bossymarmalade: this is what an asexual looks like (i only find you theoretically hot)
Dear Yoko Ono:

You shouldn't even be here.

But since you are, and at the time when the man you wanted to spend the rest of your life with would have turned seventy years old --

I guess they thought you couldn't carry your own story, the one that began with you surviving the bombing of Tokyo and continued with you becoming the first woman accepted into the philosophy department of Gakushuin University. Maybe it didn't make you three-dimensional enough that you studied music and art at Sarah Lawrence with a special interest in the avant-garde and audience participation, that you had sex with who you wanted when you wanted and had abortions and miscarriages. Maybe to them you represent an idea of a weird dragon lady with careful accented English and inscrutable slanted eyes and wild harionago hair.

I know you didn't make it onto the chart because they think you don't have any flaws.

So you're not a villain, but you, an artist and a woman long long before Johnny and Paulie went on a magical mystery tour, you are mainly a love interest. They at least know you're not only interested in your man and only disapprove of his actions from time to time, but it's easy to assume that May Pang (another unimportant possibly fictional Asian woman) never existed, that you never sent John off to have his lost weekend and recover from all the alcohol and heroin before you let him come back to you.

You're not an action heroine. Hunting down the daughter who was stolen away by your ex-husband, facing down headlines like "John Rennon's Excrusive Gloupie" and the constant death-threats and racialized insults, enduring the deep freeze from the rest of the Beatles during those tense White Album sessions because John would only go if you promised to go with him, those don't qualify you.

Do others like her?

Oh, Yoko, surely that's the damning stroke, because who could like you? A nation full of white people enraged that you stole away their Liverpudlian poet son, a world full of people enraged that you, single-handedly, YOU caused the end of the fabbest four, an unending stream of people who still call you ugly and shrill and a bitch, who say that those bullets should have found their way into your body that night and not that man who you loved and who you watched be gunned down and lost. How dare you think that you and your son have any right to decide how to remember John? Don't you know he belongs to the world, and not you who taught him to love and respect women, not you who took care of the business so he could stay home to feed the cats and rock the baby and bake the bread when he wanted to do that most of all? Do others like you?

No, the chart says, and so you're Yoko Ono.

Dear Yoko: I'd say fuck them, but you were in a bag in a hotel room decidedly *not* losing your shit at assholes attacking you for being a strong Asian woman since before I was born, so instead I'll say: It's bullshit that you're on this godawful chart at all, but I'd still be happy to find myself landing on your name at the end of it.


http://www.recmusicbeatles.com/public/files/bbs/jl_yo.playboy/interview.html
http://thecurvature.com/2008/12/15/yoko-ono-a-feminist-analysis-introduction-oh-yoko/
http://imaginepeace.com/archives/5576
http://www.lorainesammy.com/v2/2010/10/may-pang-and-yoko-ono/
bossymarmalade: girl enjoying music (wine and get on bad)
So having discovered that somehow I hadn't found all of the Racebending Revenge stories due to my own dotishness, I settled down at the main page to start reading.

And the first one is a fic about Jason Todd, the original Robin-Who-Died in the Batman 'verse, and he's Cambodian and I am connecting with his story in a way that I never, NEVER did with canon white Jason Todd (and man, I've been reading sympathetic fics about Jason Todd since the Dracoverse days fifteen years ago), and all I can think of is this post from laleia: Is this what it's like to be white?

I mean, in her post [livejournal.com profile] laleia herself says that it's a statement rather lacking in nuance and certainly, watching movies/reading stories with chromatic people in them doesn't give me any real insight into what it's like to consume the same media as a white person with them populated by white people. Also laleia's talking very specifically about her own hyphenated identity reflected in a movie, whereas I'm an Indo-Trinidadian Canadian reading about a Cambodian-American.

But, nevertheless: Cambodian Jason Todd resonates with me in a way that Caucasian Jason Todd never, ever did. Why should that be?

