this is what society is creating

for the record I don’t want to see anyone seriously using or defending “allosexual” on my dash. especially if you know there’s no such thing as “allosexual privilege”. it groups lgbtpn people together with cishets, who are our oppressors, and treats us as one coherent class of people, which we are not (and it is incredibly homophobic and transphobic to suggest that we are).

by creating a specific label, you claim the existence of a specific class which is socially organized, shares common relevant history, and holds common values or ideas. this is not the case. there is no “allosexual” group in any society anywhere in the world, there is no social group opposite to asexuality. what there is is a majority of people who share a single common characteristic: that they don’t identify as asexual, or any identity on the ace spectrum. this is not enough to form a class with a label.

what is appropriate to this portion of the population is a prefix. “non-ace”. it is what naturally comes to mind if one does not have a predetermined term for this population, and so it is not specifically designed to refer to a coherent class of people, thus it is not propagating homophobic or transphobic ideas. some say it is othering. that is the point. you are trying to distinguish between people who do and do not identify as ace or on the ace spectrum. this makes someone an other only in that context, and that is not avoidable, and that is not inherently a bad thing. you cannot unite with something that divides, with or without malice.

yes, the ace community has a right to determine what they call people who aren’t ace. but equally, our community has a right not to be forced into a class alongside our oppressors. when you do that, as the term “allosexual” inherently does, your issue becomes an inter-community issue, and we have a right to step in and say “you can’t use this term to refer to us. it’s homophobic and transphobic and we will not stand for that from you”. I don’t want to see it used seriously or defended seriously by anyone I follow. if you do, you will quickly become someone I don’t follow.

*Strums guitar*

I have nothing against killing animals for food and I often eat meat myself but we need to stop creating an industry in which animals are abused and most of their parts go to waste.

*Guitar picks up*

If we keep taking advantage of our limited resources in order to provide a large amount of meat most of which goes to waste then we’ll end up with nothing but a bunch of diseased animals and polluted water.

*Sick drumbeat kicks in*

However this does not mean it’s okay to shame people for eating meat. It’s no one person’s fault that the industry has gotten out of hand. We’ve created a society over many years in which it’s quite hard to transition from large industries back to local and environmentally-friendly businesses.

*Killer bassline starts*

And we can’t ignore the fact that the same thing has happened to the fruit/vegetable industry, it’s just a lot easier to point fingers when cute little animals are hurt.

*Killer guitar solo*

It’s time we start practicing sustainable agriculture and take away power from out of control industries such as General Mills who own most of what we consume on a regular basis and don’t give a shit as long as they get money.

I am really tired yall.

Lemme just preface this with saying that I am a writer. I have been writing for most of my life. I have taken actual classes about writing and about what fiction can offer you, me, and people as a whole. I have won an award for something that I wrote. I know and love fiction, be it in written form, graphic novels, or film. It is all so good and complex and it’s something I am passionate about. That said, let’s get into this.

A good majority of the discourse that goes on in most of the fandoms I’m in stem from the idea that violence and forbidden sexual acts in fiction will encourage those actions in reality. It is important to know, firstly, that the only time this happens is when a person is immature enough or not mentally healthy enough to distinguish reality from fiction. Growing up, my parents would often stop horror movies (back when I first started watching them) to ask me questions. To be fair, they were pretty shitty people, but in this one aspect, they were so good about making sure I knew this difference. “You know this is just a movie, right? None of the stuff on the tv is real.” They’d assure before continuing the film.

It’s not real.

Now, half of the stuff I read or watched back then was nowhere near pushing boundaries or making me think critically about society or whatever. However, I knew that what I watched wasn’t real. It was images on a screen. If I don’t like what I’m seeing, I can walk away. It doesn’t have to affect me, personally,  unless I let it.

Now, lets circle back. School. College. I took a writing class that used this book:

Granted, it was a screenwriting class and most of the chapters were about various script formats, but the beginning chapters focused on why we write and why we make the stories we do.

It had a section in it describing how human needs and desires are met through fiction. It detailed those needs in a list. This list:

Please draw your attention to the ones on the list that say that fictions helps people to:

Be purged of unpleasant emotions

To have vicarious but controlled emotional experiences

To confront, in a controlled situation, the horrible and terrible

To explore taboo subjects without guilt

Just because you personal don’t need various forms of ‘taboo’ media, doesn’t mean that others don’t. Media, in all of its forms, is a way for people to explore things safely. It’s an outlet that doesn’t harm anyone and it offers the creator and viewer/reader a safe way of exploring the complexities of situations (or in some cases relationships) that these people do not want to be involved in irl. Because we can distinguish reality from fiction. Because none of us are going out killing people or getting into abusive relationships or fucking our sibling.

While being critical of the media we consume is important and it is vital to dissect the whys of the media being created, there is a line between creating open discussion about these taboos, about the society and personal experiences that makes one need these outlets, and verbally abusing and harassing strangers.

If you want to create a dialogue about media or a ship you don’t agree with, fine. Talk about it. Dissect it. Really dig deep into the human condition and the psychology behind these outlets, but don’t shame people for them to the point of telling them to kill themselves or telling them they are human garbage or what the fuck ever.

Fiction isn’t always meant to be picturesque. It’s not always going to be SFW. If that isn’t your cup of tea, then great. Stop going into the tags of things that make you feel unhealthy. You do you. Keep yourself safe. Stop continuously exposing yourself to content that you can’t swallow. To keep getting involved, to keep harassing people, to keep abusing strangers shows that you don’t give a damn about the content. You need an excuse to bully someone else and indulge in holier-than-thou circle jerks with other people who also have no sense of what fiction is for.

