?

Log in

Exoticize my Fist!
 
[Most Recent Entries] [Calendar View] [Friends]

Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Exoticize my Fist!'s LiveJournal:

[ << Previous 20 ]
Friday, May 16th, 2008
3:24 pm
[polymexina]
radical pedagogy

Okay! So I'm making a blog focusing on radical pedagogy to act as a resource to teachers who are committed to bringing social justice into the classroom. HOWEVER, I don't know a lot of online resources dealing with that... suggestions? 

http://exploringradicalpedagogy.blogspot.com/  is the blog I mean, in case anyone cares. :)

xposted like whoa

Friday, January 4th, 2008
5:17 pm
[polymexina]
Split This Rock

Split This Rock Poetry Festival: Poems of Provocation & Witness

Washington, DC

March 20-23, 2008

www.SplitThisRock.org

info@splitthisrock.org

Split This Rock Poetry Festival calls poets to a greater role in public life and fosters a national network of activist poets. Building the audience for poetry of provocation and witness from our home in the nation's capital, we celebrate poetic diversity and the transformative power of the imagination. Featuring readings, workshops, panels, contests, walking tours, film, parties, and activism! See the website for the incredible line-up of poets, including Lucille Clifton, Mark Doty, Martín Espada, Sam Hamill, Galway Kinnell, Naomi Shihab Nye, Sonia Sanchez, and many more. Split This Rock is cosponsored by DC Poets Against the War, Sol & Soul, Busboys and Poets, and the Institute for Policy Studies. www.SplitThisRock.org

Poetry Contest – January 15 Deadline: The contest benefits Split This Rock Poetry Festival. $1,000 awarded for poems of provocation & witness; Kyle G. Dargan will judge. $500 for 1st, $300 for 2 nd, and $200 for 3rd place. 1st place winner will read the winning poem at the festival. The poem will also be published on the festival website at www.SplitThisRock.org. All winners receive free festival admission. $20 entry fee benefits the festival. Postmark Deadline: January 15, 2008. Guidelines for entry: http://splitthisrock.org/contests.html. 

Call for Poetry Films – January 30 Deadline: Seeking artistic, experimental, and challenging interpretations of poetry that explore critical social issues. Films up to 15 minutes. Entry fee: $15. Selected films and videos will be screened during the festival's film program. For full guidelines and required entry form: http://splitthisrock.org/film.html

Support Split This Rock, the historic gathering of activist poets: Every dollar you give is tax-deductible through our fiscal sponsor, the Institute for Policy Studies. Just click here: https://secure.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizations/IPS/shop/custom.jsp?donate_page_KEY=1120 and be sure to designate "Split This Rock" as the project you'd like to support. Or send a check payable to "IPS/Split This Rock" to: IPS, 1112 16 th Street, NW, Suite 600, Washington, DC  20036. Many thanks! Your contribution will make a tremendous difference.


 
Wednesday, September 12th, 2007
1:14 pm
[thrownoverbored]
Queer hapa Filipina attacked outside NY bar
Lesbian 'Top Chef' Contestant Assaulted In Homophobic Attack
by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff

Posted: September 12, 2007 - 10:30 am ET

(New York City) Former 'Top Chef' constant Josie Smith-Malave is accusing police on Long Island of doing little to arrest the men she says beat her and two other women outside a bar in Sea Cliff.

Smith-Malave, who is openly lesbian and was featured on season 2 of the Bravo network show, said through her attorney that she and the other women had been asked to leave the bar on Sept 1 after a patron objected that two of the women were dancing together.

Attorney Yetta Kurland says that about 10 or 12 patrons, mostly young and some under age, followed the three women out of the club where the assault occurred.

Kurland says that the crowd began yelling anti-gay epithets, then spat on the women and threw debris on them.

At that point several in the crowd began beating the women. The three suffered bruises. One woman had a head injury, and Kurland says that a video recorder that one of the woman had was stolen from her.

