I'm Kris, and I'm kind of awesome.
My brain wanders all over the place and between topics. Just like this Tumblr!
[Gifset: Laverne Cox speaks at the GLAAD media awards, she says,
"Each and every one of us has the capacity to be an oppressor. I want to encourage each and every one of us to interrogate how we might be an oppressor, and how we might be able to become liberators for ourselves and each other."]
spacebunnysparkle-empress asked: 1/2. answer to your post got too long. I think maybe Martin, as an author, is just portraying the world as it is. in the world we live in, those things are true. It is violent and terrible and men, particularly white men do have the power. For me personally, i see it as a mirror. i feel like he's exposing how awful we can be. plus it makes for conflict and you cant have a good tv or fiction without tons of that. also, in real world,
historically things like rape were either not discussed, considered NBD, or something which meant you must commit suicide because why would anyone want you after that? when i watch/read game of thrones, it makes me think about the brutality in our own lives, and how our media handles that. i dont know if it has that effect on anyone else though.
1. You’re wrong about social perspectives on violence, including sexual violence, from “history”. Firstly, because you seem to be generalizing the entirety of human history. Secondly,
According to the text of the Madrid manuscript of the “Synopsis historion,” a Byzantine chronicle written by John Skylitzes, “There were some Varangians dispersed in the Thrakesion theme for the winter. One of them coming across a woman of the region in the wilderness put the quality of her virtue to the test. When persuasion failed he resorted to violence, but she seized his Persian-type sword, struck him in the heart and promptly killed him. When the deed became known in the surrounding area, the Varangians held an assembly and crowned the woman, presenting her with all the possessions of her violator, whom they threw aside, unburied, according to the law concerning assassins.” In the image depicting these occurrences, the woman uses a spear to kill her attacker, and the other Varangian men approach her with armfuls of clothing.
Women’s History in regard to the European Middle Ages, specifically, is so constantly being revised, revisited, and rewritten, what is considered “the norm” and what is considered “exceptional” changes with the day of the week, the phase of the moon, and the latest piece of documentation being debated in various circles.
You can read this excerpt reviewing Gendering the Master Narrative: Women and Power in the Middle Ages in its second incarnation, versus the one from 1988 which the authors claimed focused too much on
"the positive"…. as you can see, these ideas are constantly in flux, as well they should be! I’m ready for another volume refocusing on the positive, myself…. :|
In other words, THIS is precisely what I mean-people get these ideas from media and project them onto history a lot of the time. And yes, there are plenty of counter-examples, we can talk about Artemisia Gentilischi, and a million other things, but my point is that you cannot universalize this.
2. That’s precisely the problem I’m talking about, that GoT is more of a reflection of our CURRENT SOCIETY than it is Medieval European Society, but it’s often being presented as or defended as “Just How Things Were Back Then”. You know, back when DRAGONS.
3. I think I’m going to have to have a whole speech very soon on how conflict in fiction is 100% possible without replicating or exaggerating gender or race-related oppression (Laurie J. Marks’ Elemental Logic series), AND without erasing gender (Ursula K. LeGuin’s The Left Hand of Darkness) OR people of color (like basically 90% of the genre of epic fantasy. And urban fantasy, for that matter.)
FYI, the Varangians were Vikings. This woman killed a fucking Viking and the others honoured her for it.
Let me rephrase that: a native Byzantian woman defended herself and killed a Varangian (a certain group of ‘vikings’, to be brief) who had come to these lands for trade and as hired guards (its more complex but bear with me). When the other Varangians heard of one of their own having attempted to assault a woman they proceeded to dump his corpse and give her all her belongings. Rather than, ya know, gang up on her like they constantly do in GoT (./vomit).
It is an extremely interesting manuscript excerpt to look at the interaction of different cultural groups, the way they value eachother within and across said groups, and the expectations on either side. The Varangians responded in the way they would when one of their own had attacked another, and the other had rightfully defended themselves. The fact that the ‘other’ was in this case a woman and of a culturally different group was completely irrelevant to them: someone was assaulted, therefore, it was obvious to them what aught be done - namely compensate her with the deceased’s belongings / holdings.
Thanks for adding more context to the story.
I really just want to add one more time that fantasy stories that you read or watch on TV are stories invented by writers. They are not fettered by “historical facts” to have misogyny (or racism, or anything else) hardwired into every storyline supposedly based on history. Their stories are the result of choices that they are responsible for.
This historic photograph captured the ceremony celebrating the completion of the transcontinental railroad, which united east and west coasts of this country by a land route for the first time; yet, the thousands of Chinese Americans who helped build the railroad were conspicuously absent. Photo credit: Wikipedia
On May 10th of this year, the transcontinental railroad will be 145 years old. On that day in 1869, track laid by Union Pacific Railroad and Central Pacific Railroad companies finally connected, and insodoing created a railway that spanned 1,928 miles. For the first time in American history, it was possible to travel from coast-to-coast without sailing around the North American continent.