I think many leftists have a specific eureka moment where they come to realize a crucial fact about a possible post-capitalist world:

While we are trained from childhood on to just assume that more jobs must be good because that means more people are working and therefore eating, we rarely get a point to question WHY we insist on creating systems where we must work any job in order to subsist, regardless of how necessary they are. Like….if workers and communities had democratic management over economic utilities and resources, you could create something where people just get a livable floor regardless, and from there you can focus the economy on literally meeting those needs; from there, why would anyone NEED to work at some desk job in a bureaucratic mess or a Cheetos factory that produces shit food that specifically capitalists can profit from? This doesn’t presuppose a world without entertainment and art and theme parks and passion; it just presupposes that we remove those things from an economic framework that insists we MUST do them for our bread. If our actual JOBS were cut down to just what we NEEDED TO CREATE for a functioning society (essential foods, buildings, transportation, infrastructure, healthcare, education, etc.), then the “side things” that make life interesting can be born from interest rather than necessity. Taking it a step further, automation has the power to liberate us from a plethora of those essential jobs, and with democratic control over the means of production you could actually utilize it for human flourishing rather than capitalist profit. People wouldn’t have to worry about machines taking their jobs – indeed, they’d probably WANT a machine to take their job. That means more time for leisure, family, friends, art, and self-actualization.

capitalism stops the growth of knowledge, when one is forced to work endless hours to simply survive, they never get a chance to research and improve their surroundings. there is no way you can argue it’s the most efficient way to “advance” society technologically, academically, etc.

this even goes beyond the whole “humans always have to work to survive blah blah” most of us are working far more hours than humans did a hundred thousand years ago to survive lmao. here’s the shocker they had far more free time than we do lmao. 

there’s no excuse for the amount of hours people are forced to work, when the vast majority of it is simply busywork that does nothing to improve the lives of people, and creates grotesque amounts of excess waste never to be used.

all that fucking labor appropriated and for what? to be thrown in a landfill or the ocean, etc. and to deplete our scarce resources? yeahhhh real conducive to societal advancement right there.

6

There I was, an empty piece of a shell,
Just minding my own world;
Without even knowin’ what love and life were all about
Then you came,
You brought me out of the shell;
You gave the world to me
And before I knew, there I was so in love with you

You gave me a reason for my being
And I love what I’m feelin’
You gave me a meaning to my life
Yes, I’ve gone beyond existing
And it all began when I met you

–When I Met You, Apo Hiking Society   

This doujinshi was inspired by the song “When I Met You” by Apo. Please listen to it ;v; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7bgbeNgE7No

I sketched this after the last episode last December, and was only able to complete it now. ;v; Hopefully, I would be able to do the same for the other doujins I sketched in my computer, so watch out for more. XD Hope you like it as much as I loved creating it. My bbys. ♥♥♥

Shameless plugging: please visit my online store. :3 deeyosa.tictail.com

Quirk-law is the leading cause of Villainy

At first glance, the world of BnHA seems like it might be a fun place to live, but that’s because we’re viewing it from the perspective of the top 1%. For most people, the only difference between their world and the real one is that they are in constant danger. 

Let’s review what we know about quirk law. Only licensed heroes are authorized to use quirks in public. You may use quirks privately, but they must be registered and there are myriad restrictions. You must obtain a license to use quirks for your job, also with various limitations.

On the surface, pretty commonsense. In practice, these laws target the lowest common denominator and thus punish everyone else. If you ever had a teacher who demanded silence from the class because one person misbehaved, it’s like that on a societal scale.

(excerpt from the spin off “BnHA Illegals”) This guy can move slightly faster than a brisk walking pace by holding 3 points of contact with the ground. He’s not allowed to do that. He becomes a vigilante hero, which is a crime.

The “Illegals” manga features several people who turned to the “crime” of vigilante heroism because of the draconian regulation of quirks. It’s on the level of thought-crime, guilty until proven innocent. 

While licenses make sense in the real world with regards to vehicles and guns, it doesn’t make sense for quirks because A) nearly everyone has them, and B) it’s not a choice to obtain it. 

(excerpt from chapter 85) Let’s talk about a case where these laws don’t just inconvenience an individual, but harm all of society. Momo has the quirk “creation” which is very tightly regulated for the sake of the economy. With a hero license she can create anything she needs for heroing, but anything else is (officially) off limits.

This is legislating to the worst case scenario, which, I contend, is a poor strategy in this world. It works from the assumption that she would use her quirk selfishly and excessively. If she created billions of dollars, she would ruin the economy and we would all suffer.

But what if she used her quirk selfishly and in moderation? She could make anything she needs for a modest life, or the money appropriate for a modest living, and it would have no impact on the economy. A good outcome for her and a neutral result for the rest of us. There’s no reason to prohibit this.

And, of course, the law doesn’t consider the best case scenario. What if she uses her quirk selflessly? What if, for example, every couple years she set aside a month to create smart phones for everyone in the world? Would that wreck the economy? One particular industry, sure. Would it benefit literally everyone but electronics CEOs? Would it save thousands of child laborers in sweatshops? YES! That’s a brilliant trade off! But, even if she applied for a business quirk license, I think she’d be denied for the potential disruption of the economy.

(Side note: It has been a topic of many forums whether Momo can make things as complex as a smartphone. I say yes. Recall in the School Trip Arc, she made a tracking device and matching GPS unit. It’s absolutely within her ability.)

Rapid fire round: what should these people do if society was more lenient? Shinso: suicide hotline operator. Todoroki: work inside a nuclear cooling tower, heat up water at the bottom, cool down steam at the top, infinite energy. Uraraka: construction worker work at NASA.

As civilians these quirks would be restricted. Even as heroes these quirks are going to waste from a utilitarian perspective. No one benefits from this arrangement. There is so much potential in the world, and its governments seem dedicated to squandering it.

This is a society that is oppressive to the majority. Quirks could fuel the next stage of human evolution, but laws keep society grounded in the stone age. How can anyone in that world (aside from the 1%ers in their ignorant bubble) not resent that? This is the philosophy that breeds villains, and I can’t help but agree with it.

Your life is your choice. Yes there are a few hours everyday where we HAVE to work, or HAVE to study, but the rest of the day is up to you.

You can either chill and let life pass you by, or you can decide to utilise your days by planning and working towards something that you’re passionate about.

Even if you only have 10 minutes spare a day, or even a few hours, make some time for yourself!

Take this post as your sign my love..

And also remember, failure is a personal decision, only YOU can decide what you’ve failed on. No one else. Your goals are unique to you, and the last thing you should worry about is societies opinion. Take as much time as you need, to create a life that you get excited to wake up to everyday.

