Anonymous asked: okay so Alanna has a really complicated relationship with her Bazhir ancestry because she was raised by white people and she and Thom were essentially the only mixed race kids in the lords household. her father actually met her mother while he was studying the language of the Bazhir and, provided that he's in the correct mood, he'll spend hours talking with the twins about the cities swallowed by the desert, the songs the Bazhir sing, the tales their mother told him and anything at all (cont.)
that reminds him of his wife when she was alive. Thom loves it. Alanna does not. She is not the type of person who gets happy about theoreticals or waxes poetic about the way the sun might look in the desert (though she does dream of a black city in a barren land with the wind whistling through the streets). She wants to have a lineage she can tell others about while knowing that they won’t laugh, she wants to be proud of who she is but all of the histories she reads focus on (cont)
white Tortallans instead of ‘backwards savages in the sand’, all of the heroes she wants to be have alabaster skin and hair like spun gold, she only knows one song in the Bazhir language (her father sings it to himself when he thinks she isn’t there, his voice cracking on the too familiar words), her tutors won’t tell her about her mothers people because they were never taught anything about them and by the time she’s ten she’s torn between an incredibly childish and orientalist (cont)
view of the Bazhir as ‘noble savages’ and the idea that the Bazhir are filthy barbarians. idk if I’m explaining it well but yeah Alanna doesn’t have an easy time with this shit. Also she doesn’t have a high self-esteem wrt being a girl bc she’s never really been viewed as a like proper girl? like people expect her to be a wild exotic seductress or w/e. bah I’m tired sorry 4 the word vomit
Nooo, I love the word vomit. Oh my god, why couldn’t this have been canon?? I want it so bad. Like, omg, this puts an even MORE awful spin on Alanna’s relationship with Jon and all the things he was expecting from her. Oh, and combine this with the AU/theory where Alex has been experiencing institutionalized racism since he was born because he’s a hillman; can you imagine their relationship in this universe? Someone please write a fic about this, I would love you FOREVER.
Take a trip back in time with me to the mid-90s
- if you were up to date your computer was probably running windows 95
- there was no standard word processing application (I used Word Perfect, who remembers that one?)
- “the internet” was usually synonymous with “AOL” (although some folks used Prodigy or Compuserve)
- AOL had a lot of content, including message boards, chat rooms, IM, etc.
- fandom existed primarily on newsgroups, mailing lists, and message boards
- if you were on AOL, you might find fellow fans by SEARCHING THE PROFILES OF ALL AOL USERS FOR INTEREST IN YOUR FANDOM AND THEN RANDOMLY IMING THEM CAN YOU BELIEVE WE USED TO DO THAT AND IT WORKED JFC
- chatting for non-aol users was accomplished with IRC and ICQ (uh oh!)
- the best web browser was Netscape Navigator
- you paid for internet BY THE MINUTE and it was a great day when AOL changed to a flat monthly fee for unlimited access
- you didn’t use the internet for too long at a time anyway because you were tying up your phone line. Or, you got a second line for your computer.
- websites involved lots of tiled backgrounds, flashing text, and marquees. Most had a single banner image because graphics took forever to load.
- the word “blog” did not exist
- fanfiction was hosted on your own personal website or on an archive website someone in your fandom set up. You might have fic in multiple archives.
- to share fanfic with people IRL you either had to save to a floppy for them or print it out.
- the bulk of mailing lists were on egroups which later was purchased by yahoo and turned into yahoo groups
- website hosting services included GeoCities, angelfire, Xoom, and others I feel like I’m forgetting right now
- web search was ineffective and fairly useless. You had to search multiple providers (yahoo, alta vista, lycos) which would each give vastly different results, until metasearch came along and consolidated them for you
- to find sites in your fandom you would go to one site and see which webrings they were a member of, then look through the webrings. Some people wouldn’t let you into their webring if they didn’t think you were cool enough.
