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Marketus Presswood

A Minority in the Middle Kingdom: My Experience Being Black in China

The author in China (via Marketus Presswood/Tea Leaf Nation)
The author in China (via Marketus Presswood/Tea Leaf Nation)

In the 1996 China edition of the Lonely Planet’s Guidebook, a text box aside comment from a street interview provided some interesting conversation fodder, “…there is no racism in China because there are no black people,” a Chinese woman was reported to have said. This became a little running joke in my small study abroad circle, since I was the only black student in my program of fifty students. It was 1997, and I was in Beijing studying Chinese. “There is no way you could be experiencing any racism in China,” one classmate sardonically told me, “because you are the only black person here.” We all laughed.

While China is officially home to 55 ethnic minority groups, the Middle Kingdom is far more ethnically homogeneous than the United States. Han Chinese make up 91.59% of the population, and the majority of the remaining 8.41% are visually indistinguishable from their Han counterparts. In part due to this difference, race and nationality are often conflated in China. A white foreigner is likely to be called laowai, or “old foreigner,” while a black foreigner is more likely to be described as heiren, or “black person.”

White Americans face no barriers to claiming their nationality, but blacks are often assumed to hail from Africa, a place thought more backwards and poorer than China, more than likely receiving Chinese government economic aid in the form of loans and infrastructure projects. This leads to either resentment or denigration on the part of some Chinese. The Chinese media tends to focus on the generosity of the Chinese government toward Africa – a sore point among Chinese who feel their government is not doing enough for the Chinese themselves – and not on the valuable natural resources gained or access to lucrative growth markets for cheap Chinese goods.

Traditional standards of beauty in China have also shaped perceptions of black foreigners in the country. In China, “whiteness” is seen as a highly desirable trait for women. Stores that sell beauty products without fail have a wide variety of whitening creams. The Chinese and Western models that fill the screen and print ads all fit one standard type of beauty—very white skin, tall, thin with jet-black hair. There is even a Chinese saying: “A girl can be ugly, as long as she has white skin一白遮百丑.”

My experience in China

Growing up in America, I looked at Chinese and other Asian people as persons of “color” who shared a similar experience with white racism. There was some sliver of solidarity in being a “band of minorities.” For most black people or other people of color in the American cultural context there is some tacit understanding of the mutual experiences of white racism that binds seemingly disparate American ethnic groups together in solidarity. I naively took that assumption with me to China on my first visit. I did not expect that everyone would welcome me with open arms, but I did not expect what I did encounter.

My own experience in China began in the late 90s. While working for a major international language company, I taught English to Chinese from all socio-economic backgrounds. By all accounts, my supervisors and other teachers respected my skills and knowledge in the classroom. Around 2003, however, I noticed a shift in the market and it became increasingly difficult for me to hold on to assigned classes. There were a number of complaints from students. My supervisor investigated. She clandestinely and randomly listened in on my classes via the company intercom system. After a couple of weeks she called me into her office. She told me I was an excellent teacher and could find little fault in my methods and teaching of the prescribed curriculum. Students just wanted a “different” teacher.

While on break, I overheard students speaking in Chinese about how they were paying so much money and wanted a white instructor. One student went so far as to say, “I don’t want to look at his black face all night.” There was nothing my supervisor could do. The market was demanding white teachers and the company was responding to that demand. Not only did they want white teachers, they wanted attractive ones. I overheard a number of students discussing and comparing the physical attractiveness of one teacher over another. Students were even willing to accept a white, non-native English speaker over a black, native English speaker. This was a far cry from my first days of teaching English in China in 1999, when students were just happy to have an English speaker in the room.

A century of black experiences in China

In the first half of the 20th century, Chinese and black American intellectuals collaborated. Langston Hughes, world-renowned black American writer and poet, met Lu Xun, the father of modern Chinese literature, in Shanghai in the 1930s to work on theories and language for a universal, pluralistic, transnational form of cooperative nationalism. Paul Robeson, professional actor/singer and social activist, was a staunch ally of China.  He actively fundraised for the Chinese Defense League, the precursor of the China Welfare Institute founded by Soong Ching-ling, the wife of Sun Yat-sen, a Chinese revolutionary considered to be the founder of the Republic of China (ROC). He also popularized the current Chinese National Anthem, the March of Volunteers, to a global audience by singing the song in Mandarin Chinese for audiences around the world.  A number of other black scholars visited China during the first half of the 20th century, including W.E.B. Dubois, one of the founders of the NAACP, and Rayford Logan, a Howard University history professor.

While in exile in Cuba in the early 60s, black internationalist Robert F. Williams corresponded with Mao Zedong to support the Civil Rights Movement in the U.S. Mao wrote his, Statement Supporting the Afro-American in Their Just Struggle Against Racial Discrimination by U.S. Imperialism on August 8, 1963. He declared:

I call on the workers, peasants, revolutionary intellectuals…whether white, black, yellow, or brown, to unite to oppose the racial discrimination practiced by U.S. imperialism and support the black people in their struggle against racial discrimination.

Mao issued another statement of support in April 1968 after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Despite these expressions of support, there is scant evidence to prove Mao or any other Chinese political leader at the time would have been willing to align themselves actively with the Civil Rights Movement. In fact, Chinese foreign policy in the 1960s mirrored much of that of the West, due in part to the Sino-Soviet split and the coming détente with the U.S.

After the deaths of Mao and Zhou Enlai, the era of alignment with the developing world and oppressed peoples gave way to Deng Xiaoping’s pragmatic plan for economic development epitomized in his statement, “To get rich is glorious.” From the 80s to the present, this new mantra has fueled a single-minded devotion to the pursuit of wealth, leaving little room for concern with past ideals.  The isolation of China in the decades before its economic coming of age also limited the exposure most Chinese had to people of other ethnic origins, creating a vacuum of knowledge, drawing in stereotypes and prejudice.

Experiences to come

Unlike their parents and grandparents, China’s youth have grown up with access to information, entertainment, and art from all over the world. Many have consequently come to reconsider stereotypes of black people, and they are in turn influencing the opinions of their older, more “traditional” relatives. The popularity of American popular culture in China, particularly the NBA, which as of 2011 was made up of 78% black players, is an example of this. The NBA has over 41 million combined followers on Sina and Tencent micro-blogs, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter. The Chinese Basketball Association estimates that there are 300 million people in China who play basketball. NBA stars flock to China on multi-city tours every summer to greet crowds of adoring fans.

My wife recounted a story of her younger cousin, who became a huge Allen Iverson fan to the dismay of her mother. During every game, she would don a Sixer’s jersey and plop down in front of the TV to cheer on her favorite basketball player. In order to spend more quality time with her daughter and understand her better, the girl’s mother began watching games with her child, and in no time became an avid Sixer’s fan as well.

Another friend related a story of about his uncle in Beijing, who sent his high school daughter to America for a summer camp. At the end of the camp, during the parent pick-up, his daughter burst into tears as she said goodbye to her summer camp roommate, who just happened to be black. The Chinese father recalled thinking, as he surveyed the scene of his emotionally distraught daughter, “I never thought my daughter could have such an emotional connection with a black person. Maybe I need to rethink my biases.”

Many black people from around the globe are living, working and visiting in China now. Some of us are American, European, Latin American and African with a wide range of cultures, languages, religions and professions that defy neat categorization. While different histories have been a source of racist ideas and assumptions, perhaps our shared present and future will give Chinese a reason to reflect and reconsider.

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Marketus Presswood

Marketus is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Modern Chinese History with an emphasis on both the Republican Era (1912-1949) and the post-1949 era. He previously lived in Beijing for more than eight years where he worked in international education.
  • http://mykafkaesquelife.blogspot.com/ My Kafkaesque Life

    Great post!

  • http://www.leftwritelit.com/ Jibril Ikharo

    A little off topic, but this article makes me wonder if negative stereotypes of southeast Asians have been changing for the better due to the consumption of media from abroad.

    I ask because it’s always struck me as odd that Japanese and Koreans tend to have such negative opinions about southeast Asians. I don’t know if those negative stereotypes present in China as well…

    • Conway Yao

      Definitely. The Chinese view SE Asians, like Africans, as more backwards and economically unproductive than themselves– and the economic data of the last half-century seems to justify this belief (but not the racism itself)

    • Konjit Solomon

      The SEA caste system almost matches the geography top to bottom. Chinese first, white second, S Korean, Japanese third, then it trickles down to Indonesians. Then you cam brach outside SEA to add Indians which would be way above Bangladeshi then at last comes the eastern, western and southern Africans. Look at Singapore for a very clear example.

  • Conway Yao

    Really fantastic article, thanks. Growing up in a Chinese-American family in the US, I could sense everything you’re saying above– but since I wasn’t black, I couldn’t really comment on it judiciously.

    When you have a nation as ethnically homogenous as China, racism is to be expected. What I think is even more amazing is the speed of change. The new generations, especially b/c of basketball, have ditched some of the old stereotypes of blacks, but replaced them w/others: that they’re strong, athletic, and can dunk.

    I think if you introduce more marketable role models (like Obama) that aren’t athletes, we would see another round of lightning-quick change. Maybe a movie star, intellectual (think black Bill Nye or Neil deGrasse Tyson), or singer.

    • yutoutang

      But do you ever ask yourself, why should China change to suit the morality of the West?

      • Terri

        When people are accepted based on their ability and skill, instead of something arbitrary like their skin color, society as a whole can improve. The school that chose the white person who’s English was atrocious, over the black man with a graduate degree has nothing to do with morality and everything to do with common sense.

        • Konjit Solomon

          Terri. I agree, that is how it should be in a fair/ideal world. But, that thought is a very modern one. How long has it taken the multicultural west to come to that conclusion? Yet still one sees bananas being thrown at footfall players within the EU, obscenities at the first black female Italian parliament member and of course the dramatic polarization of US politics caused by fear / hatred of having a black president. The west has not been the best role model regarding race relations. China may surprise you in the future. Don’t judge so early.

  • Scandinavian laowai

    My home town, a third tier city in Jiangsu province still has language and art schools, that do not employ black teachers! Famous “wrong colour” sportsmen are ok, but when it comes to face to face teaching it’s another story.

  • Rebecca

    Marketus ! Great Article !!

  • http://www.theatlantic.com/wendy-qian/ Wendy

    At my California college, international students would often at first complain about “political correctness” because no one knew what that was before coming to the U.S. But my friends and I gradually get used to the sensitivities around the issue of race and many of us find them necessary as well. Like this excellent article points out, many Chinese people haven’t seen a black person before or communicated with their experiences, which explains their unfiltered, disrespectful, but honest reactions. As China grows increasingly multicultural, people should really start revisiting their stereotypes of different races. At the same time, there is the risk that people across the board will hide their prejudices at home even while they saying the politically correct things. This worry should not be a case against cultural sensitivity, but rather a question that one should revisit again and again.

    If TLN readers come across the widely circulated Chinese version of the Trayvon Martin story (starts with a truthy sentence: “Zimmerman案始末事情经过很简单”), you can also get another view of insensitivity and lack of understanding of the African American experience as well.

    • yutoutang

      I disagree. We should treat foreigners with respect and politeness, but that should not be an endorsement of multiculturalism, as it clearly does not work. The best multiculturalism can offer is “getting along”, and even that doesn’t usually happen. Diversity is division, and division is weakness. Simply observe American politics, and see how much of it is wasted talking about who-hates-whom.

      Whatever racial unity a diverse populace can muster, a homogenous populace can do effortlessly, since it contains no racial fractures in the first place.

      • http://www.theatlantic.com/wendy-qian/ Wendy

        I understand your last paragraph, although I must say that racial homogeneity (in terms of looks) comes in different forms and historical contexts. For some countries, it is not a prescriptive condition that one can command, nor is it one that some countries can strive for.

        For that reason, your first paragraph isn’t relevant for societies that already has racial diversity. You are standing from a racially homogeneous (relatively speaking) society judging how Americans (or other countries with multiple races) make multiculturalism “work.” There is no standard for how multiculturalism should work as of now,
        since Americans (as well as Indians) are constantly debating about
        policies like affirmative action. so I don’t know why you have so much
        certainty that it *does not* work.

        Now that China is becoming increasingly diverse, the public should discuss these issues. Perhaps they will take your stance that China is better off with fewer people of color. But this conclusion should not be drawn by criticizing how America has failed in “multiculturalism,” since the conditions of how the diversity came into being are so much different than that of China’s.

        • Whaddashack

          6 million White people from the US, Canada and Britain alone. In a country that’s developing and can barely afford to feed its poor. This is the only thing that’s keeping people from rushing in.

          Now imagine if China actually had first world living conditions? Can you imagine the flooding in of different colored immigrants all over the world into China? It would be terrifying and given how lax Chinese are in letting people in, it’s a disaster waiting to happen.

          Good immigration policies start very early. Aside from Asian A Americans, A Canadians, A Brits, A Australians and Asians from neighboring countries like Vietnam, Japan, Korea, Nepal, Bhutan, Mongolia and so forth, I’d be very worried about how they (the others) are going to assimilate and even more about their propensity for crime and religious terrorism like the Tsarnaev brothers.

          • Konjit Solomon

            What you described about non assimilating immigrants, using and abusing government services meant for its people, reminds me of … HK. I know quite a few Hongkongers who have the same fears, as you do, about outsiders.

            I agree with your concern about assimilation, Though the word ‘assimilation’ sounds like one becoming a robot or having an identity wiped (Dr. Who). I prefer to call it ‘integration of the foreigner’ I agree with you that if immigrants can’t adapt or integrate, meaning function , in foreign society then they should think of moving.

            Yet, I do not think that there will be a mass immigration into China in near future. Unlike some of the news broadcasts I saw on CCTV.
            The 6 million “whites” in China are not receiving aid or money from the government. Plus visa-based workers have to meet a certain standard, that is insured by sponsors (companies). No free medical care, gov housing or gov anything is given. You really must not know what foreigners go through to get entry visas. I guess, just like foreigners do not know what a Chinese person has to go through in order to travel internationally.
            As a tourist, I know that when I am in China for non-work reasons I get personal visa and have a personal sponsor on file. I pay 200USD for that short-term pass when on US papers. Plus later I pay waiguoren prices plus the occasional “ghost” or heiren surcharge for services like hotel/taxi.

            So if anything, I think most foreigners from the west help by contributing economically. Most of us reside there b/c of work ,besides ESOL, or for more meaningful reasons (marriage/family). Meaning your government wants us in-country b/c we contribute to its coffers and provide a service that is needed..or else our visas would be revoked or denied.

          • Mark Lo

            Most crackers in China are useless pieces of shit who are there for cheap Chinese sell-out sluts, and to peddle their ‘ability’ to speak their native language. For fucks sake —who can’t speak their native language?

            So they are there for a skill that is for them, as simple as breathing for most healthy people.

          • phkuwumao

            your mother is a vvumao vvhore, just like her racist son

      • whopperwithcheese

        I disagree. It is not that multiculturalism does not work. It’s just that some places are full of small minded people. For example, most Chinese are Han. But even within China there is discrimination. Dark skinned Chinese are looked down upon. And a Guangdong accent in the north means you will be discriminated against. A northern accent in the south means you may be cheated.

        • Mark Lo

          What a load of shit. There are regional prejudices within countries all over the world. These are relatively benign.

          It does not compare with white supremacy and the unique way white Westerners treated the rest of the world….it is only white Westerners that have things such as the ‘one-drop’ rule, apartheid, genocide of Africans and Asians, and even other whites.

          • Glenn

            true

    • 21tigermike

      “Like this excellent article points out, many Chinese people haven’t seen a black person before or communicated with their experiences, which explains their unfiltered, disrespectful, insensitive but honest reactions.”

      They’re racist towards whites too. In China being a foreigner is like being a leper.

    • Mark Lo

      Why should China become ‘multicultural’

      Western countries are becoming increasingly so because of the history and legacy of imperialism, not to speak of the fact that most white butts are parked on formerly non-white lands in the first place

      China only has a responsibility to those within her borders, and has no historical debts to anyone outside.

  • Sborto

    Great article Marketus

    I also would like to point the influence that the media could play in this matter. Chinese people more and more consume US tv shows and films and for most of them is the only real contact with the western world. If you think it carefully what you can extract, specially from the popular US TV shows, is that white Americans are rich and handsome/beautiful, latin and black american people are poor and dangerous.

    So in my opinion if the US media have a certain point of racism (even a lot of people will not admit it) and Chinese look the outer world through US eyes ¿How you can not expect certain degree of racism?

    • mimomimo

      Yeah, it’s all because of the US….

      *yawn*

      • Sborto

        Is not everything because of US there are many reasons but US media do not help.

        • mimomimo

          ?! This article is about China. I don’t see how the US media is being blamed or dragged in to this. It’s so typical, nothing is ever a China’s fault, no it’s a western problem.

          Chinese people are very racist toward people from SE Asia as well. Even here in London, Chinese mainlanders act in a disrespectful way toward SE Asians. We were in a restaurant and a table of Chinese people next to me noticed my FiL is Malaysian. They started just talking about how lazy Malaysians are. I nearly beat them all over the head. But I guess it aint their fault, or the Chinese media’s fault or Chinese society’s problem, I should probably blame the US Media cos they invented racism.

          • Kingandrew

            I think the poster’s point was that for many in China, US films and TV are the main place they see black people. So negative portrayals in these media will tend to reinforce prejudice against black people. He didn’t say that US media were the source of all racism, but rather that exposure to US media would not do much to change racist attitudes.

  • Mark

    The fact is there is a lot of racism in China even today. If you are black or look like you’re from another Asian country, you may be looked down upon even if you are American. I have personally experienced this many times in my travels to China and I love to blow up stereotypes!

    • 21tigermike

      Come back in 30 years, maybe China will be a nicer place. Until then, the street will be covered in litter and pools of urine, and yes, racism towards non-Chinese will be prevalent.

