If you follow my frantic tweets, you know I joined the Webcomic Beacon crew, Ross, Alex, and Mark this past Sunday for their live webcomic newscast. Fortunately, if you missed it, they recorded the audio and it’s up for listening!

Among the many news topics is the whole kurtzfluffle (see what I did there) over The Economist article highlight The Oatmeal. The discussion thread over at Daily Cartoonist (my daily source for all sorts of comic drama) of the article kind of exploded when Scott Kurtz weighed in declaring that The Oatmeal is not a webcomic and that its author is not a cartoonist. Kurtz expanded on his thoughts on his own podcast, Webcomics Weekly, and, well, I guess Ross couldn’t resist so we took a stab at it as well.

Source: Webcomic Beacon

Amy Chua is a mother who wrote a piece for the Wall Street Journal entitled Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior. It’s not satire. Chua actually believes this drek. I challenge you to read this piece of racist shit without doing this:

Van Der Meme Nausea

Way to be a raging stereotype, lady.

Look, I recognize that every culture has accepted methods for raising children and I understand that people from different countries bring their cultural perceptions of child rearing with them to America. But no parenting method is superior to another.

What’s worse is that she holds herself up as a model Chinese mother. This can’t be farther from the case. My mother is Chinese and never treated me or my brother like Chua describes. My mom’s mother is Chinese from the mainland and never treated her four children in the manners described. The only parenting methods Chua can realistic describe are her own and possibly her mother’s. But to claim that she stands for all Chinese mothers is insulting.

I hate it when people claim to speak for an entire ethnicity. It implies that we can all be put into little boxes and categories and written off with a few generalized characteristics. People are not so easy to understand. Minorities already face an uphill battle when it comes to people defining us with generalizations. And now people can point to Chua’s article as justification for the Hardass Asian Mother stereotype, “See, she says they’re all hardasses just like her! It’s true, it’s true!” Ugh.

The video that accompanies the article is far less insulting. But I’d like to point out, ladies, that all parents sacrifice for their children.

After SPX 2010, I did a rather long case study of the event going over what I learned and how I approached the convention. As the 2011 con season is already gearing up, I thought I’d do something similar with Katsucon 2011 which goes from February 18th to 20th. Now this isn’t technically a report since the con isn’t until February. But I thought I’d share some thoughts about what I’m thinking for this upcoming show.
↓ Read the rest of this entry…

The lads at Epic Meal Time have done it again. This time they head to Wok Cafe to create an Epic Eggroll filled with all sorts of Cantonese and Hunan style goodies.

You know, as disgustingly epic as this is, this is probably the most healthy thing these crazy dudes have put in their faces.

An AZM reader Colleen sent along this link to the Asians Sleeping In The Library tumblr. The tag line of the site extolls our stereotypical virtues as hard workers:

They’re better at life and they get better grades than you for a reason. Pictures of Asian students from Universities sleeping in the library and lecture halls. Upload pictures using the link below.

Wow, that’s some serious Yellow envy there. On the one hand, I think this is pretty funny, mostly because I find people sleeping in awkward positions horribly entertaining. I also get that it’s intended to be a weird sort of celebration of the idea that Asian students work so hard and spend so much time at the library, that they forgo the comforts of their dorm rooms and sleep where they study to maximize learning potential.

On the other hand, this makes me slightly uncomfortable. It’s not that I can’t take a joke or laugh at myself. I just don’t like the idea of being boiled down to a stereotype. There’s no context to these photos. Maybe the roommate is banging the shit out of someone and the library is a comforting refuge from the sounds of carnal collegiate activity. Maybe campus housing fucked up again and kicked the person out week early. Maybe they’re afraid to go home because of the ridicule and abuse that await them. Maybe they just broke up with their significant other and the heart break is just too exhausting and hurtful to maintain consciousness. Without context, all we have is the assumption of the site that these are studious Asians who’d rather sleep in the library than waste time traveling home to a shower and comfy bed.

The other thing that kinda creeps me out is the voyeuristic idea of stalking Asians on campus and snapping pictures of them when they’re sleep. Stalk much? It’s like a weird kinda racial upskirt voyeur site that just feels a little squicky.

Of course, you’re reading a site that’s named after a horrible Asian invective so my populist outrage can only go so far.

I can appreciate the humor of the site. And I’m not going to pretend I didn’t laugh. But I probably won’t be visiting it all that often.

Asians Sleeping in the Library