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Author Topic: Gender Politix Linkage  (Read 933 times)

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Offline Kythia

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Re: Gender Politix Linkage
« Reply #25 on: August 22, 2013, 11:58:44 AM »
Hmmm.  Honestly, I don't agree and it's that last sentence of yours that particularly bugs me.  It's a symptom of a "implicit in my argument is that it is complete, if it appears incomplete then just assume the necessary bits are present" approach, which I have never really liked (though of course there are valid reasons for them to be used sometimes).  However looking at a few paragraphs towards the end that are clearly meant as a conclusion...

Which I repeat here for your convenience
Let us remind ourselves that the actual goal here is not the odd character who’s Strong or Effective or anything else. It’s really very simple, but it would represent a far more profound change than any amount of individual sassy kickassery can ever achieve, and would mean far fewer posters like those above.

Equality.

What do I want instead of a Strong Female Character? I want a male:female character ratio of 1:1 instead of 3:1 on our screens. I want a wealth of complex female protagonists who can be either strong or weak or both or neither, because they are more than strength or weakness. Badass gunslingers and martial artists sure, but also interesting women who are shy and quiet and do, sometimes, put up with others’ shit because in real life there’s often no practical alternative. And besides heroines, I want to see women in as many and varied secondary and character roles as men: female sidekicks, mentors, comic relief, rivals, villains. I want not to be asked, when I try to sell a book about two girls, two boys and a genderless robot, if we couldn’t change one of those girls to a boy.

...she's talking exclusively in terms of numbers.  "male:female character ratio" "wealth of..." "as many and varied...", not changing female characters to male ones. Etc.

Regardless of whether she's wrong, making an incomplete argument, making a complete one that I have misread or some other option it seems that we agree at least. 

Offline Cyrano JohnsonTopic starter

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Re: Gender Politix Linkage
« Reply #26 on: August 22, 2013, 12:03:03 PM »
it's that last sentence of yours that particularly bugs me.  It's a symptom of a "implicit in my argument is that it is complete, if it appears incomplete then just assume the necessary bits are present" approach, which I have never really liked (though of course there are valid reasons for them to be used sometimes).

By way of counterpoint: I would say it is impractical to expect people to recap Feminism 101 in every article about female characters.

But yeah, it looks as though we otherwise do agree.

Offline Ephiral

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Re: Gender Politix Linkage
« Reply #27 on: August 22, 2013, 01:33:29 PM »
I... kinda see both arguments in there. She seems to be arguing that we need equal representation onscreen as a prerequisite to getting complex, three-dimensional characters. If we only have one or two token women, then it's a Serious Problem if they're portrayed as seriously flawed or weak; with more women onscreen, there's more room for nuance.

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Re: Gender Politix Linkage
« Reply #28 on: August 22, 2013, 01:56:12 PM »
I remember a movie from the 30s called "The Women."  This is not the more modern version.

It would be a great character study for strong female characters.  Each woman had her own strengths and weakness, motivations and needs.  There were no men in the movie and even the smaller character parts and bit players had impact.