  • Kimberly Erwin

    It is the MEDIA. In order for wealth to gain a foot hold in the Chinese system more people in China must BUY things. MOST things advertised as GREAT come from ads with white faces. Every nation in the world has a history of ‘lighter’ is ‘brighter’ due to the British world wide dominance in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

    You can see Bollywood actors who are ‘the best looking’ have little ‘ethnic’ features and the lighter, the brighter for the majority of Indian actors–less attractive roles go to those with darker skin tones. So, too, with China’s Hong Kong the mecca for business at one time… A place where all the wealthy went to shop when it was ruled by the Brits. We CAN look EVERYWHERE to see it.

    (Of course, it is the same for us, Af-Ams in the U.S. Bleaching cream was the rage in the early 20th c. and then ‘straight’ locks, and then…nose…and now–blond hair and blue eyes!) So why would we NOT expect it in Asia? It’s in every Latino country. If it is of ‘wealth’ and ‘stature’ then we WANT it or want to BE like those who have it. We are still the little kids in the school yard who just want ‘to fit in’. (KEY: Fitting ‘in’ is relative. Loving ‘self’ is IMPERATIVE.)

    • mimomimo

      Lighter skin in Asia has been seen as a symbol of prestige for centuries. This is because those who worked outdoors and on farms would have darker skin and course hands due to the time they spent outdoors. Those who were didn’t work outside because they were rich and pampered stayed indoors and were pale and delicate.

      One of the most celebrated beauties of China, empress Zhao Feiyan (circa 1700s), was always described as having “slender waists and snow-white skin”, attributes that became among the “Ten Commandments of Classical Beauty” in ancient China. If you look hard enough, you will find tonnes of articles mentioning how skin whitening has a long history in China (they probably invented it). Just look at ancient Chinese paintings that pre-date their interaction with westerners – the women are always ghostly white.

      In a country where status is so very important, this idea of beauty has prevailed. Have pale skin is a status symbol still in China for women. Having pale skin means you likely work in an office and/or have enough money to spend on expensive whitening creams. It’s just like men having a long nail on their little finger, to show they don’t have a manual labour job.

      I don’t see the obsession with paleness in China as being solely due to British dominance in the 19th and 20th centuries. If it was, why hasn’t the obsession with being sun tanned (which started in the 40s) spread across the world?

    • TJDubs

      You just outed yourself as a 五毛 when you said “China’s Hong Kong”. :)

      • Kimberly Erwin

        I’m am not aware of Chinese characters. However, I am not ignorant of the notion that you are portraying me as a person who is somewhat biased? Yes. I may be. Since I get my information about the world, primarily via American means (media and schooling). However, as an interculturalist with no intentions of slighting anyone, I would ask that you ‘school’ me as it were. Should you care to of course. I would very much appreciate the lesson. U brought it up. Follow through.

    • Konjit Solomon

      Actually , not all colour or bleaching issues are based on the same “anglo skin” ideal. But African Americans always seem to only see it as a black/white (facial and hair) issue and take that luggage with them where ever they go. That is why Africans usually stay away from them when in the US. This is not meant as an insult, just an observation.

      Regarding India and Bollywood, historically, the higher castes women usually have lighter skin b/c they do not have to work outside. Lighter skin, in comparison to others near by, means you are like an aristocrat. Not a ‘worker’. Look at the Hindu G-d Shiva and his wife Parvati. There was controversy b/c she was “dark” and how she had to ‘win” him. She made herself “glow” and with that won his heart. Anyway their courtship pre-dates anything that has to do with ‘whites or jesus or anything western.minded. The ‘skin tone’ issues you see now is based on something much more ingrained than the petty white people thing.
      Yes some aspects were modified when the British came, but then it somewhat fell right in with the ‘lighter skin’ mentality that existed before. Bollywood is now using the its” the best looking” as you put it, to branch out into western markets beyond ex-pats. I must say if you can get past all the sings and dancing…the men/women in it look beautiful and just as artificial as in any Hollywood production. Bollywood does as Hollywood. They make no attempt to represent the people of their societies. ..just like the fashion industry does not. Unless there is a country out there with a diverse pool of anorexics, with great bone structure, that have not received food aid.
      I guess what I am saying is that “advertising” is just based on what is thought to help one sell a product. White or not. Money is the goal.

      In China if you put up an ad a white woman holding baby formula….it is a winner!!! not just b/c she is light skinned but b/c of the more serious issues that the ad speaks about, through her colour and genetic features, without saying a word. In Sweden, there an ad with an amazing male model. Sudanese, from the south( jet black). I am sure his ad is there b/c it sells. Another example: In Laos there is an ad for a condom “#1″ with a white or light skinned asian man and a dark skinned lao woman and it is poking fun at…it is not important. But the point is that not everything is about black/white. Yes it is used to manipulate sales, but most often than not the kernel of “truth” within the ad is riding on a more ingrained assumption/ belief that pre-dates whites/ slavery and all that.

      Regarding TJDubs comment, that was funny but I am sure he meant it as a friendly teasing.

  • Antoinette

    Great article Marketus! Thanks for sharing your perspective and hope all is well with you –
    Antoinette Gawin

  • Panman

    You nailed it with this article. I just spent the last 3 years in China, in Chengdu in what could be considered one of the more progressive cities in China. I constantly struggled with the job advertisements in the Gochengdoo magazine for English teachers. Most of the ads specifically stated “Caucasian only” which pissed me off so much that I once wrote to them complaining that they were helping the Chinese perpetuate the racist stigma against black people.

    Another unfortunate experience was their love and adoration for white people. Some of my white friends were being paid by Chinese companies to front for them at trade and marketing events. They were being paid to be the white face of the companies because having a white foreign face in your company gave you an advantage in the eyes of your costumers over the competition.

    Lastly it troubled me how they treated their own “lower level” ethnic minority population. If you were not from the “city” you were as not considered a “citizen” and were treated like second class in their own country. Unfortunately these very same ethnic groups harbored the same attitude towards blacks people. So I, with my Master degrees was lower in the Peking order than the so called “55 ethnic” groups.

    Speaking in politically correct lingo, they called it “prejudice” but I who was at the receiving end it perceived it to be downright racism. They say that the opening up of China will bring about changes in their perception, attitudes and treatment of black people but I doubt this will ever happen. Look what’s still going on in America and other historically “diversified” countries

    • Junchen Liu

      very hash, but true, again you nailed it. so sorry

    • Mavis Boonga

      We’ll Chinese should know how United States wants us to perceive Chinese ppl also it isn’t good. And most blacks were trained by (television)to think of Chinese ppl in a certain way and it isn’t good.these ppl whom control media also controls you alls perceptions it seems. It’s a crazy world we live in.

    • gracesunny

      I’m not surprised at all that China could be one of the most racist country in the world. It’s not drawing much attention yet because compare to Europe and US, still very few foreigners are living in China. Most east Asian countries, like China, Japan and Korea, are very ethnically homogeneous even now, they might have a strong economy and plenty of job opportunities now but due to the massive culture difference and language barrier, those countries are still not the primary choices to attract foreigners. Another thing about China is that most people have no international experience whatsoever, they’ve lived in China their whole life. Although many young people now go abroad to travel and study, the majority of people has no clue about what does “racism” mean and how to deal with it. When Chinese kids start at school, they are told that they should be proud of their yellow skin, black eyes and black hair, their education introduce very few history regarding the “black and white” story happened in Europe and US. That is also why Chinese people is terribly not sensitive when it comes to race. They don’t know how to be “politically correct”, and most of the time when they see people who look different, they tend to just blurt out what they think without considering if it’s appropriate. So all these adding up, you can expect that if you look “different”, you’ll get a lot of “racist” reaction, not because people are mean or they hate you, but purely because they are just ignorant.

      • Dave

        Saying they don’t know how to be politically correct is compliment. Political correctness is as much of an evil as racism.

  • Envoy of the End

    Sorry merchant, but eastern peoples are not as naive to follow down the same road to ruin the west has taken with “diversity”.

    • yutoutang

      Exactly. All proponents of diversity base their arguments only on emotions. Self-interest trumps sympathy anyday. Especially when immigrant groups also act in their own self-interest. It would be suicide to give up our own objectivity.

  • Adam

    Great Article Marketus! Hope you are well

    -Adam

  • Peter

    Great article, matches many stories others have told me. Where I used to teach in Shanghai, students also used to complain about native English speaking teachers of Asian ethnicity. One can put it down to genuine ignorance perhaps.

  • Mateusz82

    Nice bit of irony there. You bemoan the racism you felt, but also talk about “white racism” in the US, as though whites are singularly responsible for racism, and that you saw yellow people as fellow “people of color”, allies against the horrible, horrible (and colorless) whites. You can’t be opposed to racism while at the same time advocating it (and justifying it).

    • cwp

      Nice attempt at a “GOTCHA!” comment, but whether you want to acknowledge it or not, white people have historically held most of the power in the US. The agency afforded by that power has been used to oppress minorities, including black people; *that* oppression is something that can properly be called “racism”. The use of the word “white” cannot be properly called “racism”; nor even can instances of blacks or Asians stereotyping white people, for instance saying “all white people like to oppress non-whites”, be properly called “racism”. Such statements are instances of prejudice, not racism, because racism implies the agency to do substantial harm and oppress on the basis of race.

      At no point in US history could a poor black guy yelling the word “cracker” change the institutional makeup of the United States. But there was a time very recently when a white person’s use of the word “nigger” could. That’s the difference between racism and prejudice. Basically, you don’t know what you’re talking about.

      • Mateusz82

        Not an attempt at a “Gotcha!” (does having it in all-caps make it more truthy?). It’s just to point out that you don’t fight racism with racism. White people today aren’t the white people of history. My own people were historically slaughtered by the Mongols (I have Slavic ancestry), yet would you suggest I have every right to practice racism against all yellow people, or at least all Mongolians?

        I’m a poor white guy. How could I change the institutional make up of the United States with a word? Do you assume that whites have inherent dark magical powers (perhaps as part of our demonic heritage)?

        That stereotyping is racism, whether you want to acknowledge it or not. That is, however, the problem. It’s the elephant in the room. You see racism against whites, but you don’t want to see it. It must not exist, so it doesn’t. Racism by whites against other colors can exist, but not the other way around. It’s not the way we’re taught to think. The idea that any person of any race can be racist goes against the public narrative.

        People of all races can do harm. I’ve been physically assaulted due to my skin color back in America, and in China (also, how would you rationalize hatred of Westerners by Han Chinese? Do you honestly think that white people have dominance in China, a place where… how many officials or police officers are non-yellow?). This view that only whites can be perpetrators, and whites can never be victims, just attempts to excuse racism.

        I do know what I’m talking about. I’m talking about an attempt by the author (and by you) to excuse racism, something for which there is no excuse, and this includes using racism to defend racism.

        • cwp

          Again, prejudice and racism are not the same things. The author was discussing his experience of being black in America. Obviously I’m not saying that everyone with fair skin in the world has more material power than everyone with any other type of skin. It’s just that, historically, that’s how it’s gone in the US. And we’re not even 50 years removed from widespread Jim Crow practices in the south.

          Since you’re in the business of putting words in my mouth, how’s about a dose of your own medicine: Do you deny that marginalization exists in the US? Are you the kind of person who thinks that when slavery ended, blacks and whites instantly became equal in terms of material power?

          How can you condescendingly tell the author that his experience being black in America is not valid?

          • Mateusz82

            If you agree that not everyone with fair skin has more material power, then why do you keep assuming that only white people can be racist, and whites can never been the victims of racism? How does Jim Crow benefit white people today, especially white people not even in the US?

            Actually, I’m not in that business, so that’s a bit of a non-sequitur. Though, if you want really want to show me what for, and put me in my place, then do what makes you feel superior. Of course I don’t deny it exists, and never indicated such. Which blacks, and which whites? What “kind of person” are you referring to? When I’m accused of being “one of those people”, I’d like to know which group I’m lumped into.

            That’s a good question. I don’t know how a person can do that. Probably why I don’t.

            Racism is absolutely a thing. Black racism is a thing, and a thing which I experienced (unless you want to condescendingly tell me that my experience is not valid), but I don’t assume that it is the only form of racism that exists. Do you really not see the connection? Fine, I’ll break it down. A group (whites/Mongolians) unequivocally dominated another group (blacks/Slavs) historically. If blacks can use as an excuse what people with genetics similar to those who oppressed people with genetics similar to them in the past, then Slavs should be able to do the same… at least by the logic of using past wrongs as an excuse.

            Public narrative refers to a commonly held belief by a culture, often with emotional attachment, and need not really be big on facts. They exist due to being repeated and reinforced, and because challenging them is greatly discouraged. Narratives in the past have been of the brave cowboys fending off marauding savages from innocent settlers, Arab terrorists wanting to blow up the US just because, and “scientifically-proven” black inferiority. These have, for the most part, been debunked, but when they were at their strongest, it was very unpopular to disagree. When the majority were telling the same story, it was just better to go along. Some who have a vested interest in keeping the narrative will intentionally propagate it (such as war-mongers wanting to dehumanize an enemy, or slave owners wanting to rationalize slavery), though many more just repeat what they’re told. Humans tend to not be very good at breaking group think. You don’t need conspiracies for that.

            The narrative I was referring to is that of evil white perpetrators, and innocent non-white victims. Obviously, there are whites who are racist, and act on that racism, and non-whites who are the victims of said actions. The narrative kicks in when it holds that racism is exclusively white, that only whites can be racist. This narrative is, itself, racist, since it sets one group (whites) as eternal villains, deserving of the just fate of villains. It also sets another group (everyone who is not white) as eternal victims, always justified. Claiming that whites are the only ones able to be racist, and non-whites are the only ones able to be victims of racism is an example of propagating the narrative, as is shouting down anyone who questions the narrative.

            You known nothing about me, so it’s best you don’t try to make personal statements about me (such as regarding how long I lived in the US, or what I have studied). I have spent plenty of time in the United States, and have read, and studied, much. Obliquely insulting my intelligence is merely an ad hominem, and not very useful here. I wanted to tell the author that claiming (or suggesting) racism is something only whites can do, is racist. Nothing more. Please note that I keep saying “only”. I do entirely acknowledge that whites can be racist, along with people of any other color. That’s the key difference. I am opposed to any view that puts one race above another, including in a moral sense, and identifying one race as evil (inherently racist) is exactly that.

            I was asking if you held that belief, since it fit the “Only white people can be racist” narrative. If you reread, I did not say you did hold that belief. I asked if you did, rather than assume outright. Well, I guess an article “My Experience Being Black in China” would have absolutely nothing to do with China. Yeah, mentioning China in regards to an article with China in the title, on a website about China is just totally random. Also, using all caps doesn’t make your argument any more valid than inserting Internet slang.

            (For what it’s worth, I myself am of mixed race).

          • PadreTomasito

            troche to przykre, ze to polskie zacietrzewienie, niechec do wyrozumialego dialogu, a upodobanie do dyskusji opartej na konflikcie i zderzeniu oraz udowadnianiu wyzszosci wlasnych racji tak jest rozpoznawalne, tak… polskie wlasnie. Jakbym czytal wywody fanow okreslonych opcji politycznych. Wszystko co napisales mozna zawrzec w dwoch zdaniach. Ale milosc wlasna przewazyla i elaboratami tu walczysz na cudzym kulturowo i jezykowo terenie o… No wlasciwie juz nie wiadomo o co.

          • Egalitarian

            Saying that white people are the cause of racism is like saying that Muslims are the cause of terrorism, men are the cause of rape, blacks are the cause of crime, women are the cause of false rape charges, Asians are the cause of traffic accidents etc.

            It’s BS.
            Just because <1 % of a group causes something, people like to blame the whole group, which is just stupid.

          • whopperwithcheese

            Thank you. It is racist to accuse whites of being racist. Individual people of every race hold prejudices. We should not condemn all whites for things that happened in past centuries.

          • yutoutang

            Give it up. Power + Prejudice = racism is an antiquated theory that has no validity outside of sociology class. Even within sociology this definition was designed to measure effects of racism, not to discount individual hatred as racism until it got hijacked by politically biased commentators in the 90s.

            There is absolutely no reason why personal prejudice should not be considered racism alongside institutional racism, even assuming every ounce of institutional power is held by a white guy (it’s not).

        • Michelle Kirkwood

          White people have normally always held the institutional, legal,and financial power in the United States,which was used against black people and anybody else who wasn’t white for the majority of this country’s history. So traditionally, white people HAVE been the perpetrators of racism in the U.S.–there’s no getting around that,period. They’re always had more power than anybody to back their racism up against whomever they wanted to. What you don’t get, and what cwp was trying to say, is that as a white person you don’t EVER have to worry about being followed by the police while walking down the street while wearing a hoodie, you won’t have people constantly questioning your credentials for a particular job, you won’t get your resume thrown in the trash as soon as you leave the interview because your name is perceived as too “ghetto” or black, and you will never have someone ask you if you got into college trhough affirmative action, as if that’s the only way you could have gotten in into college. That’s what having “white privilege” means–as a white person,you don’t ever have to deal with the institutional disavantages of racism,since you’re part of the majority. It will never affect you, so of course it’s easy for you to claim that it’s not a problem for you. Now do you get it?
          And from what I’ve read online on various blogs over the years–one called BLACK TOKYO in particular—talked about how black folks were seen in not just Japan,but Asia period—and how racist as hell Asians could be toward black people,plus the outdated stereotypes they had about them, and their near-worship of white people. For example, I read in a post on BT how it was difficult for a black English teacher to get a teaching job in a Korean school–this person said it was much easier for a white person who didn’t have the required qualifications to get a teaching position than a black person who actually had the right credentials. I mean, in Japan,they were selling black Sambo dolls and toothpaste as recently as a decade ago,for goodness’ sake! WTF!?! Give me a break! Of course, there were blogs I’ve read about how being over in certain Asian countries was a cool experience for some black folks who went over there to go to school,live and work, so the experiences vary,apparently.

