PDA

View Full Version : Armor designs for females?



Pages : 1 2 3 4 [5] 6

daniel_ream
2017-08-07, 08:07 PM
then someone chimes in that one is a sex fantasy and the other is a power fantasy and thus they should be viewed under completely different lenses.

That's because taken as a group, men and women are not the same and desire different things in a potential mate.

Men see women as sex objects; women see men as success objects. it's a result of biology forcing different strategies on each sex necessary to propagate one's genes.

kraftcheese
2017-08-07, 08:24 PM
That's because taken as a group, men and women are not the same and desire different things in a potential mate.

Men see women as sex objects; women see men as success objects. it's a result of biology forcing different strategies on each sex necessary to propagate one's genes.
I think you should really read up about something called "socialization".

I mean I get that evo-psych-as-be-all-end of human behaviour is a big thing in pop psychology these days, that's not your fault, but maybe consider that a lot of our preferences and behaviours are a combination of genetic and social factors.

Often mostly social factors, considering the behaviours change between cultures, over time within cultures, between different individuals within cultures, etc.

I would also ask for what evidence you have to support your claim; what structures within every human brain are solely responsible for these monolithic desires? What large-scale, repeated studies have factored in the upbringing of their participants?

I would also ask how same-sex attraction would fit into your framework; if two men are attracted to each other, are they both attracted to sex or success?

Just to be clear, I'm not saying that none of our social behaviours are genetically determined, just that many are not, and the ones that are are mediated through us living our entire lives around other people and media with influence on the ideas we have.

pres_man
2017-08-07, 08:58 PM
It gets old. Let people like what they want to like. Everyone can win. People that like more modest and/or realistic armor can have that. People that like something different can have their likes too. Everyone wins. The only time anyone loses is when people are trying to force one onto the other, and when that happens we all lose. The hobby loses. Doesn't even matter what hobby. It creates bitter feelings where none should be.

https://m.popkey.co/2e2598/3GkMk.gif

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-07, 09:01 PM
Didn't we already go through the whole pop-evo-psych / bioessentialism thing many pages upthread? :smalleek:


http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2005/08/cave_thinkers.html
https://evolution-institute.org/article/evolutionary-psychology-is-neither/
http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2012/09/17/it-aint-necessarily-so

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-07, 09:20 PM
It gets old. Let people like what they want to like. Everyone can win. People that like more modest and/or realistic armor can have that. People that like something different can have their likes too. Everyone wins. The only time anyone loses is when people are trying to force one onto the other, and when that happens we all lose. The hobby loses. Doesn't even matter what hobby. It creates bitter feelings where none should be.

No one is hoping to have well dressed characters in Senran Kagura that where this type of character belongs and truly shines.

daniel_ream
2017-08-07, 11:38 PM
Didn't we already go through the whole pop-evo-psych / bioessentialism thing many pages upthread?

Perhaps we did, but you're going to have to do better than Slate and the New Yorker magazine to disprove it.

Exceptions don't disprove general patterns.

Arbane
2017-08-08, 12:43 AM
Perhaps we did, but you're going to have to do better than Slate and the New Yorker magazine to disprove it.

Exceptions don't disprove general patterns.

Don't assume for a moment that white middle-class Americans/Europeans are the universal standard for human behavior.

Necause Science says you're wrong. (https://psmag.com/social-justice/joe-henrich-weird-ultimatum-game-shaking-up-psychology-economics-53135#.7qazr996w)

Frozen_Feet
2017-08-08, 05:05 AM
The way I typically observe it, people say that it is sexist for women to be portrayed as objects / sexualized / scantily or impractically clad / stereotypically feminine, someone points out that it isn't really sexist as men are also portrayed as objects / sexualized / scantily or impractically clad / stereotypically masculine as a counter to the sexism, and then someone chimes in that one is a sex fantasy and the other is a power fantasy and thus they should be viewed under completely different lenses.

A bigger issue is the pretension that it's always male fantasy. I mean, if you show me your average BDSM-inspired pin-up Drow, I sure can agree it's a sexual fantasy. But it might as well be some woman's sexual fantasy, because women like to oggle women (https://www.autostraddle.com/100-of-women-attracted-to-other-women-study-says-315211/) as well.

It's one of the stereotypical assumptions in discussions like these that RPG art is from men, to men, hence any sexism is strictly men's fault. There's regularly very little consideration that women's aesthetic preferences might be contributing to any perceived status quo well. Like I've said in the past: that scantily clad babe on the book cover might not be there solely for the horny teenage boys. It might as well be there for horny teenage girls.

Floret
2017-08-08, 05:36 AM
That's because taken as a group, men and women are not the same and desire different things in a potential mate.

Men see women as sex objects; women see men as success objects. it's a result of biology forcing different strategies on each sex necessary to propagate one's genes.

Citation needed.
Now, anecdotal evidence suggests to me that there is some influence biology (and especially hormone levels) can have on patterns of attraction; but to argue that it is purely biological, and not influenced by culture, sterotypes and gender roles seems quite rich, especially in face of the overwhelming evidence that cultures around the world do things very differently in many regards.


A bigger issue is the pretension that it's always male fantasy. I mean, if you show me your average BDSM-inspired pin-up Drow, I sure can agree it's a sexual fantasy. But it might as well be some woman's sexual fantasy, because women like to oggle women (https://www.autostraddle.com/100-of-women-attracted-to-other-women-study-says-315211/) as well.

It's one of the stereotypical assumptions in discussions like these that RPG art is from men, to men, hence any sexism is strictly men's fault. There's regularly very little consideration that women's aesthetic preferences might be contributing to any perceived status quo well. Like I've said in the past: that scantily clad babe on the book cover might not be there solely for the horny teenage boys. It might as well be there for horny teenage girls.

1) Have you read the article you linked to? Because it is very good at pointing out the flaws in the research that lead to the conclusion it itself formulates in its title.
I would like to also point out something that the article doesn't mention that might just influence the difference in numbers for men and women engaging in same-sex attraction and behaviour: Masculine-coded things are, by and large, seen as better by society; while feminine-coded things seen as lesser, influenced by sexism, but extending it over the mere demographic split. This leads to women being more readily able to adopt masculine-coded things/behaviour (since they are, in a certain sense seen as "stepping up"), while men have more problems adopting feminine-coded things/behaviour (Since they'd be, from this perspective "stepping down"). Take for example how readily it became socially acceptable for women to wear pants; and how still-unacceptable it is for men to wear skirts.
Since attraction to women is coded as masculine and attraction to men as feminine; men have a harder time being open to the idea of same-sex attraction; making them more likely to repress it, and less likely to identify as or be comfortable with the idea of, for example, bisexuality. Of course, there might be biological factors at play! But to assume that just because that is the split we see, that it is also the split that is "natural" is somewhat fallacious reasoning.

2) Sure, there are women that are into women; I mean, noone has claimed otherwise (Heck, I have been rather open about BEING one). But to argue that the market is drawn in a way to cater to wlw ("women loving women", a sort of umbrella-term for all women attracted to other women) is... strange - They do make up somewhat of a minority. And, to boot, quite often code their attraction differently (Gay women and straight men tend to have quite varying tastes, even though they are both attracted exclusively to women).
Yes, female artists also often draw scantily clad women, even when they are being paid to do so for RPG books, and sometimes without promting from their supervisors that this is what they should draw. Sure, this could indicate the women drawing what they want to see - women. But to assume some form of equal force behind catering to wlw anywhere close to catering to straight men seems disingenuous. If there were such a drive, we'd have a lot more lesbians in fiction. Because at least from all the wlw I know, the desire to see actual representation is far, far greater than the desire for tittilation, and if we really had any influence on the market in the way you posit, we'd see far more of that; and Alison Bechdel('s friend) wouldn't have come up with the test named after her.

Liquor Box
2017-08-08, 07:03 AM
1. I know that women are far more present, for longer, and way more consistently than some people give them credit for. If I had to estimate, I'd guess something of about 1/3 to 1/2 of the Sci-Fi fandom being women. I would probably make similar predictions about Fantasy.
But I don't quite feel my personal guesses are relevant to this discussion, to be honest. Why do you ask?
It's getting longer, so I though I'd split it up.

I ask because I am trying to understand what you see the problem as being.

In fantasy and Sci Fi, what proportion of the protagonists do you think are female?


2a. I like lots of games, this is hard to answer. And please define "cater to my tastes". The aforementioned Guild Wars 2 does cater to my tastes in regards to Gameplay, otherwise I wouldn't play it, but it doesn't fully cater to my tastes in regards to proper representation. I have praised the current edition of the Dark Eye for it's representation, but even that isn't exactly what I'd be looking for, there are still questionable decisions (And the writers in many places do not understand what "full gender equality" actually means). I have media that I can enjoy, in pretty much all forms of it that I want to - but there being things I am able to enjoy despite their flaws does not mean what I actually want is out there. There are things pretty close to it; and in regards to representation I think Dark Souls does a good job (Might be one or two strange decisions for enemy/boss design, iirc?); but for playing it myself (As opposed to Let'splays, which is my form of engagement with the series) it just isn't my thing.

OK, let me explain the question better. By "of the type you like" I was refering to a genre of games you like. Let's take role playing video games as an example. By "cater to your tastes" I was refering to what you have told me of your preferences regarding gender representation and presentation. So the questions are:
- Are there any role playing video games that are not skeevy (to use your earlier word) in terms of gender representation and presentation (not necesarily ideal, but close enough for you)? Which? If not what is the closest and where does it fall short in your opinion?
- Are there and role playing video games which are skeevy in terms of gender representation and presentation (not necesarily ideal, but close enough for you)? Which and why?


2b. Sure, the players made that choice. In a game heavily reliant on optical gear prestige (Where collecting skins is part of the endgame, since gearprogression isn't much of a thing); where the most prestigous skins are almost exclusively skimpy, and the modest ones are run-of the mill things you wear while levelling. Sure, the choice is made, but not on an even playing field; too many conflating variables. And I would fault the medium at least for a great part for not supplying equal options so the choice can be made in that equal setting.
So you think players are incentivised to select skimpy armour?

In the particular game you are thinking of, are there skimpy options for male characters as well?


2c. Depictions that reduce women to their bodies and sexyness as their sole character trait or in ridiculous ways will always be suspect to me. You can be sexy without being objectified; but when depictions do those things it's no longer just a character being sexy, it's a character being made to be ogled. As long as this happens to women far more frequently as to men; and as long as there are still elements and voices in culture directly connotation a woman's worth to her attractiveness, those depicitions just won't rest easy with me. I will repeat that I would not argue for a ban, or censorship, just advocate for societal change that might just phase them out in the long run. Or maybe it won't, society will be ideal, and there will still be Dead or Alive Beach Volleyball.

So not only do you not like games/media that depict female in that way (sexyness as sole trait), but you advocate against them, although you do not think they should be censored.
How do you advocate against them? Do you advocate the manufacturers of this type of media should not provide despite there being a demand for it? Or do you advocate that those individuals who do want games/media that depict women in that way should not buy such media despite wanting it?

Also interested in if you think there is some sort of objective test that could be applied to a particular depiction of a person so that one could tell if it depicts their "sexyness as being their sole character trait"? Or is it more of a subjective "I know it when I see it" type of thing?


3. Yeah, I would. Of course, don't misconstrue this as "every piece of media has to have perfect proportions of everything". Of course not. What I am saying is that in an ideal situation, over all works of fiction our culture produces, the collective numbers line up better with real life.
Great. So, you have confirmed that in an ideal world, you would like to see portrayals of women in media reflecting the looks, traits and abilities of women in real life, in similar proportion to their incidence in real life.

Does the same apply to negative stereotypes of women? For example, lets assume that it is a negative stereotype of women that they are not particularly handy (they aren't as good as men at fixing things etc). Should media portray women as more capable of fixing things than they actually are, or is it still ok to represent women's handiness accurately?


4a. Sure, some subjectivity is there. Interestingly, it is the opposite setup that is actually used in sociology sometimes: Attraction researchers (Or whatever the correct translation would be) tried to find a measure to objectively judge attractive faces (By symmetry, for example, position of eyes, mouth and nose relative to each other etc.). They did this - and then they compared the results to another measure: Showing the same face to ten, maybe twenty people and asking them to rate on a scale from 1 to 10. The result? The average rating for any given face of the 1 to 10 scale, if given to enough randomly selected people to have the effects of personal taste filtered out, fits almost perfectly with the rating retrieved through careful measuring. This can at least be interpreted such that over a large enough representative sample of people; attractiveness becomes pretty objective - not "how attractive to a specific person" but "how attractive in general/on average"; which would be the thing relevant for the discussion from my perspective. (And, no, the average ratings weren't all 5 :smallwink:)
How would we prove the incidence of attractiveness? With a large enough random (or specifically selected) representative sample of characters; given to a large enough random (or specifically selected) representative group of people (Or, though more time consuming and about as accurate, put them through the measuring processes); collect the ratings, and sort them according to the demographic splits we want to look at. (I'd expect men to come in at maybe 5-7; and women around 7-8 for humanoid characters; but that's a pretty wild guess on my part and not actually a relevant number; I give it only to put numbers on the degree of difference I think there is.)

