Shiny Happy Fists of Rage

Hello.

I generally like blogs about anti-racism, feminism (womanism), science, religion, books, vegan recipes, my various fandoms, knitting, and funny shit.

So as you might expect, this blog of mine is some amalgamation of the above.

. . .

You know you love it.

My fandoms:


* Mass Effect
* Dragon Age
* Avatar (TLA and LOK)
* Arrested Development
* Community (sorta)
* Star Trek (DS9 and TNG)
* Song of Ice and Fire
* Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab
* Doctor Who (sorta but not really anymore.)
* Popular Science (Carl Sagan, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Michio Kaku, etc.)
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Posts tagged "OC"

trilbiesandtrifles:

lemuffinmistress:

I like Sherlock, but I have become really aware of Steven Moffat’s influence in the show and on its characters.

Moffat seems to be incapable of writing strong female characters without making them “sexy” (read: “comic book” sexy; the “recipients of the male gaze” kind of sexy).

In the hands…

i agree that irene adler got a miller-esque adaptation, which i thought was rather unnecessary - not every woman needs to be a sex worker >:|

but i disagree about amy and river.  amy isn’t a damsel in distress, outside of the girl who waited and being abducted by the silence, she’s the one who’s doing most of the saving.  and up till rory’s badassery in a good man goes to war, she was clearly “the one who wears the pants in the family”

also, yes it annoys me that River clearly does have adventures outside of the doctor that we never see - but it is DOCTOR who, you can’t really have adventures without him.

"amy isn’t a damsel in distress, outside of the girl who waited and being abducted by the silence, she’s the one who’s doing most of the saving.  and up till rory’s badassery in a good man goes to war, she was clearly “the one who wears the pants in the family”"

I disagree pretty strongly. “The Big Bang”, where Amy is trapped inside the Pandoricum and Rory becomes her protector for 1000 years - that epitomizes their relationship for me. Their relationship changes after that.

Also, recall the end of Series 6, where the Doctor gives Amy and Rory a house and a car, and tells Amy that it’s time for them to become “The Williams” instead of “The Ponds”  - treating her stated desire for independence as if it is just a passing fancy of youth.

Amy’s badassery is extremely passive - she “saves” the Doctor by remembering him - compare that to Martha (who saved the world by traveling it, spreading the news of the Doctor for an entire year) or to Donna (who became Doctor-Donna and actively participated in the saving of the world.)

Amy Pond seems more like a return to the old-fashioned female sidekicks who perpetually get into trouble and need saving . Like, all throughout “The Girl Who Waited”, she repeats some variant of “You didn’t save me. You always save me, Rory.”   I think that’s really telling - Amy herself points out that it’s “a thing” for her to always get saved by Rory. 

Why can’t Amy ever save Rory? (“Saving him with her love” doesn’t count.) Rory and Amy are both Companions, but Rory seems significantly more “useful” than Amy does. Like, Rory is forever sacrificing for Amy and making grand gestures of love and devotion (like being her protector for 1000 years). 

I’m not complaining about that per se, but it really does seem to be calling back the idea that women are to be cherished and protected, and men are to sacrifice for the women they love. I like Amy/Rory, but I would love their relationship even more if I felt that it were more equal and not so Knight in Shining Armor/Fair Scottish Maiden. 

It’s like, when Rory became companion #2, he got all the badassery, and Amy got pushed back to being the Companion that Rory saves all the time. I mean, when we got to “The Girl Who Waited”, I distinctly remember thinking “GOD when are we going to be finished with these “Save Amy!” storylines?”

RE: River Song

I’m less  upset about River, but I do notice that a lot of her actions are all tied up in male fantasies about femininity and feminine sexuality. Like, in “Let’s Kill Hitler”, poison lipstick? Really? How femme fatale. As if that would be the only way she could get one-up on the Doctor, using those good ole-fashioned feminine wiles.

Or, a smaller example, when she passes regenerations to the Doctor by kissing him.  Or like, when we’re re-introduced to River with a shot starting at her six-inch red stiletto heels that travels up her legs and over her dress, finally resting on her face. It annoys me that the most important thing about River is her “sexiness” - and that sexiness being totally tied up in male gaze and male fantasy.

I like Sherlock, but I have become really aware of Steven Moffat’s influence in the show and on its characters.

