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What Does "Yellow Fever Dating" Mean?

One term you may encounter when reading online dating profiles is yellow fever.  It's usually couched in a phrase like, "I'm not looking for guys with yellow fever" or "If you've got yellow fever, move on." What does this mean?

Yellow fever, within the dating world, has nothing to do with mosquito-borne viruses.  It is a syndrome where a person is attracted to another person chiefly because the object of interest is of Asian ancestry.

Usually, it's men who are "infected" with yellow fever, but you find the occasional woman, too.  One woman in Sacramento says:  "I have suffered much of my life from yellow fever, so guys....if you are Asian, that's a BIG plus to me!"

Reasons for yellow fever are as varied as the people who have it.  For men, they may believe that Asian woman are compliant and submissive--a notion forwarded by years of movies, TV, and books portraying Asian women as geisha-types.

For both men and women with yellow fever, there is also the idea that Asian people are spiritual and grounded, and that they spout wise, Confucian aphorisms on an hourly basis.

For Asians, yellow fever can feel demeaning because it objectifies them.  They become an object (an Asian person with pre-conceived characteristics) rather than an individual person with their own unique qualities.



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