jlh: Chibi of me in an apron with a cocktail glass and shaker. (Painting Dean)
[personal profile] jlh
This is one of those times I wish [livejournal.com profile] angiej was around more. And I'm actually going to text [livejournal.com profile] msscribe about this, because I don't want to be completely all alone out here.

If you couldn't tell from the above, this is about race. Which I have to say, I rarely specifically write about, certainly rarely complain about--it's just there, in the background, like gender or class. I was put in mind by a recent discovery that just furthered my current pet peeve: Keira Knightley.

Let's look, shall we, at the two female leads in Bend It Like Beckham, Parminder Nagra and Keira Knightley. Before she did the film, Knightley had done a few small film parts as a child, some television, and one teen movie. Before Nagra did the film, she had mostly worked in television as well. After, Knightley was Lara in Dr. Zhivago, Elizabeth in Pirates, Juliet in Love Actually, Guinevere in King Arthur (this is the bit I just found out) and she has two more films in pre-production, plus the Pirates sequel. And Nagra has done . . . ER, which we all can agree is past its prime, and a part in Ella Enchanted, where I assume she's not a stepsister but I really can't tell.

I was commenting to someone recently that I did think it was important to maintain the ethnicity of the few ethnic characters we DO have in HP when making icons (not that they didn't mean to; it was an honest mistake too complicated to explain here), and I started saying, well, there aren't a lot of icons with ethnic characters since--
--Everyone in The OC is white.
--Everyone in Buffy is white.
--Everyone in Pirates is white.
--Everyone in Lord of the Rings is white.
--Everyone in Smallville is white except Pete who is a pretty lame character anyway.
--Everyone in XMen except Storm is white, and don't remember seeing a lot of Storm icons.
--Everyone in the West Wing is white except that page guy (which is interesting since in the movie The American President the Alison Janney character was black)
--Everyone in Harry Potter is white--well, that people actually make icons of (that would be Harry, Hermione, Ron, Ginny, Draco, Sirius, Severus, Remus) .
(Parenthetical #1: Yes, before you say it, I know that only the US book 1 says that Dean is black, but I would argue that JKR thought that by implying he was from West Ham she was implying he was black, something the US reader would likely never pick up. After all, she never says Cho Chang is Asian or the Patils are Indian; she just names them. She never says Lee Jordan is black; she just gives him dreadlocks. So no, I actually do not think she was pandering to Americans by "making" him black.)
(Parenthetical #2: in which I would quote Eb's post about LotR, except it seems to have vanished, which is 100% too bad as she was right.)

Around the time that 8 Mile came out, someone said that they left the movie wanting to write "Dean/Draco" because of the Mekhi Phifer-Eminem relationship, and I remember thinking, well, that's at best reductionist and at worst offensive. Is it just that with slash, being gay is enough without being of color? (God forbid you're a woman, but that is a whole 'nother post.) Is "slash" really only about white men fucking? Is the reason so many would rather see Jack with Will instead of Anamaria only because of the slash, or because Anamaria isn't white? Is it just a reflection of what we are given to be slashed, or is it that subject matter is chosen for certain reasons?

(By the way, I'm only referring to filmed material here, as once you bring in manga/anime the entire thing shifts, and thank bloody hell for that.)

I remember being in that screening of Matrix II (which, let's remember, was multi-ethnic without making a big deal about it, and because of this, gained a very multi-ethnic audience, especially in this theater) and seeing an early preview for The Last Samurai and commenting, "Why do we need the short white man to tell us the ways of the samurai?" And you know, the more that I think about just my gut reaction, never mind how the movie actually played out (because of course in true Hollywood fashion, he "went native" and was better at it after only a few months than people who had been plying their craft for years; "Plays with Sushi" indeed) is that not only do we NOT need the short white man with the large box office draw, but it is offensive that he is there. Did we need him for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon? Indeed we did not.

So as I look at Ms. Knightley's post-Beckham projects, I think, sure, most of those parts are "canonically" white, as they are from literature of one kind or another, and sure, she marries a black guy in Love Actually, so maybe I shouldn't be quite so angry. But where are the non-western, non-white stories? And if we allow white actors to star in films that are essentially about the experience of people of color--as in The Last Samurai--what possible chance do people of color have to tell their own stories? This is not 1954, it is 2004. Has nothing changed?

Actually, don't answer that.