          • cwp

            Yeah, you nailed it. Good post.

          • Michelle Kirkwood

            Thanks—liked your post too!

          • Mateusz82

            Quite simply, not true. Some people have, and some people have not. You are overgeneralizing. Put another way, the life expectancy, in America, for males is several years lower than females. However, it would be absurd to assume that every women lives longer than every man. Traditionally some white people have been the perpetrators of racism (and so have some blacks, just that it was easier for whites). What you are doing is using the sins committed by individuals to justify hatred of everyone who shares the same color as those perpetrators. My ancestors, from parts of Europe and Asia, never even were in the US during slavery, making it even that much more absurd to expect me to accept the mark of original sin.

            What you don’t get is that you simply are wrong in making those statements, and prevailing racist views mean that you usually don’t have to worry about backing them up. I do have to worry about being followed by the police while wearing a hoodie. My white cousin was shot by the police. No magical white privilege deflected the bullets. He also didn’t look like Obama’s hypothetical son, or a younger version of Obama, so no need for him to feel any empathy. I do have people assume that I got a free ride in life, questioning my credentials, because I must have just got where I am due to white privilege. Racists assume that everything I have is a result of my skin color. Well, every good thing. The beatings in school for having the wrong skin color weren’t a result of race at all, because racism against whites doesn’t happen. It can’t happen. And if it happens undeniably, then it’ll be still denied. It’s the same reason why there was no protest for Marley Lion (if you haven’t heard of him, I can’t blame you. His name was just a flash in the news), a white boy shot and killed by a black person. It wasn’t in the national news in the first place due to not wanting to accept that some blacks might possibly commit racist acts against some whites. It goes against what we are taught to think. When people did start to question why there was an outpouring of emotion for Martin, but not some mostly anonymous white kid (or kids… there were a few other examples), the public was told that it was totally different, and that was that. It’s the reason there was no riot when OJ Simpson was acquitted for murder. You didn’t see blacks joining whites in the streets to protest. The race element (including the black power sign by a juror) had to be ignored.

            Oh, and while you mention college, might want to also point out that in college, and back in high school, the only talk of racism permitted was that it was something white people did to non-white people. Non-whites got to study about, and learn about, how they are all victims, and whites were perpetrators. When whites studied race, it was always demonization. Racism wasn’t something to blame on racists, human nature, or moral failing. Racism was simply evil white people doing evil white things, as is their nature.

            Stop conflating disagreement with ignorance. I have heard all these arguments before. However, I still disagree. Society demands that white people sit down and shut up when they are instructed about race. If a white person desires an opinion, one will be provided with the approval of a person of the right color. However, I am not backing down on my assertion of my humanity. I have read up, and I will continue to denounce racism, regardless of the one promoting it,and regardless of the target of said racism.I don’t call people racists for talking about race. I call people racists for being racist.

            And from what I have experienced in person, some Asians (I can’t break it down by race, since I’ve mostly only known Han Chinese, though there are multiple races in Asia, just like there are people of many races living in Europe, or Australia) are racist towards blacks (I’m sure Black Tokyo is completely unbiased, and would totally talk about white victimhood), as well as whites. A coworker (who was white) was beaten by several Chinese (yellow), while the authorities just watched. A man once tried to start a fight in a restaurant when he saw me there, since he didn’t want my kind in his country, and another man in a scooter spat in my face, while the police looked the other way. A white Frenchman was beaten severely by a group of yellow Chinese. The police only made a halfhearted attempt when it made international news, and video evidence threatened to embarrass them. Even afterwards, the official state position was there was nothing racist about it, and skin color didn’t factor into it at all. The belief that whites are worshipped here, an extension of the same view in the US, only assists in continuing this behavior. After all, if whites are treated so well, then these events were totally not racially motivated at all, and it’s best to just ignore them as soon as possible. It also means white people are not permitted to talk about their experiences, since everyone knows they’re privileged, and have nothing to ever complain about. I do know that it can be harder for blacks to get jobs (not with every company, but many of them), and I have personally vouched for a black woman who was denied a job based on race, confronting the company on the racist policy, and refusing to work for a place that refused to hire blacks. If you found a white person who was denied a job based on skin color, or faced some other sort of discrimination, would you stick out your neck, or just conclude that whites are all privileged, so it must not be really racism.

            Now, would you say I have the right to denounce yellow racism, and yellow privilege, or claim that racism is something all yellow people use to oppress all white people? Or, is it somehow different when a race other than whites are vilified, and white people claim the vaunted status as wronged party?

            I have read, and I have lived these experiences. I’ve protested a white teacher who made racist comments about Koreans, and I’ve confronted people in China (both white and yellow people) about racism against blacks. That’s because I oppose racism in all forms. Conversely, you’ve demonstrated you only care about racism when the victim is one of the good races, and the perpetrator is a member of the evil race.

          • Ian

            Those nasty whites! We should lock them all up! The Chinese are so much nicer to blacks than them.

            I love this – black guy comes to China and spots that the Chinese are much more overtly racist to him than would be true in any Western country other than maybe some of the Southern states of the EU – then mad white-hating blacks pop up to say that actually the Chinese are much less racist than the evil whities. Well keep on believing white-haters but I would invite you on a trip to Beijing and see how you get on in the jobs market, with the women and with the local landlords. :-)

        • Rk Smith

          I agree. White people should no longer be held responsible for historical racism. And black people have plenty of power in the US today so that old paradigm needs to just go away.

          And it is my experience in China which convinces me of this.

          The historical racism in the west had a purpose-it was economic. Blacks were needed to work and so an ideology had to be invented to justify it. As that economic need faded the racism in America faded too.

          But in China the racism is based strictly on color. Anyone who does not have white skin is automatically considered a bad person.

          This is a much more insidious form of racism than what existed in the US because this form of racism cannot go away.

          Like you, I hope these psuedo intellectual arguments about historical power and institutional blah blah blah just goes away.

          • Whaddashack

            You really should stop calling out and bestowing your own flaws on others. Are you even Black to be showing so much concern for Black people? Start at home, in America, Canada, Europe. Instead of dismissing what they went through and still do, why not help them? Of course you won’t, because all your cards deal with race.

            The only ones who practice racism strictly based on color are Whites. You just need to do a google search and find millions of sites hating on “darker skinned” people or “non Whites”. While most Chinese are ignorant of non-East Asians, they aren’t full of hate like Whites. Infact, “nigger-hatin’” is so widely practiced in the west that you can imagine these unhygienic whites sitting in front of their computers with unwashed clothes and flies and cockroaches all around them. They frothe at the mouth everytime they see something remotely black.

            And you dare accuse Chinese of racism? Chinese are naturally a lighter-skinned race and most foreigners tend to be darker or hairier than them. It’s not their fault they were born “whiter” than non-Chinese, but at least they don’t make it a focal point to call for the extinction of another race just because of their “black skin”.

          • Konjit Solomon

            I think I understand the strong emotions you are expressing,

            But your statement of “The only ones who practice racism strictly based on on color are Whites” is ever so wrong.

            Your google search example is really not a good indicator of how much more or else whites hate. Seriously. I could pay google enough to have “Wadsdashack has tunnel vision” as the number one search for ‘vision’.

            The users of the internet pre-2000 were in what countries?… even after? The US and Europe were first to fill the net with BS thinking. So it stands to reason they had more time to pollinate the net with their stupid views before you came along.

            But if you feel I am in error, please let me know in what lovely dream state you reside. I would be happy to visit you soon.

          • whopperwithcheese

            YOu are wrong. You need to travel. And I’m not sure what country live in but there is no nigger hatin in America. The things that you are typing, “flies” etc, that shows where your mind is. It’s not in a good place.

          • Whaddashack

            It’s clear to anyone who’s been watching the whole Trayvon Martin circus how much nigger hatin there is in America. As for the hang up and taking in of the flies comment, I’m so very sorry for hitting some nerves. Thing is truth hurts.

          • whopperwithcheese

            Nerve, you didn’t hit any nerves. Ur the one trapped in the prison of racism. You live in a world where you imagine people think of you as an n’word, and you refer to yourself as lowly creature like a fly. Luckily, I don’t suffer from the same self-hate as you. I’m free. But you have fun in your little world. Where you think the Trayvon Martin case is a big deal when it isn’t. Because I don’t hear you or your ilk protesting over the 13 people shot in Chicago last night. But we are supposed to be upset over Trayvon. Like I said, you need to travel, it will help you grow past the stage you are in now.

          • Whaddashack

            Looks like I laid a whopper on you. Flies and roaches a
            little close to home, eh? Look at yourself getting all emotional and hysterical. The only one trapped in the prison of racism (and discriminates based on skin color) is you and your ilk. It’s amazing how with the right words, a lot can be revealed about someone. Guess you never cared about those Blacks after all. Now keep feigning ignorance about why Trayvon was brought up. As Merkel put it, “multiculturalism has failed”. Thanks for proving just that and why it’d be wise for China to tread this concept with great care.

            Laughing at the self-hate comment. Actually, I’m more than comfortable in my own skin. In my eyes, you’re pretty much equal to Blacks and if you prefer to call them the n’word, so be it. Save the travelling advice for yourself. You need it
            bad. :)

          • Ian

            You sound crazy. The original article is by a black man who suffered much more overt racism in China than in the US. Millions of sites hating on black people run by whites? Where – a few hundred run by people who are almost as nutty and racist as you are.

            Over all I am a white guy in China and I get a pretty good run for my money here. With jobs, with the girls and so on. Why is that? Are the Chinese wrong to respect Europeans? Ultimately as has often been pointed out most of the technologies and theories and great music and great literature which make and feed the modern world have come out of the brains of middle aged, white men. Rather than just hating why not trying emulating some of that achievement. Then in a few hundred years your sons sons sons might have quite a good time in China as well.

        • Whaddashack

          “I’ve been physically assaulted due to my skin color back in America,
          and in China (also, how would you rationalize hatred of Westerners by
          Han Chinese? Do you honestly think that white people have dominance in
          China, a place where… how many officials or police officers are
          non-yellow?)”

          Explains how you got that long, huge-nostriled nose. You don’t fight racism with racism and you don’t make up obvious lies to create a strawman. Remember, you’re arguing against a Black, not against a “Han” (quite specific, and dare I say, racist).

          I don’t believe for a second you got assaulted by anyone in China nor by the police and if you did, it’s because you did something wrong.

          The biggest racist are usually the ones who accuse others of it.

          • Mateusz82

            “Explains how you got that long, huge-nostriled nose”

            Actually, I don’t have a particularly large nose, so you’re off to a good start on the not getting things right.

            ” You don’t fight racism with racism and you don’t make up obvious lies to create a strawman.”

            You are at least right there. I don’t fight racism with racism, and I don’t make up lies, or create straw men. Nice of you to notice.

            “Remember, you’re arguing against a Black, not against a “Han” (quite specific, and dare I say, racist).”

            The first part is completely irrelevant. I’m making a point about my experiences, not arguing against “a Black”, and while you dare say, you are wrong.

            “I don’t believe for a second you got assaulted by anyone in China nor by the police and if you did, it’s because you did something wrong.”

            Thankfully, reality doesn’t hinge on whether or not you decide it is true. Nice victim blaming, though.

            “The biggest racist are usually the ones who accuse others of it.”

            Was that intentional irony, or unintentional?

          • Whaddashack

            “Actually, I don’t have a particularly large nose”

            Did you know how Pinocchio got his great, long nose? He told a lie. Slavs have bigger noses as proven by Science. Smaller than certain Blacks, yes, but still larger than other races.

            “I don’t fight racism with racism, and I don’t make up lies, or create straw men.”

            You talk of irony, yet don’t know it’s meaning.

            “Thankfully, reality doesn’t hinge on whether or not you decide it is true. Nice victim blaming, though.”

            Calling out liars is my specialty. A liar doesn’t admit his lies. You understand this very well. Crime rates are very low in China, like the rest of Asia (East).

            They don’t attack you for the color of your skin, unlike the skinheads in Russia who cowardly stab 9 year old Armenian and Black little girls.

            “The biggest racist are usually the ones who accuse others of it.”

            Try not to forget that it was you that played victim, painted others as racist and failed your “Gotcha”.

            Racism is often a word thrown around by White people and created by White people. I checked to see if this was a uniquely Chinese problem, but apparently it’s not. Other Asian neighbors think exactly the same thing; foreigners (White) just luuurrrvveee playing victim and throwing the word racist casually.

            Word is that you guys have more negro blood inside. I’m beginning to see this too, you all do whine like “defiled niggers”. I understand you can’t control this inner negroid emotion within you, but you can still shut your mouth :)

          • Mateusz82

            “Did you know how Pinocchio got his great, long nose? He told a lie. Slavs have bigger noses as proven by Science. Smaller than certain Blacks, yes, but still larger than other races.”

            So… you are trying to say that our noses are so big (acceding to your version of science)… because we, as a race, all lie? Are you sure you’re not mixing your anti-Slavic racism with anti-Semitism?

            “You talk of irony, yet don’t know it’s meaning.”

            Irony is a state of affairs or an event that seems deliberately contrary to what one expects and is often wryly amusing as a result. It’s like when you accused me of racism, yet made the comment about having the huge nose, or flat out stated that only certain ethnic groups attacked other groups for their race.

            “Calling out liars is my specialty. A liar doesn’t admit his lies. You understand this very well. Crime rates are very low in China, like the rest of Asia (East).”

            Your specialty? Are you claiming to be an armchair detective now? First of all, low crime rates =/= no crime rates. Even if that claim was correct, you couldn’t rationally believe that there is no crime in China (just recently, a girl was shown stabbed to death on the surveillance camera of a store. Of course, that all is irrelevant, since you can’t actually believe that China accurately reports crime. They kinda have a state controlled media, if you haven’t been paying attention.

            “They don’t attack you for the color of your skin, unlike the skinheads in Russia who cowardly stab 9 year old Armenian and Black little girls.”

            Yes, actually they do. There’s no way to put it any better. That’s simply an untrue statement, made either out of complete ignorance of the facts (shown by lack of any supporting evidence), or intentional deception.

            “Try not to forget that it was you that played victim, painted others as racist and failed your “Gotcha”.”

            No, I didn’t. I stated my own experiences. Being attacked because of my skin color is not playing the victim, nor is it painting others as racist. If you want to blame someone for painting my attackers as racist, blame them. It was their actions.

            “Racism is often a word thrown around by White people and created by White people. I checked to see if this was a uniquely Chinese problem, but apparently it’s not. Other Asian neighbors think exactly the same thing; foreigners (White) just luuurrrvveee playing victim and throwing the word racist casually.

            Word is that you guys have more negro blood inside. I’m beginning to see this too, you all do whine like “defiled niggers”. I understand you can’t control this inner negroid emotion within you, but you can still shut your mouth :)

            Do you have actually anything at all to back up any of this, or is it just something you pulled out of the air, especially since the original article was by a black person, not a white person, talking about racism? You’re making a lot of sweeping statements, and have nothing to back it up besides, “word is”, or your own assertions. Who or what did you check, in order to see if there is a region-wide problem of uppity white folks running around Asia? How can you even claim it’s true in China?

            I can shut my mouth, but won’t do so simply because an online bigot tells me to. Incidentally, you also fail at shaming. If I did have “negro blood” in me, I wouldn’t be bothered, since I don’t see it as negative at all. For someone who criticized skinheads, you sure do hold neo-Nazi ideology.

            At this point I have to really wonder if you are a troll, or just that ignorant. Honestly, it’s hard to tell, since your disregard for facts and logic would clearly mark you as an obvious troll… but I’ve met people in person who were as ignorant as you’re showing yourself to be.

    • Mariaeugenia

      “You bemoan the racism you felt, but also talk about “white racism” in the US, as though whites are singularly responsible for racism”: I understood it in a very different way; the author is stating that there is racism everywhere; nowhere is he justifying racism

  • David Dunn

    Interesting article, however I am left unsatisfied. What happened between the late 1990s and the previous decade to change Chinese attitudes to black people or to foreigners in general. This would be an interesting subject.

  • StephanLarose

    Chinese people are for the most part racist. It’s the received view and taught from day 1 to most people. It’s especially obvious in the way Chinese look down at other Asian people, but also the common way they address any foreigner as a foreign devil.China’s enormous inferiority complex doesn’t help either, it demands that they identify others as inferior. Attitudes are changing, albeit slowly, but any foreigner, no matter the color of their skin, should expect some bizarre treatment here from time to time. You can still see Chinese people putting on puppet shows about how bad Japanese people are in Beijing to this day, so the inherited views won’t go quietly… On the other hand, I see a lot of my black friends dating some hot ass Chinese, so there’s definitely hope for China’s younger generations…

    • Konjit Solomon

      I must say that I can not really blame China’s historic use of the term “foreign devil”. Foreign devils had power and might and a tendency to manipulate and/or use force. Considering the complicated and rather unfair history of international relations between China and the west….it is par for the course (if that is the correct phrase). But I prefer the direct verbal slights in China to the highly subtle yet more elaborate/decorated insults I receive en France.

      • TJDubs

        So they have a free pass to use “foreign devil” to describe someone who may be related to to their (great) grandparents’ historical oppressors from the West.

        How about “Japanese devil”? Is it also justified to use that form of address, here in 2013?

        • Konjit Solomon

          My comment was to give some historical context regarding the use of the term. Understanding the reasons for why cultural/racial insults are created and used are important to me.

          “_____ devil” and or the warped form of “niger” or any other slur has an orgin that is based on fear. Whether through loss of life, pride or money by a group of peoples (I make no moral judgements in the last statement).

          But in 2013, those who use these terms do it as a learned habit nothing more. As with most slurs they are passed down like family flatware through generations. Then at some point society is forced to question itself. Just as europe and the states have done. It is not perfect but it is better than before. It evolves and changes. With more interaction with foreigners assumptions will shift (for lack of a better word).