Ok, I follow all that. Of that is not a course that is practically available to either of us (or presumably anyone else in this thread) to persuade each other - unless someone is a student doing their thesis on this topic or something.
So for the purposes of this thread, I don't think there's really much we can do to persuade each other except assert our own perceptions based on anecdotal observations (although often quite a lot of them), and give a few examples.


4b. The discrimination against ugly people is less codified, and systematic. As I said, there have never been laws about this, contrary to discrimination of women, suggesting the issue was either seen so clear-cut as to not require them (unlikely, given how many ugly people were, for example, rather successfully rulers - generations of incest do a number on your attractiveness rating; or present in numerous other positions); or isn't as strongly felt. Sure, women do have most of the same rights now; but the same attitudes that lead to placing these laws in the first place didn't vanish with the laws getting a slight minority, enough to be discarded. It is to expect that the impact of the same ideas that lead to this is still felt today (And, indeed, it is; for example women being unable to run for office for a long time causes problems with them getting into office - because keeping it is easier than winning it; and the ones having that advantage were still all men, even after the change; and even after we today might agree women are just as fit to hold office (Numbers of people out there don't even agree with that one))
And beyond that, just look at the ratio of, for example, women in leadership positions; and ugly people in leadership positions (or even just in parliament or sth); with regards to their respective rations in real life. Ugly people aren't really underrepresented - women definitely are. I could go on.
Yes, ugly people face individual acts of discrimination, yes, attractive people are more likely to get jobs or higher salaries (not by that big a margin, but yeah); or have more dates. But women get individual acts of discrimination as well - less likely to get jobs, less likely to be taken seriously, more likely to be harassed on the street. (And then we get into ugly women existing that face both of this and get the really short end. Intersectionality can be a bitch.) On that basis, I firmly believe the discrimination against ugly people isn't as big of a problem; but still a bit of a problem. I wouldn't champion that cause myself, but I could understand if someone else did, so to speak.

I may spend a bit longer on this, as I find it quite interesting. And it is the first real disagrement between us since you set out yor broad views on women in media, and I began asking you questions about them.

First, I am talking about whether women or ugly people are more discriminated against today, not historically. I understand that you were referencing historic laws to illustrate your opinion that discrimination against women used to be more strongly felt than discrimination against ugly people, but I thought best to be on the same page about that point from the start.

I'm not sure the historic point works though. I think it is uncontroversial to say that western society has come a long wayin terms of gender equality (not at all to suggest that it has come far enough). Women, although they may still be disadvantaged, are not as disadvantaged as they once were. On the other hand I'm not sure of any evidence that discrimination against ugly people has been reduced. Accordingly, it is quite possible that women used to be discriminated against more than unattractive people, but that now unattractive people are more discriminated against.

You mention ugly people in leadership positions. But when we control for age (holder of high office tend to be older than is conventionally attractive) I don't think that is so in recent years. If we take the main presidential candidates in USA (lets go with USA because both of us are likely to know a fair few candidates) - Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, John McCain, George Bush and John Kerry. Of those seven, I don't think any are particularly unattractive for their age - most are moderate, and 2 or 3 (Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, maybe John kerry) are unusually attractive for their age. Granted only one is a woman (and I think USA is behind most of the Western world in that regard), but the lack of ugly candidates is also marked.

I'm happy for you to suggest a different example of "leadership positions" so we can compare. You mention parliament, parliament of which country? But, i think if we control for age you will find that ugle people are remarkably underrepresented.

In your last paragraph you suggest that women fac greater workplace discrimination than ugly people. Do you have any basis for that assertion? Do you htink that women also face as much discrimination outside of the workplace context, such as in social settings?

Whether unattractive people or women face greater discrimination may end up being a point on which we have to agree to disagree. I am not even particularl sure what I think, but I lean toward ugly people facing greater discrimination. All else being equal, from a discrimination perspective, I would rather be a moderately attractive woman, than a clearly ugly person of either gender.


5. What way do you mean "most severe"? Which of those is currently the place furthest "off" and has the most work to be done? Then I probably think either antagonists or protagonists; probably antagonists. Or are you asking which I would find more important? Then the answer is "all of the above".
I really meant to ask where you think the numbers disparity (in terms of gender) is the greatest. Amongst protagonists, main characters... etc. But I think you have answered my question here.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-08, 07:07 AM
Don't assume for a moment that white middle-class Americans/Europeans are the universal standard for human behavior.

Necause Science says you're wrong. (https://psmag.com/social-justice/joe-henrich-weird-ultimatum-game-shaking-up-psychology-economics-53135#.7qazr996w)

One has to wonder if he even read the articles, or just said "I can dismiss this based on where it was published.

Funnily, one of them hits on the problem your linked article is about -- that evo-psych research seems to rely very heavily on studying westerners in college, as opposed to older people, those not in college, and those not living in "the west". (Also... love how it takes a shot at postmodernism's uselessness.)

If he looks upthread, there were also many other articles from other publications covering the same dire flaws in the premise and practice of evo psych.

Frozen_Feet
2017-08-08, 08:48 AM
1) Have you read the article you linked to? Because it is very good at pointing out the flaws in the research that lead to the conclusion it itself formulates in its title.

Of course I did. It criticizes conflating arousal with orientation and sensationalist spin on the research. However, for the discussion at hand, that is a red herring. When it comes to the material fact - that women do in fact oggle other women - the article neither debunks nor disagrees with that. It agrees with it. It even refers to studies other than what the title comes from, which provide additional proof of commonality of women's attraction to women.


I would like to also point out something that the article doesn't mention that might just influence the difference in numbers for men and women engaging in same-sex attraction and behaviour: Masculine-coded things are, by and large, seen as better by society; while feminine-coded things seen as lesser, influenced by sexism, but extending it over the mere demographic split. This leads to women being more readily able to adopt masculine-coded things/behaviour (since they are, in a certain sense seen as "stepping up"), while men have more problems adopting feminine-coded things/behaviour (Since they'd be, from this perspective "stepping down"). Take for example how readily it became socially acceptable for women to wear pants; and how still-unacceptable it is for men to wear skirts.

The article does mention culture as one possible reason behind the phenomenom, even if it does not go in depth about it.

However, this argument of yours is poor counter to mine. To explain why, let's look at your own example of masculine clothing versus feminine clothing. Which movement, since 1970s, has been the most vocal opponent of feminine clothing, expressing this, among other ways, via burning articles of feminine-coded clothing?

How about second wave feminists.

Who have also been some of the most vocal proponents of female same-sex love?

Oh right, second wave feminists. Again.

So clearly, this idea of feminine-coded things being inferior is not sole invention of men, nor is it solely upheld by men. It is in part created and upheld by women and people who claim to speak for women.


Since attraction to women is coded as masculine and attraction to men as feminine; men have a harder time being open to the idea of same-sex attraction; making them more likely to repress it, and less likely to identify as or be comfortable with the idea of, for example, bisexuality.

And what makes you think the people involved need to consciously identify as anything?

Majority of the women who took part in the study showing they got aroused by images of other women, identified as straight. In a different study examining male bisexuality (also referred to in the article), several men identifying as bi were found to only demonstrate arousal to images of one sex.

The lesson I'd take from that is that what people identify as is not any guarantee of what they find sexually or aesthetically appealing.

Or to make this less abstract via example: He-man probably wasn't made with the intent to appeal to gay men. Neither were Biker Mice From Mars. They are just examples of generically macho muscle aesthetic. But anecdotally, quite a few men realized they had hots for other guys because of them. Even someone in cast-iron closet might be a fan of either due to finding their character designs attractive, even if they'd never admit that as the specific reason.

Now consider any example of sexualized female character, ostensibly made to be attractive to men, like, say, Lara Croft. Does this stop some woman from finding them appealing? No, it does not. Being sexual fantasy to men does not prevent her from being sexual fantasy to some women also. It does not prevent women from buying Tomb Raider games and thus reinforcing the franchise. So on and so forth.

The women do not need identify as anything or be open about their preferencrs to influence the status quo. All they need to do is buy stuff with sexualized women, because they think those women are hot.


Of course, there might be biological factors at play! But to assume that just because that is the split we see, that it is also the split that is "natural" is somewhat fallacious reasoning.

Did you see me using the word "natural" somewhere?

No, you did not. Don't get sidetracked by a strawman of your own creation.

My argument is about the lack of discussion on how women's own preferences affect art. It's criticism of the stereotypical notion that sexualized women in art only exist for men, and because of men. Whether the appeal of said art is based on nature or nurture is irrelevant to it.


2) Sure, there are women that are into women; I mean, noone has claimed otherwise (Heck, I have been rather open about BEING one). But to argue that the market is drawn in a way to cater to wlw ("women loving women", a sort of umbrella-term for all women attracted to other women) is... strange - They do make up somewhat of a minority. And, to boot, quite often code their attraction differently (Gay women and straight men tend to have quite varying tastes, even though they are both attracted exclusively to women).

The market of RPG art does not need to specifically cater to women, for women to have impact on it. I already covered impact of coincidental catering above, so let's talk about something else:

A person up thread mentioned that the peak of midriff baring outfits for superheroines coincided with midriff baring outfits being a women's fashion trend in real life. Another person mentioned that women make 80% of domestic purchases.

There are, roughly, two options: one, comic books kicked off a trend of revealing clothing. Or two, the way women dressed in real life influenced comic book artists.

Given how niche comic book industry was compared to women's clothing industry, the second is much more likely in my opinion.

So now the question is, why would women, who apparently control where the money goes, choose such outfits? You can backpedal and retreat behind patriarchal influence, but then you become guilty of the exact thing I'm criticizing.


Yes, female artists also often draw scantily clad women, even when they are being paid to do so for RPG books, and sometimes without promting from their supervisors that this is what they should draw. Sure, this could indicate the women drawing what they want to see - women.

And what stops the woman the artist want to see from being a sexual fantasy to them?

What stops her from being a sexual fantasy to men also?

What stops her from being objectified, sexist, stereotypical, or whatever else?

As a general rule, nothing. There isn't a real guarantee that art of women, made by women based on women's preferences, is qualitatively better than that of men based ln men's preferemces.


But to assume some form of equal force behind catering to wlw anywhere close to catering to straight men seems disingenuous.

Did you see me use the words "equal force"?

No, you did not. Again, don't strawman the argument.

A market can be skewed towards straight men yet still be influenced by, supported by, or even created by women.


If there were such a drive, we'd have a lot more lesbians in fiction. Because at least from all the wlw I know, the desire to see actual representation is far, far greater than the desire for tittilation, and if we really had any influence on the market in the way you posit, we'd see far more of that; and Alison Bechdel('s friend) wouldn't have come up with the test named after her.

Demand does not necessarily create supply, nor does it prevent consumers from latching on the supply they have. Again, consider the Lara Croft example. She does not need to be stellar representative of women or what women want, for there to be women who find her desireable enough to shell out money for products including her.

Footman
2017-08-08, 09:11 AM
Err. Hello! i see here some huge Walls of Texts, and Arguments and so on.
This Topic was about female Armor Depicted in Fantasy right?

So well, I found, and play a Video Game, that got Female Armor Done right. It is called "For Honor." No exposed Vital Organs, (other then the Raider, and that includes both Genders), and very nice Armor in general.

So here is a Pic, that shows us some Ladys in nice practical Armor. If dudes get nice and cool Armor, the Girls should too, thats only fair. If both of them Run around like Conan the Barbarian thats fair as well.

http://i.imgur.com/4fjiNuK.png

Yes all three of these are Woman. It's always hard to tell with the Knights because all of them are covered from Head to Toe in Steel.

EDIT: Also the BBEG of the Story Campaign is an absolutly badass female Black Knight, sadly she got a little bit of Boob Plate going on, but thats my only complaint, and she is the only Character that has that.

Ashiel
2017-08-08, 09:22 AM
As my inquiry for an MMO without sexualised armor has (so far) yielded no result; it has at least not yet be shown that there actually exists what I want. It exists in some areas, sure, but by far not everything I'd actually want DOES exist amongst the numerous instances of boob armor, women dressed less than their male counterparts, less realistically muscled; and less likely to be able to deviate from beauty standards (However behold men, too, stay to them for a great deal).
Actually, several MMOs were mentioned, including recent ones such as Albion Online which just launched out of beta within the last 30 days or so. I cited Rift as an example, which IMHO has better gameplay that World of Warcraft in terms of character building and specialization, as well as the best dress up system of any MMORPG I've ever seen.