Date: 2004-01-13 02:22 pm (UTC)
ext_22302: (Default)
From: [identity profile] ivyblossom.livejournal.com
<3

More sober comment when I'm....sober. :)

Date: 2004-01-13 02:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dejaspirit.livejournal.com
Oh. Girl.

Yeah. I feel you. Keira Knightly bugs me more because she's skinny then because she's white, although I was very pleased to see that the next film Orlando is making he's co-starring with the black girl in the film as her love interest.

It's important that we see images of ourselves. It's discouraging to be submersed in an all white world. I like color. LOTS of them. (I get equally annoyed in all black places.)

And yeah, it's 2004 but some things take more than 40 years.

*hugs*

Date: 2004-01-13 05:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
Oooh! What film is that?

Yeah, man, I know things can take longer. I follow Zoe Saldana's career with interest, as she keeps popping up in intriguing ways.

But damn, I mean. Why haven't we had an epic sweeping love story starring Denzel and Halle? There is no actual reason why not! Denzel has done one love story and that was Mississippi Masala, which was nearly 15 years ago. And TV is SO segregated, it's bizarre. The black shows are just as 100% black as the white shows are white. My life isn't like that and neither is yours.

grr.

Date: 2004-01-13 05:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dejaspirit.livejournal.com
I'm looking for the movie, it's on my f-list somewhere....

I'm going to beg for more "Kingsley" icons.

Icons and Assumptions

Date: 2004-01-13 06:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] slightlights.livejournal.com
Inspired by parenthetical #1:
I have a proposal, a challenge. Forget the movies; figure out all of the interesting characters in HP who aren't specifically described in the books as being Anglo (is Dumbledore, for instance? for that matter, is Hermione's skin ever described, or just her bushy hair?), and let's find interesting, personality-appropriate non-Anglo pictures and make them icons accordingly. What do you think?

(P.S. I miss Tyr (in my icon) on Andromeda. The man had charisma.)

Re: Icons and Assumptions

Date: 2004-01-14 05:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dejaspirit.livejournal.com
That's a fantastic idea!

*huggles*!!!!

Re: Icons and Assumptions

Date: 2004-01-14 08:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
It is a great idea! You should pimp it!

Date: 2004-01-13 11:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tocomfortyou.livejournal.com
The movie's Haven, and you can read about it here (http://et.tv.yahoo.com/movies/2004/01/05/orlandobloomhavenintv/). (OMFG, what, am not a fangirl, don't look at me that way.)

And Kingsley is a bad mother who needs far more iconage. *makes note to self*

Date: 2004-01-14 08:46 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
ZOE SALDANA!!!!!!!!!!!!

Date: 2004-01-14 01:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tocomfortyou.livejournal.com
And all the Will/Anamaria fans rejoice. All what, two of them? :D

Date: 2004-01-13 04:00 pm (UTC)
ext_132: Photo of my face: white, glasses, green eyes, partially obscured by a lime green scarf. (Default)
From: [identity profile] flourish.livejournal.com
While I haven't much to say about most of it (beyond "word"), I suspect that Parminder Nagra is playing Ella's best friend, who comes from the land of Ayortha (the next country over) and is actually the only nice character of Ella's age in the entire book besides Char. So that's good. :-p

Date: 2004-01-14 08:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
That seems to be the assumption. Thanks for the "word", though!

Ooh, and happy birthday, though I'll do that better later.

Date: 2004-01-13 04:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jessindistress.livejournal.com
Whoa... that was absolutely brilliant.

And yes, the moment I saw the trailer for
[Error: Irreparable invalid markup ('<i.the>') in entry. Owner must fix manually. Raw contents below.]

Whoa... that was absolutely brilliant.

And yes, the moment I saw the trailer for <i.The Last Samurai</i>, I was thinking, "WTF? Tom Cruise is about as samurai as I'm the Queen Mother. Maybe even less so." *rolls eyes*

As for the slash points... I feel completely pathetic owning up to this, but it has rarely crossed my mind. Thankyou for mentioning it- I wish the entire fandom could read this, d00d.

~Jess

Date: 2004-01-14 08:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
Gosh, thank you so much! Yeah, I mean, I know no one really cares about minor characters, and I know that slash is very often all about the pretty more than anything else, but dude.