          That is why when I am called a black evil person/ ghost l… I ask whoever it is politely “why do you think I am evil, backwards or a ghost?” That usually throws them off enough to where they acually converse with me, 90% of the time. So I continue with “as blacks have not taken advantage of, abused or subjugated China, why do you insult me? Mandarin characters for Africa is 非洲, simply “wrong continent” or literally meaning ‘backward or less privileged land” so that does not help.

          By hanyu definition I am a wrong/less privileged person, since I am from Africa. I am proudly from 埃塞俄比亚 and a 犹太人. So many ways a person could try to insult me. But I am not that sensitive. I pick my battles. That is why knowing the reason behind an insult really does matter. Some people just hate and will not change…but others can and are willing to change, if given a chance. I look for those people.

          You TJ may not understand my logic, but I have found questioning a persons assumptions (use of insults is usually just that) makes them think. That does not mean I “give a free pass” then or now. To come to your aggressive conclusion leaves out a space for reconciliation. The Japanese devil term, that I heard used was based on WW2.
          Not that it makes the insult acceptable.

          Finally (my shot in the dark)… if a person has lived a land where they are part of the majority, then goes to another land and becomes a minority in a recently closed and some-what suspicous society.. and is hearing insults based on their race for the first time, I can completely understand their righteous indignation
          …I remember my first time.

          • TJDubs

            Thanks for your thoughtful answer. I now see the distinction between discerning a logical cause for prejudices, and excusing/forgiving such prejudices entirely (i.e. what you weren’t doing).

          • Konjit Solomon

            My choice of words in english is/are sometimes poor. I really appreciate your words “logical cause of prejudice”. Perfect Exactly what I meant. Thank you.

        • 21tigermike

          No, they don’t actually use the term 洋鬼子, but I do. Chinese will use the term 老外 and smirk and laugh at the westerner for 20 mins.

    • fsfsdf

      Seems like you western/white guys just want to bang Chinese girls, yet you use propaganda to ensure East Asian men in the west have a difficult time getting girls. How about fuck you, and when you try to invade our lands, you will die. I’m American born, btw. I’d kill your ass if one of you western/white male pieces of shit tried to step foot in my homeland and I happen to meet you there.

    • ogunsiron

      Gotta love the implication that China’s ONLY hope lies in massive racial mixing.

      Poor ignorant savage chinese who have spent the last 5000 years being chinese (what hell) when they could have been “diverse”. I have nothing against individual people engaging in racial mixing. I do have a lot of hate for the *ideology* of racial mixing as it implies that people who live in the country of their ancestors and who hope to leave that country to their children of the same ethnic group are deficient or evil in some way. Very, very insulting for the native residents of any country.

      Why don’t you go preach that same gospel in Jerusalem or in Crown Heights Brooklyn ??

  • Guest

    I really enjoyed your article.

    I am reminded,
    rather fondly, of the whitening deodernt constantly sold to me at my
    local market. Since the owner (now a friend) thought it might help
    me…some how. Scaring countless hairdressers by I wanting my frizzy
    hair styled (really funny).

    But what taught me the
    most was while in my first 3 months, coming to the realization that
    NOT attending a openning of event or business was considered the polite
    thing to do. As I later learned, darker skin is considered
    unfortunate/bad luck which might cause ill fortune for the host/owner
    instead of bringing prosperity.

    But after time, those who
    thought I embodied all the horrors of a bear market came to see as just
    ME;a person with long frizzy hair. All assumptions learned from western
    media, chinese media (nigerians in S/W) and historical prejudices fell
    away. Now we laugh about it and I catch my friends correcting
    “assumptions” of others we encounter.

    What I learned in China (SEA), India or Ethiopia is that historically, ones darkness is equal to the amount of time spent working in the fields. Peasants. Understanding this I see that the racism I encountered was different from what is like in US & EU. I do not like but understand it some what.

    For me a more equal comparison is
    Russia. I have dreamt to go but the racism there is literally
    frighteningly different. A single traveller visa request with a dark
    face (moi) seems very hard to get approved without the backing of a
    “group/agency”. And as US passport does not make it easier.

    The rejection lettre is amusing to read…blah,blah …attacks on
    minorities….not safe…try again with group.

    At the moment my english seems to limit my ability to express myself more
    clearly but I hope what have written is still understood.

  • Konjit Solomon

    I really enjoyed your article.

    I am reminded, of the whitening deodorant constantly sold to me at my
    local market. Since the owner (now a friend) thought it might help
    me…some how. Or the frightened look on countless hairdressers when I walked in with my frizzy (really funny).

    But what taught me the most was while in my first 3 months, after encountering whether or not to attend an event or business opening. A soon to be close friend explained to me , with painful hesitation, the dilemma a new business acquaintance was feeling regarding inviting me to the opening of his new business. To not invite me would be considered an insult and could cause him to lose face but to invite me could cause him to suffer none the less.

    I was hurt but also learned, a new home/business or such has its carefully planned/timed out and receives blessings that are to protect its future. Yet, darker skin is considered unfortunate/bad luck which might cause ill fortune for the host/owner instead of bringing prosperity.
    But after time, that same person who thought I embodied all the horrors of a bear market came to see as just ME;a person. A person he later apologized to and would invite to many other events.
    All the assumptions he made from western media, Chinese media (Nigerians in SE) and historical prejudices fell away. Now we laugh about it and I catch my friend correcting “assumptions” of others we encounter.

    I guess after all this time (in my experience) in China (SEA), India and Ethiopia. Historically, ones darkness is equal to the amount of time spent
    working in the fields. Peasants.
    Understanding this, how can see the prejudice I encountered in US (from some whites and many American Blacks), in Mexico or in the EU (bless (LOL) the french and Spanish) as the same?

    I feel, a more comparable country for comparison to China would be Russia.

    Yet the racism not just prejudice there is literally frightening. A single traveler visa request with a an attached photo of a dark face (moi) seems very hard to get approved without the backing of a “group/agency”. A US passport does not make it easier. The rejection lettre reads…blah,blah …attacks on minorities….not safe…try again with group.

    I have been the “wrong” colour for so long and in so many places including in the US, EU including politically correct Sweden and Finland, all of SEA, India and parts of Africa……. Yet I think it made me into a better person. It made me look at each culture uniquely to try to understand them better. To grasp how what I was experiencing at that place and moment came to be. Plus I had to look at my own issues. My very own prejudices (the horror) were one by one figuratively beaten out of me. Not all but some.
    For me, the blanket statement of racism is too general and does not lead to better understanding….just the opposite. Understanding the foundation of a prejudice( everyone has some)….makes more sense.

    I have learned to be an idiot at an arrival gate but hopefully bit wise(r) upon departure.

    At the moment my english seems to limit the ability to express myself more
    clearly but I hope what have written is still understood.

    Cheers

    • Egalitarian

      This may be a bit of a hijack, but I’m really curious about your negative experiences in, say, Sweden, Finland or other more racially homogeneous European countries. I’m BW mixed myself and have been living in a pretty much 99.9 % white EU country my entire life, so I’m wondering if my experiences are comparable.

      I’m also thinking about perhaps moving to China for a few months/years, so a first-hand account would be quite helpful :)

      If you’d be willing to discuss this, feel free to email me at anon°at°kijanca°dot°org.

      Cheers!

      • Konjit Solomon

        I did reply I hope it was received. Cheers

      • Sinosvensk

        Your facts are obviously out of date. Sweden is now a days a multi-cultural society on the brink of being a new US, where Finland is still almost homogeneous.

        I wonder which “99.9% white EU country” you live in. Romania? Bulgaria? Because there is no country left in the western EU that is that homogeneous. Not even Finland!

    • Jeff

      Dear Ms. Solomon,

      Thank you so much for the wonderfully written, candid and powerful post. I am an American student here in Beijing who is interning at an NGO. Though it’s been a great experience, I often have felt the brunt of racism/discrimination in China. I come from a mix-raced hispanic family of black and european origin. However on the surface, I come across as either Indian or Middle Easter to most Chinese people. My olive skin complexion places me in the middle of the spectrum, and I love my skin- but here it is often received with curiosity, xenophobia, or bias. When I explain I am American, the confuses people because as the article states, I do not fall in “neat categorization” and it forces people to rethink and reanalyze a belief they might have held for a long time.

      The most importance part I took away from this article and your response is that often times it is not a matter of malice or hatred but rather misunderstanding and lack of meaningful experiences with people of color. Though I do not venture to say I am a representative for an entire group of people, I do realize that often times I might be the first or the few Americans of color that Chinese people can in contact with. I have had incredible experiences here in China and do not want to leave with a bad image.

      Some of my Chinese friends, once they got to know me, treated me no differently than their peers. I was moved to tears when one of my chinese co-workers started tearing up because I am leaving for home. To vilify an entire country is wrong, but to deny that much work has to be done on intercultural exchange is also a pity. Like you’ve said my prejudices in themselves have had to be “beaten” out..and it’s a struggle balancing the constant obstacles you face as a person of color with the fact that for every bad egg of an experience there is a lot of positive interactions with people.

      • Konjit Solomon

        Jeff, Thank you for your comment regarding your experiences.

        I adore your delicate yet clear phrasing in

        “and it’s a struggle balancing the constant obstacles you face as a
        person of color with the fact that for every bad egg of an experience
        there is a lot of positive interactions with people.”

        You are so very correct that there is much to be done regarding intercultural exchange. As you yourself experienced, at times, the exchange can be rather painful and progress very slowly.

        In a way you are a representative for an entire group. a group that has little actual presence relative to the population.

        But your “confused” interactions with others as well as your peers shows how how wonderful the results can be. Just like deoderant selling shop owner, their positive experience flows slowly within future converstaions with others. That figutative flow is verbal water…over time its power can errode most barriers.

        There is a saying in advertising (even post-FB and Tweeter)
        It is something along the lines of… “if one hates something or has an unpleasant they make an effort to complain/scream/shout about it to as many people as possible, but if one likes something or have a pleasant experience they tell only few.

        Jeff, the day your internship is completed and you are on a plane taking off for the USA…..I hope you will be laughing to yourself and branishing a cheeky smile, thinking of everything you experienced, knowing it was an wild and spectacular adventure like no other.

      • Konjit Solomon

        Jeff, Thank you for your comment regarding your experiences.

        I really appreciate your delicate yet clear phrasing in

        “and it’s a struggle balancing the constant obstacles you face as a
        person of color with the fact that for every bad egg of an experience
        there is a lot of positive interactions with people.”

        You are so very correct that there is much to be done regarding
        intercultural exchange. As you yourself experienced, at times, the
        exchange can be rather painful and progress very slowly.

        In a way you are a (not by choice) representative for an entire group. One that, no matter the skin shade or facial feature, has little actual presence relative to the population.

        But your “confused” interactions with others as well as your peers
        shows how wonderful and rewarding the results can be. For you and hopefully the next person with a “confusing” look. Just like my deoderant selling shop owner, their positive experience flows slowly through future converstaions had with others within their circle of influence. That figutative flow of verbal water…over time is powerful enough to errode most mental barriers.

        There is a saying in advertising (even post-FB and Tweeter)
        It is something along the lines of… “if one hates something or has an unpleasant they make an effort to complain/scream/shout about it to as many people as possible, but if one likes something or have a pleasant experience they tell only few.

        Jeff, the day your internship is completed and you are on a plane
        taking off for the USA…..I hope you will be laughing to yourself and
        branishing a cheeky smile, thinking of everything you experienced,
        knowing it was an wild and spectacular adventure like no other!

      • Whaddashack

        An honest story and telling it what it really is like, Thanks.

        See, you can write about discrimination and negative experiences in China without resorting to making up obvious lies of getting kidnapped, raped, beaten or attacked in China.

        • Asianraper

          Holy shit I can’t believe it

        • Single Girl In Chicago

          How do you know that a foreigner/foreigners to China have NOT been raped beaten or kidnapped? This “could” happen, too. It happens all over the world in every country. It’s strange to me that you used the words “….obvious lies.” Obvious to whom?

          • SOP

            Whaddasack is a well documented racist of Asian descent. He suffers from a major inferiority complex vis-a-vis Caucasians and a quick scroll through his history on Disqus will expose his hatred. He is not qualified to speak on these matters as he himself is a major bigot.

        • Junchen Liu

          I spend 20 years in China, and my family was there before Jesus was born, this man is a honest man, every single word he said is true. but we are changing it. and we have already changed a lot, it happened in 90s its 2014 now

        • SOP

          Racist scum like you know nothing of the experiences of non-Asian foreigners in China, don’t assume to speak for us bigot. Especially an insecure racist such as yourself who has a documented history of attacking blacks, whites, and everyone not Asian to feed your racist inferiority complex.

    • Rick

      Good afternoon Mrs. Selamon, I find you very understating towards Chinese racism very surprising. Africans are neither superior nor inferior and should expect respectful treatment or respond in kind. I don’t know what country you are from, but as a self respecting African I believe that we should treat Chinese workers in Africa as well as Africans are treated in China. No better, no less.

  • Eric McGraw

    An excellent article that is worth passing on. Being a laowai in China for 7 years, I was always amazed on how being a white foreigner was such a big difference in the sea of Chinese – you’d think we’d all be put in the same group. I worked at one of the biggest private schools in China for a while and heard this day in and day out and I made it a point to discuss diversity.

  • Brerlou L. King

    This article boils down to a very simple and easy equation: RACISM ==> IGNORANCE.

    • Konjit Solomon

      or that…… ignorance begets prejudice and fear begets racism.

  • Mariaeugenia

    original, well written, interesting; in Latin America, there are countries where blacks and Chinese have “worked” (slaved?) together —Cuba, Panamá, i.e.— and bred together: Cuban dictator Fulgencio Batista, Cuban painter Wilfredo Lam.

  • Bethany Reynolds

    Marketus, this is an articulate article that so clearly reflects the xenophobia here in China, especially against blacks. In my opinion, much of this comes from ignorance, the simple fact that many Chinese have never had the opportunity to see or chat with a non-Chinese, any person of color. I believe in the power of exchange and increasing opportunities for understanding (not that cultural exchange necessarily brings positive change, but that it is more likely). As China develops, media and ideas and people and new perspectives spread even to the isolated countryside villages, I hope to witness a transformation in Chinese culture, one that is no longer shocked at different outward appearances (skin color, body type, etc.) and inner opinions but that welcomes diversity and even (some day!) individuality with open arms.

    • ogunsiron

      Basically you’re hoping that there will be fewer chinese in China, because, you know, it’s such a shame to have a country filled with its own people.
      Chinese *must* get diversified, whether they like it or not. They must be told that they don’t have any worthwile culture and that “vibrant” foreigners will finally bring them culture, right ? I’ve just never understood the mentality of people who actually go live in a foreign country and dare to pronounce that there are basically too many locals in that country. That’s what wishes for mandatory diversity are all about.

      The Chinese must all become like educated westerners for whom any kind of feeling of belonging to a nation or an ethnic group is a ridiculous notion. The Chinese should long for a future in which there will be fewer real Chinese and more “diversity” because, we all know, diverse countries are always doing so much better than homogeneous countries.

      I hope the chinese don’t fall in that trap, ever.

      • TJDubs

        So you’re saying cultural sensitivity will be the downfall of the Chinese Race and Culture?

        • ogunsiron

          Cultural sensitivity sounds innocuous enough.
          But it isn’t really.
          “Cultural sensitivity” makes people think that there is something “wrong” when a country is homogeneous. It encourages people to think that chinese cities have a huge “diversity problem” that they will need to work on very urgently. “Cultural sensitivity” propaganda dissuades natives of a certain country from asserting that they are at home and that it’s newcomers and foreigners who have to adapt, in so far as they’re asking to be welcomed.

          Cultural sensitivity goes way beyond decency, courtesy and hospitality towards the other.

          “cultural sensivity” propaganda encourages newcomers, foreigners, immigrants etc to see the native chinese as unfairly privileged, because they dare to be Chinese living at home in China, the land that their ancestors bestowed to them.

          Openness to outsiders is something that a lot of civilizations have a lot of experience in. I’d encourage the Chinese to look at their own traditions in that domain and to avoid western inspired “diversity” and “sensitivity” like the plague.

          • Konjit Solomon

            I do not agree with​ the choice of words, but completely understand the statement:

            “cultural sensitivity” propaganda encourages newcomers, foreigners, immigrants etc to see the native Chinese as unfairly privileged, because they dare to be Chinese living at home in China, the land that their ancestors bestowed to them.”

            But feel that the term cultural sensitivity denotes a “requirement” based on guilt. A requirement built
            on the wrongs done in the past by certain peoples. So, I understand sensitivity is needed in the US in the EU (those that were colonizers). Also by those peoples who felt the guilt through association (non colonizing EU countries). Plus they opened their borders to those ​they ​colonized. But why should/would I expect that when in China? Russia,
            India​ or​ Ethiopia for that matter. “Don’t throw baggage on those that did not pack it.”

            It makes no sense to me. It is like saying I have a McDonalds where I live so you (in China) need to embrace
            diversity and build one here. ​Yes I know not the strongest of choice orwords.

            I am a minority by every definition out there. Yet why am I in the minority when it comes to this? A country having cultural understanding is one thing but when you select
            to go to a foreign country ….as the phrase goes “When in Rome do as the Romans”. Stop expecting them to adapt to you. PERIOD. They allowed you in and gave you a chance. Remember you can go else where. ​More than likely you went there for financial gain. ​

            Life would be sooooo boring if every society was alike. Generic. China is China and I do not want that to change (diverse in their own way). The US has a pluralistic makeup and I would not want that to change. The ideals each of them hold dear are equal. Each will evolve or adjust… naturally by the only way that really works…… through
            economics and trade. Because you were treated badly does not mean a society of a billion plus people “need to change”.