- Meggan Roxanne

“percy jackson started as the basic straight white boy protagonist—”

no literally fuck off as an ADHD person outside of rick riordan’s work there are, literally, five (5) ADHD characters that i know of (in captain underpants, doctor who, and lazytown) and not ONE dyslexic one and you know what i think??? society was DEFINITELY built for ADHD and dyslexic people and we TOTALLY don’t have a super fucking hard time in school because of our disorders hahaha why do you THINK percy never even got B’s???? do you know how much fucking homework i FAIL TO EVEN GET FINISHED????

literally, actively, you could not be more wrong. percy jackson is not some cishet white boy. because he is ADHD and dyslexic, you cannot claim that he is the same as, say, (canon) harry potter. you CANNOT.

literally the only reason that percy even exists is rick riordan created him expressly for his ADHD and dyslexic son to feel better about having ADHD and dyslexia. he literally said in his speech after getting a stonewall award: “Percy Jackson started as a way to empower kids, in particular my son, who had learning differences.”

yeah, it’s super fucking great that you got all this representation (as a nonbinary aroace who has literally never seen a single aroace outside of this series). but you need to STOP SAYING THAT PERCY IS NOT IN MINORITY GROUPS. because HE IS. and it’s LITERALLY THE REASON YOU EVEN HAVE ALL THIS REPRESENTATION IN THE FIRST PLACE.

Quirks in BNHA are fucking wild

I really want to sit down and brainstorm about what the hell society is like? Because Mutation Quirks are a Thing, and you’ve got people running around who are all wildly differing in physicality.

Like the Pro Hero, Cementoss. He’s a fucking rectangle. He’s a block of cement with a face. That’s a person. That’s what he looks like. Tokoyami has a bird’s head

More then that, there’s the underlying question of ‘How do they work?’. Now, we all pretty much accept that there’s probably no real explanation and that’s okay, suspension of disbelief.

But Bakugou’s quirk is explained. He creates nitoglycerin in his palm-sweat and he can make that explode. This is because his mother’s quirk let her secrete glycerin (which is great for her skin), and his father had an oxidizing-sweat quirk. Bam, they combined, it’s explosive sweat. That makes some level of sense.

So if you can have a semi-plausible explanation for one quirk, what the fuck is Uraraka’s? Shoto’s? TOKOYAMI’S?!

Sero has fuckin’ cellophane tape dispensers for elbows in a universe where a man can send you to the moon with a single punch.

No, It’s Not “In Spite Of” Anything...

I absolutely hate when people say “so and so did x in spite of their disability” or “so and so overcame their disability and did x.” Because really, that’s not how it works. Disability and illness shapes a person and their experiences. Most of the time, it’s not “in spite of” our disabilities, it’s because of them.

Let’s look at some historical examples, shall we?

Take FDR. He was a wealthy, pompous playboy from a political dynasty who Gatsby-ed his way through the Roaring 20s without ever experiencing the real world. He didn’t become president in spite of having polio, he became president because of it. At a time of national hopelessness and desperation, his polio put him into the real world- into a place of understanding for the common man affected by The Depression. It humanized him and it got him 4 terms. It inspired the March of Dimes which consequently ended up funding Salk’s vaccine. That’s not “in spite of,” that’s because of.

Beethoven did not make music in spite of being deaf. In fact, he revolutionized Romantic music because of his distinct lack of high notes. His symphonies, especially his later works, are all much lower than what was common at the time, and it was all because he couldn’t hear high-pitched sounds.

Frida Kahlo did not blur the lines between Expressionism and Surrealism in spite of being disabled, she did it because she was bedridden and bored. Because she was in pain and she was shunned. In the same way her relationship with Diego Rivera inspired her works, so did being disabled. She didn’t overcome anything expect societies limitations.

The truth is, disability and illness are integral parts of our identities and they do shape our lives. The worlds we build and create are not made by overcoming the hindrance of disability, they are made because of the perspective it gives up. 

Erase the idea of in spite of. Erase the idea that our success comes from overcoming anything other than deep-seeded ableism. 

You are just as responsible for your fandom activism as creators are for their fanworks.

More so, in fact, because your primary purpose is telling people what to do or not do. Any instructive value in creative work is understood to be subordinate to entertainment and self-expression, but if you’re out there explicitly advocating for something, you’d damn well be ready to own it. Including all its implications and potential negative effects.

That means: If you’re urging people not to create some kind of fanwork because you think that’ll protect a vulnerable group, you’d better be ready to account for the members of that group who make it, enjoy it, and find solace in it.

That means: If you’re urging retaliation against creators, you are absofuckinglutely responsible for the harm that befalls them as a result, including harm to members of the group you’re trying to protect.

That means: If you’re holding everyone else to high standards about how they could affect someone with a trigger-able mental illness, you need to hold yourself to the same standards, including effects on people whose anxiety manifests as over-scrupulosity or intrusive thoughts.

That means: If you’re shaming erotica you find “gross,” you don’t get to blow off conversations about how that shame plays into conservative sexual-purity enforcement. You don’t get to wash your hands of the implications, whether or not that’s what you meant. Explicit activism has far more duty to consider indirect implications than anyone’s personal pursuit of sexual fulfillment does.

That means: If your activism has garnered you a huge follower count, you are responsible for the exposure you inflict on the people you pick fights with, and the dogpiles or hate mobs you incite. This can be a tough thing to learn if you get popular overnight, and even well-meaning people fumble with it at first, but it’s something you have to figure out. And don’t fucking give me that “it was just a block list, I didn’t mean for anyone to go into their askboxes on anon and tell them all to kill themselves” crap, the only people fooled by it are the ones looking for an excuse to be fooled.

That means: You are responsible for assessing the relative power and influence of the people you’re addressing, and not griefing marginalized subcultural small fry over artistic sins that are far more egregious among canon creators. Especially canon creators who are just as accessible on Twitter as fanwork creators are on Tumblr.

(Pre-emptive response to objections to the preceding paragraph: Only going after people you know you have social power over isn’t activism, it’s bullying with a thin veneer of activist lingo smeared over it. Only trying to clean up your immediate surroundings isn’t activism, it’s complaining to the local homeowners’ association–valid enough if someone’s running their chainsaw at 2am, but if you just can’t stand Betty’s problematic lawn flamingoes, dressing it up as concern for what tacky decorations say about the neighborhood is a little precious.)

