If all discussions about Frozen (and to a larger extent, Disney as a whole) were as mature and rational as this one I don’t think I would be nearly as annoyed by the entire thing.
That’s what I want, I don’t want emotional blindness on either side. I’d much rather have an objective, mature discussion on the topic about various cultural influences and race representation. This task seems to be absolutely above and beyond the majority of the internet. We can’t even GET to the point of “is this a problem or not?” because of all the blind emotional mudslinging and irrationality.
This was absolutely lovely and wonderfully informative, bravo!
Actually, you totally missed the point.
The entire point of the article I wrote is that people are framing the debate as if it must be argued on the grounds of “historical facts”, when actually, it has NOTHING to do with historical facts and everything to do with racism in modern society, and how it affects our media and discussions of media.
This makes you sound like someone who will refuse to look at or acknowledge a blatant injustice/inequality that exists unless it’s presented in a way that doesn’t make them feel accused or uncomfortable. Complimenting me for not making you uncomfortable is not a compliment I value.
You see, on the one hand, it seems as though you’re complimenting me, but on the other, what you’re really doing is insulting anyone who might be understandably upset by a really obvious form of systematic racism. Exclusion is a form of racism. You can SAY you don’t want “emotional blindness on either side”, but all this does is reinforce the notion that anger at being subjected to racism and emotional investment in white supremacy are morally equivalent, and they are NOT.
Framing anger at being subjected to racism as “irrational” is a form of racism.
In the OP, I talk about emotional investment in white supremacy, versus understandable rage by people who are disenfranchised by white supremacy.
It is NOT an excuse to bash people who are subjected to racism and angry about it.
This post isn’t a call for “maturity and objectivity”. It is literally the opposite of that: a call for the acknowledgement that this has more to do with human emotional attachment to stories and how we internalize messages in the media we see, that either does or does not represent us, and the quality of that representation.
I think you misunderstood? Or maybe I wasn’t clear enough?
I’m not saying “being mad about racism is irrational” that’s entirely justified.
I’m saying that we can’t even get to the question of “is Disney racist or not?” because whenever that question gets brought up all I get met with is trolling and insults from pretty much all sides of the equation. On one hand it seems to be “If you don’t think Disney is racist THEN YOU’RE A HORRIBLE PERSON” and the other hand of the debate is “if you think Disney is racist THEN YOU’RE A HORRIBLE PERSON!”
I can’t win. I’m talking about a non-objective emotional response where the general mood is pure anger and irrationality.
I understand people being angry about systematic racism, I hate that too. However channeling your anger into a well worded response is much more reasonable then just jumping down people’s throats YELLING CURSE WORDS IN ALL CAPS LIKE THIS which is pretty much 99% of what I’ve read about the entire Frozen debate. Except for your post which I appreciated because it was a drop of sanity in an ocean of insults and keyboard rage. (No seriously, it’s literally the first well-worded, rational post I’ve read on the subject.)
Maybe I should have said if the Frozen debate was as maturely worded as your response was?
For the record I am complementing you, I actually really love your blog and re-blog you almost every day. I completely agree with you that our media seriously under represents POC and that’s a huge problem.
And it’s when you think we agree that I feel like I’ve made an enormous mistake.
I’d also appreciate it if you stopped using disability as an insult. Racist people aren’t “blind” and angry people aren’t “insane”.
The only reason you elevate what I’m saying is because I’m using words and phrasing you’ve been conditioned to respect because learning to use them is expensive. My education was expensive, therefore, you respect the money I paid for it. Not me. Every single idea I’ve expressed above can also be just as accurately expressed with all caps and screaming.
You want the content and the value I provide, with a tone you find acceptable. You don’t want to feel uncomfortable. You’re complimenting me for making you feel comfortable with what I have to say, without making you feel accountable or examining yourself.
I don’t accept.
Medievalpoc is not a paper tiger for you to hide behind and accuse people who can’t afford a six figure education of being “irrational”.
This blog is about accessibility. For people with disabilities, people who can’t afford college or received a subpar public education, for people who don’t want to go to college, and for people who dropped out of high school. This blog is about puncturing the inflated importance of academic jargon, creating a relatively supportive or safe environment to discuss experiences, creativity, inspiration, and a love of history.
Denying access to knowledge that could significantly change perceptions of history that, in turn, shape our expectation of the media produced by the culture we belong to is a grave injustice.
Pretending that the history of Denmark is more relevant to Disney’s Frozen than children of color receiving the unspoken message that their stories are not worth telling is a grave injustice.
Pretending that me not using cusses and hurting your feelings makes what I say more “legitimate” or “respectable” is frankly, bullshit. People who consider themselves “moderates” and casually dismiss “both sides” do far more to perpetuate injustice, because they make themselves seem so reasonable. After all, they’re not hurting anyone, right?
They’re just allowing it to pass by unchecked, and leave their role in society unexamined, and continue to believe that their “default” position is neutral. I had hoped that followers of this blog might have guessed by now that neutrality isn’t really an option; “going with the flow” in a systemically racist society is to BE racist.
