also scholarly

highlights of this month’s SM chapter

the cover page! a mêlée à trois

our monthly ‘sun pissing moon off’ moment (plus look at what hau and rowlet are still doing)

moon’s toootally innocent smile….

….right as she uses a poison tactic and causes sun and hau to cower in fear before the “poison woman”

“these plebeians know NOTHING.”

“how could i have lost with science at my sIIIIIDEEEEEE!!!???”

moon enters a BSOD, meanwhile the edgelord proves that he’s an edgelord with a heart

sun showing off to moon but getting dismayed by her not even looking at the match (but we can always rely on hau and rowlet~)

lastly, sun freaking unleashing the z-move and yet MOON’S STILL NOT EVEN LOOKING


True Crime Book Master Post - At the request from a few of my followers, I have decided to make a second master post including some of my favourite true crime books that I have read recently. Click here to see my first true crime book master post. Click the name to be linked to where you can purchase the book online!

The Shankill Butchers - During the 1970s a group of Protestant paramilitaries embarked on a spree of indiscriminate murder which left thirty Northern Irish Catholics dead. Their leader was Lenny Murphy, a fanatical Unionist whose Catholic-sounding surname led to his persecution as a child for which he took revenge on all Catholics. Not for the squeamish, The Shankill Butchers is a horrifying detailed account of one of the most brutal series of murders in British legal history - a phenomenon whose real nature has been obscured by the troubled and violent context from which it sprang.”

The Texarkana Moonlight Murders - “ In 1946, years before the phrase “"serial murder”“ was coined, a masked killer terrorised the town of Texarkana on the Texas-Arkansas border. Striking five times within a ten-week period, always at night, the prowler claimed six lives and left three other victims wounded. Survivors told police that their assailant was a man, but could supply little else. A local newspaper dubbed him the Phantom Killer, and it stuck. Texarkana’s phantom was not America’s first serial slayer; he certainly was not the worst, either in body count or sheer brutality. But he has left a crimson mark on history as one of those who got away. Like the elusive Axeman of New Orleans, Cleveland’s Mad Butcher of Kingsbury Run, and San Francisco’s Zodiac, the Phantom Killer left a haunting mystery behind. This is the definitive story of that mystery.”

The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray Twins - “ Reggie and Ronnie Kray ruled London’s gangland during the 60s with a ruthlessness and viciousness that shocks even now. Building an empire of organised crime that has never been matched, the brothers swindled, extorted and terrorised – while enjoying a glittering celebrity status at the heart of the swinging 60s scene, until their downfall and imprisonment for life.”

Cold Serial: The Jack the Strangler Murders - “Cold Serial” paints the picture of five girls who were raped and strangled in the Dayton, Ohio, area between 1900 and 1909. The working conditions, lack of rights for women and police protection, and the sexism of the age portray these girls as victims not only of a crime but also of their time. As their stories unfold, a common thread appears, a modus operandi that begins to link them together. During that era, police did not recognize the lurking shadow of a predator. But through diligent research conducted by the author, it is now revealed.”

America’s Death Penalty: Between Past and Present -  “Over the past three decades, the United States has embraced the death penalty with tenacious enthusiasm. While most of those countries whose legal systems and cultures are normally compared to the United States have abolished capital punishment, the United States continues to employ this ultimate tool of punishment. The death penalty has achieved an unparalleled prominence in our public life and left an indelible imprint on our politics and culture. It has also provoked intense scholarly debate, much of it devoted to explaining the roots of American exceptionalism.”

Fred And Rose: The Full Story of Fred and Rose West and the Gloucester House of Horrors - “ During their long relationship the Wests murdered a series of young women, burying the remains of nine victims under their home at 25 Cromwell Street, Gloucester, including those of their teenage daughter, Heather. What was left of Fred West’s eight-year-old stepdaughter was dug up from under the Wests’ previous Gloucester home; his first wife and nanny were buried in open country outside the city. Several victims had been decapitated and dismembered, their remains showing signs of sexual torture. These twelve are just the ones the police found when the Wests were arrested in 1994. There may be more whose bones have not been located.”

Encyclopedia of Murder and Violent Crime - “Edited by an internationally recognized expert on serial killers, this encyclopedia covers both murder and violent crime in their variant forms. Included are biographies, chronologies, special interest inset boxes, up to 100 photographs, comprehensive article bibliographies, and appendices for items such as famous unsolved cases, celebrity murders, assasinations, original source documents, and online sources for information.”

