The depiction of women of East Asian descent in science fiction films reveals how racial hierarchies are mapped onto, and used as justification for, mistreatment of women—and misogynistic prejudices inform racism. Contributing to the patterns that dehumanize Asian women are multiple sci-fi films that feature cyborgs and androids in Asian female bodies.
The relationship between racism and misogyny directed toward women of Asian descent is fraught with racialized myths about Asian cultures and womanhood. Racially-motivated hatred manifests itself as misogynist racism, bringing together the toxic ideas of “yellow peril” and “yellow fever.”
In addition to these two concepts, there is also the idea of techno-Orientalism within racist misogyny. This chapter uses the three concepts of “yellow peril,” “yellow fever,” and techno-Orientalism to examine the relationship between racism and misogyny.
When actors embody the characters, they draw attention to their accents, mannerisms, and (un)intentionally highlighted or concealed traces of racialized inscriptions in their lives. Yet audiences of mainstream films tend to look through—rather than at—the Asian characters, many of whom are unnamed.