Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Card on the Table

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  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Stephen R,

    Interesting link. Yes, it would be nice if racism, misogyny, homophobia and all other kinds of bigoted bullshit were unknown in Geekdom. The big flaw in that theory is that geeks are human beings. And, like it or not, Anglo-American pop culture still largely comes from quarters dominated by straight white middle-class cis-gendered men -- with all the baggage that comes with it in the world we live in.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Kumara Republic, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    It wouldn't surprise me in the least if there's an overlap with high-functioning autism, given the above-average representation of it within certain geek clusters. There's a reason why HFA is also known as 'Silicon Valley syndrome'.

    The southernmost capital … • Since Nov 2006 • 5441 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to TracyMac,

    So maybe in terms of population proportions, geeks have greater queer acceptance compared to the general population, but there are still plenty who have issues.

    This. Also, I think that's partly because the geek community is queerer than the general population. (At least, that's my perception. We can't know, because we have no data on the proportion of LGBT people in the population. If only there were some way of gathering that kind of social data... Wait, that's a whole different can of bitching.)

    Also, as Bart says, geek texts are gayer. Not only do they deal with concepts of 'outsiders' a lot, but 'mainstream' geek stuff - Dr Who, Buffy, BSG - have LGBT characters.

    I don't want to in any way suggest that there aren't real problems with eg misogyny in geek culture, or that there aren't geek Jerkwads. But actually, things like the geek idea of masculinity is, I think, way less destructive than that in mainstream culture.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    So I have a question. Would Ender's Game be more acceptable if OSC was dead and not activity spewing his bile?

    If he was dead we could dismiss his views as being a product of history, of course we can dismiss his views as being a product of his location now.

    Does it become easier to view the art as separate from the artist over time?

    I think it does, tbh. For a start, you don't have to worry so much about the direct income stream. I mean, I'm a little surprised it hasn't come up yet, but if the point where you get uneasy with him is the money, you can consume his art without giving him money. Get his books from the library or buy them second-hand.

    However. Unlike Renaissance dramatists or (arguably) Heinlein, Card's views aren't typical of his time. You could argue, yes, that they are typical of his religion, that they're a product of his upbringing as a Mormon, as the great-great grandson of Bringham Young.

    But Card is still different. He's the only Mormon who's a Director of NOM. Other Mormons do not feel the compulsion to take the active hand that Card does. So yeah, no matter how much time goes by, Card is still too outstanding for me to excuse. I think. I mean, obviously speculating.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Emma Hart,

    For a start, you don’t have to worry so much about the direct income stream. I mean, I’m a little surprised it hasn’t come up yet, but if the point where you get uneasy with him is the money, you can consume his art without giving him money.

    If that were the only issue then you probably don’t have to worry about the movie. It’s quite likely he does not get residuals.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    He's also a producer. And if this rates really well? There are all those other Ender books still to go.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Also, as Bart says, geek texts are gayer. Not only do they deal with concepts of ‘outsiders’ a lot, but ‘mainstream’ geek stuff – Dr Who, Buffy, BSG – have LGBT characters.

    To give the straight boys credit where due, Ronald Moore was (to me) impressively grown-up and respectfully engaged with criticism that BSG's GLBT representation was far from flawless. "Yeah, we fraked up not having a gay regular character on BSG - and I'm ultimately responsible for that." Well done, Ron. Wish that was the norm. And who would have thought Steven Moffat could make Doctor Who even gayer? If steampunk Silurian detective Madame Vastra (and married woman, thank you Withnail) isn't a marriage equality / lesbian icon by now I'm handing in my bloody toaster oven in disgust. :)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Got to flick myself on the ears there -- there are also plenty of straight white middle-class cis-gendered males in geekdom who do own their privileges and don't behave like entitled garbage monsters. Because being an ignorant bigot really is a lifestyle choice.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    a lifestyle choice

    like skiing

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Martin Lindberg, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    straight white middle-class cis-gendered males

    I like the idea of a character who is a non-straight, non-white, non-middle-class, non-cis-gendered non-male. I mean, if you want all those boxes un-ticked.

    Stockholm • Since Jul 2009 • 802 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Or wearing budgie smugglers and getting all huffy when folks giggle immoderately. (Yes, I'm looking at you through my fingers Tony Abbott.)

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Martin Lindberg,

    Ursula Le Guin unticked 'em all forty-five years back. She also tells a rather wonderfully ghastly tale of how got a paperback edition of A Wizard of Earthsea and was surprised to see her hero portrayed as an Aryan wet dream when the guy in the book is none of the above.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    If that were the only issue then you probably don’t have to worry about the movie. It’s quite likely he does not get residuals.

