the White American family as 'good' and 'normal,'" in contrast to their negative gender experiences in their own Hmong American households and the lack of positive depictions of Hmong or Asian people in popular culture.
The girls thus doubted that marrying Hmong American men would lead to a family with gender equity that they desired. The article further detailed how the girls attempted to achieve what they saw as White traits to be attractive to White men or boys. There are relatively few representations of Asian people in Western media. Asian women in media tend to be portrayed in two ways: as exotic foreigners, docile and nonthreatening and sexual but also innocent, or as the nerd who is still aesthetically pleasing, but also emotionless and career oriented.
This le many Asian women to believe that they have to be in one of these boxes. It tends to convey the message that if they are smart, they cannot be sexual; or, if they are sexual, they tend to not be aware of it. Media in America that features racial diversity tends to be Black—White centered. This means that, if the character is not White, they tend to be Black. While there is the occasional Asian or Hispanic person, they are often there for comedic value rather than actual input into racial issues. This may make America appear to be composed only of Black people and White people, with Asians in either a limbo space, or a bubble where Asians only exist among other Asians.
For Asian Americans, the ideal body is influenced by the media they see. Women tend to lean towards traits that distinguish between Asian American women and White American women. For example, one trait that is held up in Asian American communities is the double eyelid. In her essay "Hateful Contraries: Media Images of Asian Women", British filmmaker Pratibha Parmar comments that the media's imagery of Asian women is "contradictory" in that it represents them as "completely dominated by their men, mute and oppressed" while also presenting them as "sexually erotic creatures".
Asian women have traditionally been stereotyped in mass media in the United States. The "Lotus Blossom Baby" is a feminine and delicate sexual-romantic object. In contrast, the " Dragon Lady " is treacherous and devious, and in some cases a prostitute or madam. Tajima suggests that this view of Asian women contributes to the existence of the Asian mail-order bride industry in the US.
It is argued that media may be furthering the progression of the Asian woman stereotype. This can be seen in movies, where the women are characterized by submissiveness. Sexual obsession with Asian people expressed by non-Asians.
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Bulletin of Concerned Asian Scholars. New York: Plume Books. The Guardian. Archived from the original on 2 February Retrieved August 22, Journal of Homosexuality. PMID Journal of the American Philosophical Association. The Harvard Crimson. Retrieved 3 June Huffpost Women.Why white guys like asian
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