This is the course blog for ICS24/ELIT24, Asian American Literature, at De Anza College
Good question. It really depends on how comfortable the Asian individual you are talking to is with themselves. From my experience Asians don't like a lot of jokes or statements regarding how much they like rice or noodles. They also don't like the "you can't see me" statements. As far as topics go I would think that we don't want to talk about Pearl Harbor when talking to Japanese people and don't make fun of Chinese New Year's customs when talking to Chinese people. As a matter of fact its best not to make fun of any Chinese customs whatsoever.
I think it depends on the context, and relationship. If i'm talking to my friends, I can easily joke around about their race, as we understand that we're joking.I think the most important thing is that even if you know something about Asians, whether from a history class or a movie, remember that if you're not that race, you don't speak for that race. Even if you learned that Filipinos take their shoes off, don't say "George takes his shoes off whenever he goes in to a building, it is a Filipino custom." because 1) you might be incorrect (as we don't take our shoes off in every building, just in house holds) but also 2) there's always an exception. If you have the need to say it, don't state it as a fact, but instead add something for their approval, like "I heard that Filipinos take their shoes off when they enter a building, George is that true?"
When you see Asians, scream out..Ay Ding Dong!..Mexicans.. What Sup Ese? ..Whites.. Sup Niggas! ..Africans.. Oh Shit Po Po!Wait... you want to talk to these people? -Tu Nguyen(If you're offended... Hahaha)
I think a delicate issue would be assuming others or perceiving others because of where their from or where they grew up. For example if someone met a Japanese person and people ask right away if they like ramen. It would assume that they perceive anyone Japanese they meet would like ramen. However most people should have a different mindset that people no matter what ethnicity they are can have different food or hobby preferences.- Jeofrey Reyes
i've never encountered a problem with discussing a topic with asian american. but try not to discuss about stereotypes towards them. it is just impolite.
If I'm hanging out with asian friends, I'll usually refrain from making jokes about their small eyes or making fun of asian moms with the sun visors or asian accents. Who knows? it could be their mom with the visor and the thick accent. And their small eyes might be one of their biggest insecurities that you're tearing apart. I never make fun of people based on their race.
Honestly, I have nothing against people making fun of Asians loving noodles or rice, or how we have small eyes because it is all true. However, I get really heated when I get called a derogatory term -- like chink or gook. Also, if you're going to insult me, at least use the right term.