poc perspective


I love year 8 fics, where they’re figuring out the people they’re going to be after the war, but still stuck in hogwarts making up for the disrupted (or skipped) year 7. 

And if those fics have hurt/comfort dealing with the aftermath of, well, of everything, then I am 10000% there for that. 

reasons to listen to come from away

-there’s a song with a verse about tampons and pads
-poc + gay representation
-unique perspective on 9/11
-it highlights issues of islamophobia that 9/11 brought about
-the female pilot in the story has a whole song about the sexism she faced while becoming a successful pilot
-“my boyfriend kevin…yes, we’re both named kevin”
-the music is hella good and folk
-seriously just listen to it it’s so good

I don’t grow a beard for religious reasons, or for any reason that could place me along the spectrum of being a hipster (though, I will admit, the thought of it is appealing as a disguise if for nothing else). No, I keep my beard because a thick black beard on a brown male disturbs people; it makes them uneasy and allows for the insensitive bigot in them to come out and play.

I keep a beard because if I was white, no one would question it or treat it or me otherwise. But because I’m brown, everyone suddenly pays attention. They do everything with suddenly more caution, shift their eyes more, breathe heavier. And most of all, are waiting for an opportunity to throw generations worth of vitriol my way (a large majority of which has undoubtedly been passed down from their parents. and their parents before them, and so on).

And I can’t wait. Because you see, it is in these moments that a human being is not only this vile, inconsiderate, and in an overall deplorable state, but also the most vulnerable to revealing their weaknesses: that they, as people, are not fortunate enough to want to share in the story of another people, or perhaps were not fortunate enough to be taught to share in the journey; to act as a neighbour, or more importantly, a host (WE are the parasites after all).

No, there’s something more that goes untold in all that anger and rage against a coloured body, but above all the fear. The fear of losing ground (or jobs, whichever way you want to look at it), the fear of changing one’s ways (arguably to a better one but who wants to argue with the dense and the dull), to give way to the future (full of unseasoned food and microwave dinners? - I think not! and to think they call US villains??!!).

I mean, come on! If I inherited this land from my birth after my forefathers had raped and pillaged and forcefully taken it from people who had potentially lived on it for centuries, and then suddenly some aliens showed up one day and had said that they left everything behind for a new life here, well damn I’d be afraid of them too. Because starting over from nothing is impossible, even frightening, to comprehend to people who started with everything.

So when I am told to trim my beard, or cut it, or rid of it altogether by people who care for my wellbeing, I scoff at the idea of giving up such a valuable opportunity at performance art. Because my beard not only exists to disturb people who harbour negative feelings against me, but to remind them that I exist. And that I will go on existing despite how they feel. And that the stronger they feel, the more willing I am to exist to remind them, to demand from them, my claim of space and the respect that I duly deserve.

—  Nav K, the revolution growing on my face (on being a black-bearded, brown super villain)

When I was younger, my mother would always tell me one particular thing right before I would leave the house: she would request that I tolerate others. To hold my tongue and not speak out or fight back if anyone spoke badly about where I am from or the religion I practice. This especially became a concern after 9/11. “Always remember the colour of your skin,” she would remind me. “This country looks down on us. They always have. They always will.” And if it was my word against that of someone with lighter skin, I would easily find myself out of luck.

For that reason, I spent the majority of my youth walking around with clenched fists in my pockets. As I matured, I began to realize the cruel truths of the world, the horrible injustices done to people by other people. It was hard to accept, and sometimes, for some strange reason, it still is.

A great part of my being wants to believe that people are good. That they are still good despite everything they have done and continue to do to one another, and all the lives they have destroyed. This is perhaps extremely naive of me, and may be what eventually destroys me. Or perhaps this is the only thing that has kept me alive.

I find people to be a mix of horrible, fascinating, and brilliant. I think it is a rather dangerous combination. Lines are almost always crossed, because limits do not exist to us. We possess the ability to love and hate without any restrain, and not surprisingly, both inevitably lead to our ruin. We are idealistic, foolish, and stubborn. We pursue those things which we cannot and should not possess. We pursue ideas of permanence which themselves have changed through the course of time. We chase after ideals which are made to sound great in theory, but are often (read: always) treated as mythology and enforced as such.

