Feminism/Sexism and Gaming/Geek/Popular culture Catch All

Seth wrote:

MrDevil and I had a page long discussion about the importance of checking our privilege at the door before entering into a conversation like this. So whether you missed that or ignored it, I was absolutely insulted when two people accused me of being ignorant of my own privilege. It really felt like you were using that as a dismissive "I Win" button in order to ignore my points.

The reason privilege was brought up was because you appealed to the common tactic of "well I'm being stereotyped too!" with regards to the husband in said ad. This is a VERY common technique used by MRA's when discussing feminist issues, and is deeply rooted in privilege.

What about the women who love doing those things, whether it's expected of them or not? Most (not all, but most) of the females in my life enjoy doing things similar to that asda ad. Are they somehow wrong or not being well served by having their efforts recognized?

This is yet another tactic used by MRA's. "What about the women who WANT to be sexually objectified? Will nobody speak for them?" The problem with using that line of argument is that it says absolutely nothing about the potential harm of reinforcing stereotypes.

It MAY BE that a particular African American REALLY enjoys all the activities that are stereotypes applied to him/her by racists, but that doesn't mean that it should be ok to reinforce them.

Valmorian wrote:

The better tack would be to ask WHY they find it offensive and maybe consider that respecting those feelings of harm might just be worth losing a "joke".

Right. Sounds like the discussion folks were actually trying to have until all the how-dare-yous came to the fore.

So, just throwing the word "privilege" out like an I Win button is not particularly helpful.

It's not an "I Win" button. More like pointing out that you might be playing the wrong game.

I know it's not one. But it can be used like one in order to shut down someone but undercutting everything they have said without explaining it. That's why I used the word "like", as in "throwing the word 'privilege' out like an..."

I do not even know what's going on in this thread anymore. People are really jumping very quickly to explain basic, simple concepts that everyone here has shown a good understanding of. Maybe it's just part of the the cycle, where we all have to show our street cred and/or get bodychecked by others (thus establishing their street cred!) every few pages.

Valmorian wrote:
What about the women who love doing those things, whether it's expected of them or not? Most (not all, but most) of the females in my life enjoy doing things similar to that asda ad. Are they somehow wrong or not being well served by having their efforts recognized?

This is yet another tactic used by MRA's. "What about the women who WANT to be sexually objectified? Will nobody speak for them?" The problem with using that line of argument is that it says absolutely nothing about the potential harm of reinforcing stereotypes.

So the basis here is that women who want to be housewives are the same as women who want to be sexually objectified? That there's harm in representing one equal to the other?

I am completely dizzy now.

Bloo Driver wrote:

I do not even know what's going on in this thread anymore. People are really jumping very quickly to explain basic, simple concepts that everyone here has shown a good understanding of. Maybe it's just part of the the cycle, where we all have to show our street cred and/or get bodychecked by others (thus establishing their street cred!) every few pages.

Totally. It is like we are having a race to see who can out-sensitive each other and show who is the only true sympathizer.

I think if anyone is in this thread they can acknowledge that there is inequality that needs to be addressed.

Bloo Driver wrote:

I know it's not one. But it can be used like one in order to shut down someone but undercutting everything they have said without explaining it.

I may spend too much time on social justice sites, but generally speaking whenever someone on those places says "Check your privilege" it's meant more as an indicator that something I've said should be re-read with the understanding that I am an outsider looking in. That comparing X and Y may not be valid because X enjoys a lot more privilege than Y and therefore might want to consider that the comparisons are not as applicable as it first appears.

In my experience the most stark way to point this out is to use a rich vs. poor paradigm as more people have a better understanding of how wealth affects one's experiences:

"Bill says that he had to go without lunch yesterday because he can't afford it. I know how he feels! I had to give up my second car!"

Before this thread got kind of weird, I thought Seth was doing a really good job of providing an alternate point of view without being offensive at all, which is pretty damn difficult to do in a topic this sensitive.

Bloo Driver wrote:

So the basis here is that women who want to be housewives are the same as women who want to be sexually objectified? That there's harm in representing one equal to the other?

I am completely dizzy now.

The basis here is that there are people who DO identify with a particular stereotype, but that says nothing about whether the stereotype is harmful.

Seth wrote:

What about the women who love doing those things, whether it's expected of them or not?

What about them? Why should women who don't love doing those things have to go unrepresented?

EDIT: And how many women who "love doing those things" would have chosen different activities to throw their energy in to if alternatives had been modelled to them?

Seth wrote:

Most (not all, but most) of the females in my life enjoy doing things similar to that asda ad.

