API Women Speak Up on Feminist Blog

May 17, 2007

The posts have been about reproductive rights, queer issues, trafficking, being an adoptee, and being a young feminist leader.

I have often spoken to the ladies at NAPAWF for articles and find them to be a great resource. I think that this series is failing a little bit though because it often reads as an advertisement for their org and doesn't seem to really get into APA women's issues in a powerful way. Though, I did really appreciate Ahuja's post on being one of the youngest women in the movement at 35. It is interesting that they haven't seemed to garner a lot of attention either, in terms of comments. I wonder: is this because they are too press release-y or because -- just like at this blog -- people would much rather respond to a post about something easy and pop culture-esque than serious issues?

On a side note, I had a scene from a play I'm working on read in the last class of my MFA career (!!) yesterday and it had a Indian woman dealing with an asshole Indian man in an arranged meeting situation. There might have been some feminist undertones to the thing. Anyway, after class this older (70s) French woman who has been auditing the class approached me and gave me props for my feminism, saying that it seemed like only "minority" women were feminist anymore. Interesting. What do y'all think? Are Asian American women epseically powerful in the feminist movement of today?




A lot of the Asian women in high positions are against mainstream feminism. That's how they make it. It's not on account of Asian American feminism that these women make it. It's because women of color are less threatening to the powers that be than men of color.A lot of us are anti-racists and feminists at the same time and advocate for the acceptance of Asian men in the mainstream. There are tons of Asian feminists advocating for better roles for Asian men.
Right/Write on, Donna.
Men are threatened by feminisms not women. You brought in the women vs. women comment.
"It's not on account of Asian American feminism that these women make it."I realize this. However, I don't think the White men care 'that much'. From what I've perceived, one is more likely to see a book at the "Asian Studies" section of Barnes & Noble with the topic being feminist related, than an even far more watered down book by an Asian male dealing with social issues like stereo-type.An Asian female actress in Hollywood for instance, will still get more roles than an Asian male, irregardless of her political activisms. Many people (men) generally relate high career positions taken by women in general to feminism.There are White men that are in essence out to do the Asian woman a favor. One example can be found by reading a blog titled "Why White Men Prefer Asian Women". Again, it's only 'one' example. Basically, what these men do is play on the 'educated', 'independent', 'free-thinking', and 'self confident' aspects of the Asian woman. The favor in this self-perceived heroic deed supposedly elevates them above the 'chauvinistic' white male who's attraction to Asian women, is based on stereotypes like submissiveness, and any sexual related 'tag'.So even though there is in fact a real difference between an Asian feminist, and one who readily accepts high positions from White male employers, I think many relate them as being very similar. People certainly relate the label to this type of 'White' woman. Many of these type of White men will certainly 'not' shun an Asian women as far as a possible relationship, if she tells him she's a feminist. A White woman on the other hand may be a different story."Men are threatened by feminisms not women"I think this is partly correct. But I think it's tough to generalize something like this when the issue of race differentiates the issue, and also given the fact that you're not a male. Weren't you after all differentiating the high profile Asian woman from the White woman? I certainly think there's quite a few high profile White women that have feminist leanings. And again, many White men see this as a 'weakening' for the Asian male.I'm glad to hear that many Asian feminists advocate the acceptance of Asian men in the mainstream. To be honest, I don't hear or see a lot about it on the internet which is the only place one would see this. But I realize this doesn't mean it happens any more or less, or an indication of it's impact.
My only point is that men are threatened by that all women want feminism and equal rights not just white women.That's all I'm saying here.
I'm glad I've stumbled upon your blog. I like the discussion and exchange of thoughts.Keep up the good work and expect me to visit your blog every now and then. Kudos!
What are your feelings about feminism and/or Asian feminism "Meet Your Asian Soulmate"?
Anyway, after class this older (70s) French woman who has been auditing the class approached me and gave me props for my feminism, saying that it seemed like only "minority" women were feminist anymore. Interesting. What do y'all think? Are Asian American women epseically powerful in the feminist movement of today?I think this statement is threatening to white males. So far, we've had three threatened white males, Webmaster, Lucas McCain and Meet Your Asian Soulmate, respond to this thread. But my original comment here was not about threatened white males.It simply said how fantastic it is that Asian, Black and Latina women are even more interested in feminism than White women.Then the terrified white males had to chime in.
I'm sure Native American women are very interested in feminism too but they weren't mentionned in the post or in the feministing piece.
Check this out from Kiran Ahuja's post:
A 2003 report by the Center for the Advancement of Women, Progress and Perils: A New Agenda for Women, noted that few women belong to women’s organizations and that women of color – specifically African American (63%) and Latinas (68%)—had a strong desire for a women’s movement than Caucasian women (41%). These statistics highlight the awkward juxtaposition of a sputtering women’s movement and a growing, potent constituency who crave a movement that puts them at the center.
Hello,I have created a pro-men website and was wondering if you would consider listing it as an external link on your site. I will be happy to add a reciprocal link back to your site in return. Thankyou for your consideration.www.genderwar.org
I suppose it would be threatening to hear Black, Latina and Asian women want feminism EVEN MORE than white women.Watch out, world!
As a White man, I often muse over my fellow race's antics. However, more so with the male half. At the same time White men attack feminism among White women, it's encouraged for women of other races. For instance, when a fellow White man wishes to use the Asian woman as a standard of comparison to put down a White woman (i.e. they're more feminine, faithful, etc.), they at times will draw the feminist, or feminism card by implying that "feminism" is partly to blame for the White man's attraction to the Asian woman.However, I believe the White man in general prefers 'minority' feminist organizations over 'minority' organizations themselves. We prefer the split. More damage can be done by a 'united' cause than a 'split' cause.We can certainly see this as far the White man's attitude towards "liberated", "free thinking" Asian women. A typical White male quip may look something like this: (to the Asian man) "Leave Asian women alone. They are independent, and can think for themselves. Stop trying to bind their feet".However, when the Asian woman's liberated/free mind swings back to their roots so to speak, by seeing that 'the grass is not necessarily greener on the other side', the Mr. Hyde tends to come forth from the White man. A good example of this is seen when an Asian woman writes a blog talking about her experiences with being a victim of "Asiaphelia" or Asian "Fetishism", and deciding on her own free will to 'not' date White men anymore. White male tantrums are often thrown at this point. The claws begin to extend among the White male repliers to the blog, and the 'racist' and 'double standard' accusations commence to fly.So, as far minority feminism among Asian women is concerned, from the White man's viewpoint they must remain within a certain boundary. They will by highly supported as long as they are being liberated from the ways of the East (aka, completely free to date the White man). As long as they do this, the high profile careers (actresses, newscasters, mayors, etc.)that are rarely given to Asian males will continue.
Minority women pose no real threat to us (I mean that in the general sense in that I'm a White male). We're a divided nation by color, and we realize that a "split" minority group is less threatening than a "unified" group. We especially encourage Asian women feminist groups so long as there's a certain boundary. As long as your independence is from the Eastern way of thinking (i.e., free to date White men). If your freedom of thought leads you back to your roots as it were, there's a problem. A small example of this can be seen when viewing blogs by Asian females who write about their negative experiences with Asian fetishisms exhibited by White males, and they, out of their free will have decided to avoid dating White males. The responses by many White males in these blogs tend to indicate a Mr. Hyde like transformation.
Part of Asian American feminism would be to see through racist sexism. All women of color battle their own form of racist sexism. Feminist theory helps women see through a lot of things not only through a gendered lens but a racial one especially if they are women of color. Women of color feminism has traditionally been about combatting white racism and sexism within their own communities. Ideally, feminisms will form under one coalition in which all women can help each other and men and children.
Like I said, Black, Latina, Asian feminism is threatening to men.
Black, Latina, Asian feminism is not threatening to White men to the extent that a 'gender unified' activist group would be. Individual feminist groups are recognized as those that will bring 'disunity' to their racial group, thus allowing the White race to remain at the top. White males know this from experience.
Lucas, that was just my opinion of the current state of feminism. Mainstream feminism can be as integrated as it wants to be, giving equal power to women of any race. Unfortunately, it is not, so each race has to do its own research and organizing.
Donna, I basically agree with you. And I'm not saying that feminism cannot, will not, or has not been effective. I just don't think that the White powers that be are too threatened by non-White feminist groups. Perhaps especially Asian feminist groups. And I think this at least partially explains the broad acceptance of Asian women in high profile careers where you don't see Asian men.Last month I was oversees, and was watching a news report on the 2 White disc-jockeys who were suspended for racial remarks towards Asians by doing on-air prank phone calls. It wasn't in English, so I didn't know exactly what they were saying, but the spokesperson/apparent activist being interviewed (and dubbed over) was obviously an Asian American woman. My question would be that since Asian women seem to have more of an accepted voice, what would happen if they began to attack stereotypes and the emasculating of the Asian male in the media?I think one of two things would happen. It would eventually make a significant impact, or we'd find that the White powers that be would draw the line on the relative acceptance of Asian female pro-activism.Would it go beyond the feminist guidelines to make an aggressive stand against the obvious injustice towards the Asian male counterpart?