            To think that is the perfect example of arrogance at its finest!

          • ogunsiron

            I’m a “person of color” but i *detest* diversity propaganda.

            I’m of course in favor of being able to travel to other countries but I think of it as an honour to be a good guest. The idea of going to China or any other country and starting to lecture them about how their population is defective because it’s not diverse is sickening to me.

          • solomon

            Bravo!!!!

            I am so with you! Sadly we are like endangered species!

          • fsfsdf

            USA has diversity and openness because of the crimes of western imperialist white supremacist piece of shit white people.

            Chinese people never went around the world destroying cultures, committing genocide, enslaving people, stealing resources from others, and forcing culture on others.

            Only whites have done this shit.

        • yutoutang

          Yes. Cultural sensitivity is precisely what’s bringing down the West, allowing so many immigrants as to fundamentally alter their ethnic and cultural makeup.

          • fsfsdf

            Except the USA and America belongs to us East Asians blood brothers of the Native AMericans. Remember that. the West and the USA doesn’t belong to whites. California and the west coast was full of brown hispanics and Chinese way before whites got here to West Coast USA. All the farms in California were owned by Japanese Americans before WWII concentration camps.

            But I agree. East Asia is for East Asians only. Non-Asian women are of course welcome. Colored brothers are welcome as long as their goal isnt to sleep around.

            White men are not welcome. They are only allowed to enter China if #1 they agree to cut their dicks off or #2 agree to only have daughters and marry those daughters off to East Asian men as payment for their western imperialist crimes and the white privilege status quo bullshit.

    • fsfsdf

      No because Chinese adopted American/western imperialist hatred for people of color, including other Chinese. Whites especially white guys are treated like kings in East Asia. But no longer once East Asian men such as myself return to our homeland to make them even more militant against white supremacist pieces of shit white male expats.

      You think an American born East Asian guy such as myself who has had to deal with being considered subhuman all my life, the propaganda against us Asian men, brainwashing of Asian women, and all the ching chong ting tong, gook, “small dick” insults. You fucking think we will forget that lifetime of abuse? Hell no. Once CHina becomes even more strong, we East Asians will unite to crush you western fucks. 混蛋,白-鳥大便。去死。東方世界萬歲。

  • Amy Werbel

    Thanks for this article — I think American media has hurt in many ways (other than the great basketball stars who are venerated).

  • Calles

    Sadly the only experiences of racism that I’ve experienced in my life have been in China.

    • Whaddashack

      I’m sorry to hear. I hope it doesn’t affect your overall experience there. People can be ignorant sometimes. Stay strong.

    • 21tigermike

      Just don’t live in China. Come back in 30 years. Why do think Chinese want to get out so badly? Enjoy your 普通话学习.

    • Solomon

      Now you can not only empathize…but sympathize because of the experiences. The fact that prejudice/racist interactions are new to you speaks of your genetics and prior residential locations. Some in this comment section have, most likely, been discriminated against in many places at home and abroad, not just in China. it is more expected than a surprise. Sorry to be snarky but seriously…. I have to smile. China seems to force pale foreigners into experiencing a 2nd tier social standing in a society…… and hopefully also re-evaluate their understanding of “the norm” they practice at home and elsewhere.

      • Calles

        I’m Latin, and my skin tone is not white, I said I’ve never experienced racism before, but I have experienced classism…, of course none of them nice experiences. I do agree with you regarding the understanding, I think I’m more open now to understand the interpretation of the things and how that makes me re-evaluate my own vision of the world.

    • Musango Lungu

      I have experienced it in both India and China. Ironically my country and many other East and Southern African countries host large populations of Indians who we have come to accept and respect as our own people. Some have even have the privilege to hold Political office and yet outside the continent,Africans are still seen as bad people. Can you ever imagine having a black legislator in India?

      • ogunsiron

        you let Indians dominate your country, your commerce, etc because you’re pathetic,not because of your big heart.

        Idin Amin expelled the Gujaratis in the 70s and they left without a penny. They went to the UK and got back on their feet. I read they then went back to Uganda and they own it AGAIN. Why ? because Ugandans aren’t particularly good at business.

        Whenever I read about something interesting (techm finance, pharm) done in Kenya, it’s done by Indians. Nothing against indians actually but please don’t mistake the east-african situation for being anything but a display of how pathetic the native black east-africans are. Sorry man but Omanis, Persians, indians etc were making slaves from you even in the 20th century. Even freaking Somalis look down on you guys.

        So don’t tell me that Indians and Pakis dominate your country because you’re tolerant. It has to do with your gross incompetence.
        Indians won’t let you be prime minister in their country because they have some pride and you don’t. You don’t, at all.

        As usual with a lot of black africans, all you care about is racism and “someone is discriminating against me!”. You don’t care about accomplishing great things so that the rest of the world is impressed. The rest of the world is not impressed by you having been a slave, sorry.

        • Musango Lungu

          You are an a$$hole and Africans are not bigots like you because we can boot out Indians anytime the same way we booted out the colonialists. The only reason these people remained in the country is because they behaved themselves. Idi Amin booted them out because they were not patroitic to the country.They stayed in their little Asian communities , refused to fully integrate with others and as a matter of fact most held British passports after Uganda gained independence meaning they were not really connected to the country. Some families split their nationalities between Britain, Uganda and the Indian sub continent. Above all they mistreated their African workers and were known for corruption. I would have done the same thing if I were Idi Amin. You are such an idiot talking about Somalia , a country which doesn’t even have a government. I didn’t say Indians and Paki’s dominate our country but I simply said we are tolerant to them and it’s true. If we feel like chasing them out we can and nothing can stop us. Just like how Mugabe has chased out the whites out of Zimbabwe. WE CAN DO IT ANY TIME.

        • Musango Lungu

          What have you yourself accomplished on a personal level? I will soon be graduating Zhejiang university with a phd in Chemical Engineering. I did my M.Tech in India and I was a top student way ahead of many of my Indian classmates such that I even got awarded a phd position at IISc Bangalore,India’s top research institution. I have published a number of interesting articles and I can give you links to my works. NOW what do you have sir that you can boast about? BTW I am posting using my actual names unlike you hiding behind a keyboard. Just Google my name and you will find links related to my name. YOU A PATHETIC I.D.I.O.T!

          • ogunsiron

            well if you are such an accomplished individual it’s even sadder that you’re so butthurt about “raaacisssssm”.
            I’ve known such black people who were very smart and very superior to almost anyone and yet the slightest incident would shatter them because of “raaaacissm”. I just don’t care about racism that much and I’m glad i dont. I dont want to live the life of the black man who cant sleep because “raaacism” and cant get along with people at work because “raaacism”. But most importantly, I dont accept the whole multicultural mentality. I can’t imagine moving to some country and then telling them that they have a problem because they’re all natives and they need diversity and bullshit like that.

    • fsfsdf

      My worst experiences of racism came from the USA, the country I was born in, because it is inherently anti-East Asian male. Maybe you are just getting a taste of your own medicine. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve been called “jackie chan” “ching chong ting tong ling long” or whatever other racial slur like “gook” “zipperhead” etc. especailly by white trash piece of shit Americans, I’d have a hundred thousand dollars.

  • Karze

    Racism is so rife in China against the minorities so much so that Tibetans have to produces frequently their ID in Lhasa, Tibet to police while their Chinese counter part never has to show their ID as they never stopped by Police.

    • fsfsdf

      STFU. I am part Hui and Manchu as well as Tatar Russian. I don’t face the same type of racist shit that I get from the states, and I was fucking born in the USA.

  • yutoutang

    IF there is an imitation of Western multiculturalist policies, it is key for Chinese to remember that we are not the USA. Do not self-flagellate like whites do when they bemoan their “white privilege.”

    There is no such thing in China. China is our native land, we’ve taken no slaves, nor killed people for this land, and thus, it is the foreigner who are privileged simply by being allowed to exist here. To demand anything else is luxury that they are not entitled to.

    • http://www.theatlantic.com/wendy-qian/ Wendy

      What the author points out in his article is not a situation specific to just foreigners in China. There are plenty of gender discriminations in employment procedures against Chinese women as well as against those of disabilities or diseases (AIDs & Hepatitis B). A visually impaired person should have more career options than just giving massages for people or performing music. It is not just about race, but rather about rethinking the mainstream discourse of who’s worthy and who isn’t.

      If you think that thinking from the marginalized person’s perspective or listening to their voices is a form of self-flaggelation or that the only oppressors are those who had slave-owning ancestors, I hope you can think again.

      • Whaddashack

        Thanks Wendy. I can agree with both your points. This isn’t a racial issue at all but one of national interest. China has as much a right as any other country to look after her own people. Certain mainstream elements has got to change.

        However, I’d elaborate my own points to your very valid argument. Priorities to curb discrimination should begin with those most in need and closest to the country, i.e. disabled (both physically/mentally), women, extremely poor, and the ethnic minorities that actually are part of China, with no country as their own such as Tujia or Naxi for instance.

        The Chinese diaspora comes next. Then Asian citizens from neighboring countries that can naturally integrate into Chinese society without too many issues.Other Asians come next and finally after all these are satisfied do we look at foreigners.

        There are a few foreigners that should always be treated with maximum wariness, particularly Muslim fundamentalists.

        • http://www.theatlantic.com/wendy-qian/ Wendy

          Some reactions to ur previous comment that “China is our native land, we’ve taken no slaves, nor killed people for this land” — its interesting to see people making this point.
          “chinese people” (within the current chinese border) had
          been oppressing each other, off and on, for thousands of years in large-scale territorial wars. i don’t think even official party history disagrees with that proposition (as it applies before 1949),

          leaving aside that china had one “mongol dynasty” and
          “manchu dynasty” that had to be established by means of what you might call one race conquering everyone and establishing itself in power (but since we have retroactively made all of the people involved into the same race, we don’t call it that or otherwise bring race into that history).

          • fsfsdf

            STFU whore. You are the type of sellout asian bitch that probably likes to suck on limp-white microdick, huh?

          • Nomoremaos

            Shut up u racist.

          • kiwipanda

            Oh cool, another Self hating “Chinese orientalist”.

          • Sly

            So she is self-hating for pointing out a flaw in Whaddashack’s argument? You know it’s ok to disagree with someone and not have a self-hate agenda guiding it Kiwipanda.

        • friend_not_lackey

          Good ideas, Whaddashack. May I ask you a question? With yours introducing this “ranking” of groups whose discrimination should be curbed first, aren’t you introducing a new pecking order and new discrimination? Furthermore, don’t you think that there is a certain kind of people which are prone to stereotyping, and those people discriminate at all of the above, i.e. poor, disabled, foreign (Asian/non-Asian), ethnic minorities… Those people will continue to hate on everything percieved “different” as long as the do not learn tolerance as a concept. Not as a list “be nice to this group”, then ten years later “don’t offend that group” and so on. Discrimination, sexism and racism go as a whole, or not at all.

        • Nomoremaos

          His must be another example of Chinese non-racism. You really need to examine why your mind is so narrow.

      • parvizr

        What does gender/handicap discrimination have to do with multiculturalism? You sound like a cutout straight from your feminism class.

        • http://www.theatlantic.com/wendy-qian/ Wendy

          race-based discrimination is linked to gender-based discrimination, since the “norm” of some job posts are the Han Chinese male. many eyebrows are raised when a woman suggests to work in a male-dominated industry. These kind of assumptions are related to how Chinese employers want a white person for some posts as well. U.S. employment history also informs us on how gender and race discrimnation are interlinked.

          • parvizr

            How does any of that link the two? Because you say so? Intersectionality is just code for compound victimhood, used by grievance mongers to gather more pity. You need to step away from Western sociology and realize that it’s based on their ideological bias and feelings like empathy. Not empirical fact or even logical discourse. As someone non-white, you should be wary of helping them spread their ridiculous ideologies around the world.

          • http://www.theatlantic.com/wendy-qian/ Wendy

            I don’t think logic and empathy are always in contradiction with each other. It should be discussed in a case by case study.

            I wouldn’t call intersectionality a type of ideology, but more of a strategy. It works sometimes and fails some other times. The difficulty of intersectionality is that some people don’t realize the connection between race and gender (i.e. a lot of Chinese males) without reading a lot of articles.

            I don’t think “intersectionality” as a strategy is monopolized by Western Sociology. Academics are discussing the relation between caste and gender in India as well. It’s a very helpful tool and I’m glad you pointed it out.

          • Sarah Ku

            If gender discrimination is so prevalent, then how come China has the highest proportion of women in senior management positions?

            Based on this 2013 Grant Thornton Report, 51% of senior executives in China are women. That means there are more women in positions of power than men!

            http://www.internationalbusinessreport.com/files/ibr2013_wib_report_final.pdf

            The next highest is Poland at 48%. While Canada is at 27% and the US at a measly 20%.

            And as a woman who is currently working in East Asia in the tech industry, I have received far more patronizing discrimination in the US than where I am now.

          • Chris in FZ

            Because they are the mistresses of powerful “real” bosses

      • markus peg

        I agree with you completely, intelligently said Wendy.

        Although the main focus is race, discrimination, as you said comes in many forms. China will slowly become more multicultural and with that will come tolerance and then mutual respect (in general anyway).

        Countries like the UK and USA didn’t become multicultural and accepting over night it took many generations.

        Your views seem very open minded, It’s people like you who are choosing what is and isn’t right from other countries with the hope of creating a better China.

        In the UK, children’s programs help the way kids think about disabilities and differences in the hopes of having a generation growing up with as little discrimination as possible, ready for when they will run the country.

        • fsfsdf

          China is already multicultural East Asia is for East Asians only. We gladly welcome black an brown brothers and sisters for visits. However, white pieces of racist western imperialiast shit are never welcome. Be glad you are not going to be treated the way we will begin treating white supremacist scum in the near future. Especially with the way white men take advantage of and treat East Asian women.

          • marduk

            My guess is that you aren’t “getting any”…

            And that you are constantly checking out the “size” of other men at the urinal.

          • fsfsdf

            More like you white faggots are constantly obsessed with Asian male dicks and always say we have “small dicks”. Yet how would you know anything about our dick sizes unless you’ve sucked them fully erect, huh? YOU are the one bringing up dick size. I am completely fine with my average 6+ inch long dick, so stfu whitephaggot.

          • fsfsdf

            You are the one bringing up dick size. And Asian men aren’t manwhores so we don’t give a shit about “getting any” you animalistic subhuman white birdshit.

            My dick is an average 6+ inches long, so I’m fine with it. How would you know our sizes unless you have sucked on hundreds of millions or a few billion erect East Asian male dicks? Huh? That’s the question all of us want to know. How are you white phaggots such authorities on Asian male dicks? Maybe it is because you phaggots are a buch of real beta FAGGOTs who like taking it up the ass?

          • Nomoremaos

            You prove the author’s point- that racists like u exist in every country- there just happens to be many more of u in China.

          • SOP

            Throwing your worthless racist corpse off a bridge is a good way forward for both you and Asia. Another Chinese bigot, is that you Whaddasack. Your inferiority complex towards whites is pathetic.

          • Mark Lo

            Agree 100 fucking percent.

            Hate seeing these white maggots in China.

            Chinese women who sleep with them are out and out sluts who deserve their heads shaved and worse.

          • Mateusz82

            I hate seeing racists, no matter what color. You don’t own Chinese women, and they can sleep with whoever they choose.

            Your yellow supremacy would fit in much better at a Klan rally, or British National Party headquarters, where you’d find like minded individuals.

          • http://www.noidiotsallowed.com/ Reptilian

            LOL. Poor sap, you must not be fµcking any women of your own kind, for you to spew that much bile. But I understand—Damn, any time I walk into a club, the women seem to just drop their ugly Han boyfriends and just saunter over to make conversation with me, and of course the obligatory Chinese take-out. I could just have a pµssy buffet all day, any day if I chose to. Blame your parents for your ugly mug (bad genes) and bad breath (not teaching you to brush your teeth)

          • Imonlytwelve

            One racist and unnecessary comment deserves another, is that how the saying goes?

            Sigh. Such myoptic simpletons.

      • SIP-SET

        I think this story was written as one man’s experience. He obviously has a love for the country. You are right to caution anyone from marginalizing China. I think it was not necessary to bring up slave owning. That might make it seem you are comparing Chinese to western white men.

      • Kiwipanda

        Why am I not surprised you are living in America…

    • Whaddashack

      “it is the foreigner who are privileged simply by being allowed to exist
      here. To demand anything else is luxury that they are not entitled to.”

      Indeed. As they say in America, if foreigners don’t like it in China, then by all means they should get the fuck out and crawl back to where they came from.

      It’s a privilege for them croakers to be there or anywhere else in the East, not their right.

    • Mateusz82

      Looks like someone else is indoctrinated with Han chauvinism. You’ve never killed people for this land? The policy of lebensraum in Tibet doesn’t count, then? And slavery… you need to read history books not provided by the PRC. You might learn the actual history of “your country”, rather than the fictional account made to help encourage xenophobic racism.

      To exist is not a privilege. If Han Chinese were treated abroad the same way non-Han, and especially Westerners, in China, there would be outrage. When Han Chinese travel to America, or immigrate, they don’t kiss anyone’s feet for being simply allowed to live.

      Your ethnic nationalism belongs in the past, thrown away with the other fascist ideologies.

      • Unknown

        China freed Tibet from slavery. You know nothing about Chinese history.

        • Mateusz82

          China conquered Tibet under the pretense of “liberation”, in order to gain more territory for the Han master race. They do let some Tibetans keep remnants of their culture. They needs something for the Han tourists to gawk at when they visit the ghettos.

          That’s a completely unsubstantiated comment.

