Hollywood has a history of portraying Asian women as exotic, sensual and
overly-sexual. In such movies as “Sayonara,” “Walk Like a Dragon,”
“Flower Drum Song,” “The World of Suzy Wong,” and “Come See the Paradise,”
Asian women have an inherent sexual allure as they are viewed as exotic,
mysterious, and subservient. These Hollywood images of “comfort women”
have spilled over into mainstream images of Asian women. In result,
Asian women are viewed for their sexual desire and hyper-femininity.
Two main reasons that this image of Asian women has become so widespread
are because of the American portrayal of Asian men, and exoticism.
In American culture, there is a long-standing stereotype of the “weak,
effeminate Asian male.” As Gary Okihiro discusses in his book, When
and Where I Enter, because of the portrayal of Asian men as feminine, Asian
females came to be seen as even more feminine, to the point of hyper-femininity.
Also, the view of Asians in general as passive and subservient has contributed
to this view of the super-feminine Asian female. This combination
of quietness and sexuality has led to the categorization of Asian women
as exotic and sensual, as can be seen by popular portrayal in many movies
and mainstream culture.
Exoticism is the depersonalization and focus on cultural differences of
Asian Americans as a type of sociological novelty. These exotic and
erotic characteristics are seen as attractive qualities as many men enjoy
having an “exotic, mysterious” object from the Orient as their sexual trophy.
As King Kok Cheung points out in Conflicts in Feminism, “the stereotype
of Asian women as submissive and dainty sex objects has given rise to an
enormous demand for X-rated films featuring Asian women and the emphasis
on bondage in pornographic materials about Asian women.” This can
even be seen by the abundance of pornographic sites if one types in the
word “Asian” or “oriental” in any search engine, such as HotBot
Here To Read On About The Damaging Effects of Female Stereotypes