Bind, Torture, Kill: The Inside Story of BTK, the Serial Killer Next Door - “For thirty-one years, a monster terrorized the residents of Wichita, Kansas. A bloodthirsty serial killer, self-named “BTK"—for "bind them, torture them, kill them"—he slaughtered men, women, and children alike, eluding the police for decades while bragging of his grisly exploits to the media. The nation was shocked when the fiend who was finally apprehended turned out to be Dennis Rader—a friendly neighbor … a devoted husband … a helpful Boy Scout dad … the respected president of his church.Written by four award-winning crime reporters who covered the story for more than twenty years, Bind, Torture, Kill is the most intimate and complete account of the BTK nightmare told by the people who were there from the beginning. With newly released documents, evidence, and information—and with the full cooperation, for the very first time, of the Wichita Police Department’s BTK Task Force—the authors have put all the pieces of the grisly puzzle into place, thanks to their unparalleled access to the families of the killer and his victims.”

Hitler’s Furies: German Women in the Nazi Killing Fields - “ History has it that the role of women in Nazi Germany was to be the perfect Hausfrau and a loyal cheerleader for the Führer. However, Lower’s research reveals an altogether more sinister truth. Lower shows us the ordinary women who became perpetrators of genocide. Drawing on decades of research, she uncovers a truth that has been in the shadows – that women too were brutal killers and that, in ignoring women’s culpability, we have ignored the reality of the Holocaust.”

Tent Number Eight - “ On a warm summer day in 1977, the State of Oklahoma was shaken by the heinous and vulgar murder of three Girl Scouts in Tent Number Eight at Camp Scott near Locust Grove, Oklahoma. The investigation of their murders and the subsequent trial of the Native American man accused of those murders will forever be marked as one of the most historical in Oklahoma history. Author Gloyd McCoy dissects the investigation of the Girl Scout murders as well as The State of Oklahoma vs. Gene Leroy Hart from the vantage point of the families, the law enforcement, the news reporters, the lawyers, the judges, and the jury. He provides background information on all the parties involved and explanations regarding why certain decisions were made, including the acquittal of the accused murderer, and what might have happened if the lawyers on both sides had made different decisions and modern technology were available. Tent Number Eight will enlighten you on the court proceedings and cultural influences of 1977 and preserve this piece of history in your mind forever. Follow the overgrowth of history back to the site of the crime. Step into Tent Number Eight and witness the events of the murders and trial first hand.”

The Only Living Witness: The True Story of Serial Sex Killer Ted Bundy - “ Ted Bundy was America’s first celebrity serial killer, and one of the most chilling enigmas in criminal history. Handsome, boyish and well-spoken, a law student with bright political prospects, Bundy was also a predator and sexual deviant who murdered and mutilated at least thirty young women and girls, many of them college coeds but at least two as young as twelve.”

Click here to see my other true crime related master posts.

 Leon Bakst, Portrait of Alexandre Benois, 1898

Leon Samoilovitch Bakst (Russian: Лео́н Никола́евич Бакст; 10 May 1866 – 28 December 1924) was a Russian painter and scene and costume designer. He was a member of the Sergei Diaghilev circle and the Ballets Russes, for which he designed exotic, richly coloured sets and costumes.
Born as Lev (Leib) Samoilovich Rosenberg (Лев Самойлович Розенберг), he was also known as Leon (Lev) Nikolayevich Bakst (Леон (Лев) Николаевич Бакст).

Alexandre Nikolayevich Benois (Russian: Алекса́ндр Никола́евич Бенуа́, also spelled Alexander Benois; 3 May [O.S. 21 April] 1870, Saint Petersburg – 9 February 1960, Paris), was an influential artist, art critic, historian, preservationist, and founding member of Mir iskusstva (World of Art), an art movement and magazine. As a designer for the Ballets Russes under Sergei Diaghilev, Benois exerted what is considered a seminal influence on the modern ballet and stage design.

Alexandre was born into the artistic and intellectual Benois family, prominent members of the 19th and early 20th-century Russian intelligentsia. His mother Camilla (ru: Камилла Альбертовна Кавос, and then Бенуа) was the granddaughter of Catterino Cavos. His father was Nicholas Benois, a noted Russian architect. His brothers included Albert, a painter, and Leon, also a notable architect. His sister, Maria, married the composer and conductor Nikolai Tcherepnin (with whom Alexandre would work). Not planning a career in the arts, Alexandre graduated from the Faculty of Law, Saint Petersburg Imperial University, in 1894.

