Friday, February 10, 2012

Do Asian Women Have Sideways Vaginas?


Ah, the power of the Internets! Just when you think you've heard of every possible sexual slang term or depraved fetish that could ever exist, you learn a new one. Earlier this week, the parody of Pete Hoekstra's racist "debbie spend it now" ad revealed to me the claim that Asian or Chinese women have "sideways vaginas."


I mean who hasn't heard about vaginas with teeth, but -- sideways vaginas? And even though its been the subject of internet speculation since as far back as 1993--making it ancient already, and remains an important topic for the pathetic yahoo answers crowd, its quite an authentically old myth.

A video clip with a sideways vagina joke:

UC-Santa Cruz professor Judy Yung has written that the rumor dates back at least to the 1850s. It may have arisen from the interface of the Chinese with the English, who took over Hong Kong in the 1840s. British writer Colin Watson, writing in 1971 about the treatment of Asian subjects in English crime stories, noted "the widespread belief that the labial plane of a Chinese vagina was horizontal instead of vertical and consequently less prized by native sensualists." Apparently, you could titillate British audiences with stories of white women and their superior vertical vaginas being kidnapped for exploitation in the Chinese brothel market.

A 1970 erotica study opines that the myth is "American folklore" that has persisted because Chinese-Americans were historically segregated from the general American population. In other words, because men were unable to regularly sample Chinese vajayjays in the name of science or otherwise, American men were forced to conclude the rumor must be true. However, since many American men in the military served in Asia between WWII and Vietnam, the myth may have been kept alive as an obvious joke. Certainly the joke seems to have been fairly well spread among American men by the 1940s.

The exact reason why the idea of the sideways vagina was invented is unclear. Intense investigation of internet speculation suggests two theories (1) Asians have "slanted" eyes, so someone suggested that Asian vaginas are slanted as well; and (2) Asian women are generally smaller and thus have smaller and "tighter" vaginas, and somehow this makes them sideways for no clear reason.

Cracked magazine suggests that sailors visiting Asia probably came up with it, since they already believed manatees were really hot mermaids. And considering the problems of having sex with mermaids, I guess sailors must be really fucked up to come up with these things. Probably just extremely horny, actually.

Today the sideways vagina legend has become solely the stuff of humor. In a 2001 Saturday Night Live skit, Alex Baldwin played on a number of well-known Chinese stereotypes, and exclaimed, "I know the womenfolk have sideways vaginas! But underneath their scales, they're just like you and me."

And then there's this joke I picked up in my researches:
A man picks up a Chinese hooker, and as she's taking him upstairs, he asks, "Is it true Oriental women have a horizontal vagina?

She looks at him and says, "Why, do you play harmonica?"
So there you have it. If you don't believe me, google up some asian porn.

1. Yung, Judy. Unbound voices: a documentary history of Chinese women in San Francisco, p. 136 (1999)
2. Edwardes, Allen et al. The cradle of erotica:
a study of Afro-Asian sexual expression and an analysis of erotic freedom in social relationships
, p. 44 (1970) ("American folklore has the has the Chinese vagina "sideways". In the United States, Chinese-Americans remain for the most part self -segregated and their women will seldom have anything to do sexually with a non-Chinese male. Thus, by want of opportunity to put it to the test, the legend of the sideways' vagina is maintained.")
3. Watson, Colin. Snobbery with violence: English crime stories and their audience (1971)
4. Flox, AV (6 July 2007). The Sideways Vagina, Blackheart Magazine
5. (November 1993 thread). Oriental vaginas
6. (February 2006 thread).Sideways vaginas
7. Snopes. com (March 2007 thread). Asian Sexuality Rumors
8. Yahoo Answers (2010 thread). Is it true that Chinese girls have horizontal vaginas?
9. (March 2004 thread). Where Did The Belief That Asian Women Are 'Sideways' Originate? (worthwhile comment: "but I've run across the concept in fiction from the 1940s (artfully relayed so that they convey the idea without being gross and explicit). Those sources treated it as an old joke, and an obviously ridiculous one. I don't think any of these took it at all seriously, or intended it as racist")
10. The Amazing Ben. The Sideways Vagina Song (March 2010) (the only known song dedicated to sideways vaginas)

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Friday, February 03, 2012

Komen Founder Admitted in 2010 Memoir That Dropping PP Funding Would Be "Turning Our Backs" On Poor Women

There is a huge and growing uproar this week over the Komen Foundation's politically-motivated decision to cut its funding for breast cancer screening to Planned Parenthood.

The decision could cut off the only access to breast health counseling available to poor women in some parts of the United States. An inflammatory claim to be sure, but the founder of the Komen group has told us that is exactly what may happen.

In 2010, Komen founder and Nancy Brinker published "Promise Me", a memoir of how the group was founded and grew, starting from the deathbed promise made to her sister, Susan G. Komen, who died of breast cancer in 1980.

In the book, she discusses how the Curves workout chain withdrew their support to Komen in 2004 due to Komen's grants to Planned Parenthood centers. Brinker is clear about why they refused to buckle to Curves' pressure:
"The grants in question supplied breast health counseling, screening, and treatment to rural women, poor women, Native American women, many women of color who were underserved--if served at all--in areas where Planned Parenthood facilities were often the only infrastructure available. Though it meant losing corporate money from Curves, we were not about to turn our backs on these women."
Until this week, apparently. Wow.

Brinker continues to make clear that Komen's PP funding has nothing to do with abortions, and that although they were sad to lose Curves' support -- "we remain focused on our mission."

Until now it seems. Ugh.

Book excerpt below

ETA 9:15am PST: Komen seems to be backing down today, but its a bit ambiguous. The admission by Brinker in 2010 above is important in any event.

ETA: 1:11pm PST: Thanks to John Green, Little Green Footballs, Shoq and all who have retweeted, reposted, facebooked, etc., this story.