I’ve spoken at length about dominant narratives and creating COUNTERnarratives; the resistance and backlash to this blog’s mere existence should demonstrate that a counternarrative is, by its creation, an act of defiance and confrontation.
All your compliments on how reasonable and mature I supposedly am do nothing but undermine people who do not have the luxury of seeming dispassionate about these things, and don’t have a sack full of million-dollar words at their disposal. You’re trying to invalidate people’s voices, to ignore them until they seem more palatable to you. Until they make you feel comfortable.
If you are comfortable, I AM DOING SOMETHING WRONG.
Frequently, running this blog is uncomfortable for me, and I am always trying to analyze what I say from as many possible perspectives as I can. I try to think about how what I say can be used against other people, in exactly this way.
My hope is that everyone who reads my writing and follows this project will analyze how they are affected by this content, and how this content affects or does not affect them. We are ALL a part of this story. We are ALL shaped by our history.
Teaching what people would rather not learn is especially tough if you are a woman or a minority professor. Research shows that our customers rate Asian-American, Hispanic, black, and women professors lower than white male professors across all subjects. Most disturbingly, student evaluations of women of color are harshest when customers are told that the results will be “communicated to a third party for the purposes of evaluation.” Our customers are not only disinclined to like tough subjects; they’re also inclined to take their discomfort out on minority professors, who are the least likely to have the protection of tenure or support from university administration.
Learning is—should often be—uncomfortable for individuals.When universities have a mission to serve the public good, they balance the needs of individuals with benefits to society and the power of the majority against the humanity of the minority.
And that’s where this sentiment, that you only want to hear these things in a certain “tone”, becomes sinister.
Invoking stereotypes like “too angry”, “irrational” or “overly emotional”, does nothing but disenfranchise the same people it always does. Emotion and anger does not invalidate people’s voices, and pretending like one “side” of the debate is no better or worse than the other is a false equivalency that perpetuates injustice against the side that is already disenfranchised. Adding six pounds to each side of a scale that is already loaded on one side does not fix the imbalance.
I do not accept your compliment, nor do I take it as anything but the attempt to use your acceptance of my “tone” as anything but a tool of silencing against others.
I just feel the need to add that I was mega disappointed with Lane's ending because motherhood is great and things, but she seemed like she needed to have some adventures first.
Oh my gosh. I have so much trouble articulating just how squirmy I was through the last few seasons. There’s definitely a moratorium on Boyfriend Discussion, like, that is just a thing that we’ve all established, but as for Lane… as a “bucket cap full of Lane-inspired pins” HUGE TYPE OF LANE FAN I really find it interesting how I approach a lot of friendship engagements differently because of GG and Lane? I think, in particular, I learned that sometimes what I hoped for in the sig-o of a good friend was not what they were drawn to or necessarily hoped for/ demanded in their actual relationships, and sometimes that has been painful to watch (when it’s not just a general clash of attraction or humor so much as THAT OTHER PERSON DOES NOT TREAT MY FRIEND HOW THEY DESERVE TO BE TREATED AND THAT PINGS ALL MY INAPPROPRIATE MEDDLING BUTTONS — but I obviously am not my friends and the worst thing I can do is make them feel unsupported in their decisions, etc…).
And having a baby is part of that? A lot of my friends have kids now, and one thing they definitely do mention to me a lot is how even more than feeling sort of isolated during pregnancy (if most of their friends are still single/ not having kids) is how it’s hard to envision a future where they’ll have the resources and ability to just go on vacation from time to time. That isn’t to say they regret having kids, of course, but it’s always interesting to me how it’s the topic I 100% know will come up if I chat with any of my married with kids pals — especially the ones who married young to people who haven’t really found their adult footing outside of a relationship. They’re usually remarkably stable in certain areas I can’t even dream of, but there is both a longing for adventuring and a marked fear/lack of confidence in their ability to do so. None of my married friends were rebellious at all, mind you, so. It’s just interesting because…
…WHILE Lane never really made it that far out of Star’s Hollow, she DID experience a lot, I think, and she did spend a lot of her teen years especially establishing herself as a specific kind of person who stood up for herself but also needed to find footing in her actual surroundings (like, I’m still in love with how she had a guy actually read the entire Bible of his own accord just to help her with that load a little, because Lane really DID take on a lot just by simply trying to exist comfortably). And yeah, I’d love for her to get to travel and adventure more, perhaps, but I actually kind of love thinking of Lane: The Parent. Lane, the person who has a chance to use all she learned to give a kid the sorts of freedom and support she had to go and find for herself. GG is such a mother/daughter show that it’s actually kind of cool to consider this other kind of parenthood — Lane witnessed not only her own upbringing but also her best friend’s (with a mother who rebelled much like Lane herself did). I DON’T KNOW WHAT I AM SAYING other than there are lots of kinds of adventures, emotional journeys, etc…, and I really love Lane