Three years later while in Versailles, Benois painted a series of watercolors depicting Last Promenades of Louis XIV. When exhibited by Pavel Tretyakov in 1897, they brought him to attention of Sergei Diaghilev and the artist Léon Bakst. Together the three men founded the art magazine and movement Mir iskusstva (World of Art), which promoted the Aesthetic Movement and Art Nouveau in Russia.

During the first decade of the new century, Benois continued to edit Mir iskusstva, but also pursued his scholarly and artistic interests. He wrote and published several monographs on 19th-century Russian art and Tsarskoye Selo. In 1903, Benois printed his illustrations to Pushkin’s poem The Bronze Horseman, a work since recognized as one of the landmarks in the genre. In 1904, he published his “Alphabet in Pictures,” at once a children’s primer an elaborate art book, copies of which fetch as much as $10,000US at auction. Illustrations from this volume were featured at a video presentation during the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014.

In 1901, Benois was appointed scenic director of the Mariinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg, the performance space for the Imperial Russian Ballet. He moved to Paris in 1905 and thereafter devoted most of his time to stage design and decor.
During these years, his work with Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes was groundbreaking. His sets and costumes for the productions of Les Sylphides (1909), Giselle (1910), and Petrushka (1911), are counted among his greatest triumphs. Although Benois worked primarily with the Ballets Russes, he also collaborated with the Moscow Art Theatre and other notable theatres of Europe.
Surviving the upheaval of the Russian Revolution of 1917, Benois achieved recognition for his scholarship; he was selected as curator of the gallery of Old Masters in the Hermitage Museum at Leningrad, where he served from 1918 to 1926. During this time he secured his brother’s heirloom Leonardo da Vinci painting of the Madonna for the museum. It became known as the Madonna Benois. Benois published his Memoirs in two volumes in 1955.
In 1927 he left Russia and settled in Paris. He worked primarily as a set designer after settling in France.

Judging Source Quality

So, today I want to talk about how to judge whether a potential source of information is reliable. I’m primarily going to approach this from an academic perspective, as sources used for academic purposes generally require the strictest standards. For my qualifications on this subject, I would like to submit ten years of higher education, two associate’s degrees, a bachelor’s degree, and enough additional course work that I’m 21 credit hours away from a second bachelor’s and a year long thesis away from a master’s degree. I spent a lot of time in academia, guys, so I feel qualified to talk on this subject.

Anywho, judging sources can be a bit of an art, depending on what subject you’re researching, and what the purpose is.  For example, if you’re just looking for your own personal curiosity, you can get by with less scholarly sources.  Additionally, there are some subjects that have a very limited amount of sources available, and you may have to use a lesser source because that’s all that exists.  So what I’m about to say is more of a general guideline than hard and fast rules, because there’s always an exception.

Here are the things you want to look at when judging a source for reliability.

Keep reading

just putting it out there, i’m a history major with an english minor. i proof and edit papers (undergrad and high school) for money. i can do grammar/syntax checks for any discipline and more thorough editing for literary or historical research papers. i also can do non-scholarly jobs. i’ve been published in my university’s lit mag and won scholarships for my essays so i’m moderately qualified. i do online freelance copy-editing and writing too, off and on. msg me if u need my services. i’m very fast and cheap, paypal me after the work is done. i can do any degree of editing you like.

On the Black Persephone debate

I mean, we can debate all day long about the relative levels of melanin in the skin of Classical Greeks, but I’d like to point out 3 things to maybe add to the discussion (which does seem to be a rather dangerous endeavor at the moment).