But you've just proved my point.

Rift has modest full coverage female armor.
https://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/6/6b/PvP_R4_Leather_Set_Seditionist_Female.png/revision/latest/scale-to-width-down/338?cb=20110512090424
https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/e/e6/PvP_R6_Leather_Set_Vigilante_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110512090944
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-haABAAjVPU8/UoqDlA6ZyuI/AAAAAAAABnI/5HVy193A7H0/s1600/RIFT_Nathellia.png
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/general-discussion/9516d1361310800-best-dressed-toons-cleric1.jpg
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/0/09/Conjurer%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514044201
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/warrior-discussion/19580d1407553680-post-your-warrior-costumes-here-rift-2014-08-09-12-45-21-37.jpg

And it also lets you dress up in things you might find problematic.
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/rogue-discussion/16578d1389745784t-best-looking-wardrobe-rouges-armor7.jpg
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/community-creations/16686d1390548034-post-your-favorite-wardrobe-creations-rogue.jpg
https://vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/8/85/Brigand%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514001127
If you see sexualized characters in Rift, it's because people want to be sexual. Because Rift has the best wardrobe system I've ever seen in any MMO. Any game, as a matter of fact, that I can recall. As you collect outfits they become permanently stored on your account, and you can dress your character in any fashion you desire regardless of the stats on your gear, which means you'll never be forced to wear an outfit you don't want to wear because of mechanical advantages or disadvantages. You don't even have to stick to armor and gear sets usable by your class (you can have a mage wearing full plate or a warrior wearing robes).

You write off Rift because the MMO set to appeal to thousands of thousands of people has options for both camps. You're effectively saying you will not be happy until someone else cannot have something that you do not want. That's not cool, and that's why I think your position is a destructive and malicious one.

Ashiel
2017-08-08, 09:55 AM
And, out of interest, how is Marvel comics a dumpsterfire? The "Heroes are now Nazis, oh no, Hydra, that was it" plotline? I assume you might mean something else, but please clarify.
I take it you're not aware of how horrible the sales of Marvel comics are going, or how they've been alienating and driving away their fans?
EDIT: PS - I've been meaning to respond to your PM, but I haven't had the time to do so with doctor's appointments and then getting called into work for an emergency. I haven't forgotten about you and I'm going to try to get it to you sometime within the next 24 hours.

Keltest
2017-08-08, 11:54 AM
Actually, several MMOs were mentioned, including recent ones such as Albion Online which just launched out of beta within the last 30 days or so. I cited Rift as an example, which IMHO has better gameplay that World of Warcraft in terms of character building and specialization, as well as the best dress up system of any MMORPG I've ever seen.

But you've just proved my point.

Rift has modest full coverage female armor.
https://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/6/6b/PvP_R4_Leather_Set_Seditionist_Female.png/revision/latest/scale-to-width-down/338?cb=20110512090424
https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/e/e6/PvP_R6_Leather_Set_Vigilante_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110512090944
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-haABAAjVPU8/UoqDlA6ZyuI/AAAAAAAABnI/5HVy193A7H0/s1600/RIFT_Nathellia.png
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/general-discussion/9516d1361310800-best-dressed-toons-cleric1.jpg
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/0/09/Conjurer%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514044201
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/warrior-discussion/19580d1407553680-post-your-warrior-costumes-here-rift-2014-08-09-12-45-21-37.jpg

And it also lets you dress up in things you might find problematic.
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/rogue-discussion/16578d1389745784t-best-looking-wardrobe-rouges-armor7.jpg
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/community-creations/16686d1390548034-post-your-favorite-wardrobe-creations-rogue.jpg
https://vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/8/85/Brigand%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514001127
If you see sexualized characters in Rift, it's because people want to be sexual. Because Rift has the best wardrobe system I've ever seen in any MMO. Any game, as a matter of fact, that I can recall. As you collect outfits they become permanently stored on your account, and you can dress your character in any fashion you desire regardless of the stats on your gear, which means you'll never be forced to wear an outfit you don't want to wear because of mechanical advantages or disadvantages. You don't even have to stick to armor and gear sets usable by your class (you can have a mage wearing full plate or a warrior wearing robes).

You write off Rift because the MMO set to appeal to thousands of thousands of people has options for both camps. You're effectively saying you will not be happy until someone else cannot have something that you do not want. That's not cool, and that's why I think your position is a destructive and malicious one.

you realize WoW does that too, right? Its called Transmogrification. Transmog for short. Diablo 3 has it as well.

Ashiel
2017-08-08, 12:07 PM
you realize WoW does that too, right? Its called Transmogrification. Transmog for short. Diablo 3 has it as well.

I didn't say that it was the only one, I said it was the best one I've seen. Transmogrification sucks giant monkey nuts by comparison to Rift's wardrobe system. I've played both. Transmog cannot (or could not) be used with items that weren't at least green quality (which meant that lots of cool looking gray and white items couldn't be used), and you have to go to a special NPC, and you have to pay currency for it, etc.

Rift works like this.
1. Acquire an item (loot, buy, whatever). Its appearance is now permanently bound to your account.
2. Open your menu and select your wardrobe.
3. Play pretty princess dress up.
4. Save your wardrobe.

And unlike transmogrification, you can mix and max outfits. If you want some plate shoulders on a mage robe with a leather hood, while wielding a spellbook in one hand and a sword in the other, on your CLERIC. You can do that. And look freaking fabulous in the process. Oh, and of course you can change the color schemes of the items as well so they all match nicely.

Tobtor
2017-08-08, 01:03 PM
Actually, several MMOs were mentioned, including recent ones such as Albion Online which just launched out of beta within the last 30 days or so. I cited Rift as an example, which IMHO has better gameplay that World of Warcraft in terms of character building and specialization, as well as the best dress up system of any MMORPG I've ever seen.

But you've just proved my point.

Rift has modest full coverage female armor.
https://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/6/6b/PvP_R4_Leather_Set_Seditionist_Female.png/revision/latest/scale-to-width-down/338?cb=20110512090424
https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/e/e6/PvP_R6_Leather_Set_Vigilante_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110512090944
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-haABAAjVPU8/UoqDlA6ZyuI/AAAAAAAABnI/5HVy193A7H0/s1600/RIFT_Nathellia.png
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/general-discussion/9516d1361310800-best-dressed-toons-cleric1.jpg
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/0/09/Conjurer%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514044201
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/warrior-discussion/19580d1407553680-post-your-warrior-costumes-here-rift-2014-08-09-12-45-21-37.jpg

And it also lets you dress up in things you might find problematic.
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/rogue-discussion/16578d1389745784t-best-looking-wardrobe-rouges-armor7.jpg
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/community-creations/16686d1390548034-post-your-favorite-wardrobe-creations-rogue.jpg
https://vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/8/85/Brigand%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514001127
If you see sexualized characters in Rift, it's because people want to be sexual. Because Rift has the best wardrobe system I've ever seen in any MMO. Any game, as a matter of fact, that I can recall. As you collect outfits they become permanently stored on your account, and you can dress your character in any fashion you desire regardless of the stats on your gear, which means you'll never be forced to wear an outfit you don't want to wear because of mechanical advantages or disadvantages. You don't even have to stick to armor and gear sets usable by your class (you can have a mage wearing full plate or a warrior wearing robes).

You write off Rift because the MMO set to appeal to thousands of thousands of people has options for both camps. You're effectively saying you will not be happy until someone else cannot have something that you do not want. That's not cool, and that's why I think your position is a destructive and malicious one.

I have two question.

1. Is it also possible to have armour that actually looks like armour? Because the first spoiler doesn't seem to show that. Yes some of them almost look like armour. The bottom two looks like clothing for a magic user and rogue.

The first one: she seem to have humongous shoulder-pads and a helmet (it is hard to judge how the male armour would look in comparison when they are not shown). It is hard to tell if she wears any other armour. Possibly some padded armour? This would be indicated by the net-pattern on arms and legs, but that would make her arms really skinny. I have seen many women of many sizes wearing gambesons, not of them had arms like that.... So maybe sensible clothing (which is good) and a helmet (and the shoulders we will wrtie of as slly fantasy for men and women alike),

Second one: very hard to see in the small picture. Possibly OK (except you now the pauldrons/shoulders). Possibly a mail on the body and some reinforced boots. Though again very skinny arms leave no room for anything below the mail. No upper leg protection, which is OK if the male version doesn't have that either.

Third one: Really? OK for the arm and legs things (if we are judging that generic fantasy fails are allowed as the men likely have them as well). But do tell me that the male version ALSO have a completely unprotected belly and upper thighs. Some of the most vulnerable spots. Do the male version have a huge cockpiece to match those silly breast-things?
First thing: Does the man have upper body-muscles forged in metal as well (vaguely resembling greek-styles parade cyras?). Even if he does: that is NOT how you make the female version. It simply wouldnt work that way. They seem like to flat round things stuck ontop of the otherwise OK upper breast-plate.

Fourth one (first in the row of three): Seems to more accurately depict how a formed upper chest piece would work for a very large breasted female (maybe bra-size H op J but ok thats the art - not the armour). Do the male version have a muscle breastplate as default? In general if not, the woman shouldn't have a breats-shaped one as default either. It is a huge problem for various reasons. Women (even ones with huge breasts!) fit nicely into medieval-styled armour with a central ridge deflecting blows away from your centre.

Fifth one (second in row of three): I am astounded that it is used as an example of "full coverage" armour! Nude upper legs? How is the leg-pieces attached to her? I have a suggestion. Try wearing armour for a few hours and then compare your experience with that armour. Also huge cleavage: another good attack point for the opponent. I would almost rather fight un-armoured than in that, and much rather a good gambeson - at least it wouldn't prevent me from fighting with those silly leg-things. Again how is the male version? Also is she wearing nothing beneath the armour (legs, breasts and maybe arms suggest she is not: she is wearing it like an actress would a fashion gown at the oscars, possibly its attached to her by tape?).

The rest: not armour so doesn't qualify your "full coverage female armor" But t does seem like reasonable fantasy clothing, and flat boots for walking around in.

The one you say we would find problematic: The first one clearly have lingerie on. Which is ok as she seem to be having flowers and about to go to bed. Ohh you mean thats her battle outfit? Hate the shoes though. How in the world she gets those pauldrons to stay there is a good question, but lets just assume "magic did it".

The others are quite horrible, yes.

Tobtor
2017-08-08, 01:08 PM
I got so caught up in the horrible notion that that is what people consider "good" armour that I forgot my second question.

Possibly it was: does the mens outfits (piece by piece) look just as ridiculous? I would like you to show male version of one, three and five and only switch to male models: is that possible? Because when I google the rift the only males I see have much more covering armour (still silly fantasy shoulders etc, so I didnt put too much weight on that in my evealuation of the female armours).

Talakeal
2017-08-08, 01:14 PM
You mention ugly people in leadership positions. But when we control for age (holder of high office tend to be older than is conventionally attractive) I don't think that is so in recent years. If we take the main presidential candidates in USA (lets go with USA because both of us are likely to know a fair few candidates) - Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, John McCain, George Bush and John Kerry. Of those seven, I don't think any are particularly unattractive for their age - most are moderate, and 2 or 3 (Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, maybe John kerry) are unusually attractive for their age. Granted only one is a woman (and I think USA is behind most of the Western world in that regard), but the lack of ugly candidates is also marked.

Its my understanding that for men height is one of, if not the, most important thing in business, in politics, and in personal relationships. Taller candidates almost always win elections, and if you look at statistics for corporate positions height and salary / authority are almost directly correlated. I have also seen studies that consistently rate men's height as the most important thing look for in a mate, to the point where most women would rather marry a tall blue color schlub than a short charming billionaire.

Also, you might want to avoid specific examples of politicians lest we risk thread derailment into areas that could get it locked.


That's because taken as a group, men and women are not the same and desire different things in a potential mate.

Men see women as sex objects; women see men as success objects. it's a result of biology forcing different strategies on each sex necessary to propagate one's genes.

Actually it seems to be almost the opposite. A "success object" male is seen as a male power fantasy, while a sensitive pretty boy is viewed as a male "sex object".


What do you mean? The dominant athletic one is more who you'd like to be with; and the pretty maiden on the arm who you'd like to be?
If that; I have to say "Doesn't really matter (for the discussion)", personal tastes aren't all that relevant on their own. n=1 can prove anything, after all (or rather, nothing, since it isn't science). I am pretty sure most men (or even most women) would disagree with you in your view on that situation.

Yes, that is what I mean.

And no, personal preference isn't really a good way to prove a point about society as a whole, I am just trying to express why I sometimes have trouble telling the difference.

