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sqbr: pretty purple pi (Default)
Tuesday, August 15th, 2017 02:58 pm
(this started out as a reply to this tumblr post)

When I first started posting about social justice online, on my fannish livejournal, I posted about racism a LOT, with lots of self righteous LET ME EXPLAIN A THING. And then two of my non-white(*) friends said it was ruining my blog for them: one because she felt like I was speaking over her experiences, which didn’t match the monolithic How POC Feel Narrative I was ‘explaining’, the other because it was causing my clueless white friends to say racist crap in the comments. I had to fight back a defensive “But DON’T YOU WANT ME TO FIGHT RACISM??” reaction.

Ten years later and I’m still trying to figure out how to discuss racism in ways that actually help fight racism, and make the spaces I control supportive of POC/non-white people, rather than simply making the loudest possible noise about how it’s REALLY BAD YOU GUYS.
Read more... )
sqbr: pretty purple pi (I like pi!)
Monday, August 14th, 2017 01:34 am
I feel weird making a post about this as a super pale white person, but I keep seeing other artists draw dark characters really badly in the sort of flat colouring used in animation and comics etc, and don't know of any better guides. So here's what I've figured out. If people know of better techniques or guides, or if I've inadvertently said something wrong or offensive, please let me know.
Read more... )
sqbr: (up and down)
Thursday, March 16th, 2017 12:32 pm
(I wanted to argue with someone on twitter and this is way too complex for 140 characters)

A hole a lot of activists seem to fall into is thinking that the axis of oppression they're fighting is the central oppression, the one from all others flow. If people just put their energy into this, the REAL fight, all the others would fall like dominos.

I have seen people argue this about ecomonic inequality, sexism, homophobia, ableism, racism (both in general and against specific ethnic groups), everything. I once read a very compelling argument by bell hooks that the Real Underlying Oppression is against children.

In every case the argument is (a) if you fight X, all the others improve and (b) There is an underlying element of X to all oppressions.

Which is true! But it's true for all of them. Everything is connected. It's all the same struggle. If you battle one, you battle them all. If one becomes worse, all the others become worse too.
Read more... )
sqbr: Are you coming to bed? I can't, this is important. Why? Someone is wrong on the internet. (duty calls)
Thursday, August 25th, 2016 01:33 pm
a) Science fiction by white people, specifically Americans, exploring the complex ethical question of whether or not slavery and/or genocide is actually always bad.
b) Inspiring and/or angry images with no descriptions about the importance of inclusion for disabled people, using a blind person's inspiring achievements as an example of what great things can happen if we just make a small effort towards accessibility. Bonus points if the person posting is themselves disabled, but not visually.

In general I feel like "inspiring visual works about blind people that clearly haven't even considered whether actual blind people can enjoy them" is a whole distinct genre. There's probably, like, people posting inspiring songs about Deaf people to soundcloud without lyrics/art installations up a flight of stairs about wheelchair users etc too, but blind people seem to get it the worst.

*mutters and grumbles*
sqbr: "Creative genius" with an arrow pointing to a sketch of me (genius!)
Thursday, May 12th, 2016 05:13 am
[community profile] seeingcolorcomm, currently open for nominations.

I haven't felt like signing up to exchanges lately but will definitely keep an eye out for pinch hits and treats.
sqbr: (up and down)
Tuesday, May 10th, 2016 09:19 pm
In which I try to tease some sort of narrative out of the ridiculously long and rambling unabridged version. It's still pretty long, and still very subjective. And I'm still open to criticism and other points of view! Especially since I'm as prone to subconsciously editing history as anyone else.

The tl;dr version is that fandom used to actively stifle discussions of social justice, and then slowly started caring about it. Unfortunately, when fandom cares about something it uses it to attack other fans with different tastes, and social justice has been no exception. I still think things are better overall.
brief mentions of rape and abuse )
sqbr: Monty Python sketch about people being oversensitive about criticism (dirty fork)
Saturday, May 7th, 2016 04:39 pm
This is an incredibly subjective and personal account, with no clear moral or narrative, because that's how it wanted to come out. I then poked at things some more and wrote A decade in online fandom social justice: Abridged, which is a bit more structured and not quite as ridiculously long.

