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The term “sexual racism” has roots in the 1970s and was defined by Rutgers University professor Charles Herbert Stember as the “sexual rejection of the racial minority” and “the conscious attempt on the part of the majority to prevent interracial cohabitation.” Modern usage of the term frequently refers to racial prejudice that’s disguised as “just a preference” on dating apps and in real-life social settings.
However, this casual framing of racism ignores the greater impact it has on the lives and self-esteem of racial minorities who are already portrayed as being less desirable in mainstream media and society at large.
But it does illuminate problematic dynamics that can occur in these situations.
Another contentious topic in the dating world is the fetishization of minorities by white people.
It’s no coincidence that Oscar-winning filmmaker Jordan Peele employed the horror genre in his 2017 film “Get Out” to examine this phenomenon.
Racial fetishism also demands a level of performance from the person of color who may not naturally exude the traits you expect them to have.
This isn’t to say that any sort of attraction a white person has for a person of color is inherently problematic.
In fact, if you’re a white person who’s only ever attracted to white people it’s probably worth examining any internalized feelings you have toward people of color.