Date: 2004-01-14 07:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jessindistress.livejournal.com
No worries. :)
Totally... and OMG... Dean/Seamus is practically canon. At the end of OotP with the whole "Ginny's dating Dean" thing, I was just all, "Uuuuh? Where the hell did that come from- Dean's on with Seamus..." It just seemed so... weird...

And as for the minor characters... well... I like them. I squee when I see any new information about them- they're the ones who build the background, and they're the ones you develop and imagine in the RPGs and fanfic... :)

~Jess

Date: 2004-01-13 05:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] anya-writer.livejournal.com
Which is why I don't watch films that smack of patronising, colonial mentality-type suppositions like "The Last Samurai."

Anya, who happens to be Asian

Date: 2004-01-13 05:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
I'm right there with you. I had no desire to see it, either. I got the run down on the plot from CC, who did see it, and ugh. NO.

Glad you are feeling better and back with us! We missed you!

Date: 2004-01-13 11:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] miafitz.livejournal.com
Agreed. I can't help but think they are robbing the Japanese people of their own culture. Although I am shocked that most people just *accepted* the film. I would've thought there would've been at least a small uproar.

Meanwhile, quite disgruntled still that of all the Asian women in the HP series, none seem to have a compelling character. Padma, Parvati and Cho are portrayed as being shallow and superficial. If there was a cheerleading squad in Hogwarts, they'd all be in it.

Mia, who is also Asian

Date: 2004-01-14 08:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
Well, most of the girls except Ginny and Hermione are fairly shallow and superficial, generally, but you are totally right. Though Cho is more of a jock, I think, and Lavender is plenty superficial and she's white.

Date: 2004-01-13 06:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] freethepenguins.livejournal.com
I have to admit that you present a very strong case. I agree with pretty much everything you said and have to admit I didn't catch the fact that Dean was from West Ham. When I first read book 1, I didn't even know where or what West Ham. was (my British friend recently introduced me - West Ham United Football Club!) and so now I understand.

One thing I don't agree with is ER being past it's prime! I love the show, I guess, and while it did drag what with Anthony Edwards' death and all that, they are making a real effort to bring it back to the show it was!

And Charlie (the President's aide) is black, on the West Wing. He's one of my favourite characters, too, because he's smart and witty, and also he's younger than everyone there and has a lot of power/stuff to do.

Date: 2004-01-13 08:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] irinaauthor.livejournal.com
And Charlie (the President's aide) is black, on the West Wing. He's one of my favourite characters, too, because he's smart and witty, and also he's younger than everyone there and has a lot of power/stuff to do.

Plus, he and the President's daughter are in lurrrrrve. [/Charlie love train]

Great post, Clio. I've actually been bothered by the Keira Knightley thing for a while too; Parminder Nagra was so much better in Beckham, and I was mystified why she wound up on a bad TV show while Knightley, whose performance was average, somehow got all of these great jobs. I hadn't considered that it was because of race, though. I'd figured it was because of the gigantic burn scar on Nagra's leg, or the fact that she's a little short and not stick-thin like Knightly is. Maybe I was being naive?

Date: 2004-01-13 08:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] freethepenguins.livejournal.com
*schnoogles Charlie/Zoe* I absolutely hated that bastard, Jean-Paul or whoever the hell he was! I can't believe he DRUGGED her drink. Grrr.

Date: 2004-01-14 08:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
It's just infuriating. Roger Ebert even said in his review for Pirates that Nagra would have been more interesting in the role than Knightley was. It's just galling what a flavour of the week she is, and how she's the total It Girl of the moment without, as far as I can see, being all that interesting. She just keeps playing objects of desire, like the girl in Love Actually or Guinevere. She was suppose to have agency in Pirates but she didn't do much with it, IMHO. Gah!

Date: 2004-01-14 08:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
Granted, I haven't watched a ton of WW, but it never seems to me like Charlie is all that powerful. Not like, say, Josh or Sam or Toby or CJ. Now, he's young, and so I think that's a big part of it, but still.

And ER--Well, it just isn't as though ER is a hot, new, career-building show. Though I will say that they have always made an effort to have a very racially diverse cast.

Date: 2004-01-13 06:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blackholly.livejournal.com
You know, I've been thinking about this a lot with regard to my own projects. In fact, I've been wanting to talk to you about it.

*calls*

Date: 2004-01-14 08:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
DUDE, know how I went on and on about Zoe Saldana? She's going to be Orlando's love interest in a new movie! w00t!

