Is art—in particular, writing—meant to be representative or aspirational?
On Twitter, where I admittedly spend more time than is probably recommended, the issue of representative vs. aspirational writing comes up often, if not necessarily using these exact terms.
The character Magneto from X-Men
I’ve been thinking about how magic is often represented in fantasy.
I’ve written previously about how many SFF stories (poorly) represent post-racial societies. My issue with magic is a close cousin to that topic.
Charles Pike, a character from season 3 of the sci-fi show The 100.
Science fiction and fantasy are my favourite genres of movies and TV series.
This is largely because they are the genres of ideas on what another version of the world could—and in some cases should—look like.
I’m often of two minds about things when it comes to writing.
Case in point: in my previous post, I argued that physical descriptions of characters of the sort that itemize their hair colour, eye colour, height, and hair style are largely irrelevant to the plot and point of most stories.
Last year, while having parts of my WIP critiqued by a CP, I received an unexpected bit of feedback.
It had to do with the physical description of a certain character. Specifically, the fact that, in her mind, I hadn’t provided a physical description at all.
(Continued from Part 1)
Last week, I started writing about the things I disliked about the movie Wonder Woman.
This particular post was a follow-up to one about the things I did like about the movie.
Overall, I did enjoy the movie. However, no movie is perfect and no form of media exists outside of the societal context in which it’s created.
No movie is perfect; that’s just a given.
Even those that come will have aspects of it that demand closer scrutiny. Not even great movies are beyond critique. Meanwhile, critiquing a movie doesn’t have to mean you didn’t still enjoy it.
I’ve never much liked superheroes.
With the exception of a brief fondness for Superman in my childhood – and this more on account of his being Christopher Reeve rather than “super” – I’ve cared little for any superhero’s exploits.
Midway through my replay of all six seasons of Xena Warrior Princess last year, I heard word of possible reboot of the show.
Details on the project have since remained scarce. No one has been cast – not even the eponymous character – nor have there even been rumours about who’s under consideration for any of the roles.
Initially, the showrunner for the Xena reboot was set to be Javier Grillo-Marxuach, one of the writers from my new favourite TV show, The 100 (Xena having been my old favourite show). However, just last week, it was announced that Grillo-Marxuach had left the project due to “unsurmountable creative differences”.
That is to say, about those who are subject matter experts on different forms of marginalization in society, who writers can recruit to help them bring verisimilitude to the portrayal of marginalized characters in fiction.
The use of sensitivity readers is a growing trend in fiction as more and more stories about marginalized characters are being published – particularly since more and more of these sorts of stories are being written by writers who themselves are not marginalized.