Sunday, March 2, 2008

Asian Men and White Women

In Enter the Dragon, I found it interesting that the only real love story, was between the white man, Roper, and the white woman, Tania, in charge of all the girls. Even in a movie with the majority of the cast being Asian and an Asian protagonist, it seems the role of love and sexuality is reserved for the two white people in the movie. In the part where Tania is delivering girls to the fighters’ rooms, it was interesting to note that Tania, a white woman among an island of Asians was the leader of the women and portrayed as the most beautiful. Also, it was interesting to see that Roper got to choose Tania while Lee only chose a girl for information and help rather than for any pleasure that the girls were delivered for. Lee, the best fighter and the one that saves the island has absolutely no sexual role in the movie.

The “effeminate” Asian man portrayed often in the media is insulting, and one of the things I found most disturbing in the readings this week was how an Asian man can prove his manliness by dating a white girl. In Screaming Monkeys, David Mura writes, “my reaction to the sexual place assigned to me turned to a compulsive sexuality-rampant promiscuity with white women…If I were with a white woman, I thought, then I would be as “good” as a white guy”(297). Also in a couple of the magazine covers shown in the Chapter, “Men” in Screaming Monkeys, the articles seemed to define Asian men as having the qualities to be a good prospect for white women. Christine Duh in a response to the article wrote, “the whole premise of your article is that a good gauge of an ethnic group’s success is whether its members are dating whites”(299). It’s sad, but I sometimes find myself subconsciously thinking like this too. When an Asian guy I know starts dating a white girl, I give him credit for being “good enough” for a white girl and thinking more highly of him. There has been an improvement in the media with the Asian man going from geeky and wimpy to smart and respectful and able to be a candidate for white women, but hopefully in the future they can start taking on roles as being tall, dark, and handsome.

No comments: