The E-mail Order Bride as Postcolonial Other: Romancing the Filipina in Web-based Narratives


Romancing the Filipina on the Web is a nostalgic exercise that serves to reinforce the American colonialist ego, on the one hand, and Western-American machismo, on the other in the light of 9/11 and the continuing disintergration of familial units in the developed world. Significantly, these constructions are manifestly orientalist, partaking as they do of hysterical, hard-sell tactics. Here, the Filipina is a postcolonial Other who is simultaneously exoticized, eroticized and tribalized by means of fairy tale narratives that idealize intercultural marriages, testimonials from satisfied customers that guarantee success, and pictures that both tease and please the patriarchal gaze. Yet, while web space is hegemonic space, there are Baudellairian insurgencies within this textual domain that challege the mail order bride imagology. These texts serve as blueprints for the de/reconstructionist agenda that seeks to articulate marginal voices in the new fronteir that is the world-wide web.