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Dora Zhao


Straight Outta Asia

Asian Americans have a wide range of unique stories—stemming from their background, family, identity—that have been largely ignored by mass media. Instead, they are portrayed as one-dimensional tropes, creating the illusion that the Asian American experience is monolithic. 

Another symptom of yellow fever

It is hard, almost impossible, to undo centuries of internalized oppression. People of color have been historically pitted against each other, driving deep-seeded wedges between their communities. But there is still possibility for change.

The problem with bad sex

Rather than slotting “bad sex” as unavoidable, we need to take it as a symbol of how society has stigmatized female sexuality. Blanket advice, telling women to better use verbal cues and just say stop, is not the solution. It unfairly places all the blame on the victim. If we want to address sexual assault, we need to start by examining our society’s toxic sexual culture and the role we play in upholding it.

Let’s talk about sex

By subverting the indoctrinated and threatening stigma about sex, we will be able to better engage in active dialogue with our partners and give clearer consent.

What a letter can mean

For 18 years, I have mispronounced my own last name for convenience. My last name is Zhao. It is a gift passed down from my grandfather to my father and now to me. It is the first last name listed on the Hundred Family Surnames — the traditional 100 most common Chinese surnames — and one of the few connections that I have to my parents’ homeland.

What sex & power have to do with academia

When accusations against Harvey Weinstein were first brought to light this October, it seemed like another stand-alone case. After the media cycle moved on to another story, the film industry would return to its normal ways, waiting until the next Weinstein was revealed. 

The speaker series we should all be going to

Lecture series at Princeton are ubiquitous. Any given day, there will be a number of visiting professors, foreign dignitaries, and leading experts on almost every academic topic. But the one speaker series that every Princeton student should be attending is the Asian American Studies Speaker Series hosted by the Program in American Studies.

Whiteness as a construct, not a color

  The key distinction to be made is that the term whiteness refers to a construct, not a color. When saying that whiteness is the root of racism, it is not a castigation of all Caucasian people. Rather, it is the recognition and repudiation of a negative ideology founded in the imbalance of powers between races. Whiteness is far more about superiority than it is about color.