For anyone who thinks that Hapa disgust at white worship and the forcing of Hapa children into a corner as their “beautiful experiments” – is a new thing, with the rise of /r/hapas.
I acknowledge that there is real value in mediating a Hapa person’s identity, multiple or not, through a literal framework of being seen through a still image or video because it is in response to a very real, historical tradition of deletion. I understand the desire to isolate Hapa celebrities from the crowd because it’s in response to a historical tradition of hiding.
But neither gestures are enough.
A while ago, I eavesdropped on a couple thumbing through the book version of Part Asian, 100% Hapa at a gift shop. And as they cooed and reveled through each picture, I learned then that it is not enough to be visible. It is not enough to be written. It is not enough if a reaction like the couple’s at the shop is the result of an exhibition like Part Asian, 100% Hapa or of the sea of navel gazing on YouTube; if the result of Fulbeck’s subjects turn to mute and naked objects – mere models for a United Colors of Benetton catalog – reinscribing the same dominant narratives they had aimed to deconstruct.
I don’t know what is, but it is not enough.