          • ogunsiron

            yeh but criticising anything jews have done is anti-semitism! what about anti-sinism ? I don’t believe that you have any proof of what you stated above. and if you do have proof, then i wonder why you looked for that proof!
            is it because you hate the Chinese and want little chinese babies to die ? You must be *insane* and suffering from anti-sinism and you must be very stupid too. See I can take what you said above and conclude that you don’t think because people who are anti-sinists don’t think. How does that work ? Oh it works the same as when you call people anti-semites so you can conveniently dismiss everything they say.

          • Mateusz82

            Anti-semitism is anti-semitism, which is what you’re doing. When you are being racist against Jews, that’s anti-semitism. It doesn’t really matter what you believe. Also, that makes no sense… you think I don’t have proof, and wonder why I have proof.

            Right… I totally want Chinese babies to die… and there is evidence to support that accusation… where exactly? You wouldn’t make such a claim without any substantiating evidence, right?

            Now, that’s not how it works. You need to use logic and facts, not just making up accusations based on your own imagination.

          • ogunsiron

            people who regularly pull out the anti-semitism card don’t bother with facts and logic. I don’t see why, when playing the rhetorical game, I have to follow strict rules while people like you don’t have to.

            You said that the Chinese harmed the Tibetans. Following the example of antisemitism hunters, I say “I don’t care about your evidence you’re an anti-sinist and you must be crazy to think the way you do”. I know I could engage your arguments but it’s not like you would ever engage mine so why bother being the one who follows the rules ?

            Anyways, dude, let’s call it quits. I shall remain a judeo-skeptic and you shall remain a good goy donkey that Rabbi Ovadia Yossef of Israel (google him for some fun) would have enjoyed riding on.

          • Mateusz82

            Well, if you follow “script rules”, like backing up your arguments, it makes you look less insane.

            Actually, history (and current recording of facts) shows that China has harmed Tibetans. I know you don’t care about evidence, but that’s your problem. I did engage yours.

            Sure thing. You can reread your copy of Mein Kampf while keeping a picture of Hitler in your boudoir, living in fear that the Jews will come to get you, and I’ll live in reality land.

          • ogunsiron

            Yes I must admit that you do engage my arguments in an honest manner when you insinuate that I keep a copy of mein kampf in my room. Sounds totally like someone who’s taking their opponent’s argument seriously. It looks like reductio ad hitlerum but i guess I should trust you that you’re actually engaging in serious discussion.

          • Mateusz82

            Most people are in denial, but you are at least adult enough to admit it.

            Although, to clarify, I wasn’t insinuating. Based on your insane hatred of Jews, and fear that they will be taking over, there is a very good chance you have Nazi memorabilia around your room.

            And you should trust that, because when you try to make inferences, it just doesn’t turn out well.

          • ogunsiron

            “blah blah blah”, said the proud donkey.

          • Mateusz82

            That has to be the most intelligent thing you said yet. Congratulations (or, as my people say, Mazel tov).

            Since you already summed up all your arguments in your last post, there’s not much left, except to say shalom.

          • Mark Lo

            CHina liberated Tibet from feudalism and has improved the lives of Tibetans immeasurably.

            Tibetans are still the vast majority in Tibet and retain their own language and traditions and customs fare more than indigenous people subjected to Anglo Saxon colonization….you can visit the place and see it for your own eyes.

            China pours huge amounts of money to develop the region and China’s minorities get affirmative action benefits that are far more generous than anything offered to minorities in the West.

          • Mateusz82

            Right… China liberated Tibet just like Spain liberated the Aztecs, and Britain liberated Australia. How many other colonizers used the justification that they were the superior culture, and therefore, were elevating the status of the conquered? The problem is that your justification of yellow man’s burden has been out of date since World War II (when Japan and Germany also tried to “liberate” places that they saw as inferior).

            They are allowed to dress in their native clothing so they can be paraded in front of Han tourists, forced to prostitute they culture so that the master race can feel better about itself, in comparison to the untermenschen.

            China pours huge amounts of money to develop lebensraum. It makes the conquered territories a better environment. Britain did the same thing in India.

          • John

            Lol, , “China liberated Tibet just like Spain liberated the Aztecs”. u made me laugh. U knew nothing about China. They did no slaughter tibet people like barbarian spain did on aztecs. Instead chinese spent lots of money to maintain and fix tibet culture. U are just an ignorant. I advise u to learn more before u talk

          • Mateusz82

            I’m not sure why stating facts makes you laugh. I’d really suggest you learn about Chinese history, as well as the history of other countries, before talking about them.

            Also, the official propaganda from China is not the same thing as learning.

            Even if English is your second language, you can still try to put some effort in your writing.

          • Guest

            I would advise that you learn proper grammar. You seem to be a Chinese troll willfully ignorant of history and brainwashed by your communist “benefactors.”

          • john kepano

            I would advise that you learn proper grammar before posting on this discussion. You seem to be a Chinese troll willfully ignorant of history and brainwashed by your communist “benefactors.”

        • Nomoremaos

          You know nothing about Chinese history if you grew up in china.

      • ogunsiron

        Be careful Chinese people.

        This is a typical westerner brainwashed with j3wish multiculturalism.
        The j3w has taught him that his own nation isn’t worth existing, that borders make no sense, that the whole world should be one big country with the same sick values that prevail in the degenerate western world.

        Be careful, Chinese people. Remember that the j3w managed to use the brits (google SASSON FAMILY) to brutalize you and force opium on you in the 19th century. Don’t let the jew poison you once again.

        For the western world it’s probably too late and they probably deserve to disappear (since they don’t protest) but you’re one of the shining lights of the human race. the human race can’t afford to lose you guys too. The modern westerner is a filthy, diseased corpse of a civilization. Take the technology but leave the rest.

        • Mateusz82

          Wow… from the ranting about Jews, to the misspelling of “Jew”, to the xenophobia, and the China worship… you have crafted a masterwork of insanity.

          • ogunsiron

            oh yes, I know right. Whenever jews have had a problem with anyone and i mean anyone, it was never, never, never their fault but always the fault of the other people. You’ve learned your lesson well you brainwashed western white man.

            I’m not “worshiping” China. I’m just stating the obvious that China has been one of the great human civilisations. Given that jews love to target the best of humanity, I encourage the chinese to learn about the disease before it washes upon their shores. They certainly are the next target.

            I feel similar about every great nation and every great people.

            Also, i thnk it’s disgusting to go to another country and then to tell the locals that there is something wrong with them for being locals living in their own country and that they have this huge “diversity” problem and that they will be so much better when their country won’t be their own anymore. If I ever go to China i’m not going to think, as i walk around, “too many chinese in china!”.

          • Mateusz82

            I can’t tell if you’re a troll, or a legitimately insane anti-semite, with a bad case of China-worship.

            ” If I ever go to China i’m not going to think,”

            Well, since you already don’t think, you shouldn’t have a problem if you visit the country. Try not to drool over it too much… not that it’d be noticeable with all the spit and trash on the streets (though, I suppose the Jews are to be blamed for the pollution and littering in China too).

          • ogunsiron

            lol.
            I don’t think that there is any other group of humans whom you would agree that any criticism of is a sign of insanity. I guess the chosen people really are more special and much more chosen, huh ?

            Few people dare to ridicule themselves by proclaiming that criticism of China, Germany, France, the UK, Nigeria, Mexico could only be a sign of insanity. Yet you glibly accept the ridiculous notion that any criticism (even mild) of jews is incontrovertible evidence of insanity.

            It is an amazing fact that an idea so stupid and actually inane is so common among educated westerners.

            It’s a good thing not all intelligent, cultured and educated people have been through the western formating process.
            You’re a trained donkey, mateusz. Probably not in every domain but on this particular issue you have been trained and tamed like the good goy donkey that you are proud to be.

          • Glenn

            “Also, i thnk it’s disgusting to go to another country and then to tell
            the locals that there is something wrong with them for being locals
            living in their own country and that they have this huge “diversity”
            problem and that they will be so much better when their country won’t be
            their own anymore. If I ever go to China i’m not going to think, as i
            walk around, “too many chinese in china!”.

            THAT i agree with you whole-heartedly… the rest? not so much… China, be OPEN to other races and other races, don’t try and change China for your sake. When in Rome, do as the Romans do..

        • Nomoremaos

          I agree with you on the multi-culturalism issue but what’s with the anti- semitism? In addition, stop kidding yourself- china is a sh*t hole.

          • ogunsiron

            China is aspiring to greater heights and I find that admirable, in general.
            You can agree with my opinions on multiculti without agreeing with me on the jew thing.
            They are separate ideas after all.

      • Mark Lo

        and especially Westerners,

        Too many Chinese treat Westerners way better than they do other Chinese —are you out of your fucking mind?

        Do Chinese men strut through the main streets of America with blonde bitches on their arms flaunting themselves —–like white men in Asian countries.

        You should go stick your head in a bucket of shit

        • Mateusz82

          Any proof of that? I’ve heard the “Chinese treat Westerners better than Chinese” before, and from people just as racist as you (well, close toes racist as you).

          I have seen yellow men with white women, and notice they don’t get the same vitriol that happens the other way around. Nice that you call blonde women bitches… I guess they’re not as pure as your Han master race (also, there are Chinese who are white. Sorry to hurt your xenophobic pride, but Asia doesn’t belong to just one skin color).

          Is that the most logical thing you can end with? I hope you are actually adolescent, because it would be sad if you were an adult, but with the maturity level of a middle school kid.

      • mr race card

        this is total bullshit crap… don’t be insincere about your racism (white liberals who say racism is bad, but enjoy white privilege; black middle class, who don’t give a shit about the poor blacks), and don’t complain about it (blacks, who go along with this racist scheme and do nothing about their situation, but parrot what the white liberals are saying). have some respect for yourself black man, otherwise don’t expect any else to.

        • Mateusz82

          Don’t tell me what to do and make assumptions. You don’t know me, and have no authority to give orders for how I should act.

          Privilege is not so simple and one sided, and racism is not limited to one color (the designated as evil).

          These assumptions do nothing to diminish racism, but instead, foster it.

    • whopperwithcheese

      Foreigners do well in China because they have skills many Chinese lack. Don’t be jealous.

      • Brian Lam

        Speaking English?

      • WALA

        Well, they have skills you dont have, which is Chinese. Don’t be jealous.

    • SOP

      Actually more than 60% of Chinese “land” is not yours (ethnic Han) but land stolen from other Asians who have been colonized by China. Dont assume moral superiority when you have none.

    • http://www.noidiotsallowed.com/ Reptilian

      You’ve taken no slaves, nor killed people for that land? Obviously, you don’t know squat about the bloody conquests of the Mongols. Oh right, when it comes to Genghis Khan, Mongols are not Chinese. But when it comes time to trot out the wonderful happy family of 56 ethnicities on CCTV during Oct 1, Mongols are suddenly Chinese.

      Also, read up a bit on the Tang, Ming and Qing Dynasties dealings with Central Asian kingdoms, especially how they required tribute and an acknowledgment of Chinese superiority, as well as what happened to the states that did not comply forthwith.

      Your attitude and worldview is typical Chinese exceptionalism (列外主义) as well as Han supremacism and willful propagandist myopia.

      Finally, I do not believe in self-flagellation over ethnic privileges, but there is a need for Han chauvinism to be parsed through.

    • JM Hatch

      Hate to tell you this, but the Polynesian originated in South China, and were pushed out & or exterminated by the “Han”, which you’ve conflated with being Chinese. This inherent process of exterminating the remaining Polynesian cultures in the Taiwan archipelago was proceeding apace before the Japanese interrupted things.

      Interesting how the racists among the Han will call the other “four stars” on the flag Chinese when they want their land and resources, but otherwise fall back into Han = Chinese. Perhaps those who remember the bitter yoke of Chinese Imperialism are best summed up by Ho Chi Minh, who in 1946 stated: “As for me, I prefer to sniff French shit for five years than to eat Chinese shit for the rest of my life.”

    • Adithya Raajkumar

      You have killed people for this land. Remember Ran Min and the Jie, Qie, and Xiongnu? That was genocide for the ages.

    • T-Rex

      Slavey has always existed in China and wars over land and resources have been fought at least as long as history has been recorded in your country. BTW, equality is not a luxury–it’s a human right!

      If the government allows you to treat foreigners that way, do you think it will think about treating you the same way if it suddenly starts to disapprove of your actions?

    • Barbara

      Well… China may have not taken a large quantity of African slaves, but the country itself still has a very long history with slavery and with killing people in territorial disputes. For example, in the Tang Dynasty it was very popular to capture Koreans and bring them over as slaves. Throughout the Qing Dynasty, China both enslaved its own lower classes (after they committed crimes) and took slaves from other lands. The Chinese also sold slaves to foreigners. Slavery actually only became fully illegal in China in 1910, years after it became illegal in most other nations (though sex trafficking and child slavery actually is still strongest in Asia, particularly China). Basically, don’t put yourself on such a pedestal of delusion. You’re really no better than anyone else on this planet.

  • Chino

    Americans, black and white, enter China then expect Chinese to behave and conduct themselves just like they. When this doesn’t happen, they, like Presswood, begin pontificating about what should be (politically) correct behaviour – standards constructed by them according to Anglo-Christian morality and to the history set in America. So pathetic. Yankee – go home!

    • marduk

      I pretty much agree. Basically, China is different. And probably not changing for a long time. Either learn to accept that or leave. I particularly detested the “missionaries” who were always looking to bring “Christ” to China. One thing I actually enjoyed about China was the lack of Christian meddling. I don’t see a good reason for China to change much. If it’s working for the Chinese, then that’s should be good enough. By and large, most Chinese leave you alone and let you go about your life. There are exceptions, but not enough to make it unbearable.

      • Nomoremaos

        It is working for the Chinese?! Really? Tell that to the 800 million who are barely making ends meet and under the constant thumb of the local henchman.

  • Cheguevera

    Chinese hate blacks just like South American do. Come to Vancouver to see for yourself .

    • Konjit Solomon

      Thanks for the warning. Guess I am lucky, I’ve never had a really bad experience in Vancouver … even walking around in 唐人街 searching for the best Hainanese Chicken.

  • BlacknProud

    Nice article, but I don’t buy the part which tend to say that Blacks in china is a novelty. ” …there is no racism in china because there are no black people.” People saying so are trying to cover up or “whithen” their history. There are indigeneous black skinned chinese in china. Now ask yourself why are there indigenous blacks all over asia(India, Irak, Java etc…). When you go to a Buddhist temple have a look at the old buddha statues and see their large nose, curly hair and dark skin. Let no one deceive you make your own research when you go to those countries.

    Racism has been used as a powerful tool for other races to conceal, destroy and steal what the black civilization has achieved and given to the world. It has worked so well that we forgot our history and even feel sorry for having a black skin, as if we want to apologize to the other races for the colour of our skin.
    Racism will continue until we are able to write our own history books and help our mother continent Africa fight and win the war the other races are having against her.

    “…there is no racism in China because there are no black people,” – See
    more at:
    http://www.tealeafnation.com/2013/07/chinese-raciality-and-black-reality-in-china/#sthash.kuJ9OfNe.dpuf

    “…there is no racism in China because there are no black people,” – See
    more at:
    http://www.tealeafnation.com/2013/07/chinese-raciality-and-black-reality-in-china/#sthash.kuJ9OfNe.dpuf

    “…there is no racism in China because there are no black people,” – See
    more at:
    http://www.tealeafnation.com/2013/07/chinese-raciality-and-black-reality-in-china/#sthash.kuJ9OfNe.dpuf

    “…there is no racism in China because there are no black people,” – See
    more at:
    http://www.tealeafnation.com/2013/07/chinese-raciality-and-black-reality-in-china/#sthash.kuJ9OfNe.dpuf

    “…there is no racism in China because there are no black people,” – See
    more at:
    http://www.tealeafnation.com/2013/07/chinese-raciality-and-black-reality-in-china/#sthash.kuJ9OfNe.dpuf

    • Konjit Solomon

      A bit black American militant….As an African and a Jew the majority of racism I have received has come from black Americans. Surprisingly Israelis are not as abusive. While in the US, I thought an oreo was a cookie until a black person called me that. No one in my family knew what that meant. A Caucasian friend had to explain it to me. Everything is so black or white…no midpoint. Over 10yrs in the US, I found black Americans to be extremely narrow minded and racist.They keep telling me…… what an “real” African was like! All because I did not talk or look as they expected. Bloody hell, Africa is a continent not a country.

      Maybe that is why I find being in China a joy. Never had an experience as or more painful than in the US. At least Chinese people ( that I encountered) are willing to venture beyond their assumptions.

  • Wo KeYi Dao Zhong Guo Qu!

    I absolutely loved your well thought article. Thanks.

    I am an African American that has studied reading and writing Chinese for the last three years. I had always hoped to go to China but I was, frankly, reluctant based on several encounters with racism in my own country here in the US. I just don’t know if I can take any more of the depression associated with another incident in such an isolated environment.

    I love languages and I love travel . . . and I know that I will have to take that leap one day.

    Reading comments from you and your readers have helped me to see the silver lining with my lot in life as an African American. These comments have helped me to pick myself up and decide to take the plunge.

    Thanks again..

    • Konjit Solomon

      Go! You will not regret it!

    • marduk

      Go and don’t worry about it. You’ll be a foreigner like all other foreigners. The other foreigners will be glad to see you. So think about it that way.

  • James CoCo

    Strange…my friend is Korean American and he teaches in China, and he says he rarely gets any kind of racism in China–especially compared to the racism he gets in Canada (born there) or the United States (studied in college there)…Another friend is a Filipino American–and he like it there as well…

    • 21tigermike

      He’s Korean American. …

      ….

      How would anybody know he wasn’t Chinese?! Think!

      • Solomon

        Your sense of humour is hilarious!

  • Marcus Black

    The only way I see is an economical and intellectual conquest of China. By seeing black people doing something good and advancing in Science and Technology, they will rethink their bias.

  • 21tigermike

    You won’t know about real racism until you learn Mandarin and hear people talking shit about you, as well as waiters/waitresses, etc. Forget about it. Congratulations on getting out of China, Marketus.

