Morin Naka. 2011
Kasper Sonne - Borderline: New Territory (2012) - Industrial paint, fire and water on canvas
— Haruki Murakami (What I Talk About When I Talk About Running)
U.S. Marines bathe and wash their uniforms in the Pacific Ocean during a lull in the fighting during the Battle of Saipan. The marine in the foreground uses sand as a grit to remove dirt and stains. Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands. July 1944.
Latin women often play the role of the seductress, like Roselyn Sanchez in Rush Hour II and Marisa Tomei (an Italian-American actress from Brooklyn) in The Perez Family. The seductive, sexy Latinas entice men. This stereotype often crosses into dangerous territory when high school-aged Latinas are showcased with the same promiscuity, such as Naya Rivera’s Santana Lopez or Francia Raisa’s Adrian Lee. Jack Thomas, a writer for Tu Vez, wrote “When white women are prostitutes, they are usually the “hooker with a heart of gold” like in Pretty Woman. When a Latina is a whore, she’s just a slut.” The “La Virgen y La Puta” stereotype is especially idiotic when Hollywood tries to convince its viewers that Latinas happen to be both fiery and uncontrollable while also fitting to be a nanny or maid.
In the second trope we’ll examine, the “La Virgen/the Virgin,” the poor little Latina is trapped in the submissive role of a housekeeper or nanny and is usually rescued by a kind-hearted white man. For an example, look at Jennifer Lopez in Maid in Manhattan or Maria from America’s favorite musical West Side Story. Maria is the innocent yet submissive Puerto Rican girl who is swept off her feet by a charming white man. The story writes itself. Yet, with regards to the “La Puta/the Whore” part of the paradox, do a quick Google search of the words “Latin woman” and you’ll find yourself amidst hundreds of links taking you to kinky, exotic porn or dating sites to find the perfectly enticing Latin woman for you.
Currently Hollywood only has two roles for Latinas: the slut and the maid