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Internet Comedy (American) and Asian Stereotypes - Essay Example

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Internet Comedy (American) and Asian Stereotypes

Many of these comedies impose their subjective vision of the Asian nationality and culture on the American viewer. In response, Asian actors develop their Internet shows to challenge and eliminate the existing stereotypes, turning comedy into a unique instrument of multicultural education. Unfortunately, the number of comedies challenging racial beliefs about Asians is too low to change public perceptions of the Asian culture. As a result, comedies may well serve to develop racial tolerance but can hardly cause a substantial change in the public representation of the Asian race. The number of comedies starring Asian actors constantly increases. Since the end of the 1990s, inviting Asian actors to work in American comedies has become commonplace. In 1998 and later in 2001, Rush Hour and Rush Hour 2 comedies became a small sensation in American comedy, grossing millions of dollars (Park, Gabbadon & Chernin 157). The use of African American and Asian actors in the lead roles did not alienate but, on the contrary, attracted White and non-White audiences (Park, Gabbadon & Chernin 157). However, it is at least incorrect to say that the presence of Asian actors in the lead roles in American comedies helps to resolve the existing racial tensions. Asian stereotypes in American comedy and American society continue to persist. ...
Meanwhile, Asians Bart Kwan and Joe Jo are promoting their YouTube channel to push the boundaries of Asian stereotypes in the media, on television, and in the Internet (Steve). So, what is happening with the Asian stereotypes and prejudices in American comedy? Back to Rush (1998) and Rush 2 (2001), the Asian nationality is associated with the two terms, ‘sushi’ and ‘Triad’, throwing the viewer even deeper into their own cultural ignorance. Additionally, non-Asian actors in the movie suggest that all Chinese people look alike (Park, Gabbadon & Chernin 162). Again, a popular American comedy turns into the source of influence on the public opinions about Asians and, simultaneously, reflects the most important long-standing beliefs about Asians in the Western world. As a result, instead of helping American viewers to identify themselves with the multicultural world, Asian actors in comedies further reinforce the existing national prejudices. They promote the value of cultural ignorance and turn prejudice and bias into an essential ingredient of people’s daily lives. Prejudice against Asians is being normalized, and even the funniest comedies and YouTube channels created by Asian actors cannot withstand the pressure of normalized cultural bias. In comedies, Asian actors and characters tend to occupy a minority position, which further complicates the development of equality perceptions in the American nation. It is interesting to note, that characterization is one of the basic ways in which American comedies promote Asian stereotypes. Comedy is the genre which allows incorporating all types of characters and provides freedom for self-expression and judgment (Mintz ...Show more

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[Author’s Name] [Class] 07 June 2012 Internet Comedy (American) and Asian Stereotypes America is the land of cultural diversity, a country of immigrants and a multicultural society. Yet, America is also the land of stereotypes that predetermine individual and public perceptions of the multicultural world…
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