- every website with fanfic had layers and layers of disclaimers and if applicable adult content warnings you had to click through to get to the content
- we have come a long way in the past 20 years (also jfc I’m old)
Hopeless Hyperbole: The Internet Debate Over Disney’s Frozen
[snip]If all discussions about Frozen (and to a larger extent, Disney as a whole) were as mature and rational as this one I don’t think I would be nearly as annoyed by the entire thing.
That’s what I want, I don’t want emotional blindness on either side. I’d much rather have an objective, mature discussion on the topic about various cultural influences and race representation. This task seems to be absolutely above and beyond the majority of the internet. We can’t even GET to the point of “is this a problem or not?” because of all the blind emotional mudslinging and irrationality.
This was absolutely lovely and wonderfully informative, bravo!
Actually, you totally missed the point.
The entire point of the article I wrote is that people are framing the debate as if it must be argued on the grounds of “historical facts”, when actually, it has NOTHING to do with historical facts and everything to do with racism in modern society, and how it affects our media and discussions of media.
It’s honestly a cultural fallacy that “emotion” and “reason” are opposites, as is the concept that being emotionally and personally detached to the degree that anyone could be described as “objective” is ridiculous.
This makes you sound like someone who will refuse to look at or acknowledge a blatant injustice/inequality that exists unless it’s presented in a way that doesn’t make them feel accused or uncomfortable. Complimenting me for not making you uncomfortable is not a compliment I value.
You see, on the one hand, it seems as though you’re complimenting me, but on the other, what you’re really doing is insulting anyone who might be understandably upset by a really obvious form of systematic racism. Exclusion is a form of racism. You can SAY you don’t want “emotional blindness on either side”, but all this does is reinforce the notion that anger at being subjected to racism and emotional investment in white supremacy are morally equivalent, and they are NOT.
Framing anger at being subjected to racism as “irrational” is a form of racism.
In the OP, I talk about emotional investment in white supremacy, versus understandable rage by people who are disenfranchised by white supremacy.
It is NOT an excuse to bash people who are subjected to racism and angry about it.
This post isn’t a call for “maturity and objectivity”. It is literally the opposite of that: a call for the acknowledgement that this has more to do with human emotional attachment to stories and how we internalize messages in the media we see, that either does or does not represent us, and the quality of that representation.
I think you misunderstood? Or maybe I wasn’t clear enough?
I’m not saying “being mad about racism is irrational” that’s entirely justified.
I’m saying that we can’t even get to the question of “is Disney racist or not?” because whenever that question gets brought up all I get met with is trolling and insults from pretty much all sides of the equation. On one hand it seems to be “If you don’t think Disney is racist THEN YOU’RE A HORRIBLE PERSON” and the other hand of the debate is “if you think Disney is racist THEN YOU’RE A HORRIBLE PERSON!”
I can’t win. I’m talking about a non-objective emotional response where the general mood is pure anger and irrationality.
I understand people being angry about systematic racism, I hate that too. However channeling your anger into a well worded response is much more reasonable then just jumping down people’s throats YELLING CURSE WORDS IN ALL CAPS LIKE THIS which is pretty much 99% of what I’ve read about the entire Frozen debate. Except for your post which I appreciated because it was a drop of sanity in an ocean of insults and keyboard rage. (No seriously, it’s literally the first well-worded, rational post I’ve read on the subject.)
Maybe I should have said if the Frozen debate was as maturely worded as your response was?
For the record I am complementing you, I actually really love your blog and re-blog you almost every day. I completely agree with you that our media seriously under represents POC and that’s a huge problem.
And it’s when you think we agree that I feel like I’ve made an enormous mistake.
I’d also appreciate it if you stopped using disability as an insult. Racist people aren’t “blind” and angry people aren’t “insane”.
The only reason you elevate what I’m saying is because I’m using words and phrasing you’ve been conditioned to respect because learning to use them is expensive. My education was expensive, therefore, you respect the money I paid for it. Not me. Every single idea I’ve expressed above can also be just as accurately expressed with all caps and screaming.