I've been inspired to write this by seeing other fans trying to sell their own, equally subjective narratives that contradict mine as The Objective Truth, and it annoys me. The most recent example is this deeply flawed essay by Franzeska. Here's some criticisms by POC: a thread on ffa wherea POC looks back on their own experiences of lj fandom and Fans Of Colour Are Not To Blame For Fandom's Erasures: A response to That Meta.
brief discussions of rape, death, and abuse, lots of discussions of bullying, lots and lots and LOTS of words )
sqbr: Well meaning white girls against racism over Tracy from Hairspray (racism)
Saturday, October 31st, 2015 12:48 pm
Because it's a complex topic and I didn't want to get into a public conversation with the bigots buzzing around him.

And looking at it again now I see a silly spelling mistake /o\ Also JUST after I sent it [personal profile] mooreeffoc pointed out that you can't "fail" an IQ test. But if I'd kept editing much longer I'd have wound myself into an anxious ball and never sent it.
Read more... )
sqbr: Well meaning white girls against racism over Tracy from Hairspray (racism)
Saturday, October 31st, 2015 07:22 am
He said "Your Halloween reminder that blackface is an IQ test, and if you wear it, you've failed." and my reply would be:

Blackface is awful, but equating low IQ with racism/moral failing is unfair. Esp given it's history http://www.racismreview.com/blog/2007/11/27/the-pseudoscience-of-%E2%80%9Cintelligence%E2%80%9D-testing/

(I found the link via quick google)

But idk, it feels weird bringing it up as a white non American. And while I'm disabled I have a pretty high IQ. Plus of course it could open me up to trolls, unless I send it as a private message.

Hmmm. Will ponder when more awake.
sqbr: pretty purple pi (Default)
Tuesday, October 28th, 2014 01:41 pm
If my (flawed and shallow) understanding of the history of novels (specifically scifi and YA), comics, and films is any guide, in 20 years:

Video games will be taken more seriously as an art.
There will be room in the marketplace for lots of healthy subgenres appealing to people from all walks of life.
There will still be heaps of cheesy AAA shooters because people like that sort of thing, but there'll also be cross pollination between genres to the betterment of all.
There will specifically be a thriving Indie Game subculture, Indie Game Makers who are taken seriously in mainstream culture and can make a comfortable living etc.
People will remember Gamergate, if they do at all, as a bunch of regressive moustache twirling Luddites who were too hidebound to accept progress and True Art etc.

And the heroes of this new movement, and of the history as people remember it, will be white dudes. They'll make a movie starring John Scalzi as the Brave Male Feminist and Zoe Quinn and Anita Sarkesian as the thankful oppressed victims. Brianna Wu will have a cameo played by Dakota Fanning.
There'll be Best MOGAI Games Of 2034 Humble Bundle or whatever, but the Indie Game Artform will for the most part still be a bunch of stories about grizzled white dudes, just...artistically written ones. Maybe some tragic lesbians every now and then, and the Great Classics as taught will include a careful tokenistic sprinkling of games about and by POC, disabled people etc.

Genres outside the Indie Game Artform will be looked down on as Not Real Art, and this condescension will as it happens fall most severely on any genres which just happen to be more popular with women (AAA action games will alosbe dismissed, and middle aged gamergaters will mutter about how they warned everyone this was going to happen and how AAA action games these days lack the masculine energy of the old days. Female fans of AAA action games will mutter someting quite different). Dating sims, for example, will continue to be as looked down on as romance novels.
Independent games which care more about representing neglected POVs and being entertaining than hitting the current Art buttons will be vaguely respected but not paid much attention.

And we'll all keep making and playing the games we like regardless.

(I do actually consider this to be a mostly much better situation than what we have now. But I had a Vision Of The Future and felt like sharing it. Also, yeah, massive generalisations etc, I hope my basic point comes across)
sqbr: zuko with a fish on his head (avatar)
Thursday, March 6th, 2014 10:34 am
There's been some discussion on tumblr of the culturally ignorant and thoughtless way white feminists often talk about anime/manga:
the original post, with my transcript, some following discussion.

