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You can call me lilly [userpic]

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September 26th, 2012 (12:05 pm)



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You can call me lilly [userpic]

Musings on the necessity of education in anti-racism

August 8th, 2009 (02:56 pm)
contemplative
Tags:

I feel too: contemplative

As a queer white feminist still deep in the throes of self-education, I already find the ass-hattery of some people incredible when they're called out on their racism. I think a huge part of the problem is that explicitly we're brought up to believe 'racism is wrong' and it doesn't go any further than that. For me, my upbringing with white liberal parents involved being told that treating someone differently because of the colour of their skin is wrong, and went no further. There was never discussion about the systemic oppression of PoC, or the intrinsic attitudes with which we are equipped as white people. My peach coloured crayon was called 'flesh'; the plasters that matched my skin tone were called 'flesh coloured', and this was never noted or discussed. Whiteness was default and my parents, I suppose, fell into the common liberal fallacy of 'the world will be fixed when we all become colour blind and gender blind'*. I've had a lot of self education to do, and am still doing it, and probably will be for a long time.

But I think a lot of problems occur when people think, 'I'm an intelligent person and I know stuff about race, I can skip the definition of terms and jump into the discussion', and don't find out the givens that other people who are in the discussion are taking as such. They hear the term 'white privilege' and jump in with 'I'm not treated in a special way because I'm white!' More often, I see uses of the word 'racist' or 'racism' used with the assumption behind them that those reading them will subscribe to, or at least understand, the activist definition of it - that is, that racism is prejudice + power, that racism isn't limited to individual acts, but refers to ways in which PoC are abused by the system. This means that when an activist says, 'I find what you said/did racist', they may mean, 'I find your actions/words to be reflecting the ways in which PoC are oppressed by the system/building on power dynamics that oppress PoC, in ways which you didn't necessarily mean', while the culprit hears 'You are a bad person who deliberately and maliciously goes around hurting people of colour'. Disconnect. Breakdown in communication.

So, I think this is why the education part of becoming an ally/working in solidarity is so vital. It's so easy to respond with hostility to what you think somebody said, when there was no sense of that in their original comment, asshattery reigns supreme and everybody has a bad day. It's not necessary, and getting yourself on the same page before blundering in is so important.

*This is a pretty good explanation for why colour-blindness is not the answer to ending racism.

You can call me lilly [userpic]

International Blog Against Racism Week

August 1st, 2009 (03:37 pm)

I'm not sure how many of my f-list follow this, but thanks to kat_lair for reminding me that it's international blog against racism week (ibarw).

I'm in an odd position this year, that I haven't been in in previous years. I'm dating someone who is mixed race. I think he counts technically as a person of colour, but he doesn't look it. He's part native american, but looks white. I, and everyone who meets him, think of him as white, and when we were talking the other day about the odd fact that he isn't white but still gets white privilege, he said 'I don't want the privilege', and I know how he feels. As a queer woman, I've experienced my fair amount of silencing, violence and oppression, but I am acutely aware that there are many people who don't have the privileges I do.

But right now, I want to write about writing characters of colour, not only within fandom but in primary material - movies, books, TV shows.

As far as I see it, people get afraid of writing something outside the 'norm'. This is why we see so few gay, bisexual, trans, gender non-conforming, disabled, coloured and female characters. I was complaining about this fact to my significant other the other day, and his response was 'well, it's hard. How do you write a bisexual character without making them into a complete slut?' And while I'm not here to bitch about alternate sexualities being under represented, I definitely feel that people of colour are under represented in the vast majority of media, and I think it's for similar reasons.

As far as I can tell, people shy away from writing these characters because they think that this trait has to be the major thing about this character. So, a three dimensional character with an interesting and complex back story, complex motivations and interesting interactions with other characters, who is also a person of colour (and a person of colour who owns that as part of their heritage and isn't just a character written as white that they paired with an actor of colour), becomes absent because people are afraid of Doing It Wrong and so don't try.

But I feel there's something wrong with the mindset of 'Oh dear, I'm afraid of offending people, I better stay away from that territory'. Firstly, it's othering at its best. "These people are different from me, I don't understand these people" means that you don't think of 'these people' as people. Second, it leaves huge swathes of the population completely under-represented, and invisible.

I'd rather that people try, and get things wrong. After all, it doesn't take a lot of effort or brains not to be a complete asshat. Just a little education and empathy, and it's hardly like the information isn't out there. At least if people seem willing to try, they can be helped to get things right.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, I wish people were not so afraid to push the boat out. As long as they don't get defensive and throw up their hands when they get things wrong (and everyone gets things wrong sometimes), it can only be a good thing, right?

You can call me lilly [userpic]

Summer Reading List

June 25th, 2008 (05:17 pm)
productive

I feel too: productive

This summer I hope to acquaint myself with some classics and move towards being what some may term well-read. Below is my list of books I plan to read this summer. I'll cross them off once I'm done and I'll be trying to review the ones I find more interesting. If I've missed any you think I should read, don't hesitate to comment and offer suggestions.