I recognize him, I guess. There's a lot of stuff that's different, but all it took was one oṃ maṇipadme hūṃ for me to catch my breath and feel my heart thump faster. And I'm not saying I don't feel this way about white characters -- that would be silly -- but not generally with such intense immediacy.

I do a lot of talking about how important it is to see people who look like us in our media, and I've internalized pretty well all of the theory and talking-points and examples. But every now and again I'm reminded what it's like to actually feel it, and it's something else entirely, and something I don't know if I'll ever get used to even if I had the opportunity. Because it still is so unexpected, every time.
bossymarmalade: blue eye with lashes of red flower petals (putting the "cauc" back in "asian")
So The Last Airbender is opening this weekend. You already know through racebending.com how racist the damn thing is; if you read jedifreac's review you'll also see how misogynistic it is as a bonus. Possibly you've read M. Night Shyamalan's contempt for the protest.

Now let me tell you a story (one that may be triggering for racism).

After my weekend trip to the Scottish Heritage festival, we stopped to get fish & chips for lunch. [personal profile] glockgal and [personal profile] 21freckles went back to the car while I waited for my order, seated next to a young black man who'd just come in on his lunch break -- obviously, because he was wearing a TD Bank pin on his shirt. So, y'know, nicely dressed and polite and everything.

I can tell a lot of you are wincing already. Just hang on.

This child comes in with his white grandparents; kid looks biracial to me. Eventually his white mom finishes her smoke outside and comes in. The kid runs over to her and in this loud, piercing voice, goes, "Look at the scary man!" and points at the bank guy next to me. "Shhh," says the mom, but the kid repeats, louder, "LOOK AT THE SCARY MAN!"

"That's not nice," the mom says. At this point I'm hoping to hell that somehow my body has acted as a sound barrier, because what the fuck -- this poor bank teller comes in for some lunch, and has to hear this bullshit. Coast Salish/BC as a rule doesn't have a lot of black folk (we ran them out back in the day of the Pullman trains) but New Westminster, where we were, has a pretty good number of (mostly) Somalian newer residents.

So, this kid, with his brown skin almost the same shade as mine, his hair in light brown tight ringlets. He looks at this quiet black man next to me and his mind says, "SCARY".

Where did he get this? Say we're generous and assume the mom didn't teach it to him, or the grandparents. Say we assume they're not from New West, they're from somewhere in Metro Vancouver with even *less* black people. Say all that.

Do you think this kid even understands that when he's a grownup, skin maybe darker than in its baby stages, people are going to be calling *him* the "scary man"? Do you think he even recognizes that he's not the hero and never will be? He's already learned from the media and society that the darker you are, the scarier you are; when will he start recognizing his face reflected back only as villain, as joke fodder, as exotic backdrop? When will he realize that other people -- people like me included -- don't see him as white, even in the middle of all his white family?

This is why it matters for kids, for adults, for *anyone* to see themselves in stories. And I don't mean as nameless creatures with no agency, or as a nation of genocidal warmongers. And there are overlaps with the racefail; there's the character Teo, whose father builds him a wheelchair after he becomes disabled, who's also been removed from the movie (to make place for a traitorous Asian character). There's the elders like GranGran, who has been reduced from a competent and vital woman to a faint ancient-wisdom shadow. There's Suki and the strong female Kyoshi Warriors, cut from the movie without even a credit.

We're the scary people on the screen, and we're the scary people in life -- even to a child who's at least partly one of us. Don't ever tell me that it's just a movie. These are the stories that tell people who we are.
bossymarmalade: a maple leaf frozen in the rideau canal (all tucked away down there)
Oh, the shit's coming down, Canadians:

. "Shut the fuck up about abortion," says Conservative minister Nancy Ruth -- and chillingly, this is her friendly advice for us IF WE SUPPORT WOMEN'S RIGHTS.

. Canada bowing to US industry's push for us to change our copyright law to mirror theirs -- want a Digital Millennium Copyright Act that will nix Canadian copyright exceptions re: education, archiving, free speech and personal use on devices requiring US permissions (aka ALL OF THEM)?

