OZY’s ‘Misunderstood’ Sets the Record Straight on Asian Stereotypes

Why you should care

Kimora Lee Simmons and Eddie Huang dispel stereotypes about Asian-Americans in this new OZY series.

We have all assumed something about somebody that wasn’t true or had false assumptions made about us. It’s frustrating, isn’t it? Join OZY’s Misunderstood as we bust stereotypes about identity groups across America.

Model and fashion designer Kimora Lee Simmons talks about feeling freakish and ugly as a child. To this day, Simmons says, she’s bombarded with negative stereotypes owing to the fact that she’s a Japanese-Black-Korean woman. She refuses to live in fear, though; and as a model, she found a space where traits that once made her stand out and be ostracized as a child are now celebrated. 

So if you think Asian-Americans are passive, think again, Simmons says: “Some of us are fabulous.”

Celebrity chef Eddie Huang, meanwhile, takes aim at the assumption that all Asian-Americans are lactose-intolerant. And misses. By a mile. “I milk-fart, but it’s worth it,” he jokes, before turning serious and noting how food has always been the one thing from his culture that non-Asians could relate to and enjoy.  


Huang has seen a lot of progress, and a breakdown in the stereotypes surrounding race. As he points out, we all know what we should and should not be doing. Now it’s just a matter of behaving.

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