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Hey there, there are a ton of danmei (Chinese gay novels) that don’t “fetishize” gay relationships or portray women as dumb cannon fodders. I personally hate it when people say danmei are only there as a gay fetishizing platform. I think I have read more “normal” novels that have more women as dumb cannon fodders than I have in danmei. I don’t know which novels you have read, but it seems you’ve been reading ones that are cultivation types. I have found that in any cultivation novels, there is blatant misogyny that is not present in most danmei. In the BL world, in general, there are many types of genres and in those genres you will find the classic dumb cannon fodder bitch types. There is so much misogyny in straight romance that they become cookie cutter and bland.

As a demisexual, I value love and chemistry over sex, even in the novels I read.

What attracts me to danmei is the fact that the plots are a lot more diverse and unique over any heterosexual novels. It’s fundamentally the same thing as people reading heterosexual romance novels, just the main characters are two males. Not all danmei are “yaoi” while most are “shounen ai.”

The difference in the two is like erotica versus a romance novel. Yaoi is where detailed sex scenes exist just like in erotica, where shounen ai is the same as a romance novel which are usually centered aound the plot and relationship building or overcoming one’s past. Danmei also frequently include a world where gender assumptions are challenged and reimagined. And in today’s world, reading something where everyone is not picked on for being gay is a breath of fresh of air.

In the real world, women can be vile, nasty, and shitty. In some of the more popular danmei, the women tend to lean toward the horrible spectrum, but I have read enough to tell that:….You cannot make an assumption that all danmei include this trope.

There are people who write BL for fetishism, and people who only enjoy it for the fetish. But don’t some men do the same when it comes to lesbian porn? Men liking boobs is the same thing as a straight woman liking penis. Just because straight women read novels where there is more penis doesn’t mean we fetishize gay relationships. We just like reading about men over reading about boobs as vivacious as Mount Everest.

And just as you said, assuming you are a straight female, you enjoy reading about limitless kinks. If you were truly disturbed, you wouldn’t read another danmei again. Also, you can join groups that will direct you towards novels that do not include the misogynistic side of the novel world. is a good source for newbies in the Chinese novel world.

Also, just because we like reading about 2D boys relationships doesn’t mean we go gaga over 3D males (gay porn). Though I will admit, as a straight female, I’d rather watch gay porn over heterosexual porn since that’s geared towards males and I don’t want to see vagina or boobs since I have my own. Which, again, is the same thing as straight males watching lesbian porn since they don’t want to see another male’s dick

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September 7, 2021 10:51 am

Well put. Thank you for your efforts. Xoxo

September 7, 2021 10:52 am

The savagery is well written. No misconception can be made

September 7, 2021 11:19 am

Well put, precisely to the point. This question reminds me of a similar topic, but way more aggresive, with some user practically ordering female readers to stop reading BL, because they are dumb fetishists and whatnot. What ‘he’ got for that was hard roasting, with pages of comments (some dumb, some not).

September 7, 2021 11:54 am

Well said. Indeed I have read novels in which females have a key role in the plot and that has nothing to do with the romance in the story, and are not on the nasty side of the spectrum.

September 7, 2021 2:13 pm

I appreciate this response very much. I am someone who simply loves love. It does not matter to me the gender of the individuals and I do not believe it should. I only recently became a visitor of this site and very much appreciate and value the works of the authors and translators. The experience has brought a lot of joy to my life which i need.

September 7, 2021 5:53 pm

I’ve been following this site for years and I love each story, each world that exists in each novel, no matter the gender of the characters, the plot matters, the well-placed content, the emotions that are aroused in your own self, experienced with each character, it’s it’s great to read something that gives pleasure.

September 7, 2021 5:58 pm

Continued… That’s the kind of reading I have here! Each world is different for each person, therefore, each one has to define for himself what he likes, without looking at who judges the book cover and not the content that exists!

September 7, 2021 7:05 pm

Well put. I never thought of it as fetishizing and I feel like it’s more on the perspective of the person reading this that makes it feels as if it’s fetishizing. Would that person say the same for yuri or het stories if they were coming from creators who were straight or lgbt?

September 7, 2021 7:23 pm

Very well said 👏👏 and I totally agree.

September 7, 2021 7:28 pm

A great response! Having navigated from yaoi to shounen ai, there is quite a bit of variety and one just has to be selective about what to read when the mood strikes. I have rarely encountered internalized misogyny in danmei. (just lucky?) To me, that seems to show up more in hetero novels. Maybe that’s why I read more danmei now. LOL

September 7, 2021 9:41 pm

Agreed 100% with the reply….🤗🤗🤗🤗

September 8, 2021 12:05 am

Well, some of the novels are portraying women as dumb, cannon fodder btches but in overall danmei novels, I think it only has 2% of that kind of novel. Maybe youre unlucky to encounter that kind of novel. Danmei has a lot of sub genres. Its like the straight novels, as OP said, but with 2 males as protagonists. I think its worse in hetero novels.

Audry Gazali
Audry Gazali
September 8, 2021 5:07 am

Very well put answer! I enjoy reading and watching BL since less or even none innocent, cute, pure, spoiled dumb acting girl which I find really annoying. BL has more interesting stories and deep characters development. Also, in BL donghua, you will not find big boops dangling everywhere. And yes, love is love, no matter what the genres are!

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