sweet as the south

  • (After installing cameras everywhere)
  • Rotti: *over speaker* It's okay, children, just act as if I wasn't watching. Just do what you would normally do.
  • Amber: *awkwardly* You're such a fucking cunt, Luigi.
  • Luigi: *just as awkwardly* At least I'm not a stupid scalpel-slut, bitch.
  • Rotti: *over speaker* What-what-WHAT?!
  • polynesians: have oral history that references a faraway land of andes-like mountains in the east, cultivated sweet potato (a plant native to central america, not the pacific), literally call sweet potato by the same word used by the quechua and aymara people indigenous to the andes, left physical remains on islands a few km off the coast of chile, have genetic links with native south americans
  • white academics: hmmm it's very doubtful polynesians contacted south america.. they probably just stopped permanently at easter island for some reason after systematically navigating the entire south pacific. the sweet potatos floated to them across the ocean
Can Tumblr Just Stop

Listen up y’all! Because when it comes to this topic:

Originally posted by blackbeak

I have had it with people saying you can’t enjoy something that doesn’t ‘belong’ to your culture. Apparently you’re racist if you’re a white girl dressing up as Tiana for comic con. Or if you’re wanting to adapt a story from China into a blockbuster movie. Or if you’re trying to cook an ethnic meal even if you have no experience. Because according to Tumblr (and alarmingly a lot of colleges) it’s ‘culture appropriation’ to even be curious about another country. Seriously. I had to write a paper to explain that you can still enjoy Mexican food even if you’re not from Mexico. And people argued with me. My professor argued with me! They all claimed that if you enjoy food from other cultures that you were stealing from that culture! Really?

I see this kind of attitude all the time about media too. Like, people flip out when they see a black girl playing Eponine from Les Miserables. Or when a predominately white school is performing The Wiz. People just jump into blind hate and claim that these performers are racists… but most of the time these performers are doing a role or a show because they love it. Because they connect with it in some way. 

Here’s a quote we all need to read:

“You don’t need to be the same ethnicity as the story you’re watching in order to identify with it. If the story is told well. It [a good story] is about relating to people that you may not necessarily think you’re going to relate to in the beginning, but by the end you’re going ‘That’s me.’ ”

You know who said that?

Lin-Manuel Miranda

AKA:

The guy who wrote In The Heights and Hamilton, which did WONDERS in including people of all different ethnicities in mainstream musicals. AND in the interview he said that he was inspired from when he saw Fiddler on the Roof when he was six years old. Even though he was Puerto Rican and the show was about Jews and Russia- he related to the story about the sacrifices you make for your family. Because that’s something that everyone can relate to.

In other words, a good story can speak to anyone regardless of culture and that’s okay!

It’s okay for a Japanese cast to perform In The Heights. It’s okay for an African American to play Éponine in Les Miserables. It’s okay for people to adapt a J-Pop song into English. And it’s okay for a predominately white school to perform Hamilton or The Wiz.

If people are doing something because they genuinely love it, then there is nothing wrong with that. And this applies to everything!!!

If you’re a white girl wanting to wear dreads in your hair because you think it looks cool- GO FOR IT! If you’re a Korean man who loves listening to Latin music- GREAT! If you’re an Irish kid obsessed with learning Japanese- AWESOME! If you’re British and want to try out for Hamilton- NICE! If you’re an African American who jams out to K-Dramas- SWEET! If you’re an American who has moved to South Africa because you want to learn more about local tribes- THAT’S SO COOL!

Look:

People shouldn’t be guilt tripped into staying in their own cultural norms. I hate it when people say “you can’t enjoy this thing because it belongs to another culture.”

Doesn’t that sound a bit racist? Scratch that. IT SOUNDS A LOT RACIST!

Yo, I can kinda see where the anger comes from. I know there are people who claim to know a lot about a different culture… when they obviously don’t by their actions or mistreatment to those who actually belong to that culture. But there is a HUGE difference between those who are being “entitled” and those who just haven’t learned enough yet. Learning about a different culture takes time! Man, it takes several years just to learn a different language. Much more to learn about social norms and values. 

And if they get a few things wrong… for crying out loud, show some mercy! No one is perfect. Stop with the “all or nothing” mentality. Show some compassion for those who genuinely want to know more about your amazing heritage/culture. 

Because most of the time these people are trying their best to learn! In fact, 99% of the time, they’re self conscious because they know they are an outsider to your thing. But you can teach them. Share your culture. Let it thrive! Give people a chance! If you treat outsiders harshly for learning and enjoying your culture, then you’re harming your own representation. 

THIS KID IS OUT!

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sweets-books-and-anime  asked:

Hi, I love your blog so much, especially the posts you have on describing POC. I'm writing a fantasy story right now and the culture of the kingdom my mc is from is heavily based on Indian culture, with me being Indian myself. I'm wondering if this could be considered cultural appropriation or what would be considered as appropriation in this case.

A kingdom based on Indian culture

I’m always one to say that if you belong to a culture, you should get first crack at messing around with it, whether in fiction or reality.  It can’t be cultural appropriation if it’s your culture to begin with.  Thing is, you have no control over how other members of your culture are going to react.  There are a billion Indians out there and we all love to argue about everything under the sun. 

You’re gonna piss some people off.  If you’re comfortable with that, then go for it.

That being said, you don’t give any more information on what you plan to do beyond stating that it’s based on “Indian culture,” and I would argue that there really isn’t any one such thing.  The subcontinent is a big place, spanning many regions and environments, each with their own distinct customs and traditions.  Yes, there are certain commonalities that allow us to group them all as “Indian” or “South Asian,” but, say, Kashmiri culture and Gujarati culture and Bengali culture and Tamil culture are as different as they are similar.

In addition, “Indian culture” has changed greatly over time, so when you say “Indian culture,” are you referring to ancient Vedic culture, medieval Hindu-Buddhist culture, Indo-Islamic culture, or something else?

Furthermore, you can argue that different social classes have their own distinct cultures.  This is maybe less pronounced in the modern age than it was in, for example, the medieval period, but you find that artistic, spiritual, and material cultures in India could have very pronounced differences, from priestly orthodoxy to the state-level kingdoms, to the family groups of artisans and workers, to tribal peoples all over the region.  Do you intend to focus on one of these distinctions or to examine a broad cross-section, and all the social intricacies that come with and cause those cultural differences?  Here’s where you need to be careful because your own background may not be the same as the groups you’re drawing inspiration from, and you may verge onto cultural appropriation, especially if you come from a background that historically exerted power over those groups.

In short, I think that while it’s fine for you, as an Indian person, to write a fantasy kingdom based on “Indian culture,” I think you may need to put some more thought into what exactly you mean by that as I think it would be impossible to encompass the cultural and historical variety of the subcontinent in one single story without it melting into a mishmash of stereotypes.
Hope that helps!

~Mod Nikhil