Is Sexual Racism Really Racism? Distinguishing Attitudes Toward Sexual Racism and Generic Racism Among Gay and Bisexual Men
- 2.1k Downloads
Sexual racism is a specific form of racial prejudice enacted in the context of sex or romance. Online, people use sex and dating profiles to describe racialized attraction through language such as “Not attracted to Asians.” Among gay and bisexual men, sexual racism is a highly contentious issue. Although some characterize discrimination among partners on the basis of race as a form of racism, others present it as a matter of preference. In May 2011, 2177 gay and bisexual men in Australia participated in an online survey that assessed how acceptably they viewed online sexual racism. Although the men sampled displayed diverse attitudes, many were remarkably tolerant of sexual racism. We conducted two multiple linear regression analyses to compare factors related to men’s attitudes toward sexual racism online and their racist attitudes more broadly. Almost every identified factor associated with men’s racist attitudes was also related to their attitudes toward sexual racism. The only differences were between men who identified as Asian or Indian. Sexual racism, therefore, is closely associated with generic racist attitudes, which challenges the idea of racial attraction as solely a matter of personal preference.
KeywordsSexual racism Gay men Online dating Racialized attraction Racial prejudice Sexual orientation
- Allport, G. (1979). The nature of prejudice: 25th anniversary edition. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
- Altman, D. (2002). Global sex. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2013). Australia 2011 census data. Accessed on 15 August 2013 from www.abs.gov.au/census.
- Ayala, G., Bingham, T., Kim, J., Wheeler, D. P., & Millett, G. A. (2012). Modeling the impact of social discrimination and financial hardship on the sexual risk of HIV among Latino and Black men who have sex with men. American Journal of Public Health, 102(S2), S242–S249.PubMedCentralCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Brown, R. (2011). Prejudice: Its social psychology. West Sussex, England: Wiley-Blackwell.Google Scholar
- Callander, D., Holt, M., & Newman, C. (2013). Preference or prejudice: Exploring and challenging race-based attraction among gay and bisexual men in Australia. Poster presented at the conference of the International Association for the Study of Sex, Culture and Society, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Retrieved from http://bit.ly/QcgzYy.
- Callander, D., Holt, M., & Newman, C. (2015). ‘Not everyone’s gonna like me’: Accounting for race and racism in Australian sex and dating webservices for gay and bisexual men. Ethnicities. doi:10.1177/1468796815581428.
- Caluya, G. (2006). The (gay) scene of racism: Face, shame and gay Asian males. Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association e-Journal, 2, online. http://www.acrawsa.org.au/files/ejournalfiles/80GilbertCaluya.pdf.
- Dasko, D. (2003). Public attitudes towards multiculturalism and bilingualism in Canada. Paper presented at the Canadian and French Perspectives on Diversity Conference, Ottawa, Canada. Retrieved from http://www.queensu.ca/cora/_files/diversity_dasko.pdf.
- Dunn, K. (2004). Racism in Australia: Findings of a survey on racist attitudes and experiences of racism. Paper presented at the Challenges of Immigration and Integration in the EU and Australia conference, Sydney, Australia. Retrieved from https://digitalcollections.anu.edu.au/bitstream/1885/41761/4/dunn_paper.pdf.
- Dunn, K., Forrest, J., Burnley, I., & McDonald, A. (2004). Constructing racism in Australia. Australian Journal of Social Issues, 39, 409–430.Google Scholar
- Hage, G. (1998). White nation: Fantasies of White supremacy in a multicultural society. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Han, A. (2006a). I think you’re the smartest race I’ve ever met: Racialised economies of queer male desire. Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association e-Journal, 2, online. http://espace.library.uq.edu.au/view/UQ:229149/AlanHan.pdf.
- Hernton, C. (1965). Sex and racism in America. New York: Anchor Books.Google Scholar
- Hull, P., Mao, L., Kolstee, J., Duck, T., Prestage, G., Zablotska, I., et al. (2014). Gay community periodic survey: Sydney 2014. Sydney: Centre for Social Research in Health, UNSW Australia.Google Scholar
- Mansfield, T., & Quan, A. (2013). Sexual racism sux! Accessed 1 June 2013. http://www.sexualracismsux.com/.
- Matheson, J. (2012, December 14). I’m a sexual racist. Sydney Star Observer. Retrieved from http://www.starobserver.com.au/opinion/soapbox-opinion/im-a-sexual-racist/91678.
- McBride, D. (2005). Why I hate Abercrombie & Fitch. New York: New York University Press.Google Scholar
- Plummer, M. (2008). Sexual racism in gay communities: Negotiating the ethnosexual marketplace. Doctoral dissertation, University of Washington. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.washington.edu/researchworks/handle/1773/9181
- Raj, S. (2011). Grindring bodies: Racial and affective economies of online queer desire. Australian Critical Race and Whiteness Studies Association e-Journal, 7(2), 55–67.Google Scholar
- Rapley, M. (2001). How to do X without doing Y’: Accomplishing discrimination without ‘being racist’-‘doing equality’. In M. Augoustinos & K. Reynolds (Eds.), Understanding prejudice, racism, and social conflict (pp. 213–250). London: Sage.Google Scholar
- Smith, J. (2012). Sexual racism in a gay community on the US-Mexico border: Revisiting the Latin Americanization thesis online. Master’s thesis, University of Texas. Retrieved from http://digitalcommons.utep.edu/dissertations/AAI1513118/.
- StataCorp. (2011). Stata statistical software: Release 12. College Station, TX: StataCorp LP.Google Scholar
- Stember, C. (1978). Sexual racism: The emotional barrier to an integrated society. New York: Harper & Row.Google Scholar
- Thalhammer, E., Zucha, V., Enzenhofer, E., Salfinger, B., & Ogris, G. (2001). Attitudes towards minority groups in the European Union. Vienna, Austria: European Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia. Retrieved from http://ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/archives/ebs/ebs_138_analysis.pdf.
- Watts, J. (2012, February 29). Gay men and women are not more racist. The Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.