Archive for the 'OT' Category

01
Aug
09

IBARW

This week is International Blog Against Racism Week. I’m not willing to let it pass without notice, but I also don’t know what to write. And really my thoughts on and analyses of racism are not the ones anyone should be reading. They’re not nuanced, developed, or aware enough; I’m working on that. In the meantime…

I cannot recommend the blogs Racialicious and The Angry Black Woman highly enough. And everyone should be reading brownfemipower’s Flip Flopping Joy!

And here are some links to IBARW posts, and just general brilliant, important things on race and racism I’ve read recently:

This post about cultural appropriation and the word “Hapa” was a worthwhile read in its own right and led me to this heart-wrenching account of racist bullying in middle school.

In response to the publishing industry white-washing of book covers (here’s one example), Coffeeandink is starting the Open Source Book Re-Covery Project, for reader-designed book covers that don’t pretend the protagonists are white. [Thanks to commenter and dear friend TGStoneButch, who pointed me toward both of the previous pieces]

K. Tempest Bradford has a series of pieces up at the Carl Brandon Society blog tracking genre fiction published by people of color. And speaking of the Carl Brandon Society blog, they also responded to a recent dust-up with an open letter about lows we don’t resort to even when we’re arguing.

Here‘s nojojojo’s response to people’s assumptions that she might enjoy being angry all the time, and why she does it when it’s actually no fun at all.

And this is an absolutely brilliant post about the difference in how white and black female characters are written (when the latter are written at all), why Nyota Uhura being single in the original Star Trek was not empowering, and why her having a love interest is important and not a step down for her. (Mild Enterprise spoilers. And mentioning Enterprise, I feel the need to say both that on first viewing it is a fun, engaging movie — much better than I expected — and that, as my friend Natalie points out, on second viewing it is a cheerful, uplifting movie about genocide. Um.)

Go forth. Read about race and racism. Blog against racism. All year.

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27
Mar
09

It’s definitely time to find a new sex advice columnist…

I did say in the wake of Prop 8 that if Dan Savage kept it up with the racism I’d have to stop liking him altogether. And while I haven’t seen that kind of overt racism from him since, a) I’m sure it’s still there, b) he’s been terribly offensive about bisexuals more times than I can count, as well as not having a good record with fat folks and people living with domestic violence, and c) this week we have some equally shocking transphobia. There will be no more “He’s a good sex advice columnist, but…” from me anymore. I’m flat out of patience and excuses. If anything, it took me too long.

In response to a reader who doesn’t know how to tell his girlfriend that he paid a trans woman for sex, Dan writes [heads up: offensive words for and thoughts about trans women below the cut]:

Continue reading ‘It’s definitely time to find a new sex advice columnist…’

26
Feb
09

Palimpsest!

All right, I have now officially responded to all of your comments. I’m even mostly caught up on my personal emails, so if I owe you one of those, feel free to poke me.

Tonight I went to the book release party for Catherynne M. Valente’s Palimpsest. I was kind of super excited about it. Firstly because I loved the two books of Valente’s that I’ve read (In The Night Garden and In the Cities of Coin and Spice, which collectively make up The Orphan’s Tales). I’ve been meaning to read them aloud to Girlfriend, Esq. (reading aloud is one of the nauseatingly cute ways we spend time together while not being in the same city). They’re made up of gorgeously nested stories, the writing is lush and beautiful, and I just found reading them to be a terribly pleasurable experience. The other reason I was excited is because the universe seemed to want me to be there; I’ve got two degrees of separation going on several different ways. I’m friendly acquaintances with two people who performed. Another performer and vendor was my first girlfriend five years ago (we had dinner last night after a year and a half of emailing; it was the first time we’ve seen each other since we broke up. It went really, really well, and I’m delighted to have her friendship in my life again and to have seen her again tonight). Girlfriend, Esq.’s wife emailed me last night to tell me that she’s LJ friends with Valente’s partner, and they have real-life friends in common from when they all lived in the same city. It is a small, small world, and an exciting amount of it came together tonight. And a good friend invited me to go before I even knew any of that. Also the show itself was all kinds of fun and exciting, with music based on the book (and people who have recommended SJ Tucker to me were so totally right), bellydance and burlesque (I know I’ve seen too much NYC burlesque when a woman in a Godzilla costume walks onstage and I say to myself “I know those boobs…that has to be Jo Boobs”), a rope suspension performance, readings from the book itself, and more. It was book release carnival! And there were pretty things for sale and lots of good people to catch up with. I enjoyed myself right up until the moment I realized that if I didn”t leave I was going to run into nasty post-midnight construction on the train.

I don’t actually have anything to say about bisexuality in Valente’s writing, mostly because I read The Orphan’s Tales before I became quite such a bisexual superhero and started looking at most things through this lense, and because I haven’t yet read Palimpsest. But I think very highly of the way she writes about a variety of imaginary cultures and makes them compelling and believable and something other than vaguely exoticized white people. I bought Palimpsest tonight, and once I’ve read it and reread the others I’m sure I’ll have something good to say. I kinda trust her to get it right.

So I’ll be honest and admit that I’m pimping the book here because it enters me in a contest to win a Palimpsest Immigration Package (with all kinds of goodies, including a signed copy of the book, and chocolates and other lovelies inspired by the book). But that just gave me the idea to post about it. I’m doing it because I believe in what Valente has to say about internet marketing, and I want to support books like this one so that people continue to publish them, and it sounds like how this book does in particular will have a lot to do with whether Valente can continue to support herself with her writing. And because so many cool people I know are involved in promoting the book. And because this is my platform and I can use it way I darn well please, of course.

So go buy Palimpsest, hm? Then send Valente your receipt to be entered to win the other Immigration Package (or send her a link to your own blog/LJ/whatever post pimping it, and get entered to win the same one I’m going for. Jerks. No, seriously, do it anyway, no hard feelings.) Also check out where else she’ll be promoting the book; there’s a lot of stuff going on, all over both coasts. And with this sort of multimedia, carnival approach, it’s sure to be fun.