Also, are you sure most women disagree? The stereotype is always about women wanting to look pretty and be with an aggressive "alpha male," and my (admittedly limited) experience in the dating pool has seemed to corroborate that. The whole "women always choose jerks over nice guys," stereotype didn't come from nothing after all.*





(Note that even if being the maiden hanging onto the strong person is something you desire, it's not really a power Fantasy, as there is no power expressed - "Power Fantasy" is not synonymous with "the way I want to be"; but rather "This makes me feel powerful and in charge/control" - not every person will actually want a power fantasy.)
(Also, yes, this is the point where we'd need demographical studies that none of us have shown yet and I don't know if exist. Only working with more-or less anecdotal evidence; personal assessments of the situation and maybe the very flawed measure of secondary data from (video game) sales - the problems with "vote with your wallet" (Lack of actual comparable/otherwise equivalent options, mostly) are in full swing again here and we would probably be best advised to be cautious not to over interpret them.)

Do you not believe in social / emotional power?

Take, for example, the conversation about the riddle of steel in the Conan movie. In essence, Thulsa Doom claims that he is more powerful than Conan, because while Conan can exert physical power over people and kill them, Thulsa Doom is so beloved by his followers that he can simply ask them to kill themselves, and that is true power.

Obviously in real life power dynamics are an incredibly complex web that goes in both ways, but to deny that emotional / social power is a real thing seems a bit naïve.


Heck, a lot of the whole "fake gamer girl" and "MRA" nonsense is based on the assumption that pretty girls already have so much power over guys that them wanting to intrude on traditionally male hobbies / social roles is taking away what few advantages men have, especially in our society where being large and violent is no longer considered the key to success in life. I don't agree with it, but again, to deny that it exists at all is, imo, pretty naïve.





Also, a few months ago didn't we have an argument about whether or not seduction rolls in RPG's forcing a PC to sleep with someone against their player's wishes was rapey; or am I thinking of someone else? If so it seems kind of weird that you don't understand the power fantasy aspect of being able to make someone desire you or your point several pages back about how fictional characters can't give consent with regards to deciding to dress or act sexy. Apologies is I am misremembering or misunderstanding your position.



*Which is not to say that it is a universal truth or that the alleged "jerks" aren't often actually just nice guys with confidence and that the "nice guys" aren't just jerks looking for something to blame their failure on.

Lord Raziere
2017-08-08, 01:23 PM
((I can be silent for no longer.))



It gets old. Let people like what they want to like. Everyone can win. People that like more modest and/or realistic armor can have that. People that like something different can have their likes too. Everyone wins. The only time anyone loses is when people are trying to force one onto the other, and when that happens we all lose. The hobby loses. Doesn't even matter what hobby. It creates bitter feelings where none should be.


All well and good.

if there weren't actual problems with these depictions that we can't ignore, actual women that find them uncomfortable, and sure you can mock such compassion by talking about "oh are we going to police everything for fear someones feelings hurt?" but that is not the point. there is still bio-essentialism right here in this thread, meaning I cannot in good conscience agree with this sentiment as long as bio-essentialism exists. Unthinking acceptance only allows the poison your trying to excise back in. Which is different from tolerance. Just because I tolerate such views against what I feel is right, does not mean I need to accept them.

the fact remains that despite all the examples of women you posted, there are still the women that believe this in the first place, the ones who do believe this in the feminist ideas you speak against. none of what you have posted invalidates that many women truly believe this regardless, do their beliefs have no weight? I for one, I'm just not sure its a good idea to throw the fact that you need to be responsible for how you communicate out the window for unthinking freedom. Unthinking freedom and acceptance only keeps the status quo. if we want progress, we have to think, we have to be responsible about our communication. No amount of freedom absolves or invalidates the responsibility of being careful what you put out- only increases it.

and if you publish skimpy armor and your wrong it does turn out to be harmful, which it can be, that is on you. social communication is not a free for all, for words are like bullets and every shot fired counts. there are clearly people who do have a problem with it, who do have good points that such armor is impractical and stupid, and have a point that it contributes to the problem of sexism, the creator is more at fault than any viewer in such responsibility- criticism exists for a reason, and that is to see things which are wrong that the author never considered. you are not responsible for your interpretations, the author is responsible for making things that can be interpreted in such a way.

the ideal you espouse, has nothing to do with the reality of the situation. its something to aim for perhaps, but fact is there are people out there, who are not enlightened about this and continue to believe sexist things because of this media. I doubt its as simple as you make it out to be, nor can I accept any ideal that allows bio-essentialism. if anything the world has taught me, things are always more complex than a simple ideal, and more things have weight than you think they do. you can argue for freedom on this all you want, but all it sounds like to me is that you want to just look at sexy parts and ignore everything else, while pulling out any argument and justification you can for it.

if you truly believe in this feminism that is different from one you dislike as you claim, then tell me what you believe that has nothing to do with the sexiness. you can post all the sexy pictures you want, but all I get from that is somehow who really really wants to look at trashy romance art and show it off to everyone, instead of just enjoying it in private like everyone else. this issue is about more than just whether or not a woman is in weird impractical armor, and if your serious, please put aside the "sexiness is good" argument for a moment, that is obvious everyone knows that, but there are other factors at stake that we must consider beyond it, no matter how much we wish the world was that simple.

for example, maybe not exactly apart of this discussion, but related: the western ideal of beauty is harmful. there are women out there who starve themselves to be thinner, or get plastic surgery and thus go into debt for it, to be like the thin beauties produced by magazines, and said beauty isn't even real- the models in such magazines are digitally modified to be a beauty that can't actually exist or be achieved. how is this different from fantasy art? its just as fake and falls under the same label: entertainment. you can label the people who do this just because of a magazine stupid true, but that is ignoring a lifetime of socialization and cultural influence. from the first days of birth well into their teens, they are influenced so, and I do not argue for limiting the freedom of the present- I argue for considering and teaching the future. kids and teens do not know better unlike adults. do we ignore the children, the ones still growing up in this discussion and allow them to perpetuate something harmful? for them to enjoy what you want, they first must be taught differently to handle it correctly rather than the current state of affairs which are quite bad indeed. and fantasy art is apart of that influence- what fantasy do we give children? they learn things about society whether we like or not, accurate or not. such things are self-fulfilling prophecy, tell them that they are a princess and that is all they will ever be. when they can be more. the fantasy art, no matter how seemingly harmless is apart of that process.

this art does not exist in a vacuum. to ignore reality just for what you say is to lose the true battle. Responsibility is just as important as freedom. I'm less worried about how this artwork came to be, and more concerned about the negative effects it has. if it was completely positive, we wouldn't be having this discussion.

Ashiel
2017-08-08, 01:30 PM
I have two question.

1. Is it also possible to have armour that actually looks like armour? Because the first spoiler doesn't seem to show that. Yes some of them almost look like armour. The bottom two looks like clothing for a magic user and rogue.

The first one: she seem to have humongous shoulder-pads and a helmet (it is hard to judge how the male armour would look in comparison when they are not shown). It is hard to tell if she wears any other armour. Possibly some padded armour? This would be indicated by the net-pattern on arms and legs, but that would make her arms really skinny. I have seen many women of many sizes wearing gambesons, not of them had arms like that.... So maybe sensible clothing (which is good) and a helmet (and the shoulders we will wrtie of as slly fantasy for men and women alike),
Most helmets are pretty ass looking but I grabbed armor off google image search. I just loaded up Rift and took some Gyazo shots of my characters.


https://i.gyazo.com/67ff260d7b5db1d2118571a47abfda06.png
https://i.gyazo.com/bb0525f8375f28a30b55121c23642f3c.png
https://i.gyazo.com/b7cf2ca4fe9ab75cea17353bbfb920ee.png
https://i.gyazo.com/ee99311fb06828bf1134c7e2198e3f93.png
https://i.gyazo.com/ff14c87b47167f2b26af8c153b8d0a6b.png

AFK, watching an anime with a friend, will respond more when it's over.

CharonsHelper
2017-08-08, 01:32 PM
While a bit off topic - MMOs where any character class can look like anything actually bug me a lot.

I want to be able to look at a character and get a ballpark of where they are in the world. A mage who looks to be in full plate but is mechanically in a robe breaks my immersion, and it affects gameplay when you have to think who to protect and/or aim to kill fast. (the latter in a PvP environment)

Ashiel
2017-08-08, 01:44 PM
While a bit off topic - MMOs where any character class can look like anything actually bug me a lot.

I want to be able to look at a character and get a ballpark of where they are in the world. A mage who looks to be in full plate but is mechanically in a robe breaks my immersion, and it affects gameplay when you have to think who to protect and/or aim to kill fast. (the latter in a PvP environment)

Wearing robes over armor would be quite practical. Similarly, a mage wearing show armor is likewise not particularly immersion breaking.

CharonsHelper
2017-08-08, 02:25 PM
Wearing robes over armor would be quite practical.

1. That's not what they look like at all.

2. No it wouldn't. A robe would be awkward and make moving more difficult combined with the armor - it'd likely get caught in joints etc.


Similarly, a mage wearing show armor is likewise not particularly immersion breaking.

1. If the world has mages in armor mechanically - fine - but mechanically they're still wearing robes.

2. What would the point of 'show armor' be besides being extra weight and looking silly?


In addition - none of that addresses the idea of not being able to figure out a class ballpark by looking at them. That's part of the draw of classes in the first place is to differentiate characters.

Edit: I realize that these things don't bother many people, and I'm not saying that mages who look like they're in plate are having badwrongfun. But having the option in an MMO makes me much less likely to play it. While I don't have to use it, others in the world I'm playing in undoubtedly will.

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-08, 02:48 PM
Hey some magic users look cool in armor:

https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/villains/images/e/e1/Dark_Lord_Ganondorf.png/revision/latest?cb=20131121122419
https://www.ssbwiki.com/images/thumb/2/23/Ganondorf_SSB4.png/250px-Ganondorf_SSB4.png
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/ssb/images/b/b2/Ganondorf_Clear_SSBB.png/revision/latest?cb=20160118005153
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/divayth_fyr_5744.jpg
http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/elderscrolls/images/5/56/Divayth_Fyr.png/revision/latest?cb=20160726120244
https://www.elderscrollsportal.de/wiki/images/1/1b/Divayth_Fyr.jpg

CharonsHelper
2017-08-08, 02:55 PM
Hey some magic users look cool in armor:

https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/villains/images/e/e1/Dark_Lord_Ganondorf.png/revision/latest?cb=20131121122419
https://www.ssbwiki.com/images/thumb/2/23/Ganondorf_SSB4.png/250px-Ganondorf_SSB4.png
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/ssb/images/b/b2/Ganondorf_Clear_SSBB.png/revision/latest?cb=20160118005153
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/divayth_fyr_5744.jpg
http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/elderscrolls/images/5/56/Divayth_Fyr.png/revision/latest?cb=20160726120244
https://www.elderscrollsportal.de/wiki/images/1/1b/Divayth_Fyr.jpg

I never said that they didn't.


If the world has mages in armor mechanically - fine -

pres_man
2017-08-08, 04:47 PM
I will say that I agree with Lord Raziere on one thing, "... wrong it does turn out to be harmful, which it can be, that is on you."

This also goes for those that demonize creators and fans of work that others see as "problematic". D&D and heavy metal don't make people satanists or suicidal, yet these claims did a lot of harm during the 80's. Violent video games do not make people more likely to go out and harm others, yet these claims in the 90's did harm to fans and creators. And yes, there is the extremely strong possibility that sexual/sexist images used in video games, TTRPGs, comics, etc. does not in fact cause sexist behavior or thoughts in their fans and creators. And if it is wrong to claim these do cause that, what harm might be being caused.

So, yes, everyone should be careful about what communications they put out and what harm they can do. Seems to me, the "safest" course would be to increase the diversity of representation, not to try to exclude some of it.

There may actually not be anything bad or wrong or badong with the Conan "male power fantasy" (standing over a mountain of corpses of his foes with a sexually appealing woman clinging worshipfully to his leg) as long as there are plenty of other images out there of both men and women in diverse roles.

CharonsHelper
2017-08-08, 05:02 PM
D&D and heavy metal does don't make people satanists or suicidal, yet these claims did a lot of harm during the 80's.

I'm assuming that that was a typo.

pres_man
2017-08-08, 05:13 PM
I'm assuming that that was a typo.

Must have been a Chick-ian slip. :wink:

Mendicant
2017-08-08, 08:27 PM
There may actually not be anything bad or wrong or badong with the Conan "male power fantasy" (standing over a mountain of corpses of his foes with a sexually appealing woman clinging worshipfully to his leg) as long as there are plenty of other images out there of both men and women in diverse roles.

Sure, but that isn't the case, currently. Nobody in this thread has actually advocated the "shut it all down" approach. The case that has been made is that
A: the current state of things is that we are inundated with boob windows and butt twists and
B: this is not super great.

This has been accompanied by a liberal amount of
C: a lot of the sexualized art has the added problem of looking kinda dumb.