You want the content and the value I provide, with a tone you find acceptable. You don’t want to feel uncomfortable. You’re complimenting me for making you feel comfortable with what I have to say, without making you feel accountable or examining yourself.
I don’t accept.
Medievalpoc is not a paper tiger for you to hide behind and accuse people who can’t afford a six figure education of being “irrational”.
This blog is about accessibility. For people with disabilities, people who can’t afford college or received a subpar public education, for people who don’t want to go to college, and for people who dropped out of high school. This blog is about puncturing the inflated importance of academic jargon, creating a relatively supportive or safe environment to discuss experiences, creativity, inspiration, and a love of history.
Denying access to knowledge that could significantly change perceptions of history that, in turn, shape our expectation of the media produced by the culture we belong to is a grave injustice.
Pretending that the history of Denmark is more relevant to Disney’s Frozen than children of color receiving the unspoken message that their stories are not worth telling is a grave injustice.
Pretending that me not using cusses and hurting your feelings makes what I say more “legitimate” or “respectable” is frankly, bullshit. People who consider themselves “moderates” and casually dismiss “both sides” do far more to perpetuate injustice, because they make themselves seem so reasonable. After all, they’re not hurting anyone, right?
They’re just allowing it to pass by unchecked, and leave their role in society unexamined, and continue to believe that their “default” position is neutral. I had hoped that followers of this blog might have guessed by now that neutrality isn’t really an option; “going with the flow” in a systemically racist society is to BE racist.
I’ve spoken at length about dominant narratives and creating COUNTERnarratives; the resistance and backlash to this blog’s mere existence should demonstrate that a counternarrative is, by its creation, an act of defiance and confrontation.
All your compliments on how reasonable and mature I supposedly am do nothing but undermine people who do not have the luxury of seeming dispassionate about these things, and don’t have a sack full of million-dollar words at their disposal. You’re trying to invalidate people’s voices, to ignore them until they seem more palatable to you. Until they make you feel comfortable.
If you are comfortable, I AM DOING SOMETHING WRONG.
Frequently, running this blog is uncomfortable for me, and I am always trying to analyze what I say from as many possible perspectives as I can. I try to think about how what I say can be used against other people, in exactly this way.
My hope is that everyone who reads my writing and follows this project will analyze how they are affected by this content, and how this content affects or does not affect them. We are ALL a part of this story. We are ALL shaped by our history.And that’s where this sentiment, that you only want to hear these things in a certain “tone”, becomes sinister.
Teaching what people would rather not learn is especially tough if you are a woman or a minority professor. Research shows that our customers rate Asian-American, Hispanic, black, and women professors lower than white male professors across all subjects. Most disturbingly, student evaluations of women of color are harshest when customers are told that the results will be “communicated to a third party for the purposes of evaluation.” Our customers are not only disinclined to like tough subjects; they’re also inclined to take their discomfort out on minority professors, who are the least likely to have the protection of tenure or support from university administration.Learning is—should often be—uncomfortable for individuals. When universities have a mission to serve the public good, they balance the needs of individuals with benefits to society and the power of the majority against the humanity of the minority.Invoking stereotypes like “too angry”, “irrational” or “overly emotional”, does nothing but disenfranchise the same people it always does. Emotion and anger does not invalidate people’s voices, and pretending like one “side” of the debate is no better or worse than the other is a false equivalency that perpetuates injustice against the side that is already disenfranchised. Adding six pounds to each side of a scale that is already loaded on one side does not fix the imbalance.I do not accept your compliment, nor do I take it as anything but the attempt to use your acceptance of my “tone” as anything but a tool of silencing against others.
Tunniit: Retracing the Lines of Inuit Tattoos
Kapwa Collective was honoured to meet director, Alethea Arnaquq-Baril at the screening of her documentary film about Inuit traditional tattooing, “Tunniit: Retracing the Lines of Inuit Tattoos”.