1. The Classical Greeks were xenophobic as fuck. Like, the level of Xenophobia Athens and Sparta (oh my god Sparta. Sparta calm the fuck down) displayed to  everyone else, including even some of the more distant poles, is either hilarious or horrifying. Seriously, read some Herodotus sometime, it’s fun. But regardless, the dividing line between Greek and Not Greek came from primarily language, religion, and culture. Applying modern definitions of race as applies to American definitions is essentially useless.
a. It is worth noting that during the Hellenistic monarchies, the Greek-speaking world was significantly more varied in terms of Ethnicity, as Alexander just looked at Asia and northern Africa and said “mine.”
b. It is probably also worth noting that talking about ethnicity and race in the Roman period is going to be a whole different story, especially during the Empire. Their policy wasn’t so much Xenophobia as it was subsume everything. There’s also lots of fun scholarly debate about just how black Septimius Severus and his son Caracalla were. It is very certain that Septimius Severus was born in one of the Roman African provinces and was described in every ancient literary source talking about him to have very dark skin. But, again, trying to figure out someone’s race in modern terms based on ancient descriptors isn’t going to ever work.

2. It is very important that modern Classicists acknowledge that by and large every non-ancient scholar who has said anything to have influenced the field in any way prior to the past couple decades or so will most likely have been an old rich white dude hailing from some western european country or other. To assume that the entire field and the current assumptions on race and culture that are entrenched in the scholarly literature are not in some way biased by the people writing them is very, very stupid. Therefore, challenging the pre-conceived notions that the Greeks 2500 years ago must look exactly like the Greeks right now and actually being willing to dig into that and unpack it, is pretty chill. Also I think anyone saying anything either way is going to have to admit that we can’t prove jack shit. 

3. Due to the fact that basically all of the Greek (and Roman) gods were imported from other cultures, there is literally no reason they can’t be portrayed however the fuck we want to portray them. Take Aphrodite. Aphrodite is nearly a direct transformation of the Mesopotamian deity Ishtar. So I think it’d be pretty dang cool to see Aphrodite portrayed with some of the ethnic characteristics of the areas of the Ancient Near East she was originally imported from. Additionally, modern intersectional feminist revisionist narratives are awwwesome. It’s equally important to acknowledge all of the patriarchal societal forces that shaped the original myth narratives, and that literally every ancient Greek or Roman writer that wrote about the gods changed the stories however the hell they wanted to. Ancient Greek religion was constantly mutable. It was not fixed even between two locations at the same time. It changed constantly depending on where you were, what cults were most important there, and what local deities had been subsumed into the cult of the particular polis. Same goes for the Romans, except even more so. Take Magna Mater, they literally sailed a ship across the ocean to go find a rock representing the goddess, brought it back, and built a temple for it. Boom. One of the most important goddesses of the Roman Pantheon. 

I am, of course, open to further discussion, if anyone would like to add a different or additional viewpoint, or correct me on any gross oversights?

hotmessduh  asked:

Good afternoon! If you still have the time, I was wondering if you could do single card reading for me. Thank you <3

Sure thing!

The card I drew for you is the King of Swords. This King is pretty scholarly, but also pretty “by the book”. You can definitely see that by all the books surrounding him that he really values knowledge. He is also a man of authority. This card is telling you that whatever is going on in your life, you need to take a strong but fair mind and use logic to come to a conclusion. It could also indicate that someone is going to come to you for advice and it will be your role to see the truth and guide them with intellect and a fair hand. 

Thanks for the ask!

PSA regarding my old Graveyard Dirt post

Okay, so my Graveyard Dirt and Etiquette post is making the rounds again, as well as a different but related one. Which I really hate actually. I cringe every time I get a note on it. (I’m only linking for sake of clarity, otherwise I wouldn’t.) So here’s a post about why.

The short version is, please stop reblogging it. I’m not bothering to bold that or anything because I know that saying this isn’t going to stop it. So there it is, my feeble resistance: please stop.

The long version why is under the cut.

Keep reading

“In this meticulously researched book, Oliver Wilkinson tells us why military captivity in the First World War mattered. Significantly, he demonstrates that POW camps were not a separate universe, divorced from fighting front and home front, but intimately connected with both. This is a story told with passion, but also with scholarly precision and close attention to detail.”

anonymous asked:

Moffat didn't like that either? he said that in an interview, I'm assuming? What didn't he like; the placement, or the idea that William is Sherlock's first name? Because that has bugged me since the moment he said it. Dude's been to court, John's seen his medical records, he's gotten financial and official mail, he had a grave... I find it very unbelievable that no-one would know that his real first name wasn't Sherlock. Unless I'm missing something?