Floret
2017-08-08, 08:31 PM
As threads get longer, and posts grow along, I again pick up the habit of putting quotes into spoilers...


It's getting longer, so I though I'd split it up.

I ask because I am trying to understand what you see the problem as being.

In fantasy and Sci Fi, what proportion of the protagonists do you think are female?

For this, to get a broader perspective, I will go beyond merely one single lead, define protagonist as "part of the main heroic group", if that is alright?
With that in mind... Let's take a look at some franchises, series and movies from the last few years.
The two modern Star Wars ensembles have one trio of one woman with two men; arguably Han, Chewie and Leia also count, bringing it up to 2:4. Rogue One had one woman, with 4 men and one male-coded robot. The newest Star Trek, from what I could see, has 2 women opposite six men.
Going to Fantasy, Game of Thrones is notoriously bad at having identifiyable protagonists, but by a rough count we get (from characters still currently alive) 7 women, and 10 men, or something? Doing surprisingly well, with raw numbers... The hobbit had arguably one woman, and let's just say a lot of men, grant that the source is really old and leave it at that. Fantastic beasts I think went 2:2 on protagonists?
For superheroes, Marvel's movies have (in the most current lineups) the Avengers (2 women; 6 men) and the Guardians of the Galaxy, coming in at 3 women and 5 men (If we include Rocket and Groot, which, honestly, we should. They are both voiceacted by men, and clearly male-coded. The Online series have currently (afaik?) 1 woman and 4 men at the lead. DCCU comes in with one woman and five men for Justice League.

So doing a numbercount of popular cinematographical works? More equal in Fantasy than I thought; excluding Tolkien Adaptations (Though they are atrocious in their numbers that is technically not a modern thing); and lining up with the numbers I had chosen beforehands.
Sci-Fi and superheroes, not so much, excluding GotG 2. (The first movie had 1:4)
...It is late, so I will not try and go through video games and books as well; maybe someone else can do a headcount there. I am surprised that the numbers might line up somewhat more closely than I had thought they would, but I don't think they quite match up with Fanbase percentages (and, for example with the Star Wars movies there was definite pushback against having women as protagonists. Silly pushback, but it was there.)


OK, let me explain the question better. By "of the type you like" I was refering to a genre of games you like. Let's take role playing video games as an example. By "cater to your tastes" I was refering to what you have told me of your preferences regarding gender representation and presentation. So the questions are:
- Are there any role playing video games that are not skeevy (to use your earlier word) in terms of gender representation and presentation (not necesarily ideal, but close enough for you)? Which? If not what is the closest and where does it fall short in your opinion?
- Are there any role playing video games which are skeevy in terms of gender representation and presentation (not necesarily ideal, but close enough for you)? Which and why?

(My words reflect mostly current moods and an imperfect grasp on english. You can change them, if you like :smallwink:)
- I think Dragon Age Inquisition comes at least very close, in sofar as that I don't remember anything sticking out to me. The world being less equal than some texts like to claim, maybe. I have found writers to be notoriously bad at actually writing equal societies, even when claiming to do so (Not that it even fully claimed that, yes, but... minute, irrelevant (for the thread) details). Dark Souls from what I have seen (Let'splays featuring male characters and a few screenshots) seems to be quite good as well.
- Does "lots of MMOs" count? Guild Wars 2 is far from perfect, though tolerable, WoW worse. It's not that big a thing in RPGs though, mostly. Also I don't play many games (An MMO takes time^^) and carefully choose those by recommendation.


So you think players are incentivised to select skimpy armour?

In the particular game you are thinking of, are there skimpy options for male characters as well?

Yes, I think they are incentivised, by the armor being shinier, and coupled with more prestige (Since harder to get).
There are some, but by far not as many as for female characters. (A fact my boyfriend often mourns).



So not only do you not like games/media that depict female in that way (sexyness as sole trait), but you advocate against them, although you do not think they should be censored.
How do you advocate against them? Do you advocate the manufacturers of this type of media should not provide despite there being a demand for it? Or do you advocate that those individuals who do want games/media that depict women in that way should not buy such media despite wanting it?

Also interested in if you think there is some sort of objective test that could be applied to a particular depiction of a person so that one could tell if it depicts their "sexyness as being their sole character trait"? Or is it more of a subjective "I know it when I see it" type of thing?

Yes. If I were to go about things by more than arguing on the internet, creating my own stuff carefully and talking to people I know IRL, I'd advocate for both producers and consumers of the media to examine their preferences, and ask themselves why they hold them, and what that might say about them. For producers, also what impact they think they might have on our culture.
If they are fine with reinforcing this, be it on their heads; but never attribute to malice what you could attribute to laziness or incompetence, so I think developers deserve to be told if they **** up in some way. They are not forced to change, but should make the decisions consciously.

As for an objective test... I shall try and see if I can find something tomorrow (Keeping in mind I run on CET)


Great. So, you have confirmed that in an ideal world, you would like to see portrayals of women in media reflecting the looks, traits and abilities of women in real life, in similar proportion to their incidence in real life.

Does the same apply to negative stereotypes of women? For example, lets assume that it is a negative stereotype of women that they are not particularly handy (they aren't as good as men at fixing things etc). Should media portray women as more capable of fixing things than they actually are, or is it still ok to represent women's handiness accurately?

Negative stereotypes? No, why would it? I want media to reflect reality, and stereotypes are not that. Another stereotype is women can't drive, for example - one demonstrably false, at least enough to convince insurance companies to give women better rates.
Negative, actual traits? Sure. It would be okay to represent things accurately - keeping in mind "accurately" means "the whole possible spectrum explored, roughly weighted according to real life". If women are, on average, worse mechanics; that should not preclude from showing women being great mechanics in proportions roughly to equal life. Again, spread across all media.


Ok, I follow all that. Of that is not a course that is practically available to either of us (or presumably anyone else in this thread) to persuade each other - unless someone is a student doing their thesis on this topic or something.
So for the purposes of this thread, I don't think there's really much we can do to persuade each other except assert our own perceptions based on anecdotal observations (although often quite a lot of them), and give a few examples.

I do agree it is somewhat unfeasible to do just for this threat. And, I must disappoint, media sciences is my minor, so I will not be doing a thesis on that. Might have considered it, otherwise. Yes, we might as well let this rest until someone comes up with another solution.
I merely wanted to point out how one could theoretically go about things had one the resources :smallwink:


I may spend a bit longer on this, as I find it quite interesting. And it is the first real disagrement between us since you set out yor broad views on women in media, and I began asking you questions about them.

First, I am talking about whether women or ugly people are more discriminated against today, not historically. I understand that you were referencing historic laws to illustrate your opinion that discrimination against women used to be more strongly felt than discrimination against ugly people, but I thought best to be on the same page about that point from the start.

I'm not sure the historic point works though. I think it is uncontroversial to say that western society has come a long wayin terms of gender equality (not at all to suggest that it has come far enough). Women, although they may still be disadvantaged, are not as disadvantaged as they once were. On the other hand I'm not sure of any evidence that discrimination against ugly people has been reduced. Accordingly, it is quite possible that women used to be discriminated against more than unattractive people, but that now unattractive people are more discriminated against.

You mention ugly people in leadership positions. But when we control for age (holder of high office tend to be older than is conventionally attractive) I don't think that is so in recent years. If we take the main presidential candidates in USA (lets go with USA because both of us are likely to know a fair few candidates) - Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Mitt Romney, John McCain, George Bush and John Kerry. Of those seven, I don't think any are particularly unattractive for their age - most are moderate, and 2 or 3 (Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, maybe John kerry) are unusually attractive for their age. Granted only one is a woman (and I think USA is behind most of the Western world in that regard), but the lack of ugly candidates is also marked.

I'm happy for you to suggest a different example of "leadership positions" so we can compare. You mention parliament, parliament of which country? But, i think if we control for age you will find that ugle people are remarkably underrepresented.

In your last paragraph you suggest that women fac greater workplace discrimination than ugly people. Do you have any basis for that assertion? Do you htink that women also face as much discrimination outside of the workplace context, such as in social settings?

Whether unattractive people or women face greater discrimination may end up being a point on which we have to agree to disagree. I am not even particularl sure what I think, but I lean toward ugly people facing greater discrimination. All else being equal, from a discrimination perspective, I would rather be a moderately attractive woman, than a clearly ugly person of either gender.

I brought up historical stuff for two reasons: To show one easily demonstrable difference in the discrimination against both groups (Legal encodings). And to argue that something that was that bad not too long ago, cannot have faded completely from then.
With "leadership positions" i actually meant in companies, not necessarily world leaders. Even with that, me being German, American presidents were not the first to come to mind - and I think even controlling for age, our last Bundeskanzler weren't the most attractive people. But here, again, you'd need more than anecdotal opinions. Maybe, given the fact those are important people, research might be found measuring them? I am unsure. And maybe Germany has different standards than the US do. (Or wherever you're from) Might be we are less superficial :smallwink:

But beyond arguing such details... I do think you are correct that I cannot simply claim sex discrimination is greater than attractiveness discrimination. We agree both exist, we agree both should probably go. Which one is more important or the bigger factor is really not something to be proven by arguing personal opinion and perception; and again we run into a need for cold, hard facts none of us have.
I swear I should compile a list of research topics for when I have access to scientific databases again...


Of course I did. It criticizes conflating arousal with orientation and sensationalist spin on the research. However, for the discussion at hand, that is a red herring. When it comes to the material fact - that women do in fact oggle other women - the article neither debunks nor disagrees with that. It agrees with it. It even refers to studies other than what the title comes from, which provide additional proof of commonality of women's attraction to women.
The article does mention culture as one possible reason behind the phenomenom, even if it does not go in depth about it.

However, this argument of yours is poor counter to mine. To explain why, let's look at your own example of masculine clothing versus feminine clothing. Which movement, since 1970s, has been the most vocal opponent of feminine clothing, expressing this, among other ways, via burning articles of feminine-coded clothing?
How about second wave feminists.
Who have also been some of the most vocal proponents of female same-sex love?
Oh right, second wave feminists. Again.
So clearly, this idea of feminine-coded things being inferior is not sole invention of men, nor is it solely upheld by men. It is in part created and upheld by women and people who claim to speak for women.

And what makes you think the people involved need to consciously identify as anything?
Majority of the women who took part in the study showing they got aroused by images of other women, identified as straight. In a different study examining male bisexuality (also referred to in the article), several men identifying as bi were found to only demonstrate arousal to images of one sex.
The lesson I'd take from that is that what people identify as is not any guarantee of what they find sexually or aesthetically appealing.
Or to make this less abstract via example: He-man probably wasn't made with the intent to appeal to gay men. Neither were Biker Mice From Mars. They are just examples of generically macho muscle aesthetic. But anecdotally, quite a few men realized they had hots for other guys because of them. Even someone in cast-iron closet might be a fan of either due to finding their character designs attractive, even if they'd never admit that as the specific reason.
Now consider any example of sexualized female character, ostensibly made to be attractive to men, like, say, Lara Croft. Does this stop some woman from finding them appealing? No, it does not. Being sexual fantasy to men does not prevent her from being sexual fantasy to some women also. It does not prevent women from buying Tomb Raider games and thus reinforcing the franchise. So on and so forth.
The women do not need identify as anything or be open about their preferencrs to influence the status quo. All they need to do is buy stuff with sexualized women, because they think those women are hot.

Did you see me using the word "natural" somewhere?
No, you did not. Don't get sidetracked by a strawman of your own creation.
My argument is about the lack of discussion on how women's own preferences affect art. It's criticism of the stereotypical notion that sexualized women in art only exist for men, and because of men. Whether the appeal of said art is based on nature or nurture is irrelevant to it.

The market of RPG art does not need to specifically cater to women, for women to have impact on it. I already covered impact of coincidental catering above, so let's talk about something else:
A person up thread mentioned that the peak of midriff baring outfits for superheroines coincided with midriff baring outfits being a women's fashion trend in real life. Another person mentioned that women make 80% of domestic purchases.
There are, roughly, two options: one, comic books kicked off a trend of revealing clothing. Or two, the way women dressed in real life influenced comic book artists.
Given how niche comic book industry was compared to women's clothing industry, the second is much more likely in my opinion.
So now the question is, why would women, who apparently control where the money goes, choose such outfits? You can backpedal and retreat behind patriarchal influence, but then you become guilty of the exact thing I'm criticizing.

And what stops the woman the artist want to see from being a sexual fantasy to them?
What stops her from being a sexual fantasy to men also?
What stops her from being objectified, sexist, stereotypical, or whatever else?
As a general rule, nothing. There isn't a real guarantee that art of women, made by women based on women's preferences, is qualitatively better than that of men based ln men's preferemces.