Moffat seems to be incapable of writing strong female characters without making them “sexy” (read:  “comic book” sexy; the “recipients of the male gaze” kind of sexy). 

 In the hands of Steven Moffat, Amy Pond, River Song, and Irene Adler all turn into tired old tropes about women - femme fatales, damsels in distress, the “love interests.” At first introduction, they all seem like powerful female figures. Instead, they all become defined solely in relation to the men in their life.

1) River Song becomes The Doctor’s Wife.  (Seriously, River Song moves back and forth in time just like the Doctor. Why is it that the only adventures of hers that we hear about have to do with her being Cleopatra or sexing up the Doctor? I’m sure she’s doing more with her time, but it’s just deemed irrelevant.)

2) Amy Pond becomes “The Girl who Waits.”  (Side note: Amy Pond is always always always “girl”. Never “woman”, even though she is a grown-ass person with a goddamn kid.)

3) Irene Adler becomes The Woman Who Beat Sherlock. 

Even though, as we discover near the end of the episode, Irene Adler is actually working under Moriarty.  Implication: smart as she may be, Moriarty is the real mastermind.

Her feelings for Sherlock are portrayed as a weakness,  one that is betrayed by her womanish sentimentality. 

Also, Irene Adler’s lesbianism (Watson: “We’re not gay!” Adler: “WELL, I AM.”)  is  COMPLETELY ignored for the rest of the episode,  and, most confusingly, not addressed *at all* when Irene Adler’s love for Sherlock is made known.

In the hands of anyone but Steven Moffat, I’d probably see this as a protest of labels, maybe a character identifying as lesbian for political reasons. Instead, it’s just another iteration of the tired old idea that “women aren’t really lesbians, they just haven’t found the right man yet.”

It all ends with Irene Adler (the dominatrix, remember?) on her knees in complete submission, only to be rescued by Sherlock, the hero. In doing so, he reclaims his position as the best, smartest, most logical and unabashedly dominant figure in the series.

It’s all very frustrating.

(Oh, and I haven’t even gotten to the fetishization and sensationalizing of Watson and Sherlock’s nonexistent gay relationship. But that’s another post.)

I think it’s odd that you can’t joke about rape, when people joke about murder all the time. A lot more people are dying than getting raped. I think it’s a comedian’s job to make everything funny. Nothing is off-limits.

- Donald Glover

For the people wondering what Donald Glover had to say about jokes involving rape.

(via feistyfeminist)

Reblogging so everyone knows how much Donald Glover sucks.

(via winteriscomingbitch)

If anyone’s wondering, here’s the reasoning we’re fighting against rape jokes, specifically.

Everybody pretty much agrees that murder is bad, and that even when walking alone at night, people aren’t asking to be murdered. When people get murdered, we go “oh shit, did they find the murderer? how is their family holding up?” When women get raped, we go “what was she wearing are you sure she didnt lead the guy on maybe she liked it maybe the guy didnt hear her say no why are you automatically siding against the guy maybe hes the actual innocent party here OMG U FEMINAZIS”.

Rape isn’t taken seriously as a crime, and women who report their rapes aren’t taken seriously as victims. Even under the “best” circumstances, these women undergo incredible amounts of victim blaming and slut shaming, something really only specific to rape victims, certainly not murder victims. 

So when the people who overwhelmingly commit rapes (practically with impunity, given the way we treat rape victims) are *same* guys want to joke about rape? Yeah, no, that is fucked the fuck up.

(via arulpragasams)

cupidcancer:

ramblingssk:

Firstly, I hate that term. I think racism is racism, and there is no reverse of it. That’s also why I disagree with the idea that there is no such thing as it, however. Again, I’ll just call it RACISM, and not reverse racism.

I do not subscribe to the theory that RACISM means you have the power…

”..because black people have allowed our own people to be racist.”

WHAT.

WHAT.

WHAT THE FUCK.

“Just think of the other person as a HUMAN, and not their color, and maybe it won’t be hard to not be racist.”

LOL,wow. Really?

“Yes, a black person can be racist to a white.”

No they can’t. Now we can’t. You’re confusing prejudice with racism.

“I do not subscribe to the theory that RACISM means you have the power to oppress a people. No, I believe that racism is when you blatantly discriminate against or hate a person because of their race, and/or you believe that your race is superior IN ANY WAY.”

Once again. Confusing prejudice with racism.