Date: 2004-01-14 10:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blackholly.livejournal.com
Duuuuude.

What movie?

Date: 2004-01-14 10:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
Haven. There is a link to a piece on entertainment tonight in the comments above; look in the string dionne started. ROCK!

Date: 2004-01-13 08:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sisterpandora.livejournal.com
You bring up an excellent point. Back when I did theater, we would talk about this all the time. It's really hard to find entertainment (or scripts) that present life as it is. We used to try to find scripts that would reflect our lives and our friends better but it seemed like everything we read was all one way or all the other. There wasn't a medium to be found and it sucked.

I can't speak for the PotC slash as I was wondering why no one was making the Jack/Anna Maria connection back when I saw it. You of course did and posted about it way before I saw the movie. Are people in that fandom still ignoring it?

And, you know, this has given me an idea. Muahahahahaha! (I'll tell you about it as soon as I've got the details sorted. ^-^ )

Date: 2004-01-14 08:53 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
I only ever seem to know the, as CC calls them, "random militant slashers" so I can't say if there even ARE any Jack/Anamaria fics out there, which is really annoying. I'd love to read some.

Date: 2004-01-14 12:09 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tocomfortyou.livejournal.com
Speaking as a girl so white she can't find makeup pale enough, this is a good post. Of all the things that annoy me re: seemingly ethnic characters, even I get tired of white bread Hogwarts. It's not like English boarding schools are some big mysterious culture. I'd much rather see some spice, some foreign lore, some history. Maybe I'm spoiled for living in such a culturally diverse area as California, but I'd be bored stupid if there was only one background, one culture, one skin color. Monochromatic only works in photographs.

Date: 2004-01-14 08:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
London is an amazingly diverse place. I think what pissed me off about the whole "Dean is black for the Americans" thing is that it negates how many black folks are running around England these days. You'd think they'd know--they are much better at integrating their television shows than we are. Probably because they aren't written to such narrow advertising demographics.

Date: 2004-01-14 01:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tocomfortyou.livejournal.com
Because God knows what I'd do if I saw a black person outside the UPN. I might just go out and..continue with my normal, economy-boosting, democracy-encouraging life.

Black List- the Fic

Date: 2004-01-14 07:10 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kirixchi.livejournal.com
See proposal here.
http://www.livejournal.com/users/kirixchi/48734.html?nc=1

Date: 2004-01-14 10:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ex-mahoney365.livejournal.com
I had the same reaction to trailers for The Last Samurai. I would have gone to a movie about the last samurai, but this was the Western White Guy in Eastern Country Dealing with Samurais. There are so many great stories to tell, real (or more real) stories that could be magnificent without being appropriated by and told through the eyes of the Western white man.

As far as slash, in the fandoms I'm at all familiar with (HP, LOTR, X-Men movieverse, Smallville, POTC, Justice League, Teen Titans), choices for m/m are fairly slim. In that they feature slashably interesting (i.e. complex, or evil) male characters who are, with the exception of the two cartoons, all white guys.

And, it boggles that the only exception I could make, above, involved cartoons. I mean, a lot of mainstream, modern/future-based shows these days try to feature a 'balanced' cast, but usually the so-called balance involves a character like Pete in Smallville, who is both bland and ignored. However, in JL and TT, the black man/boy on the teams are both a couple of the most interesting and active characters. I haven't looked for TT fic (it's a bit *too* kiddie - I fear fanfic written by and for 10 year olds), but I did go searching for fic involving my favorite JL characters (Flash, Green Lantern & Batman). Flash/Green Lantern slash is all over the place. That doesn't surprise me, because GL is such a great character, and the show makes a lot of room for interaction between GL and Flash - they have great chemistry, which can be easily read as subtext.

But then, the opportunity is there, for slashers. Green Lantern is a strong, interesting character. He's a leading man, he's complex, and he interacts on a definite personal level with another male character, providing subtext. Same can be said of Cyborg in Teen Titans. I haven't looked for TT fic (the show is a little too kiddie, so I'm thinking fanfic would = written by and for 10 year olds), so don't know what's out there; but Cyborg has great chemistry with both Robin *and* Beast Boy. If you want angsty slash, the only subtexty choices are either Cyborg/Robin or Robin/Slade; if you want lightheared slash, Cyborg/Beast Boy is pretty much it.

But, again, both are cartoons. Live action adult shows have not caught up (at least not in the realm of fantasy, which is where I go for entertainment, usually).