[question is about the first tag on this post]

It came up in the DVD commentary for His Last Vow (transcript via):

STEVEN: [Our Sherlock] gives the name William Sherlock Scott Holmes. That comes from the W. H. Baring-Gould’s biography of Sherlock Holmes …
MARK: … in which he worked out that that’s what he must be called. Whether it’s true or not, who knows? We never actually worked out how two normal parents managed to give them such strange names! There must be some reason!
STEVEN: Yeah, but William Sherlock …
MARK: Oh, but I don’t like that; I’ve never liked that. To me it’s like that bit at the end of Last Crusade when you discover that he’s not called Indiana Jones; he’s called Henry Junior – the dog was called … I never liked that. ‘No! That’s his name!’

Keep reading

anonymous asked:

ok here's a little gander for ya: you know how everyone always jokes about a homestuck movie? well, i was thinking about that, and then I realized something. copyright. could a homestuck movie even happen because of the sheer amount of copyrighted materials it has? i mean, john's shirt symbol is literally slimer. i figured i'd come to you to ask since you had that big discussion about homestuck's copyrighted-ness a while back so. yeah, if you know, could a homestuck movie even happen?

Iirc John’s shirt is actually a Japanese knockoff of Slimer, but yeah.

Homestuck and copyright is actually a fascinating thing to wrangle with. And tbh, copyright might not be as big a hurdle as trademark. But let’s walk through this.

I’m going to race through some copyright basics to give you a grounding, although this is only scratching the surface and please do not take any of it as legal guidance. Copyright is a MESS.

Copyright protects original creative works put down in tangible form. If I spend years compiling a phonebook that just organizes people’s numbers, it’s not copyright protected - it’s not creative. However, a doodle on my class notes is (as well as my class notes). “Tangible form” makes digital stuff a bit confusing, but most people agree that since it’s stored on a server somewhere, digital content is also protected.

US copyright protections are kinda absurd, tbh. Works that qualify are protected immediately, without any registration. Those protections last for a very long time. This is mostly due to powerful media production companies who want to both protect their own works for as long as possible and also beggar the public domain to hamstring competition. This really violates the original intent of copyright protection, which was to benefit the public two ways - encourage creators to make stuff bc they’d be able to profit off it for a while and THEN release that stuff into the public domain for everyone to use. Corporations ruin everything.

Usually, if you want to use something copyrighted, you need permission and may need to pay a licensing fee. However, there is a built in protection in copyright. This is called “fair use”, and it protects certain unlicensed, unpermitted uses. Four use is determined by considering four factors - the nature of the use (is it for education? for profit? published widely or limited in viewership?), the type of work being used (is the work fiction or nonfiction? artistic or scholarly?), the amount used (is it a lot? is it the most important or recognizable part?), and the potential impact on the market of the original work.

The irritating thing about fair use is that it’s not a right with clear, demarcated boundaries. It’s a legal defense, and whether a use is fair can only ever be proven in the courts. Also, although a case a while back held that copyright holders have to consider fair use before sending cease and desist messages, they often don’t, hoping to intimidate people into backing down. After all, usually it’s only powerful companies who can afford to go to court to defend their use or prosecute users - or pay licensing fees to use content in the first place. See why current copyright law makes me cranky? 

So, let’s talk Homestuck.

Hussie has used a lot of copyright-protected material. His “dubiously royalty free images” for many backgrounds, mis-attributed quotes, etc. He is probably banking on a lot of it falling under fair use, although he has compromised a fair use analysis in a few ways. To break it down… the nature of his use is for entertainment and it’s widely available on the internet, which finds against him. Many of the works he’s used have been artistic rather than scholarly, which also finds against him. The amount varies… sometimes he uses whole stock photos, which is more dangerous than a single quote from a book. Naturally, all his uses are only a small part of Homestuck’s whole. So this one is mixed. Finally, the fourth factor, which is often the most heavily weighed because copyright is all about money these days, is the most in his favor. Most of his uses of copyrighted material are not going to hurt the market for the original. No one is going to use a picture of Derse instead of the original cathedral he colored purple and drew all over. Unfortunately, the courts are far less friendly toward this factor if you’re making a profit off of it. The fact that Hussie is, among other things, selling ad space on the site and selling book versions of the comic, hurts him.

The final point in his favor is a disputed interpretation of the first factor of fair use - “transformative use”. This is the idea that if your use is transformative in some way - if it turns the copyrighted work into something new or uses it in a new way - it is more likely to be fair. This helped Hathi Trust when they were being sued by the author’s guild - their work to make works more accessible and searchable in new ways was considered transformative. Turning a stock photo into a background of a comic panel can also be seen as transformative.