If any of that is too burdensome for you, I suggest you take the advice fandom activists tend to have for fanartists and authors: if you can’t do it without doing damage and you’re not prepared to deal with the consequences, abstain. Restrict your activism to shit that’s not going to hurt people, even if that’s just being the best role model you can be.

You want to set yourself up as a moral authority? You want to dictate what people can and can’t create without activist blowback? That’s power–and yes, local power in a community can exist irrespective of society-wide systemic advantage. With power comes responsibility. Use it wisely or not, as you choose, but don’t act like you get to hold anyone accountable for their art’s indirect potential to harm if you don’t want to be accountable for your direct advocacy.

I saw two beautiful African children holding hands today, an older sister and her little brother. He fell over and scraped his knee and started crying and the older sister gave him a hug. Immediately after, he stopped crying and said it felt better and they literally held hands again and caught up with their mum.

Definitely not trying to be fake deep here but listen, what if a hug has the power to really start the healing process for people. We need to start hugging each other more often. We need to create a society where it’s okay to hug people who look hurt or request a hug from someone because we’re feeling a lack of human contact and care. A simple hug can change so much.

- Meggan Roxanne
Sci-Fantasy and Technomancy

Creating a world where magic and technology co-exist

Mixing science fiction and magic can be tricky; if everyone in the world is capable of teleporting anywhere at anytime, it probably won’t make much sense for people to own cars, for example. Blending these two forces leads to countless exciting possibilities, but it can also end up creating some inconsistencies that your audience will pick up on if you don’t think things through well.

I have several tips and things you should think about if you want to build a world that mixes sci-fi and fantasy. Ultimately how detailed you get with it is up to you; maybe you want to plot out ever single tiny aspect of how your world works, or maybe you just want to have robot dragons and to hell with whoever disagrees! It’s a story of your making; if you and your audience are having fun with it, that’s what I consider most important.

Either way, here’s some things to think about!

- Of course, it helps to start off with the usual integral factors that tend to define societies; things like geography, language, religion, laws, agriculture, philosophy, etc. Before you even start throwing magic/tech into the mix, what does your world look like? What does it sound like? What does it taste like??

- How does magic work in your world? Is it a gift only available to a select few, or can pretty much any Average Joe summon a fireball? Are all mages Clerics (with magic derived from a powerful entity), Wizards (with magic learned from studying), Sorcerers (with magic just as an innate trait), or a mixture of these (and other?) things? 

- How does technology (generally) work in your world? How widely available is it? How well is it understood? What level is it at; are there nanobots in everyone’s bloodstreams, or is a bronze sword considered “high technology”? 

- How well do magic and technology (generally) mix in your world? Are they both just two different tools for solving problems, or opposed forces? Can one be used to study the other? Can someone be an expert on both things? What problems have been solved (and created) from blending the two?

- Are either things taboo? How much social friction do either things cause? Is the use of one meant to be secret or forbidden? Why?

- Are tech-favoring people/societies generally on equal footing with magic-favoring ones? They don’t have to be! The world being skewed in one side’s favor could be a great source of conflict! 

- What can only be done with magic? What can only be done with technology? Consider the limitations of both forces in the world. Does one force typically work better in some or most ways than the other? What things simply can’t be replicated by one side? 

- Consider how advanced each side is. What methods of communication, transportation, education, fuel consumption, medical care, etc are available to magic-favoring societies and which ones are available to tech-favoring societies? One side may not be exclusively better than the other; a tech-favoring society might have much faster land transportation in the form of huge cars, but a magic-favoring one might be able to magically tame huge creatures that can walk on walls and reach places tech can’t easily get to. 

- (When it can,) how does magic solve the same problems as tech and vice versa? A magical stone of far-speech can fill the magic-equivalent role of a phone, for example. A manufactured chemical packet could function like a certain spell. Of course, if one side’s method is so ubiquitous and accessible, it’s more likely that all people’s will favor it. 

- On the other hand, the different perspectives will likely produce entirely different problems and methods of solving them. Beyond one side being unable to replicate certain things from another, they may not want to. Mages may have no interest in creating an internet analogue they instead have access to some great collective unconscious tech-favoring people can’t access. How might one describe these things to the other? This is where the real creative world-building comes in; not every problem should be solved by just having an equally viable magic or tech version of it. Different cultures will value things differently, and exploring that leads to lots of creative worldbuilding and conflict!

- Consider what divisions might exist within societies. There are always subdivisions within groups; not all mages are as powerful, knowledgeable, or experienced as one another. Some subgroups may think themselves superior in some way, and/or might look down upon others within their own circle for all kinds of reasons. No group is a hivemind (unless they literally are); groups are made up individuals! 

- Lastly (but possibly most importantly), DON’T GET TOO CAUGHT UP WITH HOW COOL YOUR WORLD IS! Consider exactly what information is relevant to the audience and what interesting ways you can show/explain it. Remember that the focus should generally remain on the characters; there’s nothing wrong with having lots of extra world-building details, but they can bog down the story in minutia if you get too off track! You can always explore and explain deeper lore in side material!

People arguing that the poor shouldn’t have kids and that benefits should be cut from kids in families with “too many kids” are being super obvious that they don’t think of poor people as fully human.  And also that they’re into genocide (it’s not like we live in a world where poverty, deprivation, and lack of access to resources is evenly distributed across all racial/ethnic groups and we all fucking know that).

Rights like being able to have a family, to raise children, to continue our families and cultures are basic parts of human rights that people should be able to choose to engage in (or not, if that’s their preference, but they shouldn’t be coerced not to).

Banning someone from having kids or starting a family or coercing them not to is an incredibly cruel thing to do to someone.  And that’s what people are doing when they suggest poor people shouldn’t have kids.  Rich people and classist assholes act like the choice is between having kids in poverty or having kids not in poverty and that’s just not how things go in reality.  Most people born in poverty will remain in poverty or close to it.  The choice to have kids and start a family outside of poverty is one denied to most people.

And don’t concern troll about the welfare of poor kids if you’re trying to cut their food, housing, education, etc. and if you see them as garbage drains on society.  Concern for poor children is totally fucking unrelated to ruling class desires to control poor people and to victim blame poor people for poverty.

Poor people having kids isn’t what creates poverty, poverty is the result of systematic exploitation and a fucked up inhumane system.  Kids born to the poor are as valuable and human as any other child, and poor people have as much rights to things like having a family as any other human being.