In terms of female characters, imho in the X-Men movieverse, Storm is one of the best characters. She along with Wolverine, Mystique & Cyclops are my favorite characters. And, if I were reading fanfic these days, I'd be looking for Jack/Annamaria or Will/Annamaria. Elizabeth drives me nuts; Annamaria is the character I want to know more about. Now, if only the moviemakers would agree with me and give Storm and Annamaria bigger roles....

Date: 2004-01-14 11:51 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
I agree that animation is definitely ahead of live action in this arena. I love Storm, too, and she was all over the comics as I recall, but isn't quite as much in evidence in the movies.

If they don't have more Anamaria in the Pirates sequel that will be a crime. She is so much more interesting than Elizabeth. I'm hoping that since the actress is making another movie with Orlando as her leading man that we'll see her in Pirates as well.

I think it's an outgrowth of traditional fantasy happening in some kind of medieval Europe, where everyone is white, and where the "evil outsiders" are often non-white, which is so colonialist and many other things that it makes my teeth ache. And the worst is, there is no reason for it except laziness and an entire community of people wanting to read LotR over and over again. Is it a problem to take the good things about LotR and not take the admittedly outdated and not so good things?

Date: 2004-01-14 08:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] missmaybe.livejournal.com
Hi. I somehow accidentally clicked on your journal from CassieClaire's, and then I discovered this post which I just think is fabulous. I was just the other day complaining about how annoying it is, as an Indian, to see Parvati and Padma Patil in HP icons as that Theresa girl from that horrible soap, Passions (who, at least, is not white), or as Britney Flippin' Spears (yes, I've really seen that. Kill me now).

And it always bothers me that Parminder Nagra got shafted to ER while K. Knightley blew up - while I like Knightley, I thought she was rather boring in Bend It Like Beckham. The only time you really hear people mention Nagra is in the company of other Indians, especially younger Indian girls, since we all had dreams of being the first Indian woman actress in the United States.

Also, I loved Love Actually. But let's not forget that while Juliet married a black guy, her whole story was with Mark. I almost felt like they threw in her husband just to have him be the "token black guy."

That comment about 8 Mile is really horrifyingly offensive. Both on a superficial (I do NOT see a comparison between Draco and Eminem) and on a much deeper level.

Anyway, I think the whole point of my rambling was just to say thank you for this post! It's good to know there are many others who feel the same way I do.

Date: 2004-01-17 10:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
Welcome! I hope that while you're poking around, you find the Parvati story, and let me know if anything seems off. But yeah, I mean, if you're going to bother with the icons, get them right.

What I would love to know is what ever happend to the woman from Mississippi Masala? And yeah, there were two token black guys--there was the friend of that guy who went to the US and came back with the babes.

The comment about 8 Mile was, sadly, made by someone who was inadvertently offensive on any number of occasions.

Well, thank you for your comments, for precisely the same reason!
(deleted comment)

Date: 2004-01-17 10:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
Yeah, see, I'm just not a "slasher". I happen to have a great love for some HP slash pairings--Sirius/Remus, Percy/Oliver, and my OTP, Dean/Seamus--but I don't think I have love for slash as such. I think that always makes it harder for me to listen to everyone slashing up all those WB shows. A, whatever, and B, can't people be just friends? Plus, horror of horrors, I write a lot of het, and het smut--H/H, D/G, and Ron/Padma, mainly.

While I did see a lot of PotC slash around, I also saw references to Jack/Elizabeth, so I was really feeling the lack of Anamaria. But on the other hand, why aren't there piles and piles of Kingsley slash? He is gorgeous and inscrutible! I mean, come on, Kingsley/Remus post-OotP? It's staring them right in the face, but no, no, they'd rather do Marauders-era James/Sirius, which makes my teeth ache. Or, as you rightly mention, Kingsley/Sirius!

Glad you stopped by! List incredibly ridiculous, and all I'll say about that is if you look at the people near the top of the list you'll see that it is very, very not random.

--Clio

Date: 2004-01-15 09:15 am (UTC)
ext_30116: (Default)
From: [identity profile] libco.livejournal.com
Hi, came by here via the infamous black list-wanted to show support to all the authors and read this. Everyone on Buffy was white with the exceptions of Kendra (season 2) and Mr. Trick (season 3) but Angel at least has the oh so sexy Gunn (August Richards) who is part of the ensemble equally with the others. ANd pft on TOm Cruise!

