[DWJ] McKinley and racism (WAS recommendations)

Martha Hixon marthahixon at gmail.com
Tue Jul 30 20:25:28 EDT 2013

all true, Deborah, all true.


Dr. Martha P. Hixon
Department of English
Middle Tennessee State University
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
615-898-2599 / martha.hixon at mtsu.edu

On Tue, Jul 30, 2013 at 7:21 PM, <deborah.dwj at suberic.net> wrote:

> On Tue, 30 Jul 2013, erikagillian at gmail.com wrote:
>  That motif, of a white person showing up and solving everything, is what
>> I meant.  I don't think TV Tropes calls it by the name I used anymore but
>> other people do.
> The idiom certainly is alive and well in certain online social justice
> circles, and speaks to the larger trope which is *really* common. Think
> Dances With Wolves, The Last Samurai, Kingdom of Heaven etc. for the
> explicit version, but it also comes through with clear mappings from F & SF
> worlds onto contemporary racial stereotypes, which is why a lot of people
> included, say, James Cameron's Avatar.  It's a sort of modern lens onto a
> romantic, Orientalist White Man's Burden.
> While looking for examples, I found a great list at the description of
> this Wiscon panel: <http://oyceter.livejournal.**com/602541.html<http://oyceter.livejournal.com/602541.html>>.
> Which made me sad because it reminded me of how very much Tamora Pierce's
> Trickster books are part of the trope. Which is just not fair, because I
> love them, but why oh why couldn't they have been Dove's story and not
> Aly's?
> Martha Hixon <marthahixon at gmail.com> wrote:
>  I wonder what McKinley would think of that interpretation. She has said
>> in the past that these early books in particular were projections of her
>> own desire for heroic fantasy with heroines she could identify with, and
>> she herself is of course white.
> It's rough, you know? Authors live in the same effed up world as the rest
> of us, and are no more immune to (conscious or unconscious) bias and
> prejudice than the rest of us. Most of the authors I know worry a *lot*
> about perpetuating sterotypes, especially in the "punch down" sense; most
> of them get called on the sterotypes they miss, and at least *try* to be
> gracious and learn for the next book.
> It wouldn't even be that much of a point if the publishing industry (at
> least in the US) weren't so, so unwilling to take a chance on authors of
> color. The stats of the number of children's books about people of color
> written by people of color are appalling (<http://ccblogc.blogspot.com/**
> 2013/07/last-week-i-posted-**mid-year-statistics.html<http://ccblogc.blogspot.com/2013/07/last-week-i-posted-mid-year-statistics.html>>).
> The absence of a diversity of voices means that a smaller set of voices --
> and therefore a smaller set of (conscious or unconscious) biases carry
> disproportionate weight.
> -deborah
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