One such myth is multiculturalism. If it truly exists, or if it ever has, it should be understood that multiculturalism has failed us. It has taught us nothing but to open ourselves to new culinary delights. But we are not some sort of ethnic buffet! Multiculturalism has done more for domestic economies than it has for its foreign-domestic populations, the products of immigration. It has not made us more amicable towards one another. It has not dissolved racial issues and concerns. It has not brought communities together. And it has not rid of preconceived notions of other races, religions, genders, or sexual orientations.

In fact, multiculturalism has been, at best, just a tease. A little show of skin; sultry legs, a dipping neckline, some cleavage. Something to excite the exotic in us. Something to make us feel like we are accepted, that we belong. That years of historic violence, abuse, and oppression can somehow be looked past without an apology. And no, multiculturalism is not an apology. It is not even a welcome, or a thank you. It is a bone. A pacifier. A lollipop for the crying child. A pathetic excuse.

Multiculturalism has failed us. Because it was never fully intended to work. Because tolerance is not the same thing as acceptance. Some of western society’s favourite occupations are to confuse tolerance for acceptance, acceptance for apology, common sense for liberalism, civic duty for charity – all on the pretense of some kind of profound form of enlightenment. Yet our names, languages, ethnicities, religions, and “cultures” all become subject to western fetishization. Somehow, for some reason, it is still okay to portray the non-white individual as the “other,” as something to be fascinated by. As if fundamentally altering the course of our history, and ultimately our existence, was alone not enough. But contrary to popular belief, we are not here for handouts or charity. But our struggles and sacrifices will be acknowledged. All the buzz words mean nothing to us. We are more than our food and our clothes, more than the languages we speak. We are more than our skin.

I do not want for future generations to have to worry about the colour of their skin, or to be told that they should change their names to something more “Western” and “easier to pronounce.” I do not want to see another PhD mopping floors or driving taxi cabs to ensure their children have a glimmer of hope in the West, only to be cheated into the lower rung of the ladder despite their efforts.

I do not want another immigration watch organization handing out anti-immigration literature to every door in our neighbourhoods, and then claim that they are not racist. I do not want another man to fear being called a terrorist for his beard or turban, or because he carries on his Prophet’s name, or another woman to be targeted for her hijab, her faith, and be told to go back to her country. Remember this: you cannot justify stealing bread from someone, and then becoming angry when someone else asks you for a piece.

The word diaspora translates from Greek to mean “the dispersal of seeds.” An immigrant is such a seed, planting him or herself into alien soil, dreaming to flourish as others have. But a seed cannot grow if the soil will not provide the nutrients it needs to survive. More and more of our seeds are failing, deteriorating, eventually dying. Or are just beginning to grow and then finding themselves to be cut down. Torn from their roots. Discarded.

The approach to this collection was not only to quell but also to cause qualm; to provide both a source for one to heal, as well as a brief glimpse into hell; to both remedy injury as well as rouse anger; to disturb those who have been pacified; to momentarily disrupt the course of Western thought; to trace back our own roots; to serve as reminder of our customs and traditions; and to recall all that has been lost and left behind.

The intention has been to incite discussion, to invite one another into a sense of acceptance, so that generations that follow can be inspired by us. It is not only a matter of racial differences, but also learning to put aside those differences which divide even communities of similar racial backgrounds and ethnic origins.

We must, for the sake of that which is left of our humanity, maintain the fact that we are each a body of water. We are each a fragment of ocean, a force of nature. We must learn to coexist alongside one another so that we may thrive. So that our collective force may become that of the ocean as opposed to minuscule drops of it.