Bet they'd enjoy someone lending a hand though. As a kid and teenager my mother "appeared" to somewhat enjoy running the house, by the time I was old enough to have an adult conversation about these things I discovered there was lots of task that she fundamentally disliked. So it's not clear to me how we can use the things people accept as their lot as a decent measure of harms caused.

Seth wrote:

Are they somehow wrong or not being well served by having their efforts recognized?

The advert isn't recognising their efforts, there are no medals, pats on the backs, rewards or thanks emanating from that advert. Just the expectation that "this is what a 'good' mother is"

Valmorian wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:

I know it's not one. But it can be used like one in order to shut down someone but undercutting everything they have said without explaining it.

I may spend too much time on social justice sites, but generally speaking whenever someone on those places says "Check your privilege" it's meant more as an indicator that something I've said should be re-read with the understanding that I am an outsider looking in. That comparing X and Y may not be valid because X enjoys a lot more privilege than Y and therefore might want to consider that the comparisons are not as applicable as it first appears.

In my experience the most stark way to point this out is to use a rich vs. poor paradigm as more people have a better understanding of how wealth affects one's experiences:

"Bill says that he had to go without lunch yesterday because he can't afford it. I know how he feels! I had to give up my second car!"

Check your privilege sounds a lot harsher than what you're describing, in my opinion. At least on a site like GWJ.

SixteenBlue wrote:

Check your privilege sounds a lot harsher than what you're describing, in my opinion. At least on a site like GWJ.

Yep, lots of people take great offense to it. I've seen it many times. I used to be quite offended by the phrase myself, but have found that taking it at face value and really THINKING about how what I've said might sound to someone actually being affected by what I'm talking about is more than worth the potential embarrassment.

Valmorian wrote:
Bloo Driver wrote:

I know it's not one. But it can be used like one in order to shut down someone but undercutting everything they have said without explaining it.

I may spend too much time on social justice sites, but generally speaking whenever someone on those places says "Check your privilege" it's meant more as an indicator that something I've said should be re-read with the understanding that I am an outsider looking in. That comparing X and Y may not be valid because X enjoys a lot more privilege than Y and therefore might want to consider that the comparisons are not as applicable as it first appears.

In my experience the most stark way to point this out is to use a rich vs. poor paradigm as more people have a better understanding of how wealth affects one's experiences:

"Bill says that he had to go without lunch yesterday because he can't afford it. I know how he feels! I had to give up my second car!"

You know when I mentioned earlier about explaining really simple concepts we all understood already...

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

Bloo Driver wrote:

You know when I mentioned earlier about explaining really simple concepts we all understood already...

I would have thought so too, but then I just saw someone use back to back common MRA tactics.

SixteenBlue wrote:
Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

Yeah, my post about Marisa Chase in Uncharted got blindsided. I was incredibly impressed with the female roles in Wreck-it Ralph!!!

SixteenBlue wrote:
Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

I hear it's the best Street Fighter movie so far.

SixteenBlue wrote:
Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

I think we could use a change of subject.

Bloo Driver wrote:

I hear it's the best Street Fighter movie so far.

Something to agree on! Wreck-it Ralph was a pretty awesome film. My son really loved it.. lots of great nods to arcade games of the past, and _relatively_ good portrayals of women in it.

Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:
Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

I hear it's the best Street Fighter movie so far.

Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:
Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

I hear it's the best Street Fighter movie so far.

For you, it was the best Street Fighter movie so far. For me, it was Tuesday.

Sometimes I am sad when I remember that was Raul Julia's last movie performance.

And then I remember why he did it and I get a little warm and fuzzy inside.

SixteenBlue wrote:
Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

Well cool, because I was planning on posting it anyway, I was just snarking first

Anyway.

With a game set in the world of arcade games, with a male protagonist, it would've been really easy to make the movie a no-woman's-land, but I was pleased to see this wasn't the case at all.

For starters, there's Calhoun, the female protagonist of Hero's Duty, which sounds like a Call of Duty parody but is really more of a standard light gun game filled with butch space marines. Calhoun clearly takes inspiration from such female fighters as Cmdr. Shepard (saw a pic that pointed out the armor is close to identical) and Samus. She's sensible and tough and has

Spoiler:

a hilari-tragic backstory.

She's more of a parody of "tough girl" characters than an actual well-rounded depiction, but it's still positive to see that the creators chose to put a woman in a role where you would expect a man.

Spoiler:

It's probably just that way to allow the romance subplot, but still...

Then there's Vanellope, who honestly gets as much plot-time as Ralph does. She lives in the world of Sugar Rush, a candy-themed kart racer designed to look as though it comes from a Japanese kawaii franchise like Hello Kitty. Unlike Calhoun, she's less of a parody of tough female characters than a legitimate tough female character. She stays fairly strong in the face of

Spoiler:

an almost insurmountably terrible life; in the occasions where she does break down, the situation's bad enough that no one could fault her for it.