Okay, 101 course for you. Racism: Power + Prejudice. So all the shit you just said? Wrong. Sorry, but you are. In fact, I’m not sorry. Because if you’re ignorant enough to believe that “see people as human and not color” crap then you are far beyond help. How white do you sound.

Beyond help.

To cupidcancer:

The OP isn’t white. The OP is black.  When she says, “”..because black people have allowed our own people to be racist.”, she’s talking about black people not calling out the black community for racism.

To the OP:

Of course, prejudice in the black community is something that needs to be dealt with. What annoys me that when we have talks about racism, though, all anyone wants to do is point to black prejudice as if it negates institutional racism. “Welp, see, EVERYONE has prejudice, EVEN BLACK PEOPLE, therefore there’s no point in trying to resolve it!”

Equating black prejudice with institutionalized white racism is dangerous. Black people can be disgustingly prejudiced, yes. But we don’t live in a society that favors and privileges black people. Being a black person hating on “the white man” in America is about as effective as punching through a brick wall with your fist.

In contrast, white racism affects the day-to-day lives of Black Americans by being institutionalized. Institutionalized poverty, lack of education, prejudice in the workplace. For example, a study compared the interview call-back rates of white people and black people, and found that white felons are MORE likely to get called back for an interview than black men WITHOUT CRIMINAL RECORDS.

That’s institutionalized racism.

You said that you wanted to table the discussion of legislation, because that’s a totally different ball game. But that’s an *important* ballgame, that makes a huge amount of difference. It’s not something that you can ignore when talking about racism.

(via sluttyeden-deactivated20120520)

I agree one hundred percent that Bella's choices are demonized and that Bella as a character is not the problem, more the fact that her choices are portrayed as the only options for a woman and Edward's behavior as a whole. There is one choice of Bella's, though, that I find problematic. Her reaction to the breakup....blankness followed by the choice to put herself in harms way to try and force him back.
lemuffinmistress lemuffinmistress Said:

I agree with this too. I don’t think that was a smart move of Bella’s at all.

However, I feel like Bella could have made this same decision, and it still wouldn’t have been problematic if Stephenie Meyers chose to show Bella’s choices in a negative light. Instead, Meyers fetishizes it, like, literally fetishizes her sorrow and her “can’t live without you” mentality. 

(Aside: Let me tell you, I have seen people who can’t live without another person.  It ain’t pretty. It’s painful (not that good pain, either) and it’s pitiful and it’s not fucking romantic. At all.)

Also, Stephenie Meyers doesn’t show Bella growing from this in any real way. After it’s all over, I’m convinced that if Edward ever left again, Bella would go right back into her catatonic state. No character growth. No admission that Bella’s actions re: Edward’s leaving were stupid. Oh sure, characters tell her that her actions were stupid all the time, but it’s presented in such a way that makes it seem like those people just don’t understand. 

The way Meyers solves the problem of Bella’s comatose state when Edward leaves is to say that Bella and Edward’s love is so strong that Bella will never have to worry about Edward leaving again … instead of Bella gaining the tools to deal with Edward’s leaving.

This is what I mean when I say that Meyers fetishizes dependency. Instead of allowing Bella to move on from being this dependent teenaged girl to a maturing independent woman, Bella continues to be a dependent woman who is just more secure in her dependency.

TLDR: Feminist characters don’t have to make feminist choices all the time. Their non-feminist actions and choices just need to be recognized as such, and those flaws need to be addressed within the text.

I think one of the biggest problems isn't the domestic aspects of Twilight itself, but the fact it's presented as the only option. There's nothing wrong with wanting to get married, but every single Twilight lady is. The book provides no choice. It's also important to note that Edward is a terrible boyfriend. He practically reeks of rape culture, first of all, and is rather dismissive of Bella's feelings, even manipulating them because he thinks he knows better than she does.
lemuffinmistress lemuffinmistress Said:

Agree with you 100%.

My post was precipitated by lots of critics talking about Bella as if Bella herself is the problem, and not the fact that, as you’ve said, Bella’s choices are presented as the only option. 

I think we’re on the same page. ;)

Listen up, y’all.

The Pandora station: “Good Music (The Roots song)” is HOT. FIRE.

HOT. FIRE.

The Roots, De La Soul, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, Black Star, all in the past 20 minutes.

Seriously. This station is what’s up.