Did you see me use the words "equal force"?
No, you did not. Again, don't strawman the argument.
A market can be skewed towards straight men yet still be influenced by, supported by, or even created by women.

Demand does not necessarily create supply, nor does it prevent consumers from latching on the supply they have. Again, consider the Lara Croft example. She does not need to be stellar representative of women or what women want, for there to be women who find her desireable enough to shell out money for products including her.

Alright, so you supplied an article with the rather inflammatory headline that no women are straight (that goes on to discuss and debunk this claim), just to back up the claim that there are women who are attracted to women?
If so, I severely misunderstood your intent, and apologize. I must question, though, how this is a statement you felt the need to back up in the first place; and why you linked to that specific article to make that point? Or, more generally: If all you wanted to say is that some women are into women, why did you link the article?
And, otherwise, apart from me overreacting to you and you being somewhat justifiedly miffed at that (that I see, and I apologize for overreating), I am largely confused. What, exactly, is the point you try to make?
That there is some influence (smaller than the one of straight male preferences) that non-straight women have on the amount of sexualised women in media? If so, how large do you think it is, in comparison, and how much impact do non-straight women actually have here? You said not equal to straight men, and I'd agree with that. But can you be more specific? Because, I'd argue its pretty small, perhaps almost negligible. I'd like to believe wlw to have influence on media, from personal experience I just don't see it being much more than that.

Two minor points: Your description of second-wave feminist activity is lacking some context. Yes, indeed, they rebelled against markers of feminity - because women, back in the days of second-wave feminism, were still pretty strictly beholden to them. Fighting for the ability to engage in male-coded activities (And getting closer to equality for women) was more important then (or it seemed that way to them), than arguing for feminine and masculine (coded, just imagine me constantly saying coded) activities being equally worthy. Today, where women do have those additional options (though still not with the same readiness men do), other directions are necessary. There is a reason today has third-wave feminism.
They did not reject symbols and acts of femininity to devalue them. They rejected them because society forced those upon them, to devalue them alongside those symbols.

And: That latching onto what supply (or things interpreatable as supply) is present is pretty much the reason the aforementioned Bechdel test was formulated. It is a mechanism I am aware of.



So well, I found, and play a Video Game, that got Female Armor Done right. It is called "For Honor." No exposed Vital Organs, (other then the Raider, and that includes both Genders), and very nice Armor in general.

Oh yes, For Honor. It does a splendid job, I find, in depicting (arguably cool), realistic-seeming Fantasy armor in manners equal for men and women. Shame they botched their handling of updates and servers so hard.


Actually, several MMOs were mentioned, including recent ones such as Albion Online which just launched out of beta within the last 30 days or so. I cited Rift as an example, which IMHO has better gameplay that World of Warcraft in terms of character building and specialization, as well as the best dress up system of any MMORPG I've ever seen.

But you've just proved my point.

Rift has modest full coverage female armor.
https://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/6/6b/PvP_R4_Leather_Set_Seditionist_Female.png/revision/latest/scale-to-width-down/338?cb=20110512090424
https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/e/e6/PvP_R6_Leather_Set_Vigilante_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110512090944
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-haABAAjVPU8/UoqDlA6ZyuI/AAAAAAAABnI/5HVy193A7H0/s1600/RIFT_Nathellia.png
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/general-discussion/9516d1361310800-best-dressed-toons-cleric1.jpg
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/0/09/Conjurer%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514044201
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/warrior-discussion/19580d1407553680-post-your-warrior-costumes-here-rift-2014-08-09-12-45-21-37.jpg

And it also lets you dress up in things you might find problematic.
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/rogue-discussion/16578d1389745784t-best-looking-wardrobe-rouges-armor7.jpg
http://forums.riftgame.com/attachments/community-creations/16686d1390548034-post-your-favorite-wardrobe-creations-rogue.jpg
https://vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/riftwardrobe/images/8/85/Brigand%27s_Set_Female.png/revision/latest?cb=20110514001127
If you see sexualized characters in Rift, it's because people want to be sexual. Because Rift has the best wardrobe system I've ever seen in any MMO. Any game, as a matter of fact, that I can recall. As you collect outfits they become permanently stored on your account, and you can dress your character in any fashion you desire regardless of the stats on your gear, which means you'll never be forced to wear an outfit you don't want to wear because of mechanical advantages or disadvantages. You don't even have to stick to armor and gear sets usable by your class (you can have a mage wearing full plate or a warrior wearing robes).

You write off Rift because the MMO set to appeal to thousands of thousands of people has options for both camps. You're effectively saying you will not be happy until someone else cannot have something that you do not want. That's not cool, and that's why I think your position is a destructive and malicious one.

As I mentioned, I didn't find much on Albion Online - Looking at their website, the screens I saw are so small I cannot make out armor details at all; and at least the artwork has a surprisingly distinct lack of women without cleavage. I saw one, I think. And let's not talk about the percentage of characters shown that even were female.
With all the examples you gave, maybe you misunderstood my point: What I asked for was not a game with non-sexualised armor. What I asked for was a game without sexualised armor. That has not yet been shown. (I would contend myself with there being a select few, thematically fitting sets that were equally sexualised for both genders. A gladiator style, maybe.)

My point on armor has never been purely coverage - boobplate, albeit fully coverin, has also drawn my ire repeatedly. My larger point has been about equality in depiction. Armor that is revealing on men should be equally on women, and armor that is covering and sensible on men should be equally so on women. For my look at Rift, I used this site (http://riftwardrobe.wikia.com/wiki/Rift_Wardrobe_Wiki)I conveniently found, to directly compare the male and female versions of a number of armor sets. While it does do better than at least the cliché MMO, there still is a distinct pattern of female armor being... more revealing, less covering, less realistic in regards to form. For each category of armor.

And... I am saying that my ideal product would not have senselessly revealing armor at all, yes. Because if I want to play an MMO, and a game without sexualised armor to boot, in a game where I regularly see other player characters, this option cannot exist, otherwise it ceases to fullfill that quality.
So... yes, I am saying that I would not have found my ideal, perfect MMO (in regards to representation), until there was one where fans of sexualised armor were left out in the cold. I do not find this unreasonable, or destructive - people have different tastes, and people that have certain tastes being excluded from certain products not catering to those tastes is pretty much par for the course. If I don't like Fighting games, I will be excluded from enjoying street fighter. This is not discriminatory, in the presence of equal other options.


I take it you're not aware of how horrible the sales of Marvel comics are going, or how they've been alienating and driving away their fans?
EDIT: PS - I've been meaning to respond to your PM, but I haven't had the time to do so with doctor's appointments and then getting called into work for an emergency. I haven't forgotten about you and I'm going to try to get it to you sometime within the next 24 hours.

I'd question what part of that is because of diversity, and what part maybe because of plottwists revealing popular characters to have been agents of the pseudo-Nazi Hydra. There have been outcries from numerous political sides over current decisions with Marvel.
And, nice to hear! No pressure, take the time you need. I am looking forward to continue that discussion :smallsmile:


Yes, that is what I mean.

And no, personal preference isn't really a good way to prove a point about society as a whole, I am just trying to express why I sometimes have trouble telling the difference.

Also, are you sure most women disagree? The stereotype is always about women wanting to look pretty and be with an aggressive "alpha male," and my (admittedly limited) experience in the dating pool has seemed to corroborate that. The whole "women always choose jerks over nice guys," stereotype didn't come from nothing after all.
Which is not to say that it is a universal truth or that the alleged "jerks" aren't often actually just nice guys with confidence and that the "nice guys" aren't just jerks looking for something to blame their failure on.

I can see how that might mess with being able to understand. After all, we all usually think the way we percieve the world is just normal, and how things are, and try to fit that together with what other people tell us - until we find out, no, it is not "just normal" to do these things and find out we have ADD; or those "girl crushes" were actual crushes and not just how those feel to everyone, or maybe that there really is a difference in colours of apples.
Then trying to piece together just how far the influence goes, and confusion abounds.

And... I am not sure, actually. From all I have seen, the stereotype doesn't really line up with reality, but that is of course again anecdotal. I have over my life not seen jerks/"Alphas" have much more success with women than other people, especially not when controlled for confidence, and possibly looks.
(As for more totally anecdotal evidence at least controlling for those two factors, two Larp characters of mine: The (male) womanizing, charming cartographer I played some years ago; and my just open and friendly (female) skald have about equal success with women; if not the skald moreso. She is decidedly less of a jerk, and less actively trying; on top of having a theoretically smaller dating pool (Namely excluding straight women).)
And let's not get into "women go for jerks over nice guys". There is no way this will end well, and it doesn't have much actual basis in reality.

Even if this were the current situation though, I would argue it is largely culturally established and to some degree enforced, and something to potentially work against. Gender stereotypes need to be thouroughly dismantled in favour of people being free to choose their paths, I find.


Do you not believe in social / emotional power?

Take, for example, the conversation about the riddle of steel in the Conan movie. In essence, Thulsa Doom claims that he is more powerful than Conan, because while Conan can exert physical power over people and kill them, Thulsa Doom is so beloved by his followers that he can simply ask them to kill themselves, and that is true power.

Obviously in real life power dynamics are an incredibly complex web that goes in both ways, but to deny that emotional / social power is a real thing seems a bit naïve.

Heck, a lot of the whole "fake gamer girl" and "MRA" nonsense is based on the assumption that pretty girls already have so much power over guys that them wanting to intrude on traditionally male hobbies / social roles is taking away what few advantages men have, especially in our society where being large and violent is no longer considered the key to success in life. I don't agree with it, but again, to deny that it exists at all is, imo, pretty naïve.

Also, a few months ago didn't we have an argument about whether or not seduction rolls in RPG's forcing a PC to sleep with someone against their player's wishes was rapey; or am I thinking of someone else? If so it seems kind of weird that you don't understand the power fantasy aspect of being able to make someone desire you or your point several pages back about how fictional characters can't give consent with regards to deciding to dress or act sexy. Apologies is I am misremembering or misunderstanding your position.


Sure I do. I do admit that in the focus on traditional male power fantasies I had not thought of that interpretation and thank you for bringing it to mind. I might want to argue that it is not something so easily displayed in fiction, but even as I am writing this I am unsure about the truth behind that. So, yes, this is a form of power Fantasy I had not considered from that lense beforehands; and it might be considered a stereotypically female power Fantasy, even.
But one thing I will argue: It serves much, much worse for a protagonist of... anything, much less most games; than the male one.
(And, of course, though here we both agree I think: Restricting women to this is at least as bad as restricting men to the Conan version of the power Fantasy).

You do not misremember us meeting in that thread; but might be misremembering or misunderstanding my position (Or I did not make myself sufficiently clear back then. Might have been that.). I am a bit confused why you seem my point there runs counter to arguing fictional characters don't make decisions for themselves (That instead are made by their creators (in the widest sense) for them, ideally on the basis of established character traits).
(My point there, to try to explain it as briefly as possible, is that I want for social interactions to be mechanized in RPGs if they are part of the RPG (On par with mechanization of other relevant things), with actual, mechanical rewards for succeeding on rolls as would happen with combat rolls. The details for that; and that ideally a player would only ever face a choice of multiple differently (un)favorable options, to never be told in absolutes "no, your character does this, fullstop" got more complicated as time went on.)


2. No it wouldn't. A robe would be awkward and make moving more difficult combined with the armor - it'd likely get caught in joints etc.

From my experience, it really depends on the robe (or how you define robe). I mean, a tabard was made for use over armor; some later Gambesons (Or gambeson-like pieces) were worn over it, etc. Putting cloth over armor isn't all that uncommon. From having fought in rather long, deliberately robe-like tabards I can say... it works, and doesn't really impact much.
And I do agree that it is really nice to have a ballpark while looking at people in an MMO, but to be honest if I am in PvP I am not even looking at the characters themselves for that - merely at the class symbols besides their healthbar. Dunno if Rift has that, but it is a much more useful and faster measure.

...Holy **** that got long. Serves me right for answering only once in a day, and then to everything I found relevant to reply to...

Liquor Box
2017-08-08, 11:31 PM
Its my understanding that for men height is one of, if not the, most important thing in business, in politics, and in personal relationships. Taller candidates almost always win elections, and if you look at statistics for corporate positions height and salary / authority are almost directly correlated. I have also seen studies that consistently rate men's height as the most important thing look for in a mate, to the point where most women would rather marry a tall blue color schlub than a short charming billionaire.


I have seen research to this effect as well. Apparently men whose height is a standard deviation below the earn a surprisingly large amount less than their taller colleagues (men taller than the mean are advantaged, but not to quite the same extent).

The intersection between this and the gender wage gap is interesting as well, given that women are generally shorter than men. I wonder who would earn less on average - an average height woman, or a short man who is the same height as the average woman? I wonder how much of the gender wage gap can be explained by women being shorter. I'd guess some, but not all. Do you know if there is any research on this?