When police arrived at the scene several of the attackers were still there but Kurland says there were no arrests, and police still have not laid any charges.

"We're disappointed with the initial response. I've been given assurances that they are going to treat this as a bias crime," Kurland told Newsday.

A spokesperson for Nassau County police declined to discuss the case while it is under investigation.

A Miami native, Smith-Malave is a former sous-chef for a Brooklyn restaurant. Prior to that she played for the New York Sharks of the Independent Women's Football League.

Kurland said that the women were on Long Island for a friend's birthday.

©365Gay.com 2007

http://www.365gay.com/Newscon07/09/091207chef.htm
Friday, March 30th, 2007
7:26 pm
[cat_on_the_wall]
A Girl Like Me
Young people are the next generation of the progressive movement. And we are doing amazing things.

Last Friday night for the Facing Race conference featured a performance line-up of spoken word poets, musicians, and jazz legend Eddie Palmieri. It also featured 17-year old Kiri Davis, whose film "A Girl Like Me" has stirred up controversy about how far we've progressed with racial equality since the 1940s; how the state of racial inequality impacts the self-esteem and self-identity for young Black people in the U.S. Davis created this movie when she was just 16, through Reel Works Teen Filmaking a free afterschool program sponsored by HBO.

The first part of her film are interviews with young Black women who share their experiences growing up dark skinned while reflecting the internalized values that comes with having a certain skin color. They address the stereotypes of Black women that inform their own personal identity. Then it segues into "The Doll Test" of a psychologist husband and wife team, Kenneth and Mamie Clark that was used to overturn racial segregation in the famous Brown vs. Board of Education case. Kiri reconducts The Doll Test in the film and the results are devestating--even after fifty three years, our youth are still impacted by race in the same way as youth in the 1940s.



I'm very grateful that Kiri made this movie. She was at the conference to present this film and it was refreshing to see how youth in high school understand politics and it's implications in their lives.
Monday, December 11th, 2006
2:53 pm
[greentea_winter]
How do you deal with a situation...
    in which someone close to you has a difficult time understanding your point of view, and has a tendency to react very pigheaded when you try to assert your point, not so much in disagreement with your point, but more lack of willingness to let go of their pride and listen to you when the moment is crucial?
How do you explain to someone that when you feel strongly about women's rights, racial injustice, etc., that you are not simply playing the blame game against all white males?  How do you show someone that even though they may not be personally commiting injustices that there is, however, a system set up that caters specifically to them with no regards for/at the expense of others?  How do you convince this person that just because others have viewed them as "the bad guy," that  you should not be punished for their assumptions?

How do you convince someone who, after the heat is over and you've had to shed too many tears, claims they are willing to listen and that they understand, to listen to you before it resorts to all of that?

Current Mood: sad
Saturday, November 11th, 2006
2:51 pm
[greentea_winter]
I recently joined this community and I decided to say wassup and introduce myself.  I'm a 23 year old multi-racial female.
In my years I've been told that I've been denying that I'm black, that I shouldn't talk black around white folks, that I sound too white around everyone else, that racism doesn't exist anymore, that the fact that I reported a sexual harssment complaint about a fellow employee made me "oversensitive," that I shouldn't point out my roomate's racist comments about American Indians being lazy welfare horders because it might "hurt her feelings," that I always talk about race, and any amount of where are you from's, no where were you born, no where are your parent's from, hey you part asian, you guys like all that sex stuff, hey is this another treasure of the Philipines, you're not Filipino, what are you thai, samoan, hawaiian, no you're not black, you're lying kinda shit I'm sure everyone in this community has already heard.

"sup.

Current Mood: hungry
Wednesday, November 1st, 2006
2:22 pm
[ninjageishagirl]
A rage against sexual objectification and exoticisation.
Dear asshole,

Number one: do not try to catch my attention by saying "Hey, hey, Asian girl." BEING ASIAN DOES NOT MAKE ME SPECIAL, DIFFERENT OR EXOTIC. IT SIMPLY MEANS I AM A LITTLE BIT YELLOW AND MY WESTERN-MADE GLASSES DO NOT STAY ON MY EASTERN-MADE NOSE. It is completely inappropriate for you to use it as a way to address me. You would not address a white woman as "white girl", now, would you?