Now, that’s only bearing on one factor out of four, although some courts have held it as more of a game changer than others. That’s what AO3 rests on, after all! But that would be his best defense. 

So - would Homestuck the webcomic be protected by fair use? I’m honestly not sure. The courts are very capricious on this matter. But here’s the thing - when you’re one person doing your thing, you can make that call. When a film company gets involved… they are far less likely to take that risk. They’re way more visible. So if a film company were to take on Homestuck as a project, I assume they would strip out anything that could be a copyright violation. That wouldn’t be much of a problem, really - after all, they could generate their own backgrounds, rather than grab stock images. I don’t know if they would worry about the source material  having violations or not. (Didn’t stop the people making the Shadowhunte/rs show, now did it?) Although that might bring Homestuck to the attention of a few people who might not have noticed earlier that their copyrights were infringed upon.

Even so, though, most of the time people don’t prosecute. It’s not worth it. (Unless it’s Disney. Disney comes after elementary schools putting Disney characters on the wall. They suck. Don’t cross them.) So at the end of the day, I don’t think Hussie’s running *much* risk of copyright infringement suits, and a film could easily dodge the risks that he did take.

Now trademarks are another story.

Copyright protects original creative works. Trademarks protect brands. A company’s logo, or name, or tagline… they don’t want someone else using it and confusing consumers. In some cases, people can be trademarked to. A quick search of the trademark office turned up results for ICP, Guy Fieri, and Betty Crocker. Some of those are major plot points in Homestuck! So getting that through in a Homestuck film would probably involve talking with these groups to see if they’re down with, for example, having their company mascot portrayed as a murderous alien queen. Some might see it as product placement or advertising of a sort. Some might not, and they might have to strip company names, mascots, celebrities, and symbols and replace them with something else or strike a financial deal. 

Soooooo, tl;dr:

I am not an expert in copyright or trademark law. This is based off one semester of education on the topic and my best guesses. But I would say that while Homestuck the webcomic gleefully infringes on copyright and violates trademarks, it probably would not be too difficult to clear that out for a film version with a few notable exceptions, which would involve replacements or deals with the people/groups involved.

anonymous asked:

Hello! What advice would you give to someone writing their own fairytale type story with themes from popular ones, such as Rapunzel or Cinderella?

First look here for general tips on retelling a story.

Second, learn about fairy tales. Fairy tales have different “types” by which they are classified. For example, through the ATU system, Rapunzel is type 310. This covers many different versions of Rapunzel that all follow the same general plot and themes (such as a magical pregnancy).

Read as many different versions of these tales you can find. Take notes on patterns, themes, differences between them, settings, and characters. It’s important to learn about the time period surrounding each version, if you can. The economy, wars, famine, religion, technology, and culture can have an effect on details within a story.

You should also look into scholarly articles about folklore and about the tales you want to use for your story. Jack Zipes is an excellent folklorist to start with.

Don’t only read the original tales though. Read fairy tale retellings too. If you want to read stuff that isn’t modeled after a particular tale but is rather a new fairy tale with common fairy tale themes and elements, you can find those in the “fairy tale” genre too.

A concept: support is not always tangible, visible and isn’t for anyone to look at from an outsiders point of view and say ‘that’s not support’ it is something special and personal that comes in many different forms and can change day to night and supporting anyone is for the people giving and receiving this support to decide how it’s valued and perceived :)

For the record, I’d like to say I wouldn’t appreciate anyone doing that example

““They’re not rounding up political opponents; those are just ‘the mentally ill,’ It’s for their own good, really, they’ll be sent to reeducation centers.””

I know it’s “supposed to” sound extremely ableist, but it’s still massively ableist. Also not far off from probably what happens today, somewhere, or something like it.

Especially the “it’s for their own good” part. It’s less a far off dystopia and more right here right now.



Yeah, that’s not a fictional example. The United States, China, North Korea, Nazis, Soviet Union and even the Russian Federation have all used that specific argument at one time or another. That’s also not an exhaustive list, by any means, before you say I forgot to mention a group you wanted. (Now, I was thinking specifically of Julie Musante’s dialog from Babylon 5 when I was typing it, but Straczynski was also fully aware of the real history there, and was pulling from a lot of different historical sources to make the character.)

