‘Asian Images’

From legal scholar Mari Matsuda’s book, Where is Your Body?

We must criticize racist images, we we must demand images that show the full range of Asian American humanity.  I know so many outspoken, activist Asian Americans, but I have not seen an outspoken, activist Asian character on television. I know gay and lesbian Asian Americans, but I have never seen one portrayed in best-selling fiction. I know Asian Americans who are bad in math, who write novels, who sit as federal judges, who teach literature, who hustle in pool halls, and who have rich and complex personalities. I would hate to see this thick collection of humanity live and die with no recording of its presence, with no recognition in the image-making institutions of high and low culture in America.

One thought on “‘Asian Images’

  1. Thank you for posting this excerpt. I look forward to reading Ms. Matsuda’s book.

    From my viewpoint, Asian Americans and Indigenous Americans are almost completely invisibilised by dominant culture’s media, or grossly tokenised and stereotyped–as terrorists with Central Asian-American men, and as computer geeks with South Asian men. But mostly invisible. And, where are the women? South, Southeast, East, and Central Asian-American women? This is a question to the owners and representatives of dominant media.

    How can we even know what our country is with such diverse populations being ignored, left out, and removed from the dominant media leaving us all with virtually no Asian- and Indigenous-American role models, mentors, political leaders, as well as full visions of ourselves, and complete understandings of one another?

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