Cut for strong language.Collapse )

X-posted to feminist_rage, racism_rage, my own journal.
Tuesday, October 17th, 2006
1:39 pm
[angryasiangrrl]
nike ad
parlance was kind enough to let me repost this image.



i'm dumbstruck, but please feel free to rant.

who is this ad marketed to? discuss.




Current Mood: not exotic
Friday, October 13th, 2006
9:15 pm
[ninjageishagirl]
Hello hello hello.
Hello, I'm just new to this community and I wanted to rage straight away!

First of all, I am a young transracial teenage woman of Scottish and Chinese descent. For anyone unfamiliar with my jargon, I am basically mixed race - but I refuse to call myself "half"-anything. I'm not halves. I'm a whole.

Anyway, because of my Chinese side, I stick out in white communities as Chinese (although stick out in Chinese communities as white). As such, I tend to get a lot of mixed reactions.

Unfortunately, a lot of that is very sexually charged. I was recently asked, in some poor attempt to chat me up, if I had ever starred in pornography! Why? Because there is a niche market for Asian porno. Nice way to totally pidgeon hole an ENTIRE RACE OF PEOPLE, you asshole. Stop thinking about me naked BECAUSE I AM ASIAN.

Hell, stop thinking of me naked FULL STOP.

RAAAAAAAGE.
Thursday, July 27th, 2006
9:54 pm
[nobetternoworse]
The MAIZ Chronicles
**I hope this is appropriate to post here. I figured that there might be some interest in this project. I am posting this for a friend who is not in this community, so if you have any questions email her, donàt leave them in a comment.**

The MAIZ Chronicles
I've recieved a few great entries, but I still need your input-I've extended the deadline to August 1st so if you're planning on sending anything in please let me know.
What to send in?
stories, articles, artwork, relevant zine and book reviews, commentaries and more.
MAIZ-Mujeres Artistas/Activistas Insurgentes y Zine-istas
(women, artists, activists, insurgents and zinesters)

Submissions are being accepted for the first issue of the The MAIZ Chronicles. This is an invitation to be part of the zine. If you are a mujer(women of color) and would like to submit to the zine, please contact me at noemi.mtz@gmail.com
*This comp zine is accepting submissions from all women of color, not only Latinas and Chicanas.


There is no theme but we would like to publish pieces from unique perspectives by mujeres on issues concerning mujeres and folks of colors- - issues that are hardly covered in zines.
Submissions can be in any language, providing translation.
Let me know if you would like to help by passing out flyers, layout, submissions, or including the call out in your zine, message board or your friends and students. Anyone can help out with the process.
Monday, July 10th, 2006
11:17 am
[kristy_chan]
Asian American LGBT Survey
The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is conducting the largest study ever of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Asian and Pacific Islande Americans. (That's LGBT APIs for short.) They are looking for 500 folks to complete the online survey. It's confidential, anonymous, and available in four languages: English, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese.

"The lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Asian-American community is under-served, under-researched and under-studied. Its members are caught in the margins," said Alain Dang, Task Force Policy analyst and the study's lead researcher. "We need to better understand the experience of this diverse part of our community. The findings of this study will help us to include the voices of the LGBT Asian-American community at all
levels of discussion."

So, why participate in this survey? Well, for one, it helps determine what people's collective experiences have been, particularly with harassment and violence related to sexual orientation, gender identity, or ethnic heritage. And the more data they have, the more sold info they have to show what kind of problems exist that need to be addressed, and to advocate for change.