—  Naveed Abdullah Khan || “After Word” from By Bodies of Water

anonymous asked:

the gender binary is from colonizers. it was imposed on my culture and other native cultures. if you want more perspectives of poc on being nb, learn more about native perspectives. talk to many different native people. most other natives i know use the term two spirit (not lgbt+ acronym stuff because those words also came from colonizers) but two spirit is a complex identity which has many more nuances than i can explain here (also @any nb nonnative, two spirit is an identity for only natives)

Thanks for the info! This is super true. I took a class about Native women specifically but my professor (who is Lakota) showed us a documentary about two spirit people and it was really eye-opening. If anyone knows of two spirit blogs or channels they want to recommend I would love to follow them.

sharkvajay  asked:

I really love your blog and you seem like a really sweet cool person, but I wish you wouldn't post that whitewashed Symmetra skin. It means a lot to a lot of people that Symmetra's brown.

Hi, thanks for the calling me sweet but this is one ask I had to answer right away because I need to set something straight. Lately I’ve noticed on Tumblr there has been a misinterpretation of what whitewashing actually is. Whitewashing is “to play a role that is traditionally, historically, and/or written for a person of color, essentially erasing the poc perspective and experience from the role in favor of a white actor.” Hollywood is no stranger to it, having white people play Egyptian gods and Middle Eastern royalty for example. And I’m sure everyone remembers Scarlet Johansson playing the Japanese lead in Ghost in the Shell. Ugh. There’s nothing like Hollywood wanting everything from other cultures but the people these cultures belong to that makes me angry and tired beyond belief.

But back to the matter at hand. Symmetra’s vampire skin is the one you’re talking about, I presume? I know it’s been the a topic of much controversy and argumentation amongst people. That the vampire skin is racist for lightening her skin and that when people with dark skin die their skin doesn’t turn that color. I completely agree with this except the thing is - I don’t consider Symmetra to be an actual vampire in this skin. I 100% believe this to be a costume of her as a European style vampire with gray skin for Halloween. There’s actually a funny story as to why I never initially considered the skin to be colorist; for three years straight as a kid I was a vampire for Halloween. Really. I had one of those red and black cheap Halloween dresses that came in a plastic bag from Party City and a matching cape from my brother’s own old vampire costume. And I’d do the full face of makeup myself. I thought using the cheap pan of white face paint cream made me look like a horrendous ghost so I mixed it in a bowl with a bit of black costume makeup and painted my face and neck light gray and my lips and eyes black. It’s a hell of a coincidence. So I’m not upset at Symmetra’s gray skin for the same reason I’m not aghast that Hanzo has dark blue skin for his Halloween skin. It’s a spooky fun Halloween costume.

At least, that’s my personal perspective as a proud woman of Indian heritage whose fave American holiday just so happens to be Halloween. But it’s important to have a dialogue about this sort of thing! So in the notes if everyone here wants to have a discussion with each other about it feel free to. Open minds and open hearts are important to changing the world.

Edit: I also should add that a more elaborate Vampire Queen costume would have been a much better skin and Blizzard could have at least given her fangs as well.

Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow stay whitewashing characters while The Flash now has a main cast that is majority POC

“Growing up, Belle was my favorite princess because she loved to read & had my hair/eye color. The fact that I chose my favorite princess because she looked like me really put the lack of POC princesses into perspective. I’m white, I can’t even imagine how young girls feel about having one princess that mildly looks like them. I hope Disney sticks to the direction they’re going in with Moana. Representation is so important to children.”

Latina Canadian

I noticed this is kind of a US-centric place, so I feel some Canadian POC perspective is needed.

I go by Maria and I am from El Salvador, the tiny country next to Guatemala and Honduras. My mom’s side of the family came here the same way many immigrants from El Salvador did- fleeing from civil war. My aunt came later when she got a graduate studies scholarship, and my grandma, mother, twin and I came last.

Getting to Canada was a nightmare of bureaucracy because really only middle-class/upper class people have enough time and money for the application. You have to get medically tested, fill out a bunch of paperwork, wait for it to come back, and if your application expires because the mail took too long then you’re going to have to start the process all over again. Our application was sponsored by our relatives here, but it was heavily delayed because 9/11 happened right as they were reviewing it. As you can guess, pretty much everyone had to start their applications over after 9/11.