On one hand I am terrified and enraged by these things; on the other, I am hoping against hope that if things fucking get bad enough then Canadians will GET THE FUCK UP and actually *attempt* to change our country and the shiftless, parasitic, greedy fucks who are running it.

AAAAAARGH
bossymarmalade: krusty the clown loves being on fire (feeling my flesh melt is faboo!)


Now Katara and Sokka are blond and the single main character they cast in the movie as Asian has been switched to be white as well!!

BRB HAVE TO GO KILL EVERYTHING
bossymarmalade: fatima dinssa near the coffee pot (roll on out)
Yuletide nominations are open!

If you haven't nominated before, be sure to read through the instructions.

This year I used two write-in slots to nominate:
- The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (tv)
- Glory (movie)

For the rest of them I chose Gen X Cops, Murdoch Mysteries, something I can't remember right now, and Little Mosque on the Prairie.

And I want to talk for a bit about that last one. )
bossymarmalade: elsie from gosford park (blase blase blase)
And there we go.

I'm only sorry that so many people had to endure all that sexism, racism, and homo/transphobia before we just macroed and giffed them out of existence.

ETA: deepsix offers Ogi's comment left on the above post, screencapped before he deleted it: In Which Dr. Ogi Ogas Demonstrates that Words Do Not Mean What He Thinks They Mean. ahahahahhaha!
bossymarmalade: burns answers the phone (a-hoy hoy)
"I just got a note back from the principal researcher, which I do not have permission to quote here, but my semi-professional opinion as a semi-professional science geek is that this guy is legit and this study is not about what people seem to think it is."

Oh! Well, that's ... comforting. The study is not even about what we think (have been told) it is.

Don't go over there and comment to writestufflee or anything -- I think quiet observation's probably best in this scenario.
bossymarmalade: homer simpson sticking a weiner in his eye (you make me feel like this)
Yep, Ogi Ogas is now preparing to claim that the entire thing was just a big ol' WHY SO SERIOUS joke: note the new "smiley-face-on-brain" icon.

Bitch, please! We called that ages ago. To get the jump on fandom you have to at LEAST claim you're the reincarnation of a still-living celebrity.
bossymarmalade: lisa simpson is determined (yet another cause to champion)
And now, after the macros and gifs have been released (ETA: enough to make them lock down their posts, hah!), it's time to get hardcore on this nonsense.

I suggest a two-pronged offensive.




option a
Writing formal letters of complaint to:
http://cns-web.bu.edu/people/people.html#
1) his former graduate studies program. They need to know that a former student is discrediting their program.

2) his former supervisor. The supervisor will have to take this behaviour into account when asked for letters of recommendation.
Gail Carpenter (referenced here)
Department of Cognitive and Neural Systems
Boston University
677 Beacon Street
Boston, MA 02215

Phone: (617) 353‑9483
Department: (617) 353‑9481
Fax: (617) 353‑7755
Emai: gail@cns.bu.edu
Web: http://cns.bu.edu/~gail/

BOSTON UNIVERSITY

Other profs in department (http://cns-web.bu.edu/people/faculty2.html):
danb@cns.bu.edu (Daniel H. Bullock)
gail@cns.bu.edu (Gail Carpenter, Ogi Ogas advisor)
mike@cns.bu.edu (Michael A. Cohen)
steve@bu.edu (Stephen Grossberg)
guenther@bu.edu (Frank Guenther)
ennio@cns.bu.edu (Ennio Mingolla)
eric@bu.edu (Eric Schwartz)
shinn@cns.bu.edu(Barbara Shinn-Cunningham)

http://techlab.bu.edu/about/about_us
suchi@bu.edu
versace@bu.edu (Asst Director Cns Tech Lab)

Other BU ppl:

dkcampbe@bu.edu (BU Provost)
fafc@bu.edu (Faculty Council ??)
rabrown@bu.edu (BU President)
wmariner@bu.edu (Faculty Council Chair ??)