Don’t say I never did anything for you.

jacquelinejane reblogged your post: Why Bella Swan Isn’t Necessarily Unfeminist

While I kind of agree with the general point, this -  "She’s not being pressured into that choice"  - is, I feel, inaccurate. From what I can remember of the books (which to be fair I read over two years ago) Bella was, indeed, pressured by Edward to marry. Didn’t he, like, propose over and over again even when she made it abundantly clear that she did not want to be anyone’s wife? Didn’t she feel awkward and uncomfortable and even annoyed every time he mentioned marriage despite knowing how she felt about the issue? And didn’t she only accept his proposal after he blackmailed her and said “If you don’t marry me I won’t make you a vampire”? Yes, at the end of the day she did decide to marry him, and for what it’s worth I don’t think there is anything wrong with a woman choosing to be a housewife or a stay at home mother, but there was most definitely pressure from Edward.

This is a good point.

She may have been pressured into marrying Edward, but she wasn’t pressured into already being kind of a homebody. She likes to cook for the men in her family, and she likes for it to be her job to be the family cook. She has to be persuaded to do social things. She wasn’t pressured into being uninterested in college, if anything, her friends try to encourage her to pursue further schooling.

The point I’m trying to make here is that Bella wants to be a wife (eventually, if not at 18) and mother and homemaker, and there’s nothing inherently wrong with that. That isn’t unfeminist of her. 

Her aversion to marrying Edward was based in the very real and completely legitimate fear of being seen as a silly 18 year old who gave up college to go marry a guy, not out of aversion to being a wife.  Edward did pressure her into getting married though, definitely, so I’m adding another tick box to the Shit Edward Did Wrong column.

boner-ghost reblogged your post: Why Bella Swan Isn’t Necessarily Unfeminist

Okay, this makes sense. I still think these books are INCREDIBLY unhealthy for young girls to read.

Oh, no doubt. The problem that I have with Twilight is, like I said earlier, the fetishizing of Bella’s choices, not the choices themselves.

That being said, I think (I hope?) that most people reading Twilight are doing it for the escapism and the “romance”. (It does squick me a bit that people see Edward as romantic and not like, seriously disturbed and stalker, but I don’t think it’s inherently wrong to have fantasies about Edward.) 

I am a little concerned that fetishizing abusive behavior in relationships will sort of normalize it and make women think that this kind of behavior is normal and romantic instead of problematic and “get-the-hell-out-now”.

The problem that I have with a lot of feminist Twilight criticism is that it sees all aspects of Bella’s character as inherently problematic and inherently antifeminist.  Bella doesn’t really want to go to college, she doesn’t really have career goals, she really really really wants to be with Edward, and she really wants to keep that demon baby.

Now, I’d argue that this doesn’t really make Bella an interesting character to me, but this isn’t enough to say that Bella isn’t a strong character, or that Twilight is anti-feminist.

Hold your horses for a sec. I’m not saying that Bella *IS* a strong character, or that Twilight *ISN’T* anti-feminist. I’m just saying that we can’t make that characterization based solely on Bella’s desires. We need to see how these desires and wants are treated in the book so that we can properly contextualize Bella’s desires and actions.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with Bella wanting all of the things she wants. Even though the idea is rather foreign to me, I know that there are intelligent women who really are truly not interested in going to college, or who have no real interest in a career. Bella would be quite content, even rather happy, being solely a wife and mother and homemaker. And you know, that’s okay. She’s not being pressured into that choice, and she doesn’t have to go to college to get points towards fulfilling her feminist quota.

It becomes problematic when Bella’s desires and choices are presented as the One True Right, and everyone else who chooses differently than Bella or wants different things is evil, misguided, and/or majorly depressed.

For example, all the women in Twilight either have children or want children. Women who can’t have children are angry and bitter and carry the sorrow with them for eons (see Rosalie.) There’s nothing wrong with having these women in the story, but the representation of women who are childless and happy in Twilight is pretty much nil. And *that’s* the problem.

What I’m saying is this: Bella has goals, they’re just goals like “become a vampire” and “marry Edward” and “be Bella”. Bella just wants to be her own person. (That person is, arguably, not very interesting, but you know, whatevs.)

I think we should be careful about labeling any of Bella’s qualities as inherently unfeminist, lest you alienate women who also want what Bella wants. Twilight is unfeminist because it fetishizes female weakness and dependency, not because Bella doesn’t have traditionally feminist goals.

TLDR: Blame the book, not Bella.