I’ve been in Canada since I was 8 and haven’t gone back to El Salvador, so it really feels like home. My Canadian citizenship is something my family and I are super-proud of. Growing up, I‘ve never really had much trouble personally because of my race, I think for two reasons. One: We lived in the third-largest city in Canada, with an incredibly large population of POCs. If you pass someone on the street, it’s likely they’re not white. Second: Latinos were so rare when I moved, and especially in the suburbs where I grew up, that we were more a curiosity than a threat. My best friends were usually “minorities” in the neighbourhood, AKA white. (Don’t get me wrong- I still pause when I get asked “where are you from?”. I have been approached by a number of people asking me if I’m anything from Persian to Italian. I still have to slow down in order to pronounce words properly. It’s just not as bad as it is in the States, where I get dirty looks and followed around stores.)

Despite being university-graduated engineers, Canada refused to acknowledge my uncle and aunt’s degree, so they had to take whatever jobs they could while going back to school (and taking care of my 3 cousins). The same thing happened to my mom, but as a single mother it took her a lot longer to earn her degree again. There were nights when she would work for 12 hours at her terrible job, then go to school and get back home around midnight. I grew up taking care of the house and my sister, with help from my grandma. We lived in a rent subsidised building, and the neighbourhood around was on the brink between the “shady” part of town and the rich suburbs.

It’s a bit frustrating coming to a new country so young, because I feel more like a second-generation than a first-generation immigrant. My memories of my birth country are so far back that I might as well have lived here all my life. Honestly, I had no other latino kids my age to interact with, so I ended up growing up like a white person. There were two other Hispanic friends I had: A younger girl who I didn’t see much after middle school, and a half-Peruvian half-Chinese guy who’s family had been in Canada since time immemorial. I can talk Spanish, but it’s very proper, grammatically correct Spanish in contrast to my mom and grandma’s slang-filled vocab. I can write at about a grade 2 level, and read at about a grade 1.

I love writing and history and I am trying to get more connected to my heritage recently. It frustrates me to no end that there’s very little pre-Europan history of the Americas, and that there’s very few fiction books with people who look like me. (So protip: write a time travel story about a latina going back to the Maya empire. A few other remarks: Latino families are close-knit and have usually conservative values (The younger generation doesn’t as much. We get along by not bringing up social issues.), I and most people I know hate getting asked “Where are you from/where is your accent from?’(If you mention an accent you’re going to make me self-conscious for weeks),I would like to see the actual body diversity of latino people in fiction, and quite a few of us can claim mixed maya-european ancestry.

Read more POC Profiles here.

if you’re not comfortable writing from the perspective of POC in a fantasy world you’ve literally created yourself, you could just make racism not exist in that world so the non-white characters wouldn’t have a markedly different experience from white characters. that’s an easy solution i came up with in two seconds. it’s like you can’t imagine writing from the perspective of people different from you but you also can’t imagine a world where POC aren’t treated like crap

if you are in the Boston area, like zines, comics, Rookie mag, or want to see more alternative media/music/art with a POC perspective, I highly recommend attending this reading/lecture!

“Suzy X frontwoman of Brooklyn-based punk rock witchcore band Shady Hawkins, contributor at Rookie and Bitch Media , illustrator, zine maker, blogger, team member at POC Zine Project and Girls Rock Camp Volunteer will be speaking about her self-archiving in her blog/project ‘Memoirs of a Mallgoth’ and zine 'Malcriada’”.

Saturday, February 1 @ 5 pm
@ the Van Alan Clark Jr. Library at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston!

I Think I Might Be Leaving Fandom...

I’ve been so confused and upset and EXTREMELY conflicted about all of the Twitter stuff that happened last night. I wanted to post about it when it happened but I couldn’t because it’s hard to properly articulate what I feel. And if I even tried to I’d probably end up looking like the bad guy and have people tone police me and say shit like ‘she’s being racist’ or 'this had nothing to do with racism’, y'all know how fandom is.

This whole Twitter fuckshit upsets me for so many reasons.

