"I talk about the gods, I am an atheist. But I am an artist too, and therefore a liar. Distrust everything I say. I am telling the truth."

--Ursula K. Leguin

November 2009



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Please note, all my fic posts here are summaries with links to my archive site. To search for fic most easily, you will want to visit my fic archive itself which has all the series/arc/pairing/character indexes and tags. *tips hat*

Posts Tagged: 'smile+when+you+say+feminist'

Sep. 9th, 2009


You know what really frosts my cookies about the Getbackers manga?

(Aside from the appallingly gender-skewed and exploitative T&A which I page past as fast as possible and try not to see for the sake of my blood pressure, fuck you very much Ayamine. That one is a given.)

Aoki can't seem to decide whether Kazuki is the baddest badass in Badassville or the designated damsel in distress. His narrative position flips unpredictably from one to the other without anything in the way of signaling or set-up, and it gives me a case of story-whiplash.

I find it exceedingly predictable in shounen, to be sure; the polite ones are the ones you have to watch out for (eg Akabane), but the actively feminized male characters are either comic relief or, narratively speaking, women--women in a shounen manga, which means damsels in distress regardless of what minor skill they may have on their own account which allows them to mop up the small fry while reemphasizing that, in context, they are still weaker. Kazuki winds up written as both a and b, and rather randomly one or the other.

Second verse, same as the first: I actually have an easier time reading shounen manga when the female characters are absent, because the inclusion of female or even strongly feminine characters is almost invariably the signal for a rousing round of role reinforcement. *spits* Thus, again, my glee in any fic I find that ignores Aoki's inability to actually characterize across gender lines even when he set it up himself and takes on the work of reconciling Kazuki's character.

Mar. 7th, 2009

Brilliant post is brilliant

And everyone should go read it.

The author expresses clearly and concisely some of the knottiest issues of writing slash as a feminist. And, as a sample, let me quote the comment in which she actually manages to define feminism, which just knocked my socks off, because have you ever tried to do this? With any belief or philosophy you hold? It's amazingly hard.

Well, I tend to go with the "feminism is the radical notion that women are people" line most of the time. :)

But, of course, that tiny quote has a lot of implications -- for instance, it implies that a feminist is someone who acknowledges that we live in a society that systematically dehumanises women. We women tend to be valorised for doing things reduce our agency, that cast us as objects, etc, while if we do things that indicate that we're complex people who want to be in control of our own lives, we're automatically suspect. Another good quote, from Rebecca West is, “I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is; I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.”

Beyond that, though, feminism is quite diverse and difficult to pin down -- because while there is a broad consensus on the need to differentiate ourselves from doormats, there are lots of different (and sometimes conflicting) ideas about how to do so. As I note above, a lot of the time, this is used, by both feminists and anti-feminists alike, to polarise feminism in very unhelpful ways, and I reject this completely, even as I acknowledge that there are feminists with whom I disagree strongly on some issues. To me, feminism is about taking all of those ideas, even those that I may initially dislike, and applying them critically, and seeing what I come away with -- sometimes, the ideas I dislike do not stand up against this process, and sometimes, I am forced to challenge my own assumptions about how things work (and sometimes I shift back and forth, undecided). I see this as an ongoing process with few easy answers.

Jan. 30th, 2009

What /is/ this?

Okay, seriously, what the fuck?

My rant on women in KHR was far from the first thing I've written castigating some anime/manga or other for presenting women as useless frills or objectified sex shows or whatever other negative stereotype was in question. I'm fairly sure it wasn't the first time such an entry has been linked on a meta comm.

So why is this particular entry drawing so much fire? I just ran across yet another (annoyingly clueless) screed against it while googling for a KHR timeline for pity's sake!

Is there really such a concentration of anti-feminist women (I shudder that such a phrase can still be written) in KHR, or did this particular entry just happen to fall into the orbit of a small knot of them and I have the bad luck to keep stumbling over their excrescence?

Sep. 16th, 2008

PSA / Action Call

See this post for details on Bush's last stand against reproductive rights, trying to slip it under the table the weasel.

Planned Parenthood has an email drive going to protest this 'rule' while it's possible, and I encourage everyone who doesn't want to be told that their doctors won't prescribe birth control because they personally define that as abortion to go customize the form-email and send it right freaking now.