Sep. 15th, 2012

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Kate Elliott on Omniscient Breasts:

Imagine a female pov character is going along about her protagonist adventure, seeing things from her perspective of the world as written in third person. She hears, sees, considers, and makes decisions and reacts based on her view of the world and what she is aware of and encounters. Abruptly, a description is dropped into the text of her secondary sexual characteristics usually in the form of soft-focus Playboy-Magazine-style sexualized kitten-bunny-I-would-fuck-her-in-a-heartbeat lustrous-eyes-and-nipples phrases. Her breasts have just become omniscient breasts.

This is what I mean when I speak of the male gaze. The breasts are no longer her breasts, they have become the breasts as described by the omniscient heterosexual male narrator (in the person of the writer) who is usually not even aware that he has just dropped out of third person and into omniscient to describe her sexual attractiveness in a way that caters to a heterosexual male audience.

Karen Healey, Revealing, isn't it?:

What women criticising sexual harassment and the response to it at various SFF cons actually are:

- unwilling to contribute to the comfortable illusion of fandom egalitarianism at the risk of their health, safety, and right to be treated as complete and whole persons deserving of respect
- ready to speak up on their behalf and on behalf of others
- refusing to take this crap

Ana Mardoll's analysis of the eleventh chapter of Prince Caspian:

Susan is crying.

Susan has been torn here to Narnia over her stated objections. She spent the night in the ruins of her old castle, crying herself to sleep as she clutched an ancient chess piece -- the one link she has left to the past. She has been marching and rowing and working non-stop for three days straight. Since she was the only one with a ranged attack, she was called upon to use serious force in order to save the life of Trumpkin. Her sister was almost killed by a bear, and in the process she was forced to consider breaching her principles against killing sentient creatures. She was nearly skewered with an arrow, had not her brother tackled her to the ground. She hasn't had a comfortable night's sleep since she arrived here, nor a pleasant meal to eat. She has committed wholly to the fight for Narnian independence, even knowing that they are very likely to die in the process. She has been shunned by Aslan.

And now she is crying.


I'm crying for her. And the narrative won't even acknowledge this stuff. I didn't make any of the above up -- that stuff is in the narrative. But we don't get to see how it affects Susan. Even to the point where her tears are relayed by what the "others" think. But, hey, they could be wrong. Whatever. Not important. Nothing to see here. Move along.

Possibly I should actually do the work I should be doing now.


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