If you’re not a POC, you might not get where I’m about to go with this…

Being a POC, a socially conscious POC, when I see racist shit going on, my first instinct is to protect the POC, which is in this case Lana. Not only is Lana a POC, but there’s so much more of a connection for me with her because I grew up with Latino relatives whom I love dearly. Behind Black people, I’m all here for the Latinos. So it frustrates me beyond end when I see people coming for Blacks/Latinos.

For me, last night I saw way too much talk of ships and characters and blame being thrown and WAY too much political correctness for my liking.

Racism/racist/stereotypical comments are NOT something to be taken lightly. Those comments that Lana received go beyond SwanQueen or Swen or CS or anything that has to do with fictional characters or a ship. This isn’t about any of that-it’s about the fact that this fandom isn’t standing in solidarity with this wonderful woman and with it’s POC fandom members…at least not to me.

What bothers me more, is that as a POC, what happened isn’t being told from a POC perspective.

I know that people have been sending Lana love and screen capped what happened and reported it to ABC and Twitter, but for me there’s too much of “This isn’t Swen’s fault” and CS shippers being silent and then there is the politeness, the “I can’t be angry or say mean things because I don’t wanna offend anyone so I’ll just say 'let’s all get along’ or #nobullying”

What happened last night was NOT bullying, so PLEASE stop saying it was. That was racism at work so PLEASE stop trying to downplay it as anything other than that.

As one of the resident POC bloggers in this fandom, seeing those tweets hurt me to my soul. I was legit near tears last night, and seeing this be halfassed and turned into some bullshit about which ship is the worst and who cares about Lana/JMo more or what ship is the most toxic…

I’ve seriously lost a deep amount of respect for this fandom.

This fandom and this show have a SERIOUS problem with racism, and last night’s incident only showed me just how serious it was.

I saw Adam’s tweets and I was done with all of this fuckshit. He literally showed me last night that he doesn’t give a damn about his POC audience or his actors. He literally said in response to someone saying that Lana should be “raped with a knife” that he’d gotten death threats last night as well.

I don’t think you guys get how pissed off and angry and hurt I am. So to help you get why I’m upset, let me give you a glimpse into how I see the show:

I’m a WOC who watches this show and I don’t see ANYBODY who looks like me. Not only am I a WOC, I happen to ship one of the dominate hetships. While I primarily ship OutlawQueen, I occasionally dip my toes into SwanQueen and Dragon Queen territory and stand in solidarity with Swen by speaking up and against the hatred they receive.

Not only that but Tiana, one Black princess that Disney has is the ONLY princess who has YET to appear on the show. The fact that fucking Merida who is a White princess and Elsa have appeared on OUAT but no Tiana? That upsets me. Sure they made Rapunzel Black but she was there for 1 ep and her only purpose was to further along David’s narrative.

Those few Black characters like Merlin and Ursula and Poseidon and Tamara and Lancelot, nobody gives a shit about them, not really. Half of y'all liked Merlin because he was cute, light skninned and had an accent-I’ve seen the posts and reblogs about him. Most people ship Sea Devil and flail over Cruella/Victoria…

From my POV, the POCs on this show are props, toys that can be used because they fit the narrative and then are put back on the shelf when they’re not necessary.

Last night really saddened me on so many levels that I’m just…

I need to back away from fandom for a little bit. It’s becoming too toxic for me. This show doesn’t care about me, not really and the fans…some days fandom makes me proud, like with #OUARF but then shit like this happens and I lose hope in this fandom.

I probably won’t be around much, because of the holidays but I’m not sure if I’ll be back full time fangirling over this show after that. I mean I’ll still watch and read and write fanfics but engaging in fandom? I don’t know about that…

embroideryporn  asked:

Hey there! I've been writing my novel for a while, and my main character is half white half Japanese. (The whole character is actually inspired by my best friend!) I've been reading a lot about describing POC characters respectfully, avoiding stereotypes, but recently I've been seeing a lot of blogs saying it's weird and wrong for white people to try and write from the perspective of a POC. I'm just confused because I thought representation was important, but I don't wanna do anything wrong?

White Writers Writing From PoC Perspectives

PoC are not a monolith, and therefore, reasonable minds will differ when it comes to PoC representation in media.

