Some people have taken to social media to criticize a selected passage from a chapter from Issa Rae's 2015 book The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl. The passage in question is about black women and Asian men, and it began making its rounds on social media although many have come to Issa Rae's defense, dismissing it as satire and urging others to discuss its context.
Screenshots of the "Insecure" creator's book features passages about dating and black women and Asian men being at the "bottom of the dating totem pole" in the United States. For years, and particularly when this book was published, discussions and studies on online dating have indeed revealed that Asian men and black women are the least sought groups for dating preferences.
Are we shocked Issa Rae wrote this? I'm not pic.twitter.com/8F7EtpaWYm
— Fidel Cashflow (@TommyDreamer___) April 29, 2018
Many have argued that Issa Rae's chapter was satirical and intended to bring awareness to race when dating in the United States. One Twitter user, @DrRondreaMathis, argued that "context matters" when reading shared screenshots of the book's chapter.
"Because context matters," she wrote in part. "And because I read her book. And because I taught her book."
On Issa Rae.
Because context matters. And because I read her book. And because I taught her book.
The first pic is the intro to the book, which I’ll come back to. 2-4 are the whole section that’s been shared. pic.twitter.com/jffPNI5L1W
— Fierce & Feminine (@DrRondreaMathis) April 30, 2018
Issa Rae said to Black women and Asian men since you're both smart and successful and your own race aint checking for you then maybe yall should consider each other…
I dont get the fake outrage. It was a joke…Sprinkled with truth.
— The Prince of Southwick (@AndreDelaghetto) April 30, 2018
Issa Rae told the educated black women to get them an Asian man. I want to be mad but I see the countless tweets of black men telling black women that they unattractive and undeserving. So… pic.twitter.com/4aScBMsy7p
— Empty Headed Mary Poppin Knockoff (@PKPhyre85) April 30, 2018
Issa Rae basically said successful black women are not heavily sought out by black men & successful Asian men are not heavily sought out by anyone . Therefore , the two should date . I see no issue . Queen Issa . Next case
— IDontReplyToDMs (@DamnSheBADD__) April 30, 2018
But some on Twitter expressed their dismay with the passages, sparking discussions on race and interracial dating:
I say if a black man said what Issa Rae said y’all would flip. Coming in my mentions telling me that black men do it too is showing how y’all would rather deflect Instead of admitting she was wrong
— Domonique???????????? (@ChefDomonique) April 30, 2018
An influential black woman (Issa rae) is telling black women to procreate with Asian men because they will intellectually suit black women in her book…. Christ what have we done as black men to be shitted on like this?
— DreTookHer???????? (@RealBeardedDre) April 29, 2018
Also again BM we have to do better to let our BW know that we love and support them no matter what, those that see BM degrading our women need to nut up and protect them. We can’t keep circulating around this same rhetoric that have our women thinking we are trash it’s toxic!
— DreTookHer???????? (@RealBeardedDre) April 30, 2018
Many on social media also argued that people should read Issa Rae's book in its entirety before critiquing selected passages while others were called out for not understanding satire. The actress has not publicly commented on the debate at the time this article was published.