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Professor writes article defending ‘Asian romantic preference’—and no one is here for it



Siobhan Ball

Internet Culture

Published Jul 18, 2019   Updated May 20, 2021, 8:26 am CDT

The internet is full of creepy fetishists of one kind or another but taking to an academic journal to defend said fetish is a new one. Stephen Kershnar, a distinguished professor of philosophy at SUNY Fredonia, has published In Defense of Asian Romantic Preference in The International Journal of Applied Philosophy.

People were horrified to discover that Kershner is not only a real academic but also has tenure.

Now in the interests of transparency, we should mention here that we don’t know if Kershnar shares that preference himself. As a philosopher, he’s written a number of similar and even more disturbing articles, including For Torture: a Right-Based Defense and Adult-Child Sex: a Philosophical Defense, and they may all be mere thought exercises designed to display his professional skills. 

However, if that is the case, choosing these topics to illustrate his abilities is still a bad move, and the internet cannot stop howling about it.

Some users are trying to look on the bright side.

Though others were more cynical about it.

With other academics commenting on the dire state of the discipline these days.

And one brave soul contacting the journal to demand an explanation.

There’s some keen speculation on the man’s personal life.


And quite a lot of women taking exception to the idea that any woman would fight over either him or his hypothetical Asian fetishist.

Twitter user Yen Rong-Wong is torn over whether she should engage academically or just write it off as irrelevant depravity.

All in all, the professor is being thoroughly dragged all over Twitter.

The Daily Dot reached out to Kershnar for a comment, and we’ll update this article if we receive a response.


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*First Published: Jul 18, 2019, 4:57 pm CDT