Liquor Box
2017-08-09, 12:02 AM
For this, to get a broader perspective, I will go beyond merely one single lead, define protagonist as "part of the main heroic group", if that is alright?
With that in mind... Let's take a look at some franchises, series and movies from the last few years.
The two modern Star Wars ensembles have one trio of one woman with two men; arguably Han, Chewie and Leia also count, bringing it up to 2:4. Rogue One had one woman, with 4 men and one male-coded robot. The newest Star Trek, from what I could see, has 2 women opposite six men.
Going to Fantasy, Game of Thrones is notoriously bad at having identifiyable protagonists, but by a rough count we get (from characters still currently alive) 7 women, and 10 men, or something? Doing surprisingly well, with raw numbers... The hobbit had arguably one woman, and let's just say a lot of men, grant that the source is really old and leave it at that. Fantastic beasts I think went 2:2 on protagonists?
For superheroes, Marvel's movies have (in the most current lineups) the Avengers (2 women; 6 men) and the Guardians of the Galaxy, coming in at 3 women and 5 men (If we include Rocket and Groot, which, honestly, we should. They are both voiceacted by men, and clearly male-coded. The Online series have currently (afaik?) 1 woman and 4 men at the lead. DCCU comes in with one woman and five men for Justice League.

So doing a numbercount of popular cinematographical works? More equal in Fantasy than I thought; excluding Tolkien Adaptations (Though they are atrocious in their numbers that is technically not a modern thing); and lining up with the numbers I had chosen beforehands.
Sci-Fi and superheroes, not so much, excluding GotG 2. (The first movie had 1:4)
...It is late, so I will not try and go through video games and books as well; maybe someone else can do a headcount there. I am surprised that the numbers might line up somewhat more closely than I had thought they would, but I don't think they quite match up with Fanbase percentages (and, for example with the Star Wars movies there was definite pushback against having women as protagonists. Silly pushback, but it was there.)

No need to do a tally of other forms of media, I originally asked for only Sci-Fi, wo you have given me mroe than I asked for.

My tally from your numbers above is that you come out with 5:14 (26% female) for Sci Fi and 9:12 (so 43% female) fantasy.

You earlier estimated that 33% to 50% of the audience of Sci-Fi/Fantasy is female. That means that the proportion of female characters (by your count) for fantasy is within the range you estimated for Fantasy audiences and your count for female representation in Sic-Fi is just outside it.

Does this mean that, in your opinion, the number of women character in fantasy and Sci-Fi is not problematic?

(My words reflect mostly current moods and an imperfect grasp on english. You can change them, if you like :smallwink:)
- I think Dragon Age Inquisition comes at least very close, in sofar as that I don't remember anything sticking out to me. The world being less equal than some texts like to claim, maybe. I have found writers to be notoriously bad at actually writing equal societies, even when claiming to do so (Not that it even fully claimed that, yes, but... minute, irrelevant (for the thread) details). Dark Souls from what I have seen (Let'splays featuring male characters and a few screenshots) seems to be quite good as well.
- Does "lots of MMOs" count? Guild Wars 2 is far from perfect, though tolerable, WoW worse. It's not that big a thing in RPGs though, mostly. Also I don't play many games (An MMO takes time^^) and carefully choose those by recommendation.

I avoided MMORPGs because I still think it is problematic to our discussion that it is users and not the game manufacturer who determine how women are dressed, how they look, how they act and how many of them there are.

But in the realm of CRPG , you agree that there are options (DA2) suitable to you. So is it fair to say that the CRPG genre's treatment of women is not problematic, because they provide options for you as well as potentially options for people who like the sort of stuff you call skeevy?


Yes. If I were to go about things by more than arguing on the internet, creating my own stuff carefully and talking to people I know IRL, I'd advocate for both producers and consumers of the media to examine their preferences, and ask themselves why they hold them, and what that might say about them. For producers, also what impact they think they might have on our culture.
If they are fine with reinforcing this, be it on their heads; but never attribute to malice what you could attribute to laziness or incompetence, so I think developers deserve to be told if they **** up in some way. They are not forced to change, but should make the decisions consciously.

Ok. You talk about motivations ("why they hold their preferences"), but surely the main motivation of the companies that produce media is obvious - to make profit by appealing to as large of an audience as is available. To the extent their products are 'skeevy', it's not because of malice or laziness, but simply because they give their consumers what they want in order to maximise profits.

[quote]As for an objective test... I shall try and see if I can find something tomorrow (Keeping in mind I run on CET)
I'd be interested. I think some sort of objective measure would add greatly to any assessment of whether women are sexualised far more than men.

Negative stereotypes? No, why would it? I want media to reflect reality, and stereotypes are not that. Another stereotype is women can't drive, for example - one demonstrably false, at least enough to convince insurance companies to give women better rates.
Negative, actual traits? Sure. It would be okay to represent things accurately - keeping in mind "accurately" means "the whole possible spectrum explored, roughly weighted according to real life". If women are, on average, worse mechanics; that should not preclude from showing women being great mechanics in proportions roughly to equal life. Again, spread across all media.

I suppose I had mean to refer to actual negative traits that women have, that are exaggerated by stereotypes. Driving is a great example, some women are poor drivers (although possibly no more so than men) but this is exaggerated so that the stereotype is that women are predominantly poor drivers.
So you think it is ok to portray some women as poor drivers, so long as other women are portrayed as competent drivers.

Would you have any objection to portraying women as often being housewives who do not work, because in reality that are far more often housewives than men are? Are you also happy with the media less frequently portraying women in positions of power (highly paid jobs, company directors etc) because the reality (even thought that reality is not ideal) is that men more frequently fill these roles in real life?

I do agree it is somewhat unfeasible to do just for this threat. And, I must disappoint, media sciences is my minor, so I will not be doing a thesis on that. Might have considered it, otherwise. Yes, we might as well let this rest until someone comes up with another solution.
I merely wanted to point out how one could theoretically go about things had one the resources :smallwink:
Great, thanks

I brought up historical stuff for two reasons: To show one easily demonstrable difference in the discrimination against both groups (Legal encodings). And to argue that something that was that bad not too long ago, cannot have faded completely from then.
With "leadership positions" i actually meant in companies, not necessarily world leaders. Even with that, me being German, American presidents were not the first to come to mind - and I think even controlling for age, our last Bundeskanzler weren't the most attractive people. But here, again, you'd need more than anecdotal opinions. Maybe, given the fact those are important people, research might be found measuring them? I am unsure. And maybe Germany has different standards than the US do. (Or wherever you're from) Might be we are less superficial :smallwink:

But beyond arguing such details... I do think you are correct that I cannot simply claim sex discrimination is greater than attractiveness discrimination. We agree both exist, we agree both should probably go. Which one is more important or the bigger factor is really not something to be proven by arguing personal opinion and perception; and again we run into a need for cold, hard facts none of us have.
I swear I should compile a list of research topics for when I have access to scientific databases again...

I'm not from USA< i just chose US leaders because they are probably the best known worldwide, so I thought you might be familiar with them. Merkel is the only recent German leader I know of, and I think she is of average attractiveness for her age, and is of course a woman.

I agree with your conclusion that we have no real proof as to whether unattractive people or women suffer more discrimination. As such, we probably cannot take this conversation much further. I just find it really interesting that there are some really high-profile types of discrimination that the public is highly aware of (race, gender and more recently sexuality) and other types of discrimination that are almost never spoken about. I think there's a perception that straight while males are really well represented in media, but I think the truth is that, because of a myriad of other grounds of dscrimination (against the fat, the stupid, the bald, the ugly, the poor, the disabled, the mentally ill - the list goes on) it is actually very few people who are well represented.

Floret
2017-08-09, 01:56 PM
No need to do a tally of other forms of media, I originally asked for only Sci-Fi, wo you have given me mroe than I asked for.

My tally from your numbers above is that you come out with 5:14 (26% female) for Sci Fi and 9:12 (so 43% female) fantasy.

You earlier estimated that 33% to 50% of the audience of Sci-Fi/Fantasy is female. That means that the proportion of female characters (by your count) for fantasy is within the range you estimated for Fantasy audiences and your count for female representation in Sic-Fi is just outside it.

Does this mean that, in your opinion, the number of women character in fantasy and Sci-Fi is not problematic?

Well, Sci-Fi and Fantasy videogames and novels might have different distributions than movies. But if you are satisfied, I shall leave that here, it is work to count these and I don't read much these days; especially not Sci-Fi.
And... looking at the pure numbers of protagonists defined this broadly, they might be, in Fantasy works fairly unproblematic. I would have guessed differently without counting these up. I would argue that it is still not known if this extends to full character rosters (including antagonists; and sidecharacters); and that pure numbers don't take into account the way they are represented, or the fact that women might have a tendency to be a protagonist rather than the protagonist (Though looking at the sources of the numbers, both Star Wars examples somewhat run against that).
For Sci-Fi, I'd argue though, 33-50% is a rough estimate; and it falling below the lowest score I can think realistic is still a problem.
(I also want to point out that this is a fairly superficial collection of data; and by no means representative. More concentrated measures might be necessary for that, though the data allows a careful prediction.)


I avoided MMORPGs because I still think it is problematic to our discussion that it is users and not the game manufacturer who determine how women are dressed, how they look, how they act and how many of them there are.

But in the realm of CRPG , you agree that there are options (DA2) suitable to you. So is it fair to say that the CRPG genre's treatment of women is not problematic, because they provide options for you as well as potentially options for people who like the sort of stuff you call skeevy?

Tricky. I still see problematic elements; and really question the decisions that lead to them being put in games. I do not think the call for these elements is actually as high as the raw sales numbers might suggest, video games have lots of intervening factors there (gameplay, for example). MMOs skew the data a bit due to player choice, yes, but as long as the sexualised and nonsexualised options aren't equivalent in all other regards (Stats, prestige) I don't think the developers are off the hook.
So maybe I will not be happy until full gender equality is reached. Maybe I am a miserable person that doesn't think people should enjoy skimpy armor. And to some degree that is right, I cannot understand the desire to, at least not as anything else but an expression of somewhat sexist thinking patterns. But maybe that is on me. I will always argue for betterment of society and callouts, but not censorship.


Ok. You talk about motivations ("why they hold their preferences"), but surely the main motivation of the companies that produce media is obvious - to make profit by appealing to as large of an audience as is available. To the extent their products are 'skeevy', it's not because of malice or laziness, but simply because they give their consumers what they want in order to maximise profits.

I'd be interested. I think some sort of objective measure would add greatly to any assessment of whether women are sexualised far more than men.

To act as if corporate executives actually give people what they want, or listens to well-made market research is somewhat unrealistic.
The case of the cancellation of Teen Titans was brought up earlier - a show with a huge following, that the audience wanted, cancelled because... Companies didn't like girls watching it because they saw the "boys merchandise" competing with the girls market. This might even be a case of profit-oriented thinking; but profit-oriented thinking is not synonymous with "giving consumers what they want".
Also, what makes the most money should really not be the be-all and end-all of all decisions made and of all culture humanity produces.

As for the measures... For a humerous take focussed on video games (Giving a collection of factors that might make a depiction of armor qualify as "sexualised"), I could show this bingo card (http://bikiniarmorbattledamage.tumblr.com/post/78258766632/female-armor-bingo). The FAQ and the links included on the blog go into some detail on many of the points already discussed in this thread as well. To be quite fair, this would have to be somewhat modified to be applicable to male characters.
(Numbered from left to right, top to bottom)
1 works (Though more boxer briefs than bra);
2 works;
3 might as well (Maybe modified to banana hammock?);
4 works;
5 has the comparison aspect inherent, so works sort of, but would ofc. require the added qualification of the Female version qualifying less or not at all for the other points;
6 works,
7 works sort of (maybe Vneck?);
8 doesn't, and I cannot think of an equivalent;
9 might;
10 works;
11 see 7 (or Ab window);
12 works;
13 Defined muscles for the armor? (Though there is some difference in connotation between abs (namely them also being linked to strength) and breasts);
14 works;
15 works;
16 works;
17 works;
18 works;
19 works;
20 works;
21 works;
22 works;
23 works;
24 I mean sort of? Maybe someone has an idea;
25 works
Some of these, looking through, might not necessarily be exclusively seen on sexualised characters; they'd probably have to be weighted or sth if taken as a list. But as a jumpoff point, I shall do that, if anything, later; with maybe some additional qualifications that I'd add.