"The Compliance Committee consists of University Provost David Campbell, Medical Campus Provost Karen Antman, Executive Vice President Joseph Mercurio, Vice President, General Counsel, and Board Secretary Todd Klipp, Associate Vice President for Internal Audit William Long, and Associate Vice President for Human Resources Manuel Monteiro."
http://www.bu.edu/ethics/

kha4@bu.edu (Karen Antman)
mercurio@bu.edu (Joseph Mercurio)
tklipp@bu.edu (Todd Klipp)
wlong@bu.edu (William Long)
mmonteir@bu.edu (Manuel Monteiro)


amenting@bu.edu (contact on press release here: http://web.bu.edu/phpbin/news/releases/display.php?id=580)

These letters should be brief, outlining pretty much what deadlychameleon touched upon, with maybe an attachment showing the original message from Ogas.

He has way stepped over the bounds of academic ethics. Even though he is no longer a student and cannot be called to account for it, his practices can still be documented in this way.

option b
Contacting the publishing house, Dutton/Penguin:
- Brian Tart, President & Publisher
Dutton's main phone number: 212-366-2000.
E-mail: brian.tart@us.penguingroup.com (thanks to [personal profile] anitabuchan)
He's also btart on Twitter. ETA: [personal profile] jfc suggests duttonbooks instead of btart.

Dutton:

Brian Tart
Christine Ball
Amy Hertz
Stephen Morrow
Carrie Thornton
Ben Sevier
Erika Imranyi

Penguin (try firstname.lastname@penguin.com, firstname.lastname@us.penguin.com, firstinitiallastname@penguin.com, firstinitiallastname@us.penguin.com)
John Makinson
David Shanks
Susan Petersen Kennedy
Nigel Portwood
Jim Crofton
Don Weisberg

Pearson (the company that owns Penguin) emal format appears to be firstname.lastname@pearson.com
Board of directors
Glen Moreno
Marjorie Scardino
Robin Freestone
Will Ethridge
Rona Fairhead
John Makinson (Chairman and Chief Executive, Penguin)

loucas.koutrouchi@pearson.com (http://www.pearson.com/index.cfm?pageid=91) Legal somebody?

The key points to emphasize in contacting the editors are the part about the IRB, misrepresenting their relationship to BU, and not being careful about asking minors about sex. The part about how we think they are blithering idiots because of their laughable stupidity about slash, sexuality, etc. is not interesting to people who may be interested in publishing controversial books. That's a reason to publish, not a reason to withdraw the contract.




Thanks to my spartan friend for the first suggestion; thanks to karnythia, wild_irises, schemingreader and everybody else in this thread for the second.

If any of you who work at universities/publishing houses have further information or advice or can figure out who exactly at BU would be best to talk to, please feel free to comment!

ETA: thanks to [personal profile] internetfailmachine for finding lists of contacts! Here's her idea when it comes to writing: "I am planning a combo complaint+withdrawal of consent email to be addressed to all/most of the above. If there is anyone who is up on the legal mumbojumbo that should be used for the withdrawal of consent, I'd love to hear about it."
bossymarmalade: lisa simpson is determined (yet another cause to champion)
Also, more seriously:

[livejournal.com profile] waywardradish runs a site on Wordpress for survivors of "holding therapy", a physically and emotionally abusive practice performed mostly on already-vulnerable children. Her site, A Search for Survivors, provides a place for people who have experienced this abuse to give testimony about what happened to them.

Wordpress has not only been attempting to suspend the site to appease disgruntled practitioners of this abusive "therapy", but its representative has used lies, intimidation, and threats of silencing in his dealings with Waywardradish.

Please take a moment to let that sink in: he is taunting an abuse survivor with the power he holds over her & other survivors' ability to testify to their suffering.

[livejournal.com profile] copperbadge provides a sample e-mail to send to Wordpress in protest:
So please, feel free to email them again at tosreports@wordpress.com to -- politely and courteously -- request that they stop interfering with the journal. No specific subject line is needed. As a text, I suggest:

I strongly protest your continued interference with the Wordpress journal childtorture.wordpress.com. It is a vital and invaluable resource for holding therapy survivors. The documentation it presents includes firsthand experiences, eyewitness accounts, and news, medical, and legal documents available to the public.