Sound good to you? Take the survey here.
Saturday, May 27th, 2006
10:13 pm
[bellalexis01]
Hello everyone: to mark my new membership to this community (a great idea), I wanted to post a poem that immediately came to mind when I stumbled upon this group:


don't wanna be your exotic
some delicate fragile colorful bird
imprisoned caged
in a land foreign to the stretch of her wings
don't wanna be your exotic
women everywhere are just like me
some taller darker nicer than me
but like me but just the same
women everywhere carry my nose on their faces
my name on their spirits
don't wanna
don't seduce yourself with
my otherness my hair
wasn't put on top of my head to entice
you into some mysterious black voodoo
the beat of my lashes against each other
ain't some dark desert beat
it's just a blink
get over it
don't wanna be your exotic
your lovin of my beauty ain't more than
funky fornication plain pink perversion
in fact nasty necrophilia
cause my beauty is dead to you
I am dead to you
not your
harem girl geisha doll banana picker
pom pom girl pum pum shorts coffee maker
town whore belly dancer private dancer
la malinche venus hottentot laundry girl
your immaculate vessel emasculating princess
don't wanna be
your erotic
not your exotic

-- suheir hammad
Tuesday, April 4th, 2006
11:40 pm
[polymexina]
Summer internship(s) in D.C.
FIGHT DISCRIMINATION
& EDUCATE D.C.-AREA YOUTH ON COMPLEX DIVERSITY ISSUES!
Summer internship(s) in D.C.

Opening Minds: The Washington Region for Justice & Inclusion (WRJI) is
currently seeking several capable and energetic full- or part-time
interns for its Youth Building Bridges youth division, June to
September 2006 (dates negotiable). All internships are unpaid.

Background:
Opening Minds-WRJI is a nonprofit organization committed to upholding
the values of equality, understanding, and respect for all people.
Through the use of training sessions, collaboration, and conflict
mediation, we fight oppression, prejudice, and discrimination in the
Washington metro area (Maryland, Virginia, and the District of
Columbia). Youth Building Bridges, our youth programs division,
brings together teens, educators, community organizations, volunteers,
and parents to identify and resolve issues caused by isolation and
prejudice in schools and neighborhoods. The roots of our organization
in the National Capital Area date back to 1938, when the organization
was part of The National Conference of Christians and Jews (NCCJ).

Internship description:
Interns for our youth programs division will assist the Director of
Youth Programs in the process of planning and implementing Opening
Minds-WRJI's four-day diversity camp for high school students, the
Youth Building Bridges Institute (YBBI), currently scheduled for June
23-26th, 2006. Interns may also be invited to serve as staff members
at YBBI 2006. Additionally, interns will assist the youth director in
organizing and leading diversity workshops, follow-up meetings, and
other events, such as the August YBBI Day of Dialogue. From time to
time, interns may be asked to complete typical office work.

Specific tasks and skills that interns will be asked to perform and
will develop include:
� curriculum writing and editing as we design the educational content
of YBBI 2006 and the August 2006 YBB leadership seminar
� facilitation and dialogue skills, involved in leading YBB workshops
� publicity and marketing as we improve community relations for
Opening Minds-WRJI
� youth development skills, related to designing follow-up programming
for YBBI 2006
� event planning skills

Qualifications:
The ideal candidate will possess
- creativity and vision
- an interest in social justice, building inclusive communities, and
fighting discrimination
- the ability to work independently on long-term projects
- attention to detail and pride in producing polished outcomes
- strong people skills
- the ability to multitask

Application materials:
Candidates should send a resume and cover letter to Abra Pollock,
Director of Youth Programs, by e-mail at apollock@openingminds.org, by
fax at (301) 650-2472, or to 8605 Cameron St., Ste. 516, Silver
Spring, MD, 20910. Please also have 2-3 references available upon
request. All application materials must be received by Mon., April
10th, 2006. For more information on the work of Opening Minds-WRJI,
please visit our website at www.OpeningMinds.org.
Tuesday, March 28th, 2006
8:19 pm
[accusehistory]
Arab Women's Conference
AMWAJ-ARAB MOVEMENT OF WOMEN ARISING FOR JUSTICE

A GATHERING OF ARAB AND ARAB AMERICAN WOMEN AND GIRLS

June 9-11th, 2006-
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS Jones College Prep School
606 South State Street

On June 9-11th, 2006, a historic event is going to take place:
A national gathering of Arab women and girls in the U.S. The gathering
will include Arab and Arab American women and girls, as well as those from
communities within the Arab world such as Assyrians, Copts, Kurds, Chaldeans
and Amazigh.

