My research addresses the fraught history of racial fetishism. Through cultural criticism—including queer of color critique, women of color feminism, and performance methodologies—I trace the connections between interracial sex, mixed race subjects, and US intervention in the transpacific.
Areas of expertise
critiques of multiracialism; queer and feminist theory; aesthetics;
the colonial present; temporality and memory; visual culture;
comparative race and ethnicity
Fields of knowledge
Gender and Sexuality Studies; Asian American Studies;
Critical Mixed Race Studies; Performance Studies;
Once the subject of social panic, racial mixture is now idealized as a sign of progress, even as an antidote to generations of racial injury. Many scholars have interrogated racial mixture's relation to scientific racism, eugenics, and the color line, but few have thoroughly confronted the peculiar enchantment of the Eurasian subject. Marked by legacies of war, trade, and migration, the Asian/white hybrid forces a reckoning with the sexual and coercive encounters between east and west. My first book project, drawn from my dissertation research, puts hybridity’s biological roots in conversation with the shifting terrain of white supremacy to demystify the lure of racial mixture and its connection to racial fetishism.
Situated in the generations after the US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn anti-miscegenation laws in Loving v. Virginia (1967) and the end of the Vietnam War (1975), my book project studies the archive of multiracial Asian American literature, culture, and performance art. Moving across theater, film, poetry, photography, true crime, and performance art, I emphasize the scene of interracial sex to recall the colonial legacy of racial fetishism. The project forwards the concept of “racial hosting” to join together a series of case studies on Asian/white cultural figures and artists who demonstrate what I call “white residue,” a remainder of whiteness despite interracial sex rendering it obsolete. I contend that the Asian/white hybrid is both an index to track the colonial condition across time, and a host that harbors the colonial desires we have come to name as progress, multiracialism, and post-racism.
In writing this book, my goal is to intervene into current debates on multiracialism and white supremacy by revealing how mixed race subjection - like all racial subjection - is a violent phenomenon with reverberating implications for the structure of racial form writ large.