In suspending and/or removing this journal you are doing both the community and your own public image a severe disservice.

Holding therapy is abusive and lethal and aimed at children, who have no voice. Please give abuse survivors back their voice.


Please do consider sending Wordpress an e-mail about this, and/or dropping a comment of support to Waywardradish. Thank you!
bossymarmalade: ramses from the ten commandments (huzzah!)
Victory!

Thank you all so much for expressing your anger over the censoring of Racebending protest items in Glockgal's Zazzle store, and for all your advice and help; there has actually been a resolution of the issue!

Viacom and Zazzle are both claiming it's the other one's fault, but whatever. The stuff's back up and if this doesn't tell them that people are now watching what they do in regards to the Last Airbender franchise, well ... nothing will, I guess. Until we boycott the movie.

But thank you again. There have been so many setbacks and disappointments with this campaign, it's heartening to see something change quickly and for the better for once. Huzzah!
bossymarmalade: aang can stay asian and still save the world - green (this is not a tan)
Well, amazon.ca is sending the same response that other branches of amazon are sending:

This is an embarrassing and ham-fisted cataloging error for a company that prides itself on offering complete selection. )

At any rate, since we're all fired up over amazonfail, how about directing a wee bit of that energy to the petition over at racebending.com? Seriously, y'all, we're struggling to even get five thousand signatures on this thing. Not having a bigger group behind us is what makes it easy for Frank Marshall to turn our dark-skinned heroes white and then blithely tell us on Twitter, "The casting on this movie is finished, so let's all take a deep breath and wait to see it."



If you could take a moment to pop over and sign the petition, it would be greatly appreciated.
bossymarmalade: lisa simpson is determined (yet another cause to champion)
On boycotts/girlcotts:

ETA for clarity: I just read a post (not linking, since this isn't a call to go argue or anything) expressing dismay over the "Thought Policing" in somebody else posting a public list of authors she won't be reading after seeing them fail all over the place this past couple months.

This made me think about the many, many things I "boycott" on an ongoing basis -- seriously, just ask my friends how I respond to simple requests to buy a Coke or go to Wal-Mart or watch Supernatural and see their eyes roll -- and what my purpose is behind that avoidance. I mean, just because I try to avoid buying Kraft products doesn't mean the company's in any danger of going out of business (not that this would be my goal, b/c hell, macaroni & cheese!) but they're not even close to my more accurate wish that they'd not be owned by Altria aka Phillip Morris. My denying myself those little blue boxes doesn't make any difference to them.

But I can't in good conscience support them. (note: i do not mean to sound superior, there are plenty of ways i give money to rotten things, i think we all have our own personal sets of not-alloweds.) There's something about these products that upsets *me* in a fundamental way.

I feel the same way about boycotting some of the authors who've been failing it up. I'm not doing it to punish or silence or send a message to them. They are the very least of my concerns. I'm avoiding their books because after seeing how they deal with real live people who are telling them, "hey, this hurts", I have no interest in seeking out their work so they can hurt me some more in a one-way medium. My boycott is my own political protest, and as the personal is political, what could be more personal than wanting the things I read/watch/buy for fun being actual FUN instead of being painful?

So while I understand that for some people, seeing these lists of boycotted authors/publishers elicits concern for, say, the more clueful Tor authors, I don't think we need to get too worried for their livelihoods or reputations. The no-buy lists are not the same thing as a slam book (HOLY SHIT Y'ALL DO YOU REMEMBER SLAM BOOKS I STILL HAVE ONE) and I wish there was a word besides "boycott" we could use, one that doesn't bring the baggage of "ostracism" with it. Because for lots of people, like myself, I would hazard a guess that boycotting is not even about punitive action.