This is something I've been thinking about for a while, I'm really uncomfortable with the combination of fetishisation/othering and erasure that's applied to Japanese culture in most anime and manga discussions I encounter, and would like to do better. So here are some thoughts on that. (Yeah, I know, ANOTHER WHITE FEMINIST POV /o\)
Read more... )
sqbr: Hannelore: Worry hat! Bravery plus 10, charisma plus 5 (worry hat)
Saturday, September 7th, 2013 08:46 pm
These have been building up for a while (since May? Really??), in some cases I'm just taking a rough guess as to why I thought a link was worth saving.

Lotsa links! )
sqbr: Well meaning white girls against racism over Tracy from Hairspray (racism)
Monday, June 3rd, 2013 03:05 pm
So! A few years ago I realised that not only did I pretty much only draw white people, but that I wasn't sure how to draw anything else. There is a long history of dark skinned people being made to look pale and POC being made to look white in order for them to be more palatable to pale white audiences. So there are ethical as well as artistic reasons to try not to screw this stuff up. I made a post poking at the problem, what have I learned since then?
Read more... )
sqbr: Are you coming to bed? I can't, this is important. Why? Someone is wrong on the internet. (duty calls)
Sunday, May 5th, 2013 05:17 pm
Hacking at Education: TED, Technology Entrepreneurship, Uncollege, and the Hole in the Wall The anti-social libertarian intellectual emptiness underlying a lot of TED-esque ideas.

On political and value neutral Everything with any message at all has a political subtext.

Why I don't like the dragon argument Points out that "if you can have dragons why can't you have POC" has some unfortunate implications that work against it.

words against communication and Also you get things like... The way worrying about appropriation/stepping on disabled people's toes can stop some people from realising they are disabled themselves. (Not that able bodied people shouldn't worry, just that it's complicated!)

Refusing to have the “What You Did” conversation "1 The ‘what you did’ conversation implies the ‘what you are’ conversation. 2 The ’what you are’ conversation is uncivil and silencing. 3 Therefore, it’s uncivil and silencing to discuss ‘what you did.’"

Frustrations of being a black gamer playing BIOSHOCK INFINITE

Sweatshops still make your clothes

Meet the 28-Year-Old Grad Student Who Just Shook the Global Austerity Movement

Vilification and 'just having a laugh' About the racist jokes in my old Uni's satirical newspaper

Righteous Wroth Rarely Is OMG a criticism of excessive social justice where the group making the criticisms (in this case, women) are the victims of the oppression ostensibly being attacked with too much zeal (eg sexism) I have Thoughts about the very complicated way mental illness (which often creates an inability to behave in the way society demands) interacts with the somewhat narrow sets of behaviours expected of a Good Ally/Activist but am not quite up to articulating them.

$300 for Julia Gillard's NDIS scheme? Please, my wheelchair costs $22,000 Apparently some Australians are ok paying taxes and levies for roads and schools but draw the line at helping disabled people.

And from the hahaha what department...
Worse than global warming??? #followateen )
sqbr: And yet all I can think is, this will make for a great Dreamwidth entry... (dreamwidth)
Sunday, December 30th, 2012 09:36 am
I may have already posted some of these, sorry!

Objecting to Objectification A post that really annoyed me. It basically says that queer women shouldn't, say, check out another women's breasts without stopping and thinking seriously about her ~thoughts~ and ~feelings~. Personally I am totally fine with random strangers (regardless of gender!) thinking I'm hot without wondering about my inner life, as long as they treat me like a person should we actually interact.

I really dislike the way ALL sexualisation of women is demonised within certain progressive spaces (while other "sex positive" progressive spaces are more likely to celebrate the sexualisation of women by men), meaning that there is pretty much nowhere it is accepted and normalised for women to sexualise other women. I realise that some women want safe spaces where they don't feel sexualised, but there's a difference between "Please don't sexualise women in this space" and "sexualising women is bad".