    That seems to vary movie to movie. Tolkien's estate got a share of the profit of LOTR I believe.

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Martin Lindberg,

    non-straight, non-white, non-middle-class, non-cis-gendered non-male

    That combo makes my head hurt ... you want a heroine who is black/brown/yellow or green (it is SF after all) who is obscenely wealthy or dirt poor but was born/hatched/decanted as male, but I can't figure out whether you want her to like boys or girls ... I need to lie down now

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Mostly off-topic, but: For the private manned (wow, that's unashamedly gendered) mission to Mars, they are looking for a couple, since they'll be basically stuck in the same room as each other for about 500 days. A gay male couple capable of passing the tests may well be easier to find than a straight couple. Mars could get its first flyby from an enlightened species.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10657 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    Seriously, Bart, I'd just take the win if DC hired a dozen more straight off-white guys and cis-women on an ongoing basis.

    Is it really that hard?

    Los Bros Hernandez have been on the scene for thirty fraking years

    There are plenty of women doing awesome work in the medium – Aline and Sophie Kominsky-Crumb, Françoise Mouly, Carla Speed McNeil, Ursula Vernon, Alison Bechdel, Hiromu Arakawa, Claire Bretecher, Julie Doucet, and Jessica Abel, are just the ones who immediately come to mind.

    None of them are doing impenetrable art-wank unimaginably distant from the air-quote unquote comics “mainstream”. So what the fuck is going on, people -- apart from (yes) SWM continuing to hire and promote people who look like them and getting pissy when that's pointed out?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Seriously, Bart, I’d just take the win if DC hired a dozen more straight off-white guys and cis-women on an ongoing basis.

    absofrigginlutely

    I don't get why in 2013 we still have this shit going down and it's across the board. Doesn't matter which profession you are in white men in suits hold the power and reward white men in suits. If a women wants to succeed her best path is to imitate a white man in a suit ... headdesk

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4460 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    Is your argument railing against an entrenched policy of only hiring 'like' types, or is it in favour of tokenist hiring of 'unlike' types? I'm not sure that you are making it clear.
    (But that may be because I know fuck-all about the hiring policies at DC or any other comics company.)

    The only sci-fi I've really read over the last 10 years or so would be Iain M Banks & he's plenty right-on for me.

    Te Ika A Maui - Whakatane… • Since Oct 2008 • 577 posts Report Reply

  • Sj,

    Hello PAS people. I am sorry to gatecrash your site with a change of subject, but is anyone out there offended by the recent front cover of TIME? Runner Oscar Pistorius bare chested, standing tall on his blades. The caption: "man, superman GUNMAN in increasing size so Gunman is massive suggesting it's the most important aspect of his life.

    Belmont • Since May 2012 • 17 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to Sj,

    Hey Sj. Discussion on the Pistorius Time cover is here.

    And. In case people are unaware, the second reading of the Marriage Equality bill is scheduled for tonight. I've heard anywhere from 7-8:30: like last time this'll firm up as we get closer, and I'll update here for those people not on Twitter.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

  • Sj, in reply to Emma Hart,

    Thanks Emma. I'll be back...

    Belmont • Since May 2012 • 17 posts Report Reply

  • Sj,

    Yes to all of that (small comment notwithstanding). In the same genre the latest Listener's Sport's segment, also on Pistorius, compares the OJ case and this one as some kind of titillating series of sports scandals that out-scandal Hollywood - like it's a good thing! Lest we all die of boredom, presumably. The killing (and killer) so dwarfs the victim and tragic loss of life it's almost laughable. When the journalist mentions John Cleese's joke about Pistorius's defence being that he was "totally legless" at the time and as a justifiable mockery against Cleese's ex-wife's recent alimony 'win', you wonder about a Monty Python connection, except that was comedy.

    Belmont • Since May 2012 • 17 posts Report Reply

  • Sj,

    For the record, I think Cleese's joke is funny, but perhaps not yet.

    Belmont • Since May 2012 • 17 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    I/S notes that there's too much business on the agenda ahead of the Marriage Equality bill, so there'll almost certainly be no vote on it until the next Member's Day.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1940 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart, in reply to linger,

    Yes, this is quite possible, and a bit of a shit. But. Debate is underway now on Parliament TV. Listener Live and gaynz have live blogs.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4651 posts Report Reply

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