When it comes to white writers writing from PoC perspectives, however, Readers of Color may be slower to read those stories, because 1) they’ve had bad experiences with previous works by white writers where they were depicted poorly, and/or 2) they may wish to support Writers of Color instead, who are often ignored in favor of white writers when it comes to writing PoC characters.

There isn’t a lot you can do about 2) except supporting works by PoC creators , but with 1) you can:

  • consume media created by the group you want to depict;
  • do your research on said group;
  • get beta readers from said group, and;
  • listen respectfully to readers when they’re critiquing you.

The above isn’t bulletproof, but if you do your homework and take your betas and readers seriously, it’s going to be much easier for PoC to trust you.

–mod Jess

anonymous asked:

I know you're not a poc but you're pretty good at analyzing stuff. So, do you think they used brownface on Lexa? Or does it only appear that way (in some scenes)?

I really don’t like talking about this type of thing on here, due to the nature of Tumblr. I am not a POC, but I have studied racial/social issues extensively in school. I do realize, AS I HAVE SAID BEFORE, how I don’t face the same challenges POCs face and I only offer an educated ‘outsider perspective’. Just like POCs have a ‘insider perspective’ on racial issues. I’ll answer this though and hopefully people won’t jump down my throat and know that I mean no harm by my words. 

Makeup was used to show sun exposure. We see that they made characters in Mount Weather have a more ‘pale’ look (using makeup) to show their lack of sun exposure – being locked underground. We also see the Delinquents (that have spent almost 1 month outside) have a tanner look while they are in Mount Weather. The show uses this to show this ‘in group’ vs ‘out group’ narrative through visuals; the differences in  skin tone due to sun exposure. So, the grounders that have spent the duration of their lives outside will be tanner than the Delinquents that spent a month on the Ground. 

Additionally, I think that they might make a person’s skin tone darker or ‘different’ so that in post-production –when they add filters or lighting to a scene – the person looks ‘natural’. That is why I think Eliza in that bts photo with the journalist posted has a more ‘orange tinge’ – it was to correct for the lighting in the scene. Lighting of scenes has a HUGE effect on how your eyes perceive these colors. For instance, when Lexa comes out of the tent and looks up at the flares and her face is much darker. This is due to the overcast day and the lighting. We also have to think about how she was standing next to a very light complected Clarke (who hasn’t spent her entire life out doors) so Lexa will look comparatively darker. Plus, the show isn’t perfect and they may have made Lexa a little darker than usual on accident that day. 

Let me just slide Sachin’s tweet in here that he posted when people on twitter were trying to “shed light” on the “racism” in the show: 

Keep reading

I will pay attention to detail.
I will remember the way she takes her tea.
The way her eyes light up when she’s passionate about something.
The way her breathing changes when I’m near.
My first few words in these things we call poems will slip into the cracks and crevices of her protective walls, make a home in her darkness and they will light up with appreciation and affection.
The next few will attack from the outside; they will move swiftly with force like arrows with flaming tips and aim directly for the heart that life has partially frozen.
Others will caress her skin when I am not around, and will remind her that she will always have my arms to come home to, even when the Earth around her that she’s lived on for her whole life feels foreign.
I will breathe her in slowly and deeply, the way I did my medication from an asthma nebulizer.
Her voice will be my wake up call in my dreams before my alarm sounds.
Her kiss would be treated as my daily birthday present.
If I had my way, her laugh would be on my phone, on repeat.
My fingers will wrap around hers as if they were my last lifeline even though I would happily drown in her daily.
My hands will be navigators, and I will not rest until I have found the most pleasurable places to touch.
My lips will be stamps and with every kiss I will leave my mark on her for her to feel and remember.
She will be documented in free verse and rhyme, from her morning routine to her weirdest dream.
She will be made to smile, sometimes so hard it feels like her cheeks are bursting at the seams.
She will be mine, and I will be hers.
And when life tries to interrupt our peace, my words will start their onslaught once again.
—  maxwelldpoetry, “This Is How I Will Love Her”