These past few years have been difficult ones for our communities, and
there are many Arab women and girls living throughout the U.S. who have been
working actively in different arenas to empower ourselves and each other.
It’s time we come together, talk face to face about issues that affect our
lives, honor our histories of activism and share our skills to build a
larger vision and movement of and by Arab and Arab American women and girls.

The gathering will feature performances, discussions and workshops and
opportunities for strengthening alliances with one another. Participants
will be invited to choose between several overlapping activities covering a
broad spectrum of issues and interests, such as such as family violence,
intergenerational issues ,immigration, racism, religious identity,
imperialism and war, sexuality and LGBTQ experiences, mixed race identity,
art, poetry, activism and political organizing

¨ Explore issues that impact our lives
¨ Build coalitions that strengthen our movements
¨ Engage in poetry, film and performance in our work for social
change
¨ Build power with one another and in our local communities
¨ Walk away with new skills

If you would like to have a registration form emailed to you please email
Suzanne at s_adely@yahoo.com. Register before April 15th 2006. Registrations
forms are available in English and Arabic. For more informatin see
www.amwajgathering.org.

Jones College Prep School is located just south of downtown Chicago and
is accessible by subway and car and Midway and O’Hare airports. Parking is
available. For more info: www.jonescollegeprep.org - Lodging opportunities
include 1) Chicago Youth Hostel (www.hichicago.org)-AMWAJ discount available
until May 1st; 2) Chicago
Travelodg(www.travelodgehoteldowntown.com/home/)-AMWAJ discount available
until May 1st; and 3) Community Housing (yas_ahmed@hotmail.com- indicate
your interest in this option on your registration form by May 1st.


Arab Women’s Gathering Organizing Collective and Advisory Committee:
Katherine Acey (New York, NY); Rabab Abdulhadi (Dearborn, Michigan);
Suzanne Adely (Chicago, IL); Yasmin Ahmed (Chicago, IL); Janaan Attia
(Oakland, CA); Lara Deeb (Long Beach, CA); Eman Desouky (Oakland, CA); Nada
Elia (Seattle, WA); Noura Erakat (Washington D.C.); Huda Jadallah (Oakland,
CA); Amira Jarmakani (Atlanta, GA); Jumana Musa (Washington D.C.); Nadine
Naber (Ann Arbor, MI); Heba Nimr (Oakland, CA); Itedal Shalabi (Chicago, IL)
Wednesday, March 15th, 2006
8:29 am
[mila_manosevic]
AND WHEN YOU LEAVE, TAKE YOUR PICTURES WITH YOU
Jo Carrillo

Our white sisters
radical friends
love to own pictures of us
sitting at a factory machine
wielding a machete
in our bright bandannas
holding brown yellow black red children
reading books from literacy campaigns
holding machine guns bayonets bombs knives
Our white sisters
radical friends
should think
again.

Our white sisters
radical friends
love to own pictures of us
walking to the fields in hot sun
with straw hat on head if brown
bandanna if black
in bright embroidered shirts
holding brown yellow black red children
reading books from literacy campaigns
smiling.
Our white sisters radical friends
should think again.

No one smiles
at the beginning of a day spent
digging for souvenir chunks of uranium
of cleaning up after
our white sisters
radical friends

And when our white sisters
radical friends see us
in the flesh
not as a picture they own,
they are not quite as sure if
they like us as much.
We're not as happy as we look
on their wall.

crossposted ro exoticizemyfist
Monday, March 13th, 2006
12:38 am
[fa_ikaika]
nasty little NZ restaurant
sassafras_siren suggested I cross post this from sex_and_race.

