This conversation, with one of my friends who is a white man, happened only a couple of weeks ago, but took me back to an adolescence peppered with similar microaggressions. The medium of porn, and the endemic racism that threads through parts of the industry is a very complicated conversation. Many elements of our romantic and sexual choices are influenced by society. A study by the University of St Andrews found that exposure to online media pushes our attraction closer to stereotypes of masculine and feminine extremes. Whilst we could definitely spend some time unpacking the social and cultural connotations attached to those physical attributes, their histories are so distinct to the history of race, it feels undignified to waste word count even explaining it. But I will point out that the way race is conceptualised has long been hierarchical, and sexual and romantic segregation has been historically enforced as a tool of maintaining that hierarchy.
Savage Love: Does my girlfriend have a race fetish?
Urban Dictionary: White girl fetish
I once asked my first boyfriend what his friends thought about me. Apparently they were amused that he was dating a Chinese girl, and teased him about "riding her like a Kawasaki. Growing up in New Zealand, I often grappled with being different. I never believed in Santa and rice was my go-to starch. By my late teens, I realized that being Chinese also gave me a typecast sexual identity: bashful, privately kinky, and rumored to be in possession of an extra snug, sideways vagina. I first heard murmurings about "yellow fever" at university. I wasn't surprised that a piece of slang had been coined for men—and, it seems, predominantly white men—who harbor a special affection towards Asian women; we all know a guy whose dating history reads like a copy of the Chinese Yellow Pages.
The Other 'Yellow Fever'—Why Are Some People Exclusively Attracted to Asian Women?
Lillian , a something who lives in New York and Boston, is a single Asian American woman who actively dates. Needless to say, her Tinder inbox is a hot mess. She posts screenshots of their messages alongside photos of herself looking stoic, fierce and totally over it. She posts those, too. We have our own inner lives.
Racial fetishism is sexually fetishizing a person or culture belonging to a specific race or ethnic group. Homi K. Racial fetishism involves contradictory belief systems where the 'other' is both demonized and idolized. Feminist writer Anne McClintock is interested in opening up the discourse of fetishism to stray away from the phallus and the scene of castration.