3 dimensional portrayals of women of color, but only if they have white male love interests

Christopher Huang
26 min readAug 28, 2022

I am glad to see more 3 dimensional representations of women of color in mainstream media. However, I’ve largely been frustrated by the erasure and dehumanization of men of color in these stories, and the elevation of white men as the most desirable, perpetuating white male supremacist ideas, and want to see way more stories of people of color being romantic partners with other people of color. I won’t know how much of this is related a long history of white gatekeepers, writers, producers, executives, casting directors making decisions to insert white men into (often) the center of stories, or how much of it is related to storytellers of color internalizing ubiquitous, hegemonic, racist ideas of white being the most desirable and the necessity to center white people for more “success” and “universal” appeal.

Both are problems interlinked with each other and both perpetuate these white male supremacist ideas further.

There is a long history of white men in positions of power trying to control white women, and women of color, through “miscegenation” laws and the ubiquitous perpetuation of ideas that white men are more desirable and men of color are dehumanized predators of white women.

So much of (US) white cultural development in the 1800s and 1900s during mass immigration to the US involved thinking of life as a zero sum game where if another group is doing well (or merely coexisting), the way to deal with those emotions was to dehumanize and/or murder them. (The definition of white has shifted; Irish, Polish, and Italians were once seen as a threat to whiteness, and groups to dehumanize).

Ideas of Asian men being undesirable, evil, weird, conniving, plotting predators of white women who are simultaneously asexual and sexually weird (for example, Long Duk Dong in Sixteen Candles), including all the ideas of Asian men having small penises, originate from white male insecurity. There was prevalent dehumanization to justify the mistreatment and murder/lynchings of Chinese men during the Chinese Exclusion Act era from the 1800s-1960s. Ideas of Black men being criminals, predators of white women, and…

Christopher Huang

pro photographer who cares about the impact of imagery as any storyteller should christopherhuang.com, IG/FB: christopherhuang, christopherhuangphotography