The restaurant chain "Monsoon Poon" (the title says it all really), has a whole menu full of objectionable "Asian woman as hooker" motifs.

Here's the post from my comrade-in-arms Tze-Ming Mok who spotted them.

If you feel like sending the "restarateurs" an email and letting them know that other people don't appreciate their "sense of humor", be my guest. Tze-Ming's blog has the email address.

This kind of maliciously ignant behavior needs to be buried forcefully by the neck in my humble opinion.


Nice backup comment from ebonbird (thanks mate)

By the way, does everyone know about bigbadchinesemamma? She's pretty hilarious on the objectification thing too. I particularly love the prank phone calls she does to massage parlors.
Wednesday, March 1st, 2006
5:57 pm
[sassafras_siren]
Those Tears
This is something i posted in my journal...

At the coffee shop yesterday, I saw a friend of mine and we had a great talk. She's been going through fits with her Women's Studies classes. She said some of her classmates (all of them are white) started crying and calling her 'racist' because she wanted to talk about how the feminist movement has been dominated by white women who historically have failed to understand or take on issues concerning women of color; 'sisterhood,' so blithely spoken of in slogans and bumper stickers, in a very real way has not historically included sisters who were sistahs. This apparently made some of them cry. Good thing I wasn't there or I would have caused more trouble by laughing at them or saying 'white girl, please...'

As harsh as that may sound to some ears, I would've said it like that because, in my experience, the two most distasteful attributes of whiteness are 1) the overwhelming need to be the focus of EVERYTHING, ever endeavor, every discussion, every issue, every study (and conversely, being struck with an almost crippling anxiety when not at the center of all such endeavors) and 2) An overwhelming sense of entitlement such that one cannot grasp the concept of how white privilege works in such settings. I told my friend that I'd send her a copy of Chrystos' poem, "Those Tears," and that she should discreetly xerox copies and put them in everyone's mailbox. But that's just me.

I guess my disdain for 'those tears' comes (also) from the fact that typically the times when whites are excluded or marginalized because of their race in the mainstream, it's usually rare, a punctuated moment or series of moments when they don't feel like they belong or that their point of view is important. Being a woman of color, that's not a rare or isolated experience for me; that's my mode of being in the world, my daily experience, one that has been so ubiquitous, so commonplace as to be cliché. So no, I don't have a whole lot of sympathy. That is not to say I don't have any; for those intrepid enough to confront their feelings in the context of our history and our current socio-cultural condition, I am happy to discuss some of the issues at stake. However to start crying because a POC states a historic fact of white privilege/racist exclusion? Puh-leez.

In the words of Christos: Give us our inch, & we'll hand you a hanky
Sunday, October 23rd, 2005
1:24 pm
[sassafras_siren]
What the hell...?
I am...dumbfounded. What do ya'll think of this?
Thursday, September 1st, 2005
10:09 am
[sassafras_siren]
This is something I'm looking into. Hope it's ok to post here.

Funding for Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Project (SELA) cut in 2003 due to spending pressures in war in Iraq

Here's my favorite part of that article:

New Orleans had long known it was highly vulnerable to flooding and a direct hit from a hurricane. In fact, the federal government has been working with state and local officials in the region since the late 1960s on major hurricane and flood relief efforts. When flooding from a massive rainstorm in May 1995 killed six people, Congress authorized the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project, or SELA.

Over the next 10 years, the Army Corps of Engineers, tasked with carrying out SELA, spent $430 million on shoring up levees and building pumping stations, with $50 million in local aid. But at least $250 million in crucial projects remained, even as hurricane activity in the Atlantic Basin increased dramatically and the levees surrounding New Orleans continued to subside.