.

Again, they could've had a male character in that role. The game that Sugar Rush is obviously based on, Mario Kart, is mostly male characters. But it's a girl who wants to be a racer.

HUGE spoiler:

Spoiler:

She also gets a fun moment where she turns into a princess and immediately ditches the dress and declares that she wants to be president instead.

But the thing I liked best was the Player character. This movie doesn't have much focus on what goes on outside the arcade cabinets (unlike Toy Story), and there's only one arcade player who gets significant screentime. She's a nerdy looking girl who isn't just into Sugar Rush, but is also seen playing Hero's Duty and other games. It's nice to see a realistic depiction of a girl who games (and appreciates retro classics to boot!).

So basically I thought it was refreshing to see female characters in a movie where you wouldn't necessarily expect it.

Bloo Driver wrote:
SixteenBlue wrote:
Demyx wrote:

Man, I came into this thread to talk about the positive inclusion of females in Wreck-it Ralph but I guess now might not be the best time :p

I'd like to hear about that.

I hear it's the best Street Fighter movie so far.

Not unless it features superconductor electromagnetism.

Nice, Demyx! You said everything so that I don't have to.

Demyx wrote:

But the thing I liked best was the Player character.

I'm not sure how I missed that, but you're right that is awesome! It didn't even occur to me that the only arcade player really shown was that one girl.

Valmorian wrote:
Demyx wrote:

But the thing I liked best was the Player character.

I'm not sure how I missed that, but you're right that is awesome! It didn't even occur to me that the only arcade player really shown was that one girl.

Yeah, she was great!

And then I thought better of playing the victim card. I'm interested in seeing Wreck It Ralph though!

Seth wrote:

What about the women who love doing those things, whether it's expected of them or not? Most (not all, but most) of the females in my life enjoy doing things similar to that asda ad. Are they somehow wrong or not being well served by having their efforts recognized?

I think what it comes down to is that no one wants a particular gender/race/lifestyle to be portrayed as the preferred one, or event the standard one. The housewife stereotype has never fit reality anyway. Sure, some married women choose to do something other than work in an office, but that doesn't mean that they fit the housewife stereotype or that they want to be labeled as such. While it's not remotely the same situation, as a working father I absolutely don't want to be labeled as whatever the term is for the equivalent stereotype working dad either.

I'm stuck. I don't want to pull the jade's trick and just ignore what happened, but I missed the party and you've all moved on. I thought I was very careful to not say anything that would hurt others when I was expressing my own feelings, but it's pretty damned obvious I failed. And I'm sorry for that.

As far as Wreck it Ralph, it was an awesome film, for any kind of people. I loved that the Player was a little girl. I also loved that they still used quarters in the machines. But that's because I'm old.

complexmath wrote:
Seth wrote:

What about the women who love doing those things, whether it's expected of them or not? Most (not all, but most) of the females in my life enjoy doing things similar to that asda ad. Are they somehow wrong or not being well served by having their efforts recognized?

I think what it comes down to is that no one wants a particular gender/race/lifestyle to be portrayed as the preferred one, or event the standard one.

I agree! But (and since this is the fourth time I've said it, I'll go ahead and make this my last post on the topic) the Asda ad isn't doing that -- except through the unspoken suggestion that happens whenever you have a commercial that isn't 45 minutes long in order to caveat out everyone. The Asda ad is saying "we want to help hardworking women do what they love to do." Sure, they're not handing out medals, awards, or other hyperbole, but they're recognizing and appreciating those women who make up a significant portion of their customer base. Also they're trying to sell more stuff.

Instead, we've had people try to tell me they know the innermost thoughts of the women in my life better than I do, and that I'm discussing from a position of complete ignorance. When that happens, honest discussion ends.

The housewife stereotype has never fit reality anyway. Sure, some married women choose to do something other than work in an office, but that doesn't mean that they fit the housewife stereotype or that they want to be labeled as such. While it's not remotely the same situation, as a working father I absolutely don't want to be labeled as whatever the term is for the equivalent stereotype working dad either.

Well, right. But stereotypes do exist for a reason, so I understand why Asda is marketing to one. 80% of Asda's clients are women, and I'm sure there was a lot of research was done such that Asda would get an accurate targeting of those women in its ad. That said, I get that many posters here find the idea of a woman taking pleasure in domestic work roles anathema; that's fine and I applaud them for their views.

I suppose all I wanted to do was get someone to acknowledge that women taking pleasure in domestic activities was just as cool as women taking pleasure in any other activity. And that pointing out that women who work hard for their family can be positive without taking away anything from women who don't. I feel like I failed in that respect.