a dire fawn

no cyborg of roboincubator born shall harm space macbeth

Posts tagged sexuality

Jul 2

Tobi needs your support!

besttumblr:

boi-girl-wonder:

amydentata:

Doing it Again: In Depth is a documentary about the sex lives of trans women, from the mouths of trans women themselves. Tobi Hill-Meyer needs your support to make this happen! She was the director for Doing it Ourselves, a groundbreaking film that won the Emerging Filmmaker Award at the 2010 Feminist Porn Awards.

By supporting this project, you help combat the negative representation of trans women in the media and the erasure of our sexualities. You will also get to see an insightful and erotic documentary once it’s completed! It’s a win-win.

Any amount helps. If you can’t show your support with money, that’s ok. Spread the word to your friends!

signal boosting this because fuck yeah tobi hill-meyer.

fuck yeah indeed

(via hotgothmom)


Jun 23

The State of Diversity Criticism and “do your fuckin’ research”

realtalkvideogames:

Alright folks, strap on in, because we’re going to be hitting a lot of points today. While this topic encompasses many writers and publications, the main focus of my post is a recent piece on 1UP by JP Kellams on gender topics in videogame criticism.

The theory in the middle is mostly okay stuff, but those who regularly engage in the critical circles of videogames will find them all rather familiar. JP starts and ends his piece basically saying that he hasn’t really looked into feminist critique enough, but there isn’t really any critical lens used in the gender debates currently going on. The loudest social justice members, apparently, are histrionic, irrational, and polemic in their efforts to discuss diversity issues within this great art form. JP goes on to posit some ideas for “rational” discussion, like the male gaze, concept of the Final Girl, and that the homogeneous makeup of development teams creating a very narrow range of games for other people to enjoy.

I’m just going to come out and say it: way to go, you are just another dude in the game industry who thinks they are saying something Smart about gender issues for the First Time that social justice proponents have been harping on and on about FOREVER. JP can find solace in that he’s not the only guy regurgitating critical lenses; it’s actually quite an epidemic.

I wanted to know why this kept happening. I figured that if JP was interested enough in calling the current social justice initiative ineffectual, he would at least be following the conversation? Ironically, the only person I saw him following on Twitter (where most of this discourse happens) that had anything to do with the English speaking diversity activism he was addressing was Kate Cox, who did a fucking three part piece on the male gaze as it pertains to videogames. The people writing, curating, and publicly promoting diversity discourse are more than aware of the concepts JP talks about, many trained academically in critical theory and consistantly use it. It’s there, and people who aren’t paid and are constantly ignored by bigger publications tirelessly engage developers and publications with problematic material using critical theory. If anyone is skeptical, you can go ahead and gander at my collection of writing, all unpaid and on my own time: mattiebrice.blogspot.com.

So, if publications like 1UP and Kill Screen (not the only ones, just showing the breadth of sites with this problem) have men reiterating what minority activists have been saying all along, or worse, positing ideas that rely on stereotyped, shallow knowledge of minority issues, what is the cause? Why is it 1UP would commission a piece about gender theory discourse from JP, who admits he’s not the best person to ask in his preamble, and not the many people in the trenches who ARE the experts? Why are the publications that do, like Kill Screen and Kotaku, continue to produce problematic material in opposition to these writers?

For one, there is this assumption that diversity issues are just a bunch of inflammatory/liberal opinions not really based in anything but feelings. Many of these men who are writing on social justice don’t do any research on it, despite being writers and having that as a part of their job. This activism is backed by years of research and critical theory with evidence and solid philosophical groundwork. There is a deserved amount of anger in this movement because despite all of this evidence, people dismiss minorities as self-serving. It’s not until a dude comes along with a stoic and detached demeanor to say something that it’s given any credit.

Risking alienating some of my friends, a lot of this lies in publications being structurally built against culture criticism and the minority writers who would be providing this rich and compelling argument for diversity initiatives and being extremely hesitant to change. Here’s the real talk: it doesn’t matter if behind closed doors you are totally sympathetic with minority issues; if you can’t publicly and systemically promote diversity issues, then you are part of the problem. And, yes, I know all the excuses; people need money, they need to keep the immature audience that reads their material, and bosses find talking about these issues too risky in the face of increased profit.

There is no way the community is going to become familiar with the critical side of social justice if publications continue to devalue this sort of discourse by barring culture critics exposure and pay, qualities decidedly considered being “professional.” The stuff that “actually matters.” Instead, people with the posistion to enact change exploit social justice circles by only reporting on and discussing extremely emotional and inflammatory topics. They look for the offended, they look for the victims, and ignore those continuing to work to change the discriminatory nature of videogame culture.

So, why is it that articles like JP’s happen? Because they are part of a “Gender, Sexuality, and Videogames” week. That means they are niche and only important for a small amount of time then get tucked away before anyone gets funny ideas. The painful part of this is that 1UP is churning out some really good stuff on this topic. But we don’t want a version of Black History Month, we want positive representation of diverse identities in our development teams, mastheads, and games.

Now.

And how do you do it? I dunno, maybe you can include the people who talk about it every. single. day. into your plans.

PS: Don’t even think of trying to tell me what’s “practical.” Practical is often code for intentionally settling for less because the ideal takes too much effort.

ETA: I am not the only nor first person to say something about the erasure of minorities from critical discourse. Check out this blog post written by Alex Raymond nearly three years ago basically critiquing the same thing. That slowly but surely change is taking its sweet ass time.

ETA2: I spoke with JP on Twitter, which was basically him using Tone argument to devalue my argument, that if I was nice and polite, he would have a conversation. This is after his original article that said the social justice movement is hysterical and irrational.