1. Watership Down - Richard Adams
2. Middlemarch - George Eliot
3. Persuasion - Austen
4. The essential James Joyce - James Joyce
5. Anna Karenina - Tolstoy
6. Hard Times - Dickens
7. The Glass Bead Game - Hermann Hesse
8. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoevsky
9. Waiting for Godot - Samuel Beckett
10. The Sound and the Fury - William Faulkner
11. The Sparrow - Mary Doria Russel
12. The Castle - Franz Kafka
13. The Picture of Dorian Grey - Oscar Wilde
14. Dirt Music - Tim Winton
15. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov - begun 25th June/finished 03rd July
16. Orlando - Virginia Woolf
17. Fight Club - Chuck Palahniuk - begun 30th June/finished 30th June
18. Oryx & Crake - Margaret Atwood - begun 09th July/finished 10th July
19. The French Lieutenant's Woman - John Fowles
20. The Time Traveler's Wife - Audrey Niffinegger - Begun 07th July/finished 07 July
21. The Virgin Suicides - Jeffrey Eugenides - Begun 10th July/Finished 11th July
22. Rashomon and 17 Other Stories - Ryunosuke Akutagawa
23. Le Petit Prince - Antoine de Saint-Exupery
24. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Brontë
25. Wuthering Heights - Emily Brontë
26. Gulliver's Travels - Jonathan Swift
27. The Jungle Book - Rudyard Kipling
28. The Virgin and the Gipsy - D. H. Lawrence
29. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
30. The Perks of Being a Wallflower - Stephen Chbosky
31. The Catcher in the Rye - J. D. Salinger
32. Wide Sargasso Sea - Jean Rhys
33. The Tesseract - Alex Garland
34. Perdido Street Station - China Miéville

You can call me lilly [userpic]

Fanfic: After Juliet: Whiskey

May 29th, 2008 (11:02 pm)

Title: Whiskey
Fandom: After Juliet
Characters: Rosaline, Gianni
Rating: NC-17
Word Count: ~2500
Summary: “What punishments lie in your fancy's wake?"
Warnings: There's sex. There's language. There are mentions of lesbian action. Any of that offends you, don't read it.
Disclaimer: I own nothing but my imagination. After Juliet was a play written by Sharman MacDonald using mainly characters from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.

You can call me lilly [userpic]

Fanfic: After Juliet: Swing.

February 21st, 2008 (09:06 pm)

Title: Swing.
Fandom: After Juliet
Characters: Rosaline, Livia
Rating: G
Word Count: ~300
Summary: “Maybe he’s here to bring us peace.”
Disclaimer: I own nothing but my imagination. After Juliet was a play written by Sharman MacDonald using mainly characters from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet.

“I don’t want peace, Livvy.”Collapse )

You can call me lilly [userpic]

Veronica Mars. Veronica Mars/Lilly Kane. 024. Family.

January 14th, 2008 (10:14 pm)

Title: Family
Fandom: Veronica Mars
Pairing: Veronica/Lilly
Prompt: 024 Family
Rating: G
Word Count: ~200
Notes: I wrote this back in April. It's for Nell because she expressed a want for fic. Just a little thing.

Family.Collapse )

Little Damn Table.

You can call me lilly [userpic]

Veronica Mars. Veronica Mars/Lilly Kane. 005. Outsides.

July 26th, 2007 (11:46 pm)

Title: Outsides
Fandom: Veronica Mars
Pairing: Veronica/Lilly
Prompt: 005 Outsides
Rating: Maybe R for sexual situations?
Word Count: ~650
Summary: The first time she marks you you’re ten and she’s eleven and she says that she owns you.

a bruise, a bite mark, a signatureCollapse )

Little Damn Table

You can call me lilly [userpic]

Veronica Mars. Veronica Mars/Lilly Kane. 018. Black

July 26th, 2007 (10:36 pm)

Title: Black
Fandom: Veronica Mars
Pairing: Veronica/Lilly
Prompt: 018 Black
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: ~400
Summary:
Strange, how the smallest thing makes you think of her.

blackCollapse )


Little Damn Table

You can call me lilly [userpic]

FIC: Carve your name

May 1st, 2007 (11:01 pm)

Title: Carve your name
Fandom: Veronica Mars
Pairing: Veronica/Lilly, some LoVe
Rating: NC-17 for sexual situations
Word Count: ~4000
A/N: Written for the alternative ending smutathon at vm_library. Contains femslash and a certain degree of angst. The title is from the placebo song Every you Every me. The line The world has moved on borrowed from Stephen King's dark tower series. Thanks to Nell worldwasasong for the beta. Thanks to Madame Librarian taken_with_you for being fabulous.

It's hotter than it ought to be, even in Neptune. Even on Lilly’s birthday.Collapse )

Most of my Veronica/Lilly fic can be found here.

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