  • az_kh89

    I have been to China once, to their most advanced and modern city, Shanghai, I am not black, I am from Bangladesh (we are most commonly mistaken for being Indians, not that there is anything wrong with it as statistically it is more likely). In the 4 days that I was there, I encountered a wide variety of racism, starting from the airport to the taxi drivers to shopping mall sales clerks. One particular incident, that was the most overt form of racism I have ever encountered to date was when a taxi driver said to my Chinese girl friend (he didn’t know I spoke Chinese as well) “Oh he is so hairy, its not good, he smells, you see, he is from India, they eat lamb over there, therefore they stink like lambs and are hair like lambs”. Situation was so bad, my girl friend would not even hold my hand or appear to show that we were a couple in private…lest she be judged by random strangers in the most populous country in the world, a little racism from her part to me.

    • az_kh89

      But I must say, I did meet some random people, at the airport, on the train, who helped me immensely and were remarkably blind to color or appearance. But the age old adage is true, a speck of dung in a glass of milk, destroys the whole thing.

      • marduk

        Yep. Same here. You get all kinds in China, including lots of certifiably insane people, too, like local village idiots. Had a few of them following me around shouting some crap or the other, too, from time to time.

    • marduk

      This happens to white guys as well. Hairy, stinky, etc., etc. Heard it all before, even my wife being called a prostitute.

  • Revival of China

    More black people in China violate the laws,with more than 90% of them are illegal staying, so many crime of them, such as raping, robering and selling drugs and the fact that they cannot speak in Chinese. That’s why we hate black. If you really want to change something, please ask your fellas to respect our laws and cultures

    • Musango Lungu

      What is the source of your statistics or is it just some percentage you have pulled out of your a$$ to justify your statement?

      • ogunsiron

        *shrug* it’s the same in London, Paris, Baltimore, Detroit, Toronto, etc. And just like in London, Paris, Baltimore, Toronto, etc when nonblacks complain about black crime, black intellectuals act all offended and say there is no such thing.

        • Musango Lungu

          Still doesn’t answer the question just like I thought!

          • ogunsiron

            even if he pulled the stats you’d say that the stats are biased or made up so why bother ?

          • amobi

            you miss the point @ogunsiron(actually alot of people here posting) and I dont think you understand or feel what and why shes arguing. The point is that educated and law abiding black(darker) people have a hard time assimilating into alot(I want to say any) of societies based on people or a person who they have nothing to do with(other than color) which the facts that were supplied that insinuated that “black people are negative” were probably just fabricated or inaccurate anyway. even if they werent you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover anyway because people are complicated so even if someone looked just like her/him people have completely different traits and personalities. this is why you(anyone) should judge people and i think so many people have forgotten that.sorry for the no grammar corrections lmao

    • Boss

      Agree, look at who is selling drugs in Beijing’s Sanlitun or Guangzhou in most of the Western districts. No Chinese, no White, only Blacks. Everyone in Guangzhou know to avoid the so called “Chocolate city” at night, while anywhere else even in the migrant districts is fine.

  • paul martin

    This wa s a great account of a cultural expierence that most north americans of colour may never get to expierence. Thanks for sharing. As a black educator I find that popular culture in North America is very insular and we never step outside our own consumer expierwnce enough to consider how our history has shaped many of the current social values that we live by in modern society. GReat reflection and analysis.

  • Kay

    Marketus, I appreciate your article. I am about to move to Zhenjiang for a year to teach English. My daughter will travel with me. We’ve already been informed she will be the first foreigner of any race to enroll at the school. Add that she’s African-American (Black) on top of that and I’m sure you can see what may await us. I have no fear of the unknown. In fact, I’m very excited about going and will certainly make the best of the experience. All the best as you pursue your Pd.D.

  • Musango Lungu

    I am currently studying in China and to be pretty honest some of my experiences have been rather appalling and nothing much has changed since the author was here if anything perhaps it’s becoming worse as Chinese people become more wealthier. I am always been asked if I want to stay and work here after I graduate and my answer is a resounding NO. This is one place I wouldn’t want to work or raise a family.

  • Brian K Smith

    I enjoyed reading your article and happened to come across it as I was researching places in China that were not so polluted. I have studied Chinese in the past and might reconsider going to China to future develop my knowledge of Mandarin. Any suggestions on how I might go by finding employment in China? smithbriank@yahoo.com

  • A.

    Hello. Yesterday I returned from Jinan, China. I was visiting my brother who is an English teacher. Out of the 10 teachers that I met, 5 were black. I do not know about their experiences of racism.

  • sheng

    fair and calm observations and analysis. It’s ignorant for chinese to assume white skin is better, but that’s just how the Chinese aesthetic preference has been formed historically and culturally, just like americans assuming blond hair, blue eyes are beautiful. People of different educational background may be treating black people differently. But China as a country is really against racial prejudice and haven’t had any institutional racism against any ethnicity. In fact commoners take pride in their equality to everyone else regardless their ethnicities.

  • Angela Anderson

    I am glad that another has reflected on their experience in China. I am a black American female, and I own my own business. I have visited a few countries in Asia, among other countries. I recently returned home from a 3 week trip to Thailand. I did not feel discriminated against in Thailand, however, whenever I visited Beijing and Tokyo in 2010, I did sense the prejudice. I also visited Shanghai and Hong Kong during that time, but those places were ok. I feel that a good number of Chinese, especially the older ones, have a bias against black people. In Beijing I was followed around in the stores as if I was going to steal something. Of course I got the double looks walking down the street. Going through airport security in Beijing, they always stop me to scan me, even if the beeper doesn’t go off. One airport security guy dumped EVERYTHING out of my purse. I also had an issue with the tour guide in Beijing. On the airplane going to Beijing (connection flight) for my Thailand trip, (Air China), one stewardess refused to hand me food, when I reached for it, she grabbed it back, slammed it down on the tray table and then rushed away. I had a similar experience on the plane coming back home (Chiang Mai to Beijing), however, this experience was with a passenger. I was sitting in an aisle seat and I reached for her tray to give to the stewardess, she grabbed it back as if she didn’t want me to touch it. I agree, some Chinese people seriously need to reflect and reconsider their feelings towards black people. There are good and bad people in every culture…Chinese people need to learn not to stereotype all black people as being the same.

    • marduk

      In my first week in Shenyang, I had a film crew follow me around a mall just so they could get film of a white foreigner visiting their new stores.
      I found out the next day that I was on their TV commercial (uncompensated) and had become a minor celebrity in the neighborhood.
      So I drew stares just about everywhere I went. Even Walmart.
      And just about everytime I used a urinal, some guy would be checking out my junk, I guess to see who was larger. Seriously. I learned a few phrases to make them stop such as “kan shenme kan”? What are YOU looking at?

  • Bodysurf

    I’m a middle-aged, white American who has been living and working in Shanghai for almost 2 years. I can verify from personal experience many of Presswood’s observations, even here in what the Chinese consider the most forward-thinking and liberal of their cities.
    I have two very close black friends here in China. We are in the same small group Bible study and they make a fair living teaching English, but it is simply a reality that if they were white they would be making far more money and be in very high demand. The Chinese government is cracking down on foreigners who come on a tourist visa and work contract jobs anyway, and have made it more difficult to get a Z, or residence visa, also. With so many teachers heading home, I hope that the supply/demand curve for native English speakers asserts itself, and they can enjoy the paychecks they deserve. How things are going for blacks in second-tier cities in outlying provinces, I don’t want to imagine. Could be there simply aren’t any. In my travels, I can visit a large city (by US standards, anyway) and not see a single non-Han face for the entire duration of my visit.
    Mr. Presswood’s admiration for China and the Chinese is evident, and I deeply appreciate the way he simply related his experiences and allowed the readers to reach our own conclusions.
    As I’m typing this, in the Subway (the sandwich shop, not the metro) on
    Nanjing Xi Lu in SH, there is a mixed-race (B&W) couple at the table to my left, and a group of Chinese young people to my right. Hopefully it’s a matter of time, like most else.

  • Mandii

    Thank you for sharing.

  • Dexter Pinion

    Hey mate you would have enjoyed a scene I was privileged enough to witness: a black American reading the Chinese menu to an ABC

  • Christopher

    This article could not be more true, I myself never experienced any trouble while in China as I am white (except for the usual scams), but a good friend of mine who happens to be black and is married with a Chinese woman struggles a lot more to find jobs and yet he is highly qualified in his field with 10+ years of experience.
    When hanging out together I can see how local people are giving him angry, suspicious or condescending looks all the time, he also got called “black ghost/black demon” so many times that I lost count.
    China still has a long way to go.

    • “Furious” George Rockwell

      And it’ll never get there.

      • 33 on HIGH

        “Whiteness” has been the norm for a VERY long time. Ancient texts will talk about “white” gods all over the world.

        I don’t recall dark as night gods creating humanity. Any perception of skin colour found on ancient statues containing the black pigmentation will find that it is esoteric and not literal.

        Archeology will shed light on the explosive nature of the white man on the scene of the world pre dating ANCIENT CIVILIZATIONS by 1000′s of years. Native Americans are no more native to the continent of North America than the horse is.

        It is the jew that has caused the white man grief and pain everywhere in the world.

    • C Kane

      ur friend is still treated better than asians in the west by blacks, or whites.

    • C Kane

      all people from the west complaints about how people looking at them, black or white. geez, i wonder what if i had enough of the intimidating looks of the black and white people in brooklyn.
      i think what proofs that the westerners are in a more favourable position, is that the westerners in china are in the position to make fuzz about whatever they dont like, while asians in the west are not in the position to adress the daily discrimination towards them, without being ridiculed and shunned. if there is one thing that the chinese should learn, they should learn to be more selfcentered and put their own interest before everything, instead of making compromises and ”adjust” themselves to the downpressors.

    • marduk

      I’m white and the same thing happens to me when I’m out with my wife.
      Or any other Asian woman for that matter, even a fellow teacher or a student.
      Folks like that fsfsdf guy are all over the place just seething with inadequacy.

  • C Kane

    that’s kind of a self-centered analysis dont you think? why would mao and a country too busy to feed itself care anything about american black civil right movement? what did all those black americans and europeans talking about racism and discrimination all day long do for the asians in the west but making their life more difficult? calling them chingchongs, chopie, spring roll, chop suey, nihaww, chink, ect?

  • fsfsdf

    As a fellow person of color, as a yellow man, I say you have a right to complain. But I bet if you saw a lot of Asian guys with pretty black women, you wouldn’t be too happy either. But a black guy with asian girl is better any day than a piece of shit white supremacist honky whiteboy with his entitle white privileged attitude.

    As long as you don’t show any sort of western privilege, a lot of Asians such as myself would welcome you with open arms. And as long as your goal isn’t to go bang a bunch of Chinese or East Asian girls.

    Let us Peoples of Color be united against the white supremacist motherfuckers who want to keep western imperialism alive.

    • ogunsiron

      As a fellow person of color (don’t really like that term but whatever), I say it might be better to look at the role in world history of a particular type of white.
      A particular type of white that calls itself chosen by god. As a chinese, have you ever heard of the sasooon family ?

      • fsfsdf

        Death to anglos and the ashkenazi jew mutant whites. Yes I am aware. Death to the western imperialist western europeans and american white trash scum.

        • Solomon

          oh so you view ashenazi separate from sephardi and mizani….LOL… and also tie them in with imperialists. Damn. Not to be rude but, does, your family tree have any branches?

          • fsfsdf

            Rothschilds. It isnt any conspiracy. Yes only ashkenazi. If you experienced life as an American born Chinese/East Asian MALE you would understand. But you don’t and even a lot of East Asian American guys are in denial.

          • Selamon

            Again, isn’t this discussion supposed to be about experiences being black in China?

          • ogunsiron

            You may be african but your jewish urge to control the discussion and to decide who thinks what is, I suppose, not that surprising. I’ll leave you with a nice quenelle. Goodbye.

          • Selamon

            *shrug*

          • fsfsdf

            How about you westerners stfu about whatever racism you face in China or East Asia? I am sympathetic towards how blacks may be discriminated against, but I wouldn’t blink a fucking eye of white males begin to be lynched/killed for all their actions in East Asia. In general you westerners have always treated East Asian males with the most disdain, so you can expect the coming decades for the entirety of East Asia to be extremely unwelcoming to non-East Asians, especially the pro-western imperialist pro-American imperialist sort. You westerners have no fucking idea what is in store for you. And no, I’m not Chinese, but I sympathize with why they feel the way they do. You need only look at history and current dynamics to know.

          • Nomoremaos

            Perhaps u should see a psychologist. You really are a sick person.

          • Nomoremaos

            Should we all shed a tear for the poor East Asian American? The way you sound – someone should give u a good ass whooping.

      • Solomon

        ogunsiron, I was so happy you read your words I commented before reading some of your other posts…. Please be aware you are agreeing with the remarks of an African Jew, moi :-)

        • ogunsiron

          Selamon,
          If this were real life I’d be embarassed and apologize for harm caused because I’m not really a mean person.
          What’s your background if I may ask ?
          Are you bene Israel ? An african convert to Judaism ? If you’re what’s known as a Falasha (sorry I don’t know if it’s an offensive term or not but it’s widely used) then, as far as I know, what a lot of people don’t like about the jews doesn’t apply to your ancestors, as far as I know.

          Selamon,
          if i had to put in a nutshell the reason I have something against jews :

          Like a lot of westerners, I’ve grown up with this story that jews have been the eternal victim, the eternally wronged. According to that story, people throughout the centuries and around the world just go crazy every once in a while and they start hating jews, *for no good reason ever, ever ever ever ever*. According to that story, to imagine that the jews might have done some wrong to the people they interacted with is to commit heresy. I accepted that story until a few years ago.

          Then I started to doubt it and I started to read and to connect some dots and I realized just how absurd that story was and I’m still amazed that most of us accept that ridiculoys story. What other people in the entire world has never done wrong to their neighbour ?Could anyone accept that story about the Chinese, the English, the Dominicans, the Maori ? No intelligent person could accept that ridiculous story about any people and yet when it comes to jews we accept that the world just hates them and always has for no damn good reason.

          • Selamon

            Last time I checked, the article people are discussing in this comments section is….experiences of being black in China. Contribute or kindly move on.

          • ogunsiron

            this jew thing started when I said, among other things, that the Chinese should be weary of multiculturalism propaganda and that multiculturalism propaganda was a jewish specialty. I stand by that and you don’t get to set the parameters of the discussion. I’m not your donkey but you can take matheusz over there.

          • fsfsdf

            Let me be clear: western imperialist whites/Americans are on the top of the shit list of us East Asian men, especially white males and ashkenazi jew males.

          • Nomoremaos

            Go f+#k yourself you racist low life.

        • ogunsiron

          Selamon, google “douglas rushkoff corrosive force”. The link is in french but the audio is in english.

          That man is not some nobody. In any case, I claim that the view that he expresses is one that’s shared by many, many jews and especially by the jewish leaders (secular and spiritual). Furthermore, a glance at the old testament shows that Rushkoff’s attitude has been around for a very, very, very long time. In a nutshell, I claim that the jewish people has hated and despised mankind for a very, very, very long time and that this hate and disdain for non-jews has manifested itself in action throughout the centuries.

          It goes without saying that I’m not claiming that you as an individual hate humanity. I do think that throughout history, the proportion of jews who did think that way has been non negligible. Combined with the fact that jewish people have been extremely, extremely capable, that hate for the goyim must have been felt by many

          I don’t think I’m a hypocrit.
          I’m extremely willing to criticize my own demographic actually.

          • Selamon

            Last time I checked, the article people are discussing in this comments section is….experiences of being black in China.

    • Nomoremaos

      You’re a fellow person of shit. You embarrass the Chinese race and show what an ignorant racist sounds like.

    • Junchen Liu

      i understand where you come from, and I was taught the same in our school, but hey f*** it man, lets forget about the color.
      in general its the western counties job to stop us progressing, and its our job to not allow it to happen again. I would give my life to stop it happening.
      I hate the the so called white supremacist as much as you do, and I think the western country is nice in someway, but all this has nothing to do with the color.

  • Xiaoxiao Michelson

    The more we get to know each other, the less likely we would make assumptions on each other without any meaningful interaction.

    The government should do more, and so should each individual.

    • Xiaoxiao Michelson

      One of the best article i have read. Congrats!

    • ogunsiron

      Ridiculous stereotypes will get replaced by stereotypes based on solid knowledge. Yes I did say that some stereotypes are valid and based on fact, and some aren’t.

  • marduk

    Maybe you’re being just a bit sensitive about being black in China.
    I’m white, and in some parts of China which I thought weren’t very backward (such as Shenyang) I could stop people dead in their tracks while the whole family stared at me in disbelief.
    It even happened to me in a Walmart half-way across the store.
    As for being called “heiren”, the only term I’ve heard used to describe blacks is “laohei”, even from my in-laws, so it’s not really that different. But since I don’t know the context, maybe there is another reason they chose “heiren” over “laohei”, just as they occasionally say “bairen” for white people.
    Also, one of the funnier stories I heard from a black teacher in China was her reaction to the use of the “N-word” in China.
    She was shocked when she kept hearing what she thought was “nigga, nigga, nigga” just about everywhere she went. She said it just made her angry that everyone was so rude to use that term when they must have been talking about her.
    Instead, they were using the common Chinese word “nage” which means “that”.
    And, if you notice, sometimes Chinese get excited and stammer just as we do and say “that, that, that” which sounds like “nigga, nigga, nigga”.
    I taught in China in 2003, and I’m sure the “market” has changed since then.
    I suspect that the trend toward “celebrity”-type English instructors has made the market better for people who “fit” a certain pre-conception.
    Most likely being young, and “entertaining” (like a pop star) rather than being older and better educated will get you the job, even if you’re white.
    Even when I was there, there was a certain preference for “single” males over “married” males, so I rarely discussed my family life with my students.
    When you’re often seen as an entertainer as much as a teacher, “looks” matter.

