(That such terms, including “Yellow Fever,” are blithely tossed around as being vaguely funny despite their obvious racism, helps show how much a specific relationship of race to desire is baked into pop culture.) The sexual politics at play here are much more sophisticated than simple man/woman, white/non-white binaries.
What if you’re a Chinese-American lesbian living in Paris who only falls for statuesque European blondes…and vice versa?
Emotionally, this is how it feels to be pestered by suitors with “Yellow Fever.” What we object to – what all women object to, really, -- should be obvious, for nobody likes being reduced to a preferential lust object. This is the of Asian women everywhere: Stop fetishizing me! Last year, PBS aired a documentary called "Seeking Asian Female," about an aging white man who finds a bride from China via the internet.
If current trends in pop culture are any indication, “Yellow Fever” is now more prevalent than ever.
Performance artist Kristina Wong recently investigated this by going on unscripted dates with eager men, and literally spitting on stereotypes of the demure geisha-fantasy.
A few months ago, an alarming survey suggested that "Yellow Fever" is more widespread than previously suspected.While racial bias is "highly prevalent", Denton said his research showed that very few gay and bisexual men made that preference explicit in their online dating profiles - about four percent.It generally manifests in more subtle ways, according to Denton, like not replying to a message from someone in the list of racial groups you don't fancy. When I interviewed men about their experiences with sexual racism, predominantly they discussed these very periphery, hard to see, hard to identify feelings of exclusion characterised their online experiences."Denton said his research has found guys who rated low have come from historically marginalised groups.And instead of fleeing in horror, both sides laugh and laugh.As internet dating continues to accelerate the collapse of socio-geographic boundaries, one thing is clear: the world will be a better place when the “Yellow Fever” nonsense is a thing of the past, and the sound of online buzzing means, simply, “Hi!