It's about choosing what I want to allow into my space, and what I have the desire or non-desire to deal with. And I have as much right to talk publicly about what I don't like and why, as you have to talk publicly about the same thing and why and how much you like it.

Besides, I have to save up my energy to do some good hard protesting of the Avatar movie when it comes out and has heroic white people instead of heroic brown people! AAAARGH.
bossymarmalade: blue eye with lashes of red flower petals (putting the "cauc" back in "asian")
"When you take a beloved story that has a fan base, you'll never be able to make everyone happy," says Ricketts, the casting director, who was not involved with the casting of principal roles. "There's been some talk that we're casting authentic Asians as a response to the backlash, which is totally wrong because our world is multi-ethnic and the 'Avatar' world will be multi-ethnic."

Let me make this perfectly clear.

I am not -- I would guess that most of the people protesting Avatar whitewashing are not -- primarily unhappy that they are ruining "a beloved story".

I am unhappy that they are DEMONIZING MY ETHNICITY. I am unhappy that they have cast white people in the heroic roles and Asians as the flavourful background. I am unhappy that the story is now about the peaceful white Air & Water Tribes who are the targets of genocide at the hands of the warlike brown Fire Nation.

That's the reason for unhappiness, DeeDee Ricketts. And you should know how much you've contributed to it, because every time you open your mouth you say something even more ignorant and hurtful. Every time the people behind this movie try to scramble to cover their tracks, they make it even *worse*. "Our world is multi-ethnic and the Avatar world will be multi-ethnic"? Yes, but apparently with the same silencing racism, the same use of Asian culture as set-dressing and Asian people as oddities, and the added bonus of making white people both martyred victim and brave, wise hero.

Let's not pretend, DeeDee, that there was ever any fucking concern about "making everyone happy". You want to make white people happy, because according to your standards they are the ones who matter. Don't try to wriggle this around and make it seem like the people protesting, the ones who are seeing one of the few positive representations of themselves that does not centre around whiteness being taken away and given to those that hath, that we are unreasonably "unhappy".

It's not just fannish unhappiness you're hearing. It's anger, and pain, and determination. You can't make me happy; you don't have that ability or that privilege. You don't even have the first clue. When your response to protests about forced invisibility and writing whiteness over Asianness includes the phrase "authentic Asians", you have just proven your own misguided and shit-stupid belief that YOU are the authority and the arbiter of what is authentically Asian.

This is why people are unhappy. Not because they're worried you'll dress the Water Tribes in aquamarine instead of sky blue, or whatever trivialization of the "fan base" you're entertaining as being our major concern.

We are unhappy because you have taken our story, in which we were the good ones and the bad ones and everybody in-between, a story in which for once we didn't have to deal with how the white folks felt about our strength and beliefs, and you've made us the chaff and the misguided and the corrupt and the genocidal. We are unhappy and we are speaking up about it.

This might not be something that you associate with Asians (despite your vast wellspring of knowledge regarding our "authenticity" and clothing and whatnot), but get ready for a lot more of it, DeeDee. Get ready.




further reading
. [livejournal.com profile] drelfina: rice porridge - what do you know about my culture?
. [livejournal.com profile] deepad: to burn a bridge is sometimes as necessary as to build one - using a person's own culture to silence and dismiss them, as demonstrated by will shetterly

. an informative and concise press release regarding the aang-ain't-white movement
bossymarmalade: a man in moko jumbie mud (moko jumbies are my entourage)
Just in case any of y'all were led to believe that using the word "slumdog" to refer to Indian people is fun, jokey slang, please ... don't.

http://navia.livejournal.com/220989.html

http://www.amconmag.com/larison/2009/02/26/slums-are-for-lovers/

http://www.musicindiaonline.com/n/i/top_stories/2867/ (ETA: I include this last one for his account of the term being used, not b/c I necessarily agree with his views on Mumbai.)
bossymarmalade: bart simpson hopes for a prize in the cereal box (you gotta be lucky *sometime*)
I love how when people like anna post a long, smart post about the repeating patterns of race discussions vis-à-vis Carol Thatcher and RaceFail 09, inevitably somebody will show up with comments not about the thought-provoking exploration of race politics and society, but asking, "what's a golliwog?" Despite anna putting TWO LINKS right next to the word so people could educate themselves before joining the conversation.