It is estimated that as many as 12,000 Chinese American labourers helped build the transcontinental railroad, predominantly on the West Coast. Working for a fraction of the pay of their non-Asian White counterparts, Chinese “coolie” labourers were assigned some of the most dangerous tasks, including blasting away rocks that lay in the path of the track. Unknown numbers of Chinese American men lost their lives in the course of laying the railroad. This was in part because of ongoing anti-Asian racism among the work crews; White labourers viewed their Chinese American colleagues with disdain,calling them “midgets”, “effeminate” and “monkeys”. Nonetheless, Chinese American labourers participated in the construction of virtually every railroad track on the West coast built during that era.
Yet, when the railroad was completed on May 10th, 1869, an event commemorated in a historical photograph that showed actual railroad workers crowded around the final spike as it is hammered into the ground, Chinese American labourers were left out of the photograph. They were literally erased from history.
Every year on May 10th, that historic photograph is re-created by the park officials who maintain the national park commemorating the site of the Golden Spike ceremony. And every year, park officials refuse to make any specific effort to make the Asian American community visible in the photograph recreation.
This year, acclaimed Asian American photographer and historian, Corky Lee — whose iconic black-and-white photographs have documented some of the most landmark moments in the political history of Asian America — is organizing a “flashmob” style event to correct the historic wrong of that 1869 Golden Spike Ceremony photograph.
On Saturday, May 10th at 9:30am, Corky is inviting Asian Americans to join him at the Golden Spike National Historic Site in Tremonton, Utah (group transportation is being organized from Salt Lake City). He is hoping to get at least 145 Asian Americans to join him in recreating that historic photograph, but this time with the faces of Asian America front and center!
If you are 1) Asian American, and 2) able to get to Utah on May 10th, I urge you to please come out and help him in making this important project happen! Please help challenge the erasure of Asian Americans from the history of the transcontinental railroad.
Please join (and share)this Facebook Event page to help get the word out.
And, if you are able to make it to Utah on May 10th, please contact Ze Xiao (zxiao [at] slco [dot] org), who is coordinating transportation to the Golden Spike site for Corky’s photograph.
There were three sorts of Dornishmen, the first King Daeron had observed. There were the salty Dornishmen who lived along the coasts, the sandy Dornishmen of the deserts and long river valleys, and the stony Dornishmen who made their fastnesses in the passes and heights of the Red Mountains. The salty Domishmen had the most Rhoynish blood, the stony Dornishmen the least.
All three one sorts seemed well represented in Doran’s retinue. The salty Dornishmen were
lithe and darkwhite as fuck, with smooth olivepale ass skin and long black hairracist turbans streaming in the wind. The sandy Dornishmen were even darkerwhiter, their faces burned brownwhite by the hot Dornish sun. They wound long bright scarfs around their helms to ward off sunstroke. The stony Dornishmen were biggest and fairest (finally some more white people up in here), sons of the Andals and the First Men, brownhaired or blond, with faces that freckled or burned in the sun instead of browning.
The lords wore silk and satin robes with jeweled belts and flowing sleeves. Their armor was heavily enameled and inlaid with burnished copper, shining silver, and soft red gold. They came astride red horses and golden ones and a few as pale as snow, all slim and swift, with long necks and narrow beautiful heads. The fabled sand steeds of Dorne were smaller than proper warhorses and could not bear such weight of armor, but it was said that they could run for a day and night and another day, and never tire.
#i took some liberty and corrected the shitty book version to make it into the vastly superior david&dan version #thank you for your time #who needs representation anyways since we all can see how spanish/italian inspired dorne obviously is
Thank you for this great gifset contrasted with the original text description of the Dornishmen. I think just about everyone was fairly disappointed in the casting here. It shouldn’t have to be pointed out that:
1. the books (ASOIAF) are not accurate to history in a general sense
2. the books are not accurate to history in the sense of dragons and magic
3. the show (Game of Thrones) is not accurate to the books in terms of people and casting as the characters are described, in many ways that do a disservice to people of color
4. this is inarguable whitewashing, and I do not generally use that term very often.
Once more, I’ll point out that Fantasy is not History. Once again, I’ll point out that whether or not Dorne is supposed to be ‘inspired by’ Medieval Spain or Italy, this is still inaccurate.
And a final reminder: These books and the show based on it were created on purpose by human beings for an audience-both of whom are modern people and part of American culture, right here, right now. The choices made, the casting, the storylines and plot points, all are conscious decisions made by people. Game of Thrones isn’t history, it is a fantasy show.
P.S. I personally am a fan of the show and the books, I have seen every episode and read every book, including some of the short fiction (so no worries about spoiling me). I don’t feel particularly conflicted in being critical of it, or analyzing it.