Curious facts about dream and ink

*Dream and ink were friends long ago.

*Dream thought Ink and he had the same goal.


*Dream never could notice the aura of Ink since this one has no soul. For some reason Dream thought that Ink hid his aura so that it could not be read.


*Dream and Ink are currently not friends.


*They had a pretty big fight when the guardian of the dreams saw that Ink was not interested in saving the people, but only the Aus. Although both seem similar have opposite thoughts.


*Dream wants to protect the positive feelings and living things of the Aus, even if it means changing a timeline.


*Ink as a protector of the Aus only protects them from anomalies or changes in temporal lines, practically does not matter if an Au was created to suffer.


*Ink is not bad, he’s chaotic neutral. (A neutral chaotic character is considered free from the restrictions of society and is not impelled to practice the Good itself. For him, Good or Evil does not interest him much.)


*Dream is totally chaotic good. (A good chaotic character acts according to the dictates of his conscience without regard to what others may think of him. He is generous and benevolent, combining a good heart with a free spirit.)



Its all ok @comyet ??

5

Dialogue: Exposing the Rhetoric of Exclusion through Medieval Manuscripts

By Kristen Collins and Bryan Keene, originally published on the Getty Iris

We invite your thoughts on an exhibition-in-progress at the Getty that addresses the persistence of prejudice as seen through lingering stereotypes from the Middle Ages.

As curators in the Getty Museum’s department of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts, we are interested in how books, and museum collections more broadly, can spark dialogues about inclusivity and diversity. Our manuscripts collection at the Getty consists primarily of objects from Western Europe, which can present challenges when trying to connect with a multicultural and increasingly international audience. 

We are striving to make connections between the Middle Ages and the contemporary world—connections that may not be immediately evident, but are powerful nonetheless. Museums are inherently political organizations, in terms of the ways that collections are assembled, displayed, and interpreted. This year’s meeting of the Association of Art Museum Curators addressed how institutional narratives and implicit bias can skew ideas of history and culture in ways that exclude minorities and gloss over the shameful aspects of our past. Groups such as the Medievalists of Color, the Society for the Study of Disability in the Middle Ages, the Society for Medieval Feminist Scholarship, and the Society for the Study of Homosexuality in the Middle Ages, among others, are applying similar lines of inquiry, seeking to decolonize and diversify the field of medieval studies. We stand with these groups.

We were also inspired by Holland Cotter’s call to arms, as he exhorted museums to tell the truth about art, “about who made objects, and how they work in the world, and how they got to the museum, and what they mean, what values they advertise, good and bad. Go for truth (which, like the telling of history, is always changing), and connect art to life.”

Here is our description of the exhibition, still in draft form:

Medieval manuscripts preserve stories of romance, faith, and knowledge, but their luxurious illuminations can reveal more sinister narratives as well. Typically created for the privileged classes, such books nevertheless provide glimpses of the marginalized and powerless and reflect their tenuous places in society. Attitudes toward Jews and Muslims, the poor, those perceived as sexual or gender deviants, and the foreign peoples beyond European borders can be discerned through caricature and polemical imagery, as well as through marks of erasure and censorship.

As repositories of history and memory, museums reveal much about our shared past, but all too often the stories told from luxury art objects focus on the elite. Through case studies of objects in the Getty’s collection, this exhibition examines the “out groups” living within western Europe. Medieval society was far more diverse than is commonly understood, but diversity did not necessarily engender tolerance. Life contained significant obstacles for those who were not fully abled, wealthy, Caucasian, Christian, heterosexual, cisgender males. For today’s viewer, the vivid images and pervasive narratives in illuminated manuscripts can serve as a stark reminder of the power of rhetoric and the danger of prejudice.

We begin the exhibition with a masterpiece of Romanesque painting, shown above. This manuscript, with its gilded pages and geometric symmetry, reveals the institutionalized antisemitism that formed the basis of Christian rhetoric about the triumph of the Church.

Ecclesia, the personification of the Christian Church, is seen above and to Christ’s right, while the Jewish Synagoga appears on Christ’s left. Often represented as a blindfolded figure, here Synagoga (in red robes) points at Christ, glaring. She holds a banderole representing Old Testament law that proclaims “cursed be he who hangs on the tree.” Below, two additional personifications echo and intensify the antithetical positions of these two figures. In a roundel below Ecclesia, the fair-skinned figure of Life (at far left) gazes calmly across the composition at Death, whose dark complexion and hook nose are seen in caricatures of Jews in other twelfth-century images.

We’d Like Your Comments

We are in the early stages of writing this exhibition, which is scheduled to be presented in the Getty’s manuscripts gallery in January 2018. As we create both the thematic content and the individual object texts—which we will be posting periodically on the Getty Tumblr—we are curious to receive community input. Specifically, we are curious to know any or all of the following:

  • Your level of interest in an exhibition of medieval and Renaissance art exploring these themes
  • Comments on the wording of the exhibition description we’ve shared above (as a whole or in any part)
  • Suggestions for perspectives and points of view we should consider in developing the exhibition
  • Any and all other suggestions or criticisms

Please reblog with your comments, DM us, or contact the curators directly by email at manuscripts@getty.edu.

Parenting

Moon: how you nurture, how you show affection, how you offer comfort & care, how you tend to needs; how you cope with anger or frustration, how you express those emotions, how you express love; your perception of what your child needs based on your memory of your own childhood, how you apply your experience of life to your child, how you take what you learned from the parent that nurtured you and use it in raising your own child; how you make your child feel safe and loved; how you navigate pregnancy/motherhood (if you’re a woman) and your perception of / attitude toward those things; how parenthood affects you.

Mercury: how you speak to your child, how you teach your child to speak, how you listen to your child; how you teach your child in general, the attitude and approach you take to teaching; the way you share information with your child.

Venus: what you dress your child in, how you style their hair; how you decorate their bedroom; what you buy for them, especially the toys & clothing; how you handle their self-esteem; what social values you instill in them, what manners you teach them, how you socialize them, what you teach them about their presentation and their appearance; how you express love and affection.

