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Date Posted: Thursday, April 14, 09:14:20am
Author: Nell
Subject: "Unimaginative" is not an excuse, I don't think anyway. (r)
In reply to: Swatkat 's message, "That's just plain unimaginative writing.(r)" on Thursday, April 14, 02:07:16am

Fannish misogyny certainly does exist, but it happens as much in het fandom as it does in slash fandom.

Absolutely - which was the point I was trying to make in the metafannish thread/discussion I responded too. We live in a world full of conflicted and conflicting attitudes and ideas about women, ranging from uncertainty to outright misogyny. Of course fanfic reflects this back - in all genres, het, gen, and slash. The OP I rose too was insisting that slash - by definition - is not misogynist and that it was rude to say so. My response was, essentially, that some of it *is*, just as some het and some gen is, and maybe you wish that weren't so, or that the misogynist slashers didn't make you look bad by association, but just as I have to live with all the stupid het heroines and sparkly Mary Sues as part of the het fic world - so you have to live with the stupid slashers. (I also think that there is an ugly streak of misogyny in some of the more virulant MarySue hunting....but that is a topic for another day...*g*)

Not that I'm implying that merely not liking a female character equals misogyny, or that somehow all female authors *must* write about female characters - but there are fans out there with the "Ewww, girls" attitude.

Having actually seen the phrase "eww, girls" more than once, yep - they are out there. I know sometimes it was in gest, but more than once - even with the winking icon, it really wasn't. It is often one of those "its a joke if you're going to be offended, it's serious if you agree" statements.

As for "not liking a female character =/= misogyny" - again, of course, (see our wonderful TRs who love Madeline but dislike Nikita) but I also see statements like "Just because I don't like any of the female characters in HP doesn't mean I don't like women".


Whatever you might think of JKR's world - the women/girls in it are a seriously diverse bunch. If you can't find *any* female in that world likable, I gotta wonder about the seriousness of the second half of that statement.

That is, as far as I'm concerned, unimaginative writing. Poor writing, even.

Which is exactly what this chick from HL fandom said when I pointed to all the misogny in het or gen as well as in slash - with the implication that bad writing excuses the author from the charge of deploying anti-female cliches.

It indeed may be poor writing, or inexperienced writing. This don't make it not *also* reflecting back cultural cliches, many of which are misogynist. Part of what makes for 'bad writing" or "unimaginative writing" is that it is using cliche and archteype instead of richer, more complex characters/themes/plots. But just saying it's bad doesn't remove the responsbility the author bears for reflecting back conflicitng to negative views of women. We certainly would not accept that excuse for racist cliches - why should we for misogynist (or misandric to be fair - the demonization of a het man in a slash fic I read a while back totally infuriated me) cliches?

PS - Yes. Adrian Paul. I got *no* problem with celebrating het female desire for that particular male body.... *beg* I, personally, don't like other male bodies cluttering up the screen when I'm doing it - however that is, as you say, a matter of taste and kink - not politics.

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