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So where is this "obsession" with ethnic Jewish women? I don't know a single soul who has a burning "obsession" for these ethnic LI and SI women. Non-ethnic Jewish women such as Scarlett Johansson, Kate Hudson, or Rachel Bilson are sometimes attractive and desirable.
Yet, to see “Jewishness” accepted as beautiful is not exactly the same thing as being the object of a fetish.
A good friend of mine, who is Chinese-American, once told me that she was nervous to date white men because she could never be sure if they liked her for who she was, or if they just wanted to date “an Asian girl.” Noxon mentions the rise of non-Jewish men (he calls them “goyfriends”) trolling on Jewish dating sites for Jewish women. Is it because we’re awesome, or because we have become the object of their fetish?
Perhaps the real attraction to the “sultry Jewess” is that she is ethnic and exotic, but still white.
There was a time in American history when Jews were not considered white, a notion common in Europe as well.
Today, American Jews occupy a fuzzy space between power and marginalization, and between whiteness and “the exotic.” Noxon’s piece embodies that bridge of identities. Tamar Fox of Mixed Multitudes was somewhere in between being offended and flattered.
This is interesting, because even Noxon recognizes the fact that Jewish women have had to overcome a few unflattering stereotypes, such as “frigidity, whininess, and big hair.” We have discussed this quite a bit at Jewesses with Attitude.As Judith candidly put it in our conversation about this article, “Anything that fetishizes or stereotypes a whole category of people is never a good starting point.” In the piece, Noxon attempts to explain the attraction to Jewish women.He notes the “double mitzvah” of sex on Shabbat as evidence that Judaism encourages women to be sexually open and adventurous.That, plus there is the added appeal of defiling a “nice Jewish girl.” But that is not the whole story.All minority women share the experience of being exoticized.If we are all being honest here, without reverting to the knee-jerk reaction of accusing me of Antisemitism, we can agree there are very few poor souls fetishizing ethnic Long Island Jews. As a side note, right out of college I lived in Israel for a year working for Intel. The great looking Ashkenazi sabras have been there since 1948 or before and have mixed in well.