While the spread shows a number of African American women (including first lady Michelle Obama -- played by Alicia Keys -- Billie Holiday, and tennis star Althea Gibson), and one (ONE!) Latina (Dolores Huerta played by, who else, American Ferrera), there are no Asian American women. None. (Note to the world: Camilla Belle, who plays Mary Tyler Moore, is half-Brazilian. She couldn't have played Rita Hayworth, or something?)
Why? It's not because Asian American women have contributed nothing to US history and achievements. Maya Lin, Anna May Wong, Vera Wang, Connie Chung, Michiko Kakutani, Patsy Mink, Thelma Buchholdt, Michelle Kwan, and Kristi Yamaguchi were not merely pioneering Asian Americans, but groundbreakers in their own fields of design, entertainment, journalism, criticism, politics, and sports.
And it's not like there are no Asian American actresses to play them. I'd love to see Vanessa Hudgens do Anna May Wong, or Grace Park posing before the Vietnam Memorial as Maya Lin.
So, for Women's History Month, I'm going to do a few profiles of Asian American women. PLEASE HELP ME by suggesting women you'd like me to profile. (And you can even profile them yourselves and put the links in comments here. If there are enough, I'll do a links post.)
I'm going to start here with our very own Yuri Kochiyama in my next post, longtime activist and godmother to Asian American social justice workers everywhere. You can see a video of her above, which will give you some little idea of her placement in history. Which actress/model do you think should play her in a Glamour photo shoot in a perfect world?