Jupiter: your philosophies/beliefs about parenthood, your knowledge surrounding parenthood, your parenting values; how you impart your personal wisdom to your child, how you mentor them, the morality & philosophies you teach them, the truths & deeper meanings you teach them; what you learn through parenthood, how the experience of parenting a child enlightens you; how you encourage & impassion your child, how you engender a lust for life within them; how you enrich their life or how they enrich yours.

Saturn: how you scold/punish your child, how you handle their mistakes & flaws, what privileges you give them, what you teach them about their privileges; how you discipline your child, how you engender self-discipline within your child; how you influence their self-worth and work ethic, what you teach them about work, how you prepare them for jobs / the future / society; what practical skills you teach them, how you encourage (or force) them to be productive; the structure you build in their lives, the foundation & stability you create for them; how/if you introduce them to the harshness of the world, how you raise them to be a member of society, the life lessons you prepare them for; your fears about your child, your fears about parenting, the mistakes you make as a parent, the mistakes you’re afraid of your child making, how strict you are as a parent.

Ceres: what you feed your child, how you satisfy their physical needs, how you nurture & care for them physically; how you nurture your child in general, what compassion and sensitivity you offer, your selflessness or lack thereof, what you are willing to give, your unconditional love; your relationship to the organic and biological side of being a parent; how you make your child feel secure.

Vesta: how family fits into your destiny and/or highest potential, how you channel your individual essence into the well-being of your family; your devotion to your family & children; how you “keep” / take care of your home, the things that belong to you, and the people (and animals) you’re responsible for.

2nd House: the environment you raise your child in, how you accommodate them materially, how you take care of them physically, how you treat/spoil them; the fundamental & personal values you teach your child, the principles by which you teach/raise your child, what you teach is be important in life, how you influence their personality and life path, what you teach is essential for happiness; how you set them up for the future practically/materially.

5th House: your attitude toward procreation; your relationship with your child overall, how you connect to them as a parent / their creator; the media you surround your child with (music you play, shows you let them watch, etc); how you play with your child, the sweet & joyful side of parenting, the fulfillment you draw from raising your child; how you bring art into your child’s life; what you teach your child about love/sex & relationships; how you allow your child to enjoy life (especially in their teenage years), the freedom you give them in their teenage years; the essence of your love for your child.

6th House: your relationship with your child overall, how much you’re able to give, how you behave as a caretaker in general; your devotion to your child’s well-being, your concern with their health; your everyday home routine; how you tend to the physical needs of your child, what you feed them, how you keep them active & healthy; how you approach sickness in your child, how you prevent illness/injury, how you heal your child, how you cope with an ill/injured or disabled child, how you cope with a child that consumes all your time & energy; your unconditional love and how you show it through care/service/healing.

Imum Coeli: the home you make, both materially and emotionally; the safety, structure, and stability you provide; how you handle your child’s psychology & the influence you have on it; how you nurture your child emotionally, your relationship with them as someone who protects & cares for them, how you defend your child from the outside world & the public, how you treat your child in private; how you treat your child at night & how you handle their sleep schedule; how you handle their secrets and their deepest psychological needs, how you handle their emotions and their pain, how you care for their development.

Medium Coeli: your vision for your child, what you hope they will become, how you influence their destiny/purpose/potential; how you build their self-esteem & self-worth, how you encourage their dreams, how you help them achieve their dreams, how you support them in their career, how you instill the discipline to work toward their own dreams; your authority in their life, the impact you have on who they become, how they find the meaning in what you taught them & apply it to the rest of their lives, how their identity/ego absorbs your parenting style.

(The IC-MC axis also rules how your childhood and experience of parenting from a child’s perspective influences your parenthood; your parents, the way you lived and what you learned as a child is re-purposed as you raise your own child. You become what you learned from your parents, positively or negatively, in your own unique way. The mistakes you make and the things you do well as a parent come from your understanding of your own parents’ mistakes/skills.)

q&a: Kieran

princekierz said:

Hi Cassie. This is about Lady Midnight, not Lord of Shadows, so I may be a little late but anyway. People who hate Kieran are constantly bringing up the fact that he tried to convince Mark that he being with his family again wasn’t real in that note he sent him and I really can’t understand why he did it? What was the true purpose of that note? Can you please tell me? I love Kieran, and I don’t like when people are unfair with him. Thank you.

That’s interesting – I have to admit it never really occurred to me people would be confused by what that note meant/was about. The below contains spoilers but not major ones, so skip if you are avoiding even mild spoilers.

First I should say it’s fine to dislike a character. There is no character I have written or read about that someone hasn’t disliked for some reason. If that character is in a love triangle, multiply that by 100,000,0000000. (That may not be a real number but you get the point.) I’ve been thinking a lot about liking and disliking characters and the act of reading with empathy, which I will get to more at the end of this essay. Right now I’m just going to talk about what that note meant, and the way in which Kieran is a complicated sort of character generally.

We read for lots of reasons. To see our own experience reflected (a “mirror” reading experience) and also to see experiences that are not ours. (A “window” experience.) One of the interesting things about seeing the judgements of Kieran is the expectation that he is meant to act like a mundane human being (one who has dutifully read not just many relationship-help tomes but also all the Shadowhunter books – thanks, Kieran! – and is well acquainted with the Blackthorns despite never having met them). At very least, he is expected to act like a Shadowhunter, and not at all like a Faerie – despite the fact that a Faerie is what he is, and as a Faerie, he is not like us. He does not have typical human cultural beliefs about love (in good and bad ways), or commitment — he doesn’t mind at all whether Mark has sex with other people — or what promises mean, or what is personal space (a ridiculous idea to a Faerie.)

Mostly what I’ve seen complaint-wise about Kieran is that he is manipulative, which is true only to the extent that he has grown up in Faerie, where everyone is manipulative. Because they cannot lie, they have created a complex society of misdirection and manipulation and Kieran, growing up as Prince, would have been raised in the heart of that. He would know no other way to behave, and indeed has only been learning, slowly, different human patterns of behavior. He is actually really terrible at being manipulative — not a patch on Julian, for instance — and mostly he is neither good at it nor does it that often. But we can certainly look at what he has done.