He also wanted to make clear that he wasn’t “taking sides” and was being even handed between social justice and the skeptics. He literally said I was turning it into a social justice thing and he never intended that. So he literally had no idea of the discourse and fell into every trap of dude trying to be logical where women cannot. And this isn’t even considering how super problematic a lot of his statements were, especially with Bayonetta. This whole “play it safe” without actual research on what has been done really needs to stop.

Here’s the deal: There ARE very valuable things people in a place of privilege can do and say that would contribute to this discourse. I would say the social justice movement badly needs more cis straight etc men to further grow its philosophy and reach. And there are already really awesome guys who are a part of it and I what I love about them is that they LISTEN FIRST. There’s usually a gut reaction, but after listening to what bothers a person, or what has already been said, they avoid the usual trappings of privilege. They also ASK QUESTIONS about their posistion and what they can do. I love my straight cis dude friends, and I’m learning more angles and skills because they help diversify the movement.


Apr 24

Crowdsourcing Readings on Sexuality

I’m teaching my first course this summer — on the sociology of sexuality — and I’ve been thinking a lot about how I want to approach it. The most important thing for me is to avoid the trap of attempting coverage. This is an introductory level course, so I don’t really care whether or not students are aware of all of the theoretical approaches sociologists have developed to sexuality. Instead, I want to focus on a few topics in detail and encourage them to think about the ways in which a social constructionist perspective might provide a useful alternative to dominant biological/individualistic narratives about sex. We only have about nine weeks with two four-hour meetings per, so I have to be pretty judicious about what gets included. As of right now, the “keywords” I’ve organized the course around are: “stories,” “models,” “identity,” “bodies,” “desires,” “health,” “law,” and “markets.”

With that in mind, I’m trying to find readings to really engage my students and get them thinking in new ways about the topic. I already have a number of ideas, but things are far from set in stone. So I thought I’d ask what kinds of readings folks think are important to include in an introductory class on sexuality. What pieces were (trans)formative for you when you first began engaging with ideas of sexuality and gender? These don’t have to be academic or even nonfictional, though if you have a book in mind, a particular chapter would be useful (I’m trying to avoid requiring that my students buy anything). I’m looking for anything that sparked an intellectual, emotional, or even physical response in you when you first read it. Please let me know if you have any suggestions!

UPDATE: I shouldn’t have limited this to readings. Suggestions for films, television shows, games, and pretty much any other media form are all welcome. Thanks!


Apr 17

It’s been very interesting participating in a gender studies class that’s coded as relatively straight. One dynamic that’s different from more explicitly queer courses I’ve taken is that lots of folks spend time speculating about alternatives to normative ways of doing gender and sexuality as if nobody had imagined or tried them before. Sometimes I get the urge to tell them: there really are other ways of being! Me and my communities are living examples of your hypotheses (and desires?)!


Feb 17

Feb 12

In seeing the massive disney debate…

theoceanandthesky:

satifice:

and knowing everything I do about video games, fantasy, and science fiction.

I shudder to think that for most white people, the idealized imaginary worlds they create are places where PoC don’t exist. Usually, neither do queers. Or trans people. Or marginalized people.

These are the worlds of their imaginations. These are the places they go to for entertainment and fun. This is how they escape from reality. Are they disappointed that their various genocides haven’t (yet) been 100% effective? Is this the reality that they need respite from?

THIS.

(via kiriamaya)


Jan 17
[Image Description: Poster featuring an arm gripping a length of sheets. Above, red text reads “Sociology of Sexuality / Summer Quarter 2012.” Below, smaller black text says: “We usually think of sex as an intensely personal and private thing. Sociology takes a different perspective, seeing sexuality as an organizing principle of everyday life. This course starts from this recognition and seeks to examine the role of sexuality in contemporary US culture.”]
The most recent assignment for my teaching seminar was to come up with a poster that will get folks interested in taking our course. I don’t really have any graphic design training, but I wanted to try and come up with something that didn’t reproduce dominant societal ideas of what “sexuality” looks like, yet at the same time conveyed information without too much text. I don’t know if it’ll actually get used when I teach the class, but what do you folks think?

[Image Description: Poster featuring an arm gripping a length of sheets. Above, red text reads “Sociology of Sexuality / Summer Quarter 2012.” Below, smaller black text says: “We usually think of sex as an intensely personal and private thing. Sociology takes a different perspective, seeing sexuality as an organizing principle of everyday life. This course starts from this recognition and seeks to examine the role of sexuality in contemporary US culture.”]

The most recent assignment for my teaching seminar was to come up with a poster that will get folks interested in taking our course. I don’t really have any graphic design training, but I wanted to try and come up with something that didn’t reproduce dominant societal ideas of what “sexuality” looks like, yet at the same time conveyed information without too much text. I don’t know if it’ll actually get used when I teach the class, but what do you folks think?


Oct 8
delisubthefemmecub:

slaterwashere:

womynstudies:

yesysabella:

kitten-pits:

a slide from my presentation on gender for psychology 

This is so awesome!

YES. 

 ”sex is your biological gender.” NO

I know I’ve already written about this on here a million times but i fucking HATE these charts. 

Me too! My thoughts on this business, once again, can be found here and here.

delisubthefemmecub:

slaterwashere:

womynstudies:

yesysabella:

kitten-pits:

a slide from my presentation on gender for psychology

This is so awesome!

YES. 

 ”sex is your biological gender.” NO

I know I’ve already written about this on here a million times but i fucking HATE these charts. 

Me too! My thoughts on this business, once again, can be found here and here.

(via thisblogisdefunctgoaway-deactiv)


Aug 22

Aug 5

Just as there is no such thing as an intrinsically “gay” sex act, there is no such thing as an intrinsically “straight” sex act. Sex is gay, straight, neither, both, queer, etc. depending on how the participants define it and themselves.


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