In particular, in the US, it has been invoked against the Women’s Liberation movement, and again against Civil Rights activists. If this makes you uncomfortable, good. Embrace that. It is at the core of what a dystopia really is. Not the nightmare of some possible future; not an unpleasantly comfortable adventure world; not some tech illiterate cyberpunk setting. Dystopias are the unmasked horror of the world that exists right outside your door, that you’ve been desperately trying to ignore.

We live in a world where the Chicago PD was just caught running an extra-judicial black site in Chicago’s West Side. Again, no space Nazis needed. Just ex-soldiers who took the Jack Bauer techniques they learned in the Military, brought them home, and are trying to maintain order as they see it.

You create a fictional world instead of using the real one, because you want to get your reader thinking about something without the inherent baggage of how the world should work. That’s everyone, from Ayn Rand to Warren Ellis. It works. You can talk about things that would massively piss off a reader if you just came straight at them preaching. You can bypass some prejudice, and get someone to think about an issue more objectively if it’s couched in a fictional world.

This is where things like the original Star Trek TV series become brilliant. (Granted, in that specific example, it’s a kind of mescaline soaked brilliance.) They bring up issues that are too touchy to address directly, and then talk about the subject, and leave you to sort out the meaning after the fact. (Also, if you’re into scholarly articles, Star Trek in all of its incarnations leads to some really interesting critical analysis. For both it’s successes and it’s failures.)

Dystopian fiction is at its best, when you can see the outline of the world you live in, and realize just how dangerously close you are to getting there.

Be disturbed, that really is the point.


anonymous asked:

When I debated (in HS) we ran a lot of ID pol stuff on the military topic and it was the most eye-opening best thing in my life. Also, in scholarly Pilipino news apparently the academy is debating whether Filipinos are Asian or Latino.


1) filipinxs are Asian
2) we were colonized by Spain so Spain does not equal to Latin America
3) if that’s even a debate which it shouldn’t even be, it should be “hispanic” and not Latino

Wtf is this scholarly shit don’t people know history and geography in academia like this is basic wtf this reintrenches the fact that Filipinxs don’t fucking belong anywhere and we’re not welcome to any identities cause we’re always outsiders we’re not Asian enough we’re not pacific islanders we’re not this or that or this or that ugh

Research PSA

I see this a lot where folks say “I’ve done my research and come to the conclusion that the Burning Times was a thing” or “I’ve done my research on [deity] but I still need some info.”

As someone with a BA in Religious Studies and a Masters of Library and Information Science who was trained in the fine art of looking shit up, I’m here to tell you that all research is not created equal.

Quality over quantity is a good rule of thumb. A ton of Llewellyn books, for instance, have the same tired misinformation that one or two academic books could fix. If the research you’re doing is from books that don’t have the best reputation for being credible sources of information, then it’s not that useful in the end, is it?**

That’s why it’s so important to ask yourself questions like: “Who is this author?” “What are their qualifications?” This is why it’s important to look at their bibliography to see what sources they used. If they made notes, it’s important to take a look at them (The Spiral Dance is one such example, because the author writes about how her views have changed and corrects some problematic statements she made in the original text). Barbara G. Walker apparently wrote some books about knitting that are considered classics, but near as I can tell, she is not an archaeologist, linguist, or historian, and most of the tumblr memes about Ishtar or the origin of the term “cunt” can be traced to her work. Seriously I have read her works, they’re about the exact opposite of scholarly.

It’s also important to understand that yes, academics have biases and sometimes they just spat something out because tenure, and you know what, academic stuff just isn’t going to be accessible to everyone, either because you need to pay to access it or you just don’t get what they’re saying, that’s why I’m constantly recommending GLE or lokavinr, because they are able to talk about these things in ways that make it easy for people to understand, and, unlike many academics, they are Heathens themselves and they take the religion seriously.

The next time you say “I’ve done my research” take a moment and think about what kind of research you’ve been doing, because you might just be rehashing the same old misinformation that’s been debunked five hundred times already.

**The exception would be if you’re looking for a more practical guide on how to do something and the author who does that thing happens to publish through Llewellyn. A book like Fire Jewel is not an academic text, it is purely a devotional book, and you should take any historical info in it with a truckload of salt, but if you want more practical info. from folks who like Freyja, you could do worse.