So, on to the note and the vague six words it contains. (I don’t really understand what “he tried to convince Mark that he being with his family again wasn’t real” means, because Mark was obviously with his family and not, say, on a balloon tour of Cappadocia. I don’t think even the Seelie Queen would have tried to convince him otherwise, because that is not manipulation, that is waving your arms around yelling “Mark! They’re dosing you with PCP! That’s not really Ty! It’s a huge bunny!“ which is not going to work and nobody would reasonably think it would.) So I’m just going to gather that some sinister goal is being implied here and talk about why Kieran did send the note.

Remember that none of this is real. Why did Kieran say that? Because he was worried about Mark and thought it was the truth. Not for another reason. I gather there is an assumption that the phrase "remember that none of this is real” is somehow about Mark’s family, but it wasn’t. If Kieran had wanted to say “don’t trust your family” or whatever, he would have said that. The note was about the entire world of the Nephilim. Nor was it anything Kieran didn’t entirely think was true.

Nor was he entirely wrong.

Kieran was cast out of the King’s court because he was well-liked and the King saw him as a threat. He spent his years in the Wild Hunt with Mark watching as Mark’s heart broke every single night when he counted out his family’s names on the stars. He felt Mark’s agony when Mark saw Simon, and thought Simon had come to bring him back to the Nephilim, only to find out the Shadowhunters had abandoned him like garbage. Experiencing the agony of someone you love is worse than experiencing your own. After living through the horror of Mark’s despair and crushing loss, is it particularly surprising that Kieran might be wary of Mark getting attached to his family again only to be ripped away from them again – which is in fact what pretty much everyone in Lady Midnight thought was going to happen? Like, nobody thought this majorly fuckerated offer from the Fair Folk was likely to have a good outcome? Julian was terrified what it meant for the kids and thought it might be better if Mark had never come back? Kieran is unlikely to have a more positive view of the kindliness and honestly of the Clave (or the Courts of Fae) than Julian does.

Here is what Kieran knows to be fact:

Shadowhunters hate Faeries.

Mark was abandoned by his people. The Nephilim, certainly, his family, perhaps. Kieran knows they never tried to get in touch with Mark, and he is unaware of the Blackthorns’ complicated circumstances, that they were forbidden to look for Mark, and that they needed to protect Helen. There is no way he would know about those things, unless he had read the books. (Read the books, Kieran!).

He knows the Shadowhunters have enacted the Cold Peace, a series of racist laws punishing Faeries. He knows Mark will be in danger from this.

He has no reason not to think that when Mark is returned to the world of the Nephilim, using his family as bait, they won’t chop his damn head off.

That is what Kieran is urging Mark not to think is real. Nephilim promises. The idea that he will be safe outside Faerie in the Shadowhunter world. And Kieran is not exactly wrong either. We are all glad that Mark is back with his family….and if the Cohort gets into power they might chop his damn head off. Maybe he would have been better off back in the Wild Hunt.

Kieran can’t lie – and he can’t lie in writing either. He said what he said in his note because he was frightened for Mark, and he wanted him to stay safe. In no way did he mean “Your family doesn’t love you,” because if he thought that, he would actually have said it at some point, ever, rather than being incredibly vague in a note that, since he has never said anything remotely like “Your family doesn’t love you” to Mark, Mark would find incomprehensible. Mark understands the note perfectly, because the idea that Nephilim as a group are not trustworthy is not new to him nor is it a huge surprise Kieran would feel that way. (There’s also a lot of numinous stuff to get into about what real and unreal means to faeries, in a magical sense, but there’s no room here, alas.) Kieran has lots of opportunities to say bad things to Mark about his family if he wanted to, but IIRC he never does.

Misguided is not the same as manipulative. To be manipulative means that you’re playing on someone else’s hopes or fears to achieve selfish ends without regard for their well-being. But the idea that Kieran is a cold-hearted bastard who didn’t mean a word of the note (despite not being actually able to lie) and is a consummate actor doesn’t really jibe with anything we actually know or observe about Kieran. Far from having Julian’s ability to play others like guitar strings, mostly Kieran blurts out what he means when he means it and never even tries to pretend otherwise. He can be petulant as hell and annoying, showing up to see Mark when he’s not supposed to and sulking about whether Mark likes someone else. He can be manipulative in the way he sometimes kisses Mark when Mark is trying to be logical because he’s insecure and he trusts Mark’s desire for him even when he can’t convince himself Mark really loves him (but this doesn’t really work, which is what I mean by Kieran not being great at manipulation). He very foolishly interferes with Mark’s dream in Lord of Shadows because he wants to talk and he thinks giving Mark a dream in which they’re having a friendly conversation means he’ll find out what Mark’s hiding. (Which is another example of him not really understanding human issues. All he wants out of the dream is a talk — “Because you are not truthful with me. Your heart is closed and shrouded. I cannot see it,” Kieran said. “I thought, in dreams, perhaps …” — and the dream starts out with them sitting and talking while one bandages the other, and Kieran manages to get in the idea that he knows Mark is lying to him. Things take a sexy turn, but not because of Kieran. He can’t control Mark’s dreams in every detail: if he could, there would be literally zero point in a dream in which he’s hoping Mark will volunteer to tell him the truth. Mark has to have free will in the dream or there’s no point in what Kieran straight-up says the dream is for, and again, Kieran cannot baldfacedly lie. And Kieran is right — Mark is lying to him, in fact the whole family is gaslighting him, which is why it pains Mark when Kieran recalls the phrase “remember that none of this is real.” Because none of it, in this case, IS REAL. Kieran is being lied to by EVERYONE. However, Mark is still right that Kieran shouldn’t be poking at his dreams — and he shouldn’t. Kieran, as a faerie, doesn’t really get that: dreams aren’t private to him, and besides, Mark has allowed Kieran into his dreams before, so Kieran assumes it’ll be okay now, because Mark said it was all right previously. But this is where Kieran needs to learn not to make assumptions, and to value Mark’s privacy even if he doesn’t really get it. Does he? He seems to: he listens to what Mark says, and he never touches his dreams again. In fact, they actually have a pretty useful, healthy conversation about it, though we have to wait until QoAD to see how any breakthroughs they make in LoS play out.)

