The Museum of Chinese in America maintains an extensive archive and collection of Chinese American artifacts and oral histories. MOCA Mondays will briefly highlight one image or item from the collection and/or past exhibitions. For more information, visit our website.
This image was included in the show “Archivist of the Yellow Peril: Yoshio Kishi Collecting for a New America”. Yellow peril is a term for the race-based fear that an influx of Asian immigrants would threaten white standards of living. It was also a frequent theme in pulp entertainment in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, with villains portrayed much in the manner above, where a long-nailed Chinese man is depicted as threatening a white woman. This and other stereotypes are also explored at the Museum in the core exhibition.
MOCA wants to know: how do you respond to this? When you look at an image like this, what thoughts or emotions are stirred? We invite you to share with us in the comments section.