A criticism of yarn bombing

Identity should always be part of the gameplay
N K Jemisin talking about how oppression and privilege are dealt with in the Dragon Age world. I know some people prefer fantasy worlds with no sexism/racism etc, but personally I tend to enjoy ones which DO have some bigotry as long as it's handled well and in a way that allows for happy endings.

The Naked and the TED A criticism of various books to come out of TED and TED in general.

The missing stair, My friend group has a case of the Creepy Dude. How do we clear that up?, “I am the Lorax, and I speak for the creeps!” Posts on dealing with creepiness (and worse) in other people

Fallacy Watch: No True Klansman Redefining terms like "racism" to refer to attitudes so heinous that nobody actually believes them, thus allowing the speaker to avoid being labelled with the term.

self-care: a buncha links, or something Not all self care can be ~enlightened~ acts like doing activism or eating organic free trade vegetables, but it's still necessary.

Lincoln Against the Radicals "Lincoln is not a movie about Reconstruction, of course; it’s a movie about old white men in beards and wigs heroically working together to save grateful black people."
sqbr: And yet all I can think is, this will make for a great Dreamwidth entry... (dw)
Saturday, June 9th, 2012 09:19 pm
PC World I had something to say about this but I don't remember what...

Me pondering conflict anxiety and accessibility in online arguments

Fragments of Evolving Manhood: Notes Towards a Discussion of Male Self-Hatred Points out the ugly underbelly of the idea of "protective" dads/big brothers "guarding" girls from their boyfriends. I hate the way fandom gleefully embraces this trope and applies it to male characters who've shown no signs of it (Tenzin from Avatar: The Legend of Korra for example) My dad has always treated my boyfriends like any of my friends and been friendly and welcoming (in his quiet way) and I think this is much more endearing.

Peril Asian Australian online magazine

Pick your battle: a practical guide to social activism I thought this was pretty good for what it was, but I was a bit annoyed by the way it glossed over the possibility of fixing problems with anything other than formal activism (plus there seem to be accessibility issues)

Sure, you can join an organisation for volunteering to visit old people, but why not just visit the ones you already know? There's a division of the world into Activists, Victims, and Ignorant Masses To Be Educated, and while she gives a lot of very good advice about being inclusive it still feels like she's missing something crucial. Perhaps the fact that we all wear all three different hats at different times. There's a danger of people going "I'm an Activist, so by definition I can't be in need of education/complicit with any oppression" etc, or of seeing Activists as better qualified to know how to fix things than the Victims.

Formal activism is the right tool for changing government legislation and other Big Issues, and it's something I want to get more involved in. But I also see a lot of value (and for me, accessibility, an issue she glossed over as well) in smaller more organic connections within one's own community, helping those who need helping and educating/lobbying those who need to change, while also being open to change ourselves.

Another thing that's been making me think about these divisions is some surveys I did about attitudes towards charity, and this charity related quote.
sqbr: Asterix-like magnifying glass over Perth, Western Australia (australia 2)
Thursday, September 22nd, 2011 10:26 am
1. Invade country. Murder/enslave/displace etc. local inhabitants.
2. Wring hands about how sad it is that this proud savage race is doomed to die out in the face of civilisation. Bar locals from actually joining "civilisation"/earning money etc.
3. Wring hands about lack of education/food etc for the children. Steal them and attempt to raise them to be a submissive underclass.
4. Wring hands about how social problems and disconnection from their Authentic Culture makes them a Doomed People. Refuse to give basic government support to those who continue in the traditional lifestyle.
5. Wring hands about poor outcomes in remote communities and lack of approved engagement with government programs. Send in army, dismantle local solutions, cut/restrict welfare.
6. Wring hands about widespread starvation and unsustainability of remote communities. Cut welfare altogether, force people to live in the cities.
7. Profit!

nb I don't mean to do that thing of acting like any Indigenous person who lives in the city is Totally Inauthentic and doesn't count. But they shouldn't be forced to live there, and I think some of the power of this form of cultural genocide is the combination of not counting anyone who's too "inauthentic" and refusing to support remote communities. Also I know this is just some guy with no real power, but it was such a perfect example of this historical pattern I felt like highlighting it.