So yes, Kieran can make spectacularly bad decisions, with the worst of them being when he thought getting Mark hauled back to the Wild Hunt for an infraction was a good idea and wouldn’t result in any collateral damage. And Kieran deserves to be blamed and to feel guilty for that, nor do I mean to excuse him – and I have no interest in doing that; that wrong that he did is a building block of his flawed character. As I saw someone say on twitter the other day, which probably means you’ve all seen it many times, characters are not all either angelic cinnamon rolls or problematic monsters. Like people, because they are intended to reflect people, they exist on a continuum of behavior: some fail and learn, some fail and never learn, some have good intentions and some bad, some grow and change, some are changed by grief or shock or maturity, some cannot grow and are tragic figures. Committing a manipulative act doesn’t damn you forever unless you keep committing manipulative acts forever. If people (and characters) were rendered garbage by past mistakes, there would be no need for therapy or books, since both are about how people learn to change.

As Kieran says: “Everyone is more than one thing. We are more than the single actions we undertake, whether they be good or evil.” That was in Lady Midnight, and it’s possible he was thinking about the fact that he never tells Mark in that book that the reason he wanted Mark brought back to the Wild Hunt so badly – the reason he turned Mark in, hoping he’d be dragged away from the world of Nephilim – was not so that he could date Mark, but because he had been told Mark was going to be murdered. That Mark’s head was going to be chopped off NOW. That doesn’t excuse his behavior, but it makes it a lot less manipulative in two ways: he actually wasn’t acting for a selfish end, but to protect Mark from death, and he never tells Mark that in LM, letting Mark blame him. He lets Mark break up with him and walk away from him with only quiet resignation as a reply. He does nothing to try to make him stay and attempts no manipulation at all, nor is he manipulative when he shows up to help save Tavvy – he offers help, gives it, and expects nothing in return. Only when Kieran is in shock over having been lied to, and his sudden recollection of his own mistakes, does he tell Mark that he was in fear for Mark’s life – which makes a big difference to Mark, who is able to recognize what that means about why Kieran did what he did.

[Kieran said] “Iarlath had hinted you would not be safe in the Shadowhunters’ world. That they were planning to lure you back, only to execute you on some trumped-up charge. I was a fool to believe him. I know it now.”

“Oh,” said Mark. The knowledge unfolded in him, realization edged with relief. “You thought you were saving my life.”

Kieran nodded. “It makes no difference, though. What I did was wrong.”

(Emphasis mine.) Kieran is flawed, he screws up. He is also capable of acts of great nobility – his willingness to testify to protect the Blackthorns at the end of LOS being one of them. Kieran spends LOS being lied to and manipulated by everyone around him while his memory is gone. He is trapped in the Institute, a place so full of anti-Faerie magic that it makes him so sick he can barely eat. He suspects Mark is jerking him around in some way, he turns out to be right, and he’s still willing to testify in the Blackthorns’ defense. He is also able to see when he is/was wrong, and acknowledge it. None of this makes him a perfect person, but it certainly complicates him away from the oversimplified reading that he’s a manipulative horrorshow and that’s the end of the story — especially when a huge chunk of the story has yet to be told.

My suspicion, since there are plenty of other flawed characters in these books stumbling along messing up, is that Kieran’s true crime is being part of a love triangle. Having been through this before I remember well the long essays about how Will was a horrible person and the Wessa relationship was toxic and Jem was a horrible person and that relationship was toxic because dying people should know not to bother other people with their feelings (seriously). That is how people talk about love triangles these days; it seems to be a contest about which relationship is perceived as healthiest, which people are the best and most deserving people of the prize (Tessa, or in this case, Mark). There are a couple problems with that: one that is an unhealthy relationship can become healthy. (It obviously depends on the relationship, some absolutely cannot and should not be fixed, but there would be little need for marriage counselors if relationships could not be made healthier.) The second is that if you want to hate a character, you can convince yourself they are evil even if they spend a whole book saving bunnies, nuns, and salmon who can’t find the salmon cannon, so the arguments do get a bit circular after a while. Certainly I have come across plenty of essays about how Cristina is terrible and should go away because Kieran doesn’t like her (he does like her) and Mark doesn’t want her (not true) and she isn’t so great (I think she is so great and so do they.)

So I will say three things:

1) Kieran is not what is keeping Mark and Cristina apart, any more than Cristina is what is keeping Mark and Kieran apart. Kieran and Mark have a relationship that needs to be worked on to be healthy, and Cristina and Mark have to get to know each other better outside the magic of the binding spell. These things would be true regardless.

2) I know that this essay will garner plenty of people announcing that this means I ship Mark and Kieran or am in love with Kieran, and I know this because this happens whenever I post anything about them, or a piece of fanart of them, even if I post a piece of fanart of Cristina and Mark shortly after. I can only say what I have said for ten years, which is that I don’t ship my own characters or “love” them in the way a fan loves a character — all the characters are pieces of myself in some way or other so that’d feel very odd. I know there may be other authors who feel differently, but I can’t “ship” a couple when I’m primarily interested in their relationships in terms of theme, craft and writing the best story I can — I need the distance of being a reader, not a writer, to “ship” something. (I would also note that male authors rarely ever have people talk about how they’re in love with their characters or they write about them because it’s a “fetish” or “they get off on it”: only women get that narrative, but that’s another post.)

3) I remember reading online that writers should write with “savage empathy.” I’ve always thought that was great advice, as it reminds us to always stay in sympathy with characters and write from a place of their humanity, in all the vastness of humanity’s capability for complexity: for the same person to be capable of immense selfishness and immense nobility, or deep gentleness and great cruelty. It reminds us that we strive to reflect what is human rather than what is either entirely perfect or entirely evil. I feel like it’s also been good advice for me as a reader. It reminds me to look at things from the characters’ point of view, to not expect them to know what I know,* to remember the circumstances of their lives and the ways in which they may behave differently than I would because of the way they were raised/what their culture prioritizes. It has helped me be less judgmental of characters and while I don’t think it’s made me unaware of the problematic, I think it’s made me a happier reader. Even when I don’t forgive, I can understand, and that reminder of the eternal complexity of the human soul, and its capability for change and redemption, has enriched my reading life. It’s wonderful to realize that you can enjoy reading even more than you did before, and I can only hope for the same for all my readers.

*This is why it is pointless to be angry at the Superhero’s girlfriend when he is off saving the city, and you know he is off saving the city but she doesn’t, so she’s just angry he didn’t make it to little Marcia’s bat mitzvah.