[DWJ] McKinley and racism (WAS recommendations)

erikagillian at gmail.com erikagillian at gmail.com
Tue Jul 30 23:15:42 EDT 2013


Wilkins' Tooth!  And I think Nick isn't totally pasty anyway, the Magids Nick, so Maree possibly too.

Gin <kalaidiscope at gmail.com> wrote:

>Hi,
>
>Re: Blue Sword- This was very influenced by Kipling.  From memory, it name
>checks Kim in the authors dedication. It's an interesting puzzle, because
>Kim ( and Aerin) are both " white" colonial, shown as more capable than the
>natives.
>
>But they are capable because they bridge the worlds- they may be white on
>the outside, but the are "eggs" , yellow on the inside ( To use the
>colloquial term for people who identify asian, even though they look
>caucasian)
>
>There has been interesting discussion on this IRL here in Australia- Is
>someone who is only 1/16th indigenous allowed to identify as Aboriginal?
>There are people who do identify as aboriginal with this little indigenous
>blood, and they defend there right to do so. I don't have a problem with
>this myself. Certainly Aerin has native blood, and finds that she connects
>with her heritage- that her heritage reaches out and grabs her- more than
>her birth country ever did. So I would be reluctant to call  her a "great
>white hero"
>
>As Erika said, the older man/younger woman theme is directly connected to
>Mckinley's life- She is in love with an older man, and that is what she
>writes about. Seems fair to me, though I can see that someone just looking
>at the books without that knowledge might find the continuing theme a bit
>*interesting*
>
>Sometimes it does help to know something about the author, in spite of them
>all telling us that the books should be judged independently....
>
>ODWJ reference...Does DWJ have any black characters? I have just realised I
>cannot name any. Does DWJ go out  of her way to describe characters as
>white?
>
>Regards
>
>Gin
>
>On Wed, Jul 31, 2013 at 11:16 AM, erikagillian at gmail.com <
>erikagillian at gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> The reason that age gap shows up is (probably) because McKinley is married
>> to Peter Dickinson, who is twenty five years her senior.   Also a
>> children's and YA author of some renown.
>>
>> Janet Eastwood <janet.eastwood at hotmail.com> wrote:
>>
>> >Oh yes, read Ghost Knight and Dragon Rider by all means. And for younger
>> readers, Funke's picturebooks are funny and sweet and bold.
>> >
>> >Another thing that troubles me with McKinley's writing (much as I like
>> some of her books) is the pervasive theme of young woman marrying much
>> older man. It shows up in many of her works (and in many other authors'
>> works as well), and while an age gap isn't necessarily a bad thing, the
>> recurrence of young female protagonist in her late teens marrying a man
>> somewhere between ten and two hundred years (Beauty) older is slightly
>> worrying. Because while such marriages can and do work out happily,
>> historically and socially, older + male = power. So there's quite the power
>> imbalance there, as well as other emphases on the lover as a powerful male:
>> "Master" (Chalice - as Martha pointed out), king (The Blue Sword), captor
>> (Beauty, Rose Daughter), teacher (Spindle's End), vampire (Sunshine),
>> sorcerer...
>> >
>> >Janet
>> >
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