  • marduk

    You know, the more I read here, the more I am reminded that life isn’t always easy for MOST foreigners in China.
    Even the ones who look Chinese.
    Another experience I had was with a Canadian Chinese woman who totally freaked out and had to leave China. For her, it was the fact that she looked Chinese, but couldn’t communicate. So everywhere she went with us, the Chinese would always talk to her as if she were local. And she kept saying “I’m not Chinese”, “I’M NOT CHINESE” and would get louder and louder (not being able to speak Mandarin).
    And she kept doing inappropriate things like buying gifts for her students, which prompted them to buy her gifts and get into that whole “tit-for-tat” thing the Chinese do.
    She basically couldn’t hack living in China and left after a month.
    My wife even has a hard time in China now because when many Chinese men see her with ME, they call her a prostitute. This happened quite a bit in the early 2000′s. It even happened to Chinese female teaching assistants if they were seen with foreign men.

  • Nomoremaos

    Chinese are some of the most racist people out there- even those in other countries. The author seems to imply that with a little understanding, China will eventually get it. Does he have the same attitude toward “white” people as well? Why would anyone go to a primarily mono-ethnic country and somehow think they identify with his feelings of victimhood because they are not white. Quite a stereotype, wouldn’t you say?! I would strongly urge anyone visiting China to understand that there are deep-seated biases and racist attitudes that are just as ingrained as in the West – and probably more so.

  • Junchen Liu

    As a Chinese, I am deeply sorry…. I really can’t deny what you said about the white teacher matter. because in early 2000 I was one of those student, and I noticed, the black teacher in our HUGE language college was none…… on the plus side, its not all just racism, the stupidity or naivety more based on the conclusion that “only white people speaks English well”.

    if you were teaching basketball, I am sure the white teach will be discriminated against….. and all they want is to hang out with you.

    what I am trying to say is, people acting weirdly or stupidly on things they don’t know, and the media played a big part as well, I am sure, if we had a few black friends since our very early age, things will be different.

    I wasn’t trying to find excuse at all. some of the stuff you were experienced was WRONG, and it has to be improved.

    When I say improve, I really hope on both side, the Chinese MUST stop thinking narrowly, must stop any discrimination acts, but on the black peoples side, more education, less crime rate, more achievement on the scientific field is also needed.

    China, is not a country would give a lot respect to the rappers, or pop stars etc.. deep down the root, we think technology and science above all other skills in life.
    again, I am not trying to say, what happen to your was right, and you 100% no deserve any of that bullshit, I was just trying to explain what people are truly thinking in China.

    lets hope, it will change. again apologize for what happen.

    • Junchen Liu

      historically
      black = doing a lot labour work in the farm = lower classed
      white = working on better jobs = upper class
      we not born to be evil, there are long history of this kind of bullshit in human
      history

      yes i said human, which including black people too, look how many black people bleach their skin, look how white nicki minaj’s skin is.

      we all need act on it

    • ogunsiron

      When I say improve, I really hope on both side, the Chinese MUST stop thinking narrowly, must stop any discrimination acts, but on the black peoples side, more education, less crime rate, more achievement on the scientific field is also needed.


      I’m a black man.
      I find that earning the respect of someone like you who has high standards is more gratifying than earning the respect of some white leftist who’s ready to excuse absolutely anything coming from the black community and who’d rather blame those who react to such problems coming from the black community.

      I’d much rather be friends with someone like you who says “I wish black people would shape up” than with a white leftist who says “no no please don’t change anything about yourself because that’s victim blaming and everything is the fault of white privilege man and racism and hitler and the holocaust and the kkk etc etc”

      I read an article a few years ago about tensions between the black community in San Franciso and the Chinese community there. Some local americanized chinese leftist was basically saying that the chinese deserved the violence at the hand of the uneducated black people there because the chinese were racists, didn’t wnt to live with black people, etc. So you Chinese aren’t immune to stupid white lefty thinking.

      Btw, to those who’d call me an uncle tom :
      White people have the right to be as ridiculously critical of their own community as they want. In some White circles it’s like a contest to see who will be hardest on themselves. If whites have the right to self criticize ( and the Chinese do too) then I as a Black man have the right to self-criticize too. If you take me seriously as a real human being then you have to allow me the right to self criticize.

      • Junchen Liu

        if you look back the last 50 years, things have been improved a lot.
        if the king of the earth is a black man. I truly believe in my life time,
        the all sort of discrimination will be long gone. black is a race blessed by the god. I hope there is a better world tomorrow

  • inachu

    I met a black guy in china and he was 24/7 scared about all the men thinking about him being black. The opposite is true of black women in china. The black women in china wear their afro super large. even larger than they did in the 1970′s
    This one black female in Zhengzhou stood at the bus stop like a statue very proud who she was while standing there as if she was a greek goddess.

    I just giggled as I got in the taxi.

  • Daniel Cooper

    What an awe inspiring article man, on my blog:

    voyagetoasia.com

    I’m also targeting these beliefs that Chinese people or Asians in general hate blacks, I, as a student, have been to China namely for 2 semesters non-consecutively, and came in contact with Korea, Japanese, even Thai culture, and to this day, since I just returned 2 months ago, I’ve never been thrown a racist comment. I’m friendly yes, but China was one place, where they love you because your black, which isn’t negative, but lack of exposure. And lots and LOTS of pictures, I love what your doing man. And with my blog, I’m trying to do the same, I hope to bridge cultures and shatter sterotypes with my blog.

  • Pierre

    Thank you for your article and that was the same when you are white or asian in africa, or being asian or black in europe, people are racist, you have to integrate yourself into the culture before you give any weird comments about the local people.
    And you have to remember you can’t generalise everyone. I heard so many friends ( they are black and asian) said they had bad experience in europe , american, asia, everywhere, I mean you have to polite and behave yourself first, we all have preference, so do different countries do, so don’t be mad or being ridiculous why they didn’t write the caution in the metro with your mother language.

  • Caroline

    And also why people in europe are racist towards black or arabs and gypsy? I have a friend from France, he told me French are quite disappointed with those immigrants, except japan,korea, china, us, because they work hard and seldom cause problems to the french citizen unlike black or arab people not working, making babies EATING welfare as those work hard people in France. In France, people pay 30% of their salary as tax to their Repulique, and the government use their taxes pay those people who has no job. unfortunately, some people mis-use the advantage and bringing this country going down. I hope their won’t be another French Revolution coming up the near future.

  • http://www.owenprescott.com/ Owen Prescott

    I wonder how Chinese will receive a mixed race guy, I plan to visit Taiwan first then China at some point.

  • Christopher

    Racism is on the rise in China, and not only against black people (even if it’s still worse against them). In the past 5 years or so the view of foreigners as a whole went from worship to disdain, people are still incredibly nice in smaller cities but first and second-tier cities have more and more nationalistic youth who will provocate and try to start a fight with every foreigners they see. You can’t date with Chinese girls without being insulted by local men, hearing them telling how foreigners are “stealing Chinese women” and so-on, maybe women would consider them if they were showering everyday, but that’s another story. You constantly get cheated on prices and taxi fares because “you are foreigner, thus you have more money, and you must pay more”.
    Anyway I am out of here, this country is becoming unbearable as a foreigner.

  • mikee22

    You write really well. An insightful article. I was in China, Yunnan province, in 1996 for a month. I have travelled to over 60 countries, and for extended periods, on all continents except the Arctic, and have found the culture that is most different from mine, I am Canadian, is China. While Western culture is based on the individual, in Chinese culture the group is predominant and the concept of the individual is subjugated. That may explain why they are somewhat insular, and do not appreciate difference, as they seem to constantly strive for similarity and uniformity. I suppose in socio-historic terms this was required to survive however in a modern context it is neo-fascist.

  • Kadeem-Emmanuel Rafal

    Today I just so happened to run into the international shanghai film festival, and all the Chinese stars had Caucasian dates. I also have many Chinese friends that always say I am okay because “I’m not too dark.” It also amazes me how I see so many Caucasian guys here who would probably have a difficult time finding a partner back in the west easily find a decent successful Chinese women. While I would see Chinese women who would be considered poor with black guys.

  • Lilo Cruz
  • HannibalHonney

    As an Asian (not a Chinese though) who was born in Asia, living in Asia and being around Chinese people all my life, I just have a few things to say.

    In Asia we generally have this annoying strong “obsession” toward white skin, something I really detest now. When I was very young, I remember all local novels and books described a “beautiful” person as having a “Caucasian look”. It wasn’t until I graduated from college that I realized how backward thinking that is, and how wrong and messed up it really is. It was only then that I realized, while it was always a common thing to see local celebs having a white partner, I never ever saw any local celebrities showing off a “black” partner on TV or magazines. It just never happened.

    BUT!! This, though, is taken to a whole new level by Chinese people. It’s even worst in Chinese culture, doesn’t matter which part of Asia they’re in, doesn’t have to be in China. See Yin and Yang for the example. It’s Yin (bad: black) and Yang (good: white), that’s what they have literally been using to make up their minds about people too. Anything dark is BAD. Anything white is GREAT. If you’re dark and you have to live around Chinese, sorry, it’s bad luck all the way, doesn’t matter if you’re as hot as Beyonce or Will Smith, they just CAN’T look past skin color. You’re not gonna have things easy. With Koreans, Japanese, and Southeast Asians, maybe. Not Chinese.

    Finally, if you’re thinking “it’ll get better” or “the younger generations will change it”, then you’re just being completely NAIVE. It won’t change. Not in 10 years, not in 20, not in a million. I just don’t see it happening with Chinese. Other Asians, hard to say, but maybe there’s a possibility for this mentality to change, but definitely not with Asian Chinese; the Chinese who were born, raised, and live in Asia. It won’t happen. It’s THAT bad.

  • 绍鹏 岳

    原来老外也关注人种问题啊,唉,这东西怎么说呢,我是觉得很无聊的。说穿了,就是经济主导文化罢了,啥时候咱中国强了,你再看吧,我就不说了

  • Adithya Raajkumar

    There’s even a lot of racism against non-Han Chinese, Manchus, and other Asians who aren’t Han.

  • minjan

    Chinks are a shallow superficial people. See how many of them go for plastic surgery. They got negative self esteem, no racial or ethnic pride. also see how many of them want to marry white men and have hybrid kids in order to get rid of their self perceived ugly features. Yuks what a race!!

    • ogunsiron

      lol what race are you ? black ?

      yeah I’m sure the chinese, with their history, philosophy, arts and science have a LOT to learn from some stupid african-americans whose only achievement in history has been enslavement and crying about how white people don’t like them.

  • minjan

    The next time they say they are white tell them that they are yellow and pull your eyes back into slits. Thats the only way these people will learn

  • caligirl

    hate to break it to you brotha, but in the words of bell hooks–imperialist-white supremacist-capitalist-patriarchy has infected the entire globe, and it isn’t going to go away gently any time soon. it takes mass resistance. glad that more people are waking up.

    • ogunsiron

      good thing that the Chinese are doing their own thing and not reading a retarded hack like bell hooks.

      I get the feeling that China would not be regaining its place among the world’s greats if she had been pouring over the works of bell hooks lol.

      bell hooks for china ? wow. just wow.

  • Asteroid Man

    I’m a black boy living in China Changchun and i had bad moments but I learnt how to deal with this and overcome no matter what, my lovely girlfriend is a chinese girl and we are both happy together, we don’t care about what people say. ;)

  • Shan Lim

    I’m a Southeast Asian oversea Chinese. When I was growing up I’d never seen a black person except on TV. My first encounter of seeing two black tourists cruising in a tourist district was during my young adult life. I was just very curious and was very much wanting to get to know them better.

    I was always curious not just on Black persons but on all foreigners and the Europeans or Americans, of course. I just wanted to know how they live, their culture and to experience the difference myself.

  • DLS

    I noticed the same situation when I traveled to Guangzhou about 7 or 8 years ago. I was extremely disgusted with the ways that some of my family and some random others talked about “black folks” when they see them… I also witnessed similar occurrences when I was living in Istanbul, Turkey from 2010 to 2013. I speak Cantonese, Turkish (limited fluency) and obviously, English so I pick up a lot of these kinds of comments as I eavesdrop on the things and random comments that people talk about. In Southern China, people there seem to think folks with darker skin are all thieves (same attitudes apply to Turkic minorities in China); In Istanbul, folks seem to think ladies with darker skin are sexual objects/prostitutes from impoverished countries (they also feel the same way towards “Japanese” ladies; and European ladies)… … The idea of possessing “darker skin represents being backward” is highly appalling… I grew up in the South and had spent most of my life right here in the South and for goodness sake even in the “backward South” people don’t act like this (of course there is still the legacy of bedsheets and burning crosses but that is less of a concern now-a-days compared to normalized prejudice, I believe)… I have also discussed this with another friend of mine who is originally from Bulgaria, she mentioned that it seemed to be the norm in many parts of the world – the way they judge people in a darker skin tone… … It’s sickening the way such developing countries seemed to have picked up prejudice ideologies from (i.e. the US in the pre-Civil Rights Era?) without giving people a chance to even disprove such ideologies. I am somewhat furious over such topics, I, myself also experienced such backward-mindedness when I was living in Turkey based on the shape of my eyes…

    I agree with Panman on “adoration for white people” in China. My shallow explanation for this is that since China was conquered, occupied by European powers and continuously feel victimized by modern history, they had never regained their own sense of pride and so they “worship whiteness” in order to fulfill that sense of inferiority instilled by such historical occurrences.

    Prejudice is deep and alive everywhere. I assume it’s a part of human nature to come up with such “rules of thumb” out of certain social and evolutionary needs. The more languages you speak and understand, and the more you try to mingle with folks from different cultures, the more of a chance you will run into situations like these, I believe. The best way to deal with these situations when you are abroad is to get together with folks back home and laugh it off. If you are working in education in these foreign countries, you have a slightly better chance of correcting such behaviors. Be confident, confront and correct them immediately when it happens on your watch! It is very difficult but hang in there, lots of folks out there are going through the same situations world-wide based on whatever that people see in them (sexual orientation, skin tone, political orientations, religion, which part of the country they’re from, etc…)

    • ogunsiron

      The Chinese are not interested in your multiculturalism.

      “Be confident, confront and correct them immediately when it happens on your watch!”

      Lol. With China rising and the West going down, you won’t be able to feel so confident and that’s a good thing. The world doesn’t need more globalist multiculturalist nonsense. China doesn’t need to be run according to the whims of foreigners and small minorities.

      You sound like the typical social justice warrior. With the rise of China, Malaysia, India and Russia, a world is rising where your sick views will be severely challenged.

      Btw, you’re relly not very informed or very smart if you think that the usa south before the 50s is where racial ideas were invented. lol.
      Why don’t you take a look at ancient chinese art and ask yourself if they thought of dark skin as something desirable ? Take a look at ancient Indian and Persian art too.

  • Jay

    China’s conservative ideals is actually what is driving their rise in world power. As a white male, I hope China stays more of a singular culture and becomes the number 1 super power. Humanity is better off with a national ubermensch than under 1 world statism.

  • Kiwipanda

    Chinese people are just ignorant, it lacks the evil of institutional racism in say America. Ha ha in the West if they have a problem with your skin colour, they will just use some other fancy word to deny your job application.

  • mrkushman ha

    Wow…guess I better think twice before I move to china and possibly Japan too sense I always wanted to go there

  • wilf lawrence

    If people of color (or blacks), had originated from countries or continent with superior economies and high standard of living, would they be treated as though they migrated from another planet? One racist in a forum said, and I quote, “we need to purge the earth of this scourge(blacks)”, and I thought, gush.., how hateful this person is. People of other races consider us africans too cheap and gullible. Africans, as a people, haven’t actually grown and advanced enough to create a certain uniqueness or originally associated with Asians, Europeans and north americans. What adversely affected that originality and uniqueness was the manner we accepted with open arms Christianity and islam. Although nothing about religion is mentioned here, I am of the opinion that we lost the essential ingredient needed to foster innovative and courageous character when we jettisoned our culture and accepted islam and Christianity. We were looking for acceptance by adopting the religions of the Europeans and people from the east. These alien religions and cultures may have been forced on us at gun point but our tacit adoption of them haven’t helped us grown into people of power and grace as promised but rather a people who would rather favour shortcuts over hard work and thoroughness. In today’s world, and as always, superiority in knowledge and economy win. Color is secondary. You will have many friends if you are rich and powerful, but we are considered poor and inept as a people. We need to break with these traditions forced on us. We have split personality. Let’s work on that first and we’d found acceptance.

  • IAF101

    Chinese society has always been deeply prejudicial – same goes with the Japanese. It wasn’t until America totally neutered Japan in WW2 did the Japanese actually being to consider that perhaps they were not the master race.
    Wealth and insularity engender such prejudices.

  • threadbarebridge

    in the Chinese mind nationalism is a virtue–extreme nationalism an a ++ virtue. they have no appreciation of racism and its full hideous connotation; so they don’t see there’s not a hair that can get in between of extreme nationalism and racism.

    • ogunsiron

      You’re right that the chinese haven’t yet learned that they have this huge “diversity” problem that will be solved once china starts to import millions of non-chinese. They haven’t yet learned that their history is nothing but criminality. They haven’t yet learned that they have no culture and that only foreigners have culture.

  • californiagirl

    I loved your article! I was just googling information for an essay about wether or not racism began in America. I know racism did not begin in America, but some many of my peers are naive to this thought. I was particularly drawn to your article having lived in China myself, however I am fair skinned and did not have your same experience. Thank you for sharing, I found it very interesting and eye opening! You write very well! And I bought the crazy whitening cream on accident once! My hard earned college summer tan gone and slightly splotchy from that stuff! Crazy!