- A Conversation About Asian-American Erotica Writers – Suleikha Snyder and Solace Ames were at The Toast talking about writing romance and erotica.
Suleikha Snyder: We definitely need more of that, and more mature handling of what women find erotic in general. Because I feel like there’s a lot of cut-and-dry, black-and-white judgyness about sexuality and sexual experience. We’re still giving into the ol’ virgin/whore dichotomy, seldom acknowledging that virgins have sex drives and “whores” are a social construct.
Solace Ames: Well, men are typically allowed to have a range while women are dichotomized. And I think our challenge as erotic writers is…do we reject that entirely? Or do we find some kind of compromise with it? In my latest book I have a male sex worker, and male sex workers are actually very popular in romance right now, both in m/m and m/f. Not so with women. Can I actually represent someone like the woman I was as a romantic subject with agency? I don’t know yet. I feel like I’m working there, I’m getting there.
- Asian Americans and the ‘model minority’ myth – Ellen D. Wu takes on the “Tiger Mom” and other stereotypes tied to the “model minority” narrative.
By the 1960s, the concept of strong, disciplined families became the basis of the new racial stereotype of Chinese Americans as “model minorities”: domestic exemplars, upwardly mobile and politically docile. In the midst of the black freedom movement of the 1960s, numerous politicians and academics and the mainstream media contrasted Chinese with African Americans. They found it expedient to invoke Chinese “culture” to counter the demands of civil rights and black power activists for substantive change.
- British readers and writers need to embrace their colonial past – I think this sort of fizzles out in the end, when he tries to tie it together by mentioning his new novel, but he makes some interesting points about facing the embarrassing colonial themes in fiction.
Or at least it has everywhere but in Britain, where we were already embarrassed and guilty about our colonial past, before postcolonialism found a troubling ambiguity in even the most well-intentioned colonial enterprise, and exposed plenty of straightforward brutality and exploitation. It is striking to compare the energetic debates of the last few weeks over how the first world war should be presented – a reflection of our constant fascination with the two world wars – with the near-silence with which we still approach the subject of the empire. Increasingly distant from us, empire is such a knotty, ambiguous subject, in which the British are the bad guys rather than the plucky underdogs, that it has become easier to ignore our imperial legacy than to examine it full in the face.
- Join Me For Unabashed Gushing Over Assassin’s Creed: Liberation‘s Female Protagonist – The Mary Sue reviews a game set in New Orleans in 1765 and it sounds like the heroine is pretty awesome.
Aveline has three distinct ways she can present herself. Her Assassin garb carries notoriety no matter what, but gives her full access to her combat skills. The Lady Persona means no climbing or jumping (because, let’s be real, corsets are not conducive to parkour), but she can bribe guards to look the other way, coax them to follow her into the last secluded corner they’ll ever see, or silently dispose of them with her parasol gun. Her parasol gun. This Persona gains notoriety very slowly — she’s a lady, after all. She can get away with a lot. Quite different from the Slave Persona, which accrues notoriety for acts as minor as knocking into someone on the street. Guards need little excuse to rough up a slave. The trade-off is that in this guise, Aveline can blend into the background. Just pick up a crate, stand close to other workers, and disappear into the crowd. A fine way to escape from the scene of a crime.
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An ice hockey fan from north of Boston and the genre's most beloved troll, Ridley enjoys reading contemporary and historical romance, as well as the odd erotica novel. As someone who uses a wheelchair, she takes a particular interest in disability themes.
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