At this point it's like ALL discussions of race that aren't Racism 101 should come with disclaimers. I'm taking mine from Wyclef Jean's "Anything Can Happen":

Take this lesson to your next session
I suggest you practice with the freshmen
Sophomore, junior, then come check the senior
By then I would have graduated from the school of ruckus


I totally thought of this song when I read the reiterated bit of Willow's post and hell, it seems like a better and better idea by the moment.

In other news!! The people making the crappy whitewashed Avatar movie have turfed Jesse McCartney and replaced him with Dev Patel. Yay! ... except that Patel will be the Japanese-based bad-guy character (instead of brown-skinned Inuit goofball Sokka, which, um, DEV PATEL!! Shouldn't this be OBVIOUS?!?!) As the sister says, this is not a change that shows the producers understand their racism, it's tokenism so they can point to the lone brown dude and say, "hey, lookit, we're not racist!"

Anyhow, this campaign is clearly not over. Lori has set up an awesome Zazzle store that sells Avatar protest shirts/postcards/buttons, and she has also made all of her excellent graphics available free if you want to do your own printing and whatnot!
bossymarmalade: lisa simpson is determined (yet another cause to champion)
Before I get going: latest news from the Avatar movie? Asians/Natives are only allowed to be extras in their own stories! Don't forget your kooky "costumes"!!

Now.

Today I got a textbook for my Human Sexuality class, and on the very first page was this:

When we speak of "having sex" (a rather ugly phrase, which seems to imply that we engage in sexual activity much as we "have" a ham sandwich) ...

It took five people with PhDs to produce that, in a university-level academic text which claims that it represents the "unique realities of Canadian society".

My initial response was to tell them what they could do to themselves with their ham sandwich (and it ain't "have" it).

My second response -- as, indeed, many of my responses have been this past week -- was to link it back to the "elitist privileging of fauxcademics" element of the silencing/dismissing of PoC that's gone on lately. (I am refusing to call it the Cultural Appropriation discussion anymore, since that original aim was so thoroughly derailed that it seems pointless now.)

It's still taking me some time to work my way through the very supportive comments left to my initial post on the subject, but I wanted to make this one because in addition to my stupid moralistic textbook I've recently read these two completely non-stupid posts:
http://ciderpress.livejournal.com/214072.html
http://navia.livejournal.com/220395.html

Getting back to academia, here's some that isn't as dumb as my first quote:

While it is true that history is written by the winners, resistant narratives -- counter-memories or counter-histories -- have always existed alongside hegemonic historiography. The losers have never been completely silent, although their manner of entering into discourse has often been overlooked. Thus in order to take account of counter-histories historians and theorists have recently begun to study enslaved peoples' songs, women's diaries, and the works of subaltern groups of various kinds. Postcolonial critics, diasporists, African-American theorists and feminist theorists have analyzed these counter-narratives and opened up critical spaces for the retelling of history. Their work has served to expose the institutional processes whereby historiography has constituted marginalized, subaltern identities, then created the conditions under which the abjected groups can represent themselves in the public sphere. Changing the relations of representation permits the objects of discourse to become subjects possessing political agency.
- karen slawner

In regards to the [livejournal.com profile] diversity2009 project this quote is bang-on. Not only did two of the most vicious and racist people in the discussion create a project (predicated upon the entirely incorrect assumption that the PoC who disagreed with them are not involved in any anti-racist activism) which has over its short, convoluted course been described as:
- an opportunity for PoC to edit slush piles
- a challenge to online SF venues to issue a single, diversity-themed edition during the summer of 2009
- a goodwill gesture inside the community
- a collaborative safe space to encourage diversity in existing ezines that are in need of such

-- but they then disappeared from the public eye, leaving the project in the hands of a very young, very inexperienced PoC who has been struggling to deal with and defend both the intrinsically flawed nature of the project and the behaviour of its creators and, unbelievably, now bears the SOLE PUBLIC RESPONSIBILITY for a project that's all about creating a safe space for white people to talk about how they need diversity.