Yet after 2003, the flow of federal dollars toward SELA dropped to a trickle. The Corps never tried to hide the fact that the spending pressures of the war in Iraq, as well as homeland security -- coming at the same time as federal tax cuts -- was the reason for the strain. At least nine articles in the Times-Picayune from 2004 and 2005 specifically cite the cost of Iraq as a reason for the lack of hurricane- and flood-control dollars.


And the Bush administration is going to actually look in people's faces and say there was no way to forsee this.

Also, here's an article that was published in the Houston Chronicle in December of 2001

New Orleans is sinking. And its main buffer from a hurricane, the protective Mississippi River delta, is quickly eroding away, leaving the historic city perilously close to disaster. So vulnerable, in fact, that earlier this year the Federal Emergency Management Agency ranked the potential damage to New Orleans as among the three likeliest, most castastrophic disasters facing this country. The other two? A massive earthquake in San Francisco, and, almost prophetically, a terrorist attack on New York City. The New Orleans hurricane scenario may be the deadliest of all.Collapse )

This didn't have to happen, but because we're so overextended in Iraq, it's leaving us vulnerable in so many other areas.
Wednesday, August 31st, 2005
6:25 pm
[sassafras_siren]
Hello all. This is something that I posted on my journal that angryasiangrrl thought would be appropriate for this comm, which I am very glad to be a new member of.
_____________________________________

My mother is a wonderful woman. Strong, funny, crazy an wonderful. But sometimes I just wonder...
For a while now she's been telling me to get a 'look'. Specifically, a look a could pull off when I go on the market for interviews. She suggested using an 'African' theme in my fashion accessories, because I am 'an exotic beauty.'
Mommmmm!!!!
I hate that word 'exotic'. What the hell does it actually mean, anyway? I mean, i know the dictionary definition: ex·ot·ic adj, From another part of the world; foreign: exotic tropical plants in a greenhouse. See Synonyms at foreign.
Intriguingly unusual or different; excitingly strange: “If something can be explained simply, in a familiar way, then it is best to avoid more exotic explanations”. See Synonyms at fantastic. Of or involving striptease: an exotic dancer." Yeah yeah yeah I know all that. But I guess I'm troubled by the way exotic is used, especially the way it's used to regard feminine beauty. Every time I hear it lately, it's been in used to describe a woman of some seemingly ethnic descent who has mainstream appeal. Like with the latina woman on 'Desperate Housewives', or on VH1 (or was it E!...don't remember) when discussing the hair disasters of celebrities, described an asian supermodel as having 'exotic good looks'. WTF??? Why is it not enough to simply say she's beautiful? Why the moniker 'exotic'? And why does it only seem to get applied to women of color? Why isn't 'beautiful' enough for us?
Thinking about the term, I remember being in ATL and reading a queer women's mag at the local women's bookstore. One of the articles was by a young woman who was part of an Asian/Pacific Islander queer women's group. She was writing about how she and her friends marched in Pride with signs that said stuff like "Exotic Erotic? NOT" and "I AM NOT YOUR CHINA DOLL." During the Dyke March, she said a young white woman came over to her and said 'You are my exotic erotic! You're so hot'. Yep, ole girl got the clueless award of that year, but what struck me more was how even in a political and feminist context, that damn word gets thrown around in the same irritating racialized way.
I always go back to the question, why is 'beautiful' not enough? Why use a word that removes you from the sphere of the beautiful, to something separate, something that makes your attractiveness conditional or qualified or distinct from 'regular' beauty? That irritates me to no end, and is a major turn off for me.
I've told my mother this before. Actually I used stronger language. Told her I thought it was a neo-racist, sexist term, or something to that effect. She quickly added "I know, I know. But you know the look I'm talking about, right?"
Yeah, mom, I know. I'm gonna go order my kente cloth handbag from 'Ethnicities-R-Us Fashion Hut' right now.

Current Mood: irritated
[ << Previous 20 ]
About LiveJournal.com