Date: 2004-01-17 10:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
The blacklist is infantile, but I'm glad it led you to stop by!

Well, good for Angel, I say. Too bad it's such an annoying show, but we can't have everything.

Date: 2004-01-16 11:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ex-greythist387.livejournal.com
Word. (Hello, just stopping in.)

Briefly, on the two actresses from Bend It and their ensuing career moves: it probably doesn't hurt Keira Knightley that both her parents are in the biz. I don't mean that the roles she gets arise from nepotism, but connections do help.

Date: 2004-01-17 10:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jlh.livejournal.com
True. I think in the end I'm just annoyed about role availability. Why KK became the 2003 It Girl is due to a ton of complicated factors, but why PN didn't is fairly obvious.

I was going to do a comparison of Nicole Kidman and Halle Berry post-Oscar but they are very different sorts of actresses. Perhaps in another post--perhaps right after this year's awards.

Thanks for stopping in!

Date: 2004-01-17 12:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ex-greythist387.livejournal.com
After this year's awards would be perfect--probably, unfortunately, also cathartic.

*waves*

Date: 2004-01-27 09:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] bloodybrilliant.livejournal.com
I have read your journal before, but I think how I wound up here today had to do with a long series of links ranging from another lj to that horrid list to Heidi to Oscars to your post about it and among others...then I found this one.

Admittedly after the fact ;) but I have to say this is absolutely One Great Post. I agree with you whole-heartedly, as a white girl. :) That is the first reason that I had no desire to see The Last Samurai. I told my husband that after he went to see it. "Why do they have to have a little white man to show us the struggles and honor of a samurai? Why can't a Japanese man be used to tell the story??" etc. I find myself really noticing things like this in books and movies within the past 10 years of my life, I suppose. I did notice when reading LoTR, but I still love that book. But it was Very Anglican. I agree also with the comments about the WB shows. I just find it odd that in this day and age there are no shows/movies/books in the "popular" culture that adequately and honestly represent Our Lives as they are: quite multicultural. As a whole, I mean. Why is everything either All-White or All-Black or All-Whatever? Do people think we do not relate if we are not-of-the-same-skin-pursuasion? I realize that there are many areas in the US that are still sort of segregated in how people interact...(so this or that may not "go over with the viewers as well" but SO the F*@# what?! Don't watch or read if that sort of thing is weird to you.) Where I live, in the South, for example, has its places...but that is just "as a whole" or generally. I find that I run into tons of prejudiced people here, white and black. Disturbing, yes. But people EVERYWHERE are different. They have to get used to that: everyone is not Like Them. I know my friends are not all-white-just-hang-out-with-white-people. And people are so educated these days it is hard to believe that some could still harbor old prejudices that would make it hard to "read about" or "watch that" because of X or Y. But I know it happens. And it is sad. And infuriating.

One of my absolute favorite fics are AngieJ's Paradise fics, especially the first one because it is told from Angelina's perspective and through HER family heritage and life experiences. I miss her in the rest of it! I think Angie did such a fabulous job of putting all of those background info on mythologies and legend and old history/folklore. THAT is my favorite about her stories. And THAT is what makes her stuff really stick out in my mind. And why it is one of my select favorites.
Do you think that, perhaps, some people though, may not feel fully completely at ease writing about a culture they have less understanding about than their own and that might be why there is not so much culturally representative literature/fic/writing/etc out there??? I know it could also be called laziness for not doing any research :) but ... ? Maybe people might feel that they don't want to misrepresent someone or they may make a stupid mistake that would be wrong or...I don't know! :) I can hardly think now. I hope this makes sense.
But I just really whole-heartedly agree with you on this post. I think I will add it to my Memorable posts, if you don't mind. :) And would you mind if I friend you? I mostly just read journals and fic and like to comment and discuss stuff with people so I am not looking for friending back :) You just certainly have something to say and I have enjoyed reading your journal, and I will be back! :D

Isobel

Oh! And I *so* agree about Anamaria from Pirates! Dude, she was so fascinating and interesting...I just kept hoping they would put some more about her in the movie, but knew they wouldn't. Like you, I will be keeping my fingers crossed for more development in PotC2...and *squee* I had already heard about Haven and was so very excited when I realized who was playing his "love interest"! Yay! :)

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