The project is really representative of the entire morass of insensitivity, cowardice, and willful Not Getting It that has characterized this discussion. The final touch of manipulating a kid who's just starting to grapple with her own racialized identity to be their white-by-proxy token-PoC shield? That's not just repulsive, it's -- say it with me now -- ABUSIVE.

They can fuck themselves with that ham sandwich.
bossymarmalade: homer simpson assumes a fetal position (despair of the dial tone)
Okay. I haven't posted anything about the cultural appropriation conversation that's been going on for the better part of the week (or does it just *feel* that long?), because I don't read Elizabeth Bear or Emma Bull and had nothing specific to their writing to contribute.

But now it has reached the point where people are making posts claiming that the PoC who have objected to being reduced to "write everybody as though they were white on the inside!", who have objected to dismissal as being "unable to critically analyze literature in the proper university-trained manner", who have objected to the old, tired trope of "if you don't like how white people write you, why don't you just write yourselves?" were being ABUSIVE for challenging those statements. In a "tone" that isn't completely detached, unemotional, and coldly academic.

[livejournal.com profile] medievalist in particular likes to call the PoC involvement in the conversation "manipulative", "insincere", "overtly gendered", and "misogynistic".

Apart from the blatant, mind-boggling way in which an issue that supposedly began with an interest in respecting the Other has suddenly and aggressively become yet again All About the Hurt Feelings of White People, I am astounded that so many people wanking about their precious academic credentials are completely ignorant of how goddamn OFTEN PoC have seen these same generalized dismissals. Too emotional, too loud, too angry, too uneducated, TOO FUCKING COLOURED.

Let me tell you something: I am perfectly capable of using academic language. Many of us are. But after all of the articles and research and polemic that I've been inundated with over the course of my schooling -- and no, I'm not a career academic, and my family hasn't propped up the hallowed halls of post-secondary schooling since time immemorial -- don't you think I know EXACTLY what academia thinks of the voices of PoC? Don't you think I've read enough studies from the pens of white people about their ideas of people of colour? I am IN a department that touts itself as supporting anti-racist feminist work, and yet EVERY DAY I engage in classwork I simultaneously engage with all of the iron-clad ingrained racism of the institution of higher education.

So don't tell me, from your white, privileged high horse, that academia is some pure value-neutral reasonable and logical perspective from which to examine my suffering. Don't act as though we don't know what abuse is, and we need your handed-down-from-heaven white-defined knowledge to understand OUR OWN EXPERIENCE.

Most of all, don't fucking pretend you give a good goddamn about anything other than covering your own ass if the VERY MOMENT a person of colour challenges your self-congratulatory public onanism, you find every method you can to invalidate their critique and surround yourself with allies who assure you that you are, indeed, the Victim In All This Silly Race Stuff and Why Can't Those Darkies See It's For Their Own Good?

I'm angry, but I used this icon instead of one of my angry ones because more than anything, I'm devastated that these people have found such a singularly vicious way to cut down my opinions. I'm not smart enough to understand why their writing isn't really racist. I am, in fact, abusive for arguing with them. I just ... I feel blindsided. Help me here, please; I can't believe how much this hurts.
bossymarmalade: a man in moko jumbie mud (moko jumbies are my entourage)
Quebec comedy show does racist shit, gets butthurt when people are offended

"It is dishonest to claim that we showed racism," Cloutier and Morissette said in the statement. "We reject this allegation with vigour. Each racial allusion in the skit served to highlight the ineptitude of the characters in the skit."

AAARGH. Look, it's simple: if the people to whom you were "alluding" -- who JUST MIGHT be a little more adept than you at recognizing racism against them -- tell you that they were offended by your shit, then YOUR SHIT IS OFFENSIVE. Why is this so hard to understand?

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