Wikipedia quotes the APA with this:

The American Psychological Association (APA) in its 2007 Report looked at the cognitive and emotional consequences of sexualization and the consequences for mental and physical health, and impact on development of a healthy sexual self-image. The report considers that a person is sexualized in the following situations:

a person's value comes only from his or her sexual appeal or sexual behavior, to the exclusion of other characteristics;
a person is held to a standard that equates physical attractiveness (narrowly defined) with being sexy;
a person is sexually objectified—that is, made into a thing for others' sexual use, rather than seen as a person with the capacity for independent action and decision making; and/or
sexuality is inappropriately imposed upon a person.
Which might get a bit subjective in application, but seems like a generally good starting point, and echoes lots of things said in this thread; though it isn't developed to be applied to media depictions specifically. I didn't find anything more specific; but might search on. I'll see, I think the two things might provide enough of a jump-off point.


I suppose I had mean to refer to actual negative traits that women have, that are exaggerated by stereotypes. Driving is a great example, some women are poor drivers (although possibly no more so than men) but this is exaggerated so that the stereotype is that women are predominantly poor drivers.
So you think it is ok to portray some women as poor drivers, so long as other women are portrayed as competent drivers.

Would you have any objection to portraying women as often being housewives who do not work, because in reality that are far more often housewives than men are? Are you also happy with the media less frequently portraying women in positions of power (highly paid jobs, company directors etc) because the reality (even thought that reality is not ideal) is that men more frequently fill these roles in real life?

(Less so then men, in fact. More careful, and less likely to get into accidents.) But, yes, of course. For every stereotype, however in line or not it may be with reality (or even counter to it), there are people who fullfill it. I know I fullfill some, for various things (Talking like a waterfall, for example; and I very literally once went "Oh, squirrel!" mid-sentence. Unintentionally. ...Thinking back it might have been a rabbit, but my point stands :smallwink:). People that fullfill stereotypes exist, and refraining from showing this just because it is also a stereotype won't do much good; especially when we come to stereotypes with bad connotations, that aren't actually unambiguously bad though (such as bisexuals being promiscuous or sth). Even stereotypical people deserve to see themselves in media, so to speak.

Your second question is interesting. Because my initial reaction is "no"; even though that runs completely counter to everything I've argued so far on that point.
But occupation has an interesting difference to the other examples discussed so far (Housespouse being included in "Occupation" here; as would be "jobless"). Because while personality traits, looks and abilities are quite easily represented in Fiction in a wide range of settings (Okay, so depending on the setting driving might not be, or be way more limited, but I hope you get my general point?) without changing too much about settings or story, occupation is somewhat different. Because with jobs, fiction is all over the place representation-wise; taking inspiration from settings with way, way different job ratios, creating jobs nonexistant IRL (Superheroes, or adventurers, for example), and some jobs being way, way less suited to write a story around (Which might not matter much for total representation; but will very likely do so at least for representation amongst protagonists).
I suppose this is about the question where we see the media: As a way to influence the world to be better, or as a mere mirror. In regards to things unchangable like appearance, it might better serve as a mirror - because representing more pretty people will not encourage more people to be pretty. In regards to things changable, such as jobs or leadership positions, it could influence betterment - being able to see that "people like you" can be certain things makes it way more "real" and in a way feel more achievable that you might be that, too. (The power of representation is well documented; I think there is a great Whoopie Goldberg quote about it somewhere).
So while period pieces should probably stick to actually representing the period as accurately as possible (Fantasy worlds "inspired" by these periods are not automatically beholden to the same biases, btw. It is perfectly possible to create a medieval Fantasy with Gender equality. Not that anyone claimed it was, but I see it in media far too often that the biases are merely copied, without thinking if it is actually an important part of the setting), other media might be better served to shoot more in the direction of ideal. Or at least, if the tradeoff has to be made between statistically correct distributions and showing a greater range of (realistically existing) options; to go for the latter.
I thank you for pointing out inconsistencies in my thinking, at any rate.


I'm not from USA< i just chose US leaders because they are probably the best known worldwide, so I thought you might be familiar with them. Merkel is the only recent German leader I know of, and I think she is of average attractiveness for her age, and is of course a woman.

I agree with your conclusion that we have no real proof as to whether unattractive people or women suffer more discrimination. As such, we probably cannot take this conversation much further. I just find it really interesting that there are some really high-profile types of discrimination that the public is highly aware of (race, gender and more recently sexuality) and other types of discrimination that are almost never spoken about. I think there's a perception that straight while males are really well represented in media, but I think the truth is that, because of a myriad of other grounds of dscrimination (against the fat, the stupid, the bald, the ugly, the poor, the disabled, the mentally ill - the list goes on) it is actually very few people who are well represented.

Ah, in an American Forum, I assumed. My apologies.

Yeah, the discussion on discrimination is a rather broad one, and certainly some of them tend to slip under the radar.
The fact that some of those discriminations are or were somewhat less institutionalized than others can be another problem with visibilty. (Well, discrimination against disabled and mentally ill people had plenty institutions behind it, and even against poor people there are things.)
Which ones of these are bigger, have greater impact, or be worse... Is a discussion best not gone into; discrimination of any sort is bad, and all of them can intersect to boot. And, without science behind it, this too, I fear, might be a discussion better left at that - there is discrimination against both women and ugly people, we both agree on that; that is bad; and media depiction for both those groups is not ideal.
And maybe, just maybe, there is a connection between the discrimination and non-ideal media presentation (Or, well, science strongly points to there being one).

2D8HP
2017-08-09, 03:08 PM
...Well, Sci-Fi and Fantasy videogames and novels might have different distributions than movies.....


Video games seem to be doing fine (without me as I have little interest in them).

I am however interested in what may inspire more people to play table-top role-playing games, and write stories I like.

Some favorites from the last century are:

Book: Swords against Death by Fritz Leiber

Movie: The 7th Voyage of Sinbad

Television series: Star Trek

From this century I've liked:

Book: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke.

Movie: The Two Towers

Television series: Jonathan Strange & Mr Norell

Whatever art now that may inspire more works like that I support.

Does the art alienate or attract, and by how much?


.....the cancellation of Teen Titans was brought up earlier - a show with a huge following, that the audience wanted, cancelled because... Companies didn't like girls watching it because they saw the "boys merchandise" competing with the girls market. This might even be a case of profit-oriented thinking; but profit-oriented thinking is not synonymous with "giving consumers what they want".
Also, what makes the most money should really not be the be-all and end-all of all decisions made and of all culture humanity produces.....


Appeals to "the wisdom of the market", always seem lame to me.


....For every stereotype, however in line or not it may be with reality (or even counter to it), there are people who fullfill it.....


It's a big world, and there's an example of almost everything.

I'll try to avoid "some", and "I know a" arguments (unless it's funnier that way).

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-09, 03:21 PM
To act as if corporate executives actually give people what they want, or listens to well-made market research is somewhat unrealistic.

The case of the cancellation of Teen Titans was brought up earlier - a show with a huge following, that the audience wanted, cancelled because... Companies didn't like girls watching it because they saw the "boys merchandise" competing with the girls market. This might even be a case of profit-oriented thinking; but profit-oriented thinking is not synonymous with "giving consumers what they want".

Also, what makes the most money should really not be the be-all and end-all of all decisions made and of all culture humanity produces.


Yeap... Teen Titans and Young Justice both cancelled because their relatively large viewerships weren't in line with the gender-split marketing strategies.

http://emorywheel.com/teen-titans-the-show-that-got-prematurely-cancelled/
https://www.themarysue.com/warner-bros-animation-girl-market/
http://khazm.tumblr.com/post/122436722069/why-was-teen-titans-cancelled
https://moviepilot.com/posts/3772856

1337 b4k4
2017-08-09, 09:36 PM
Tricky. I still see problematic elements; and really question the decisions that lead to them being put in games. I do not think the call for these elements is actually as high as the raw sales numbers might suggest, video games have lots of intervening factors there (gameplay, for example).


I wonder if the apparel choices in SecondLife offers any insight on this? I sincerely don't know what it might show about player preferences, but IIRC isn't almost all SecondLife content user created and the gender split is nearly 50/50. Obviously it's not an RPG or a Fantasy MMO, but in some ways I think that's better because it's something that people can make into anything they want.

Liquor Box
2017-08-10, 01:20 AM
Well, Sci-Fi and Fantasy videogames and novels might have different distributions than movies. But if you are satisfied, I shall leave that here, it is work to count these and I don't read much these days; especially not Sci-Fi.
And... looking at the pure numbers of protagonists defined this broadly, they might be, in Fantasy works fairly unproblematic. I would have guessed differently without counting these up. I would argue that it is still not known if this extends to full character rosters (including antagonists; and sidecharacters); and that pure numbers don't take into account the way they are represented, or the fact that women might have a tendency to be a protagonist rather than the protagonist (Though looking at the sources of the numbers, both Star Wars examples somewhat run against that).
For Sci-Fi, I'd argue though, 33-50% is a rough estimate; and it falling below the lowest score I can think realistic is still a problem.
(I also want to point out that this is a fairly superficial collection of data; and by no means representative. More concentrated measures might be necessary for that, though the data allows a careful prediction.)

Yeah I understand your four caveats:
- Your views are only with regard to television and film fantasy/Sci Fi. We could repeat the exercise for another medium if you like.
- Also, your views only apply to main characters (which is the group you chose), we could repeat for another character grouping if you like.
- Likewise, your views here only apply to whether women are depicted frequently enough, not other aspects of their depiction - although some of the other threads of our conversation (below) touch on that.
- This is al based on rough figures, your best guesstimate.

I was a little surprised that you think that your Sci-Fi figures mean women are under-represented. When we discussed it earlier (post 974) you suggested that it would be ok (although not ideal) if the proportion of the audience of a particular gender was 30%, but the character representation of that gender was only 20%. That seems to be a bigger disparity than your actual estimates for the Sci-Fi genre. Do you think it would be ok to describe female representation in Sci Fi of "ok, but not ideal", subject to the four points above?


Tricky. I still see problematic elements; and really question the decisions that lead to them being put in games. I do not think the call for these elements is actually as high as the raw sales numbers might suggest, video games have lots of intervening factors there (gameplay, for example). MMOs skew the data a bit due to player choice, yes, but as long as the sexualised and nonsexualised options aren't equivalent in all other regards (Stats, prestige) I don't think the developers are off the hook.
So maybe I will not be happy until full gender equality is reached. Maybe I am a miserable person that doesn't think people should enjoy skimpy armor. And to some degree that is right, I cannot understand the desire to, at least not as anything else but an expression of somewhat sexist thinking patterns. But maybe that is on me. I will always argue for betterment of society and callouts, but not censorship.
Ok, perhaps we can return to the discussion of MMORPG's in a little bit.

But if we put the discussion of MMORPG's aside for the moment, and instead look at the offline CRPG genre, you agree that there are options (DA2) suitable to you. So is it fair to say that the CRPG genre's treatment of women is not problematic, because they provide options for you as well as potentially options for people who like the sort of stuff you call skeevy?



To act as if corporate executives actually give people what they want, or listens to well-made market research is somewhat unrealistic.
The case of the cancellation of Teen Titans was brought up earlier - a show with a huge following, that the audience wanted, cancelled because... Companies didn't like girls watching it because they saw the "boys merchandise" competing with the girls market. This might even be a case of profit-oriented thinking; but profit-oriented thinking is not synonymous with "giving consumers what they want".
Also, what makes the most money should really not be the be-all and end-all of all decisions made and of all culture humanity produces.

As to Teen Titans, I read the two sources for this that Max Killjoy links in a later post (the other two links relate to different cancelled show. One is an article that presents the idea that Teen Titans was cancelled as being a theory (one of at least two presented in the article). The second appears to be a message board post and although it makes the assertion more strongly, it appears to me to be less credible. On the other hand I see that the Wikipedia page for Teen Titans puts forward two other reasons for the cancellation (that the sixth season pitch was deficient, and that there was never a plan for a sixth season anyway). The reasons suggested by Wikipedia seem more credible to me because they were asserted by an actor on the series, and an editor of it respectively.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teen_Titans_(TV_series)

Even if we accept that there are a few counter-examples, can we agree that it is ONE of the main motivations of makers of media to appeal to a wide audience, even if there are also others?

Also, regarding your comment that profit should not be the only motivator for "all culture humanity produces", remember we are nto talking about all media within a particular genre here. This limb of the conversation is about whether it is ok for some games to depict women in a certain way (their attractiveness being their defining trait) even if there are other options available. In other words, we are discussing the bottom of the barrel (from your perspective) not "all culture humanity produces". Surely it is not that surprising that SOME media within a genre puts profits first and adheres to markets you don't approve of?



As for the measures... For a humerous take focussed on video games (Giving a collection of factors that might make a depiction of armor qualify as "sexualised"), I could show this bingo card (http://bikiniarmorbattledamage.tumblr.com/post/78258766632/female-armor-bingo). The FAQ and the links included on the blog go into some detail on many of the points already discussed in this thread as well. To be quite fair, this would have to be somewhat modified to be applicable to male characters.
(Numbered from left to right, top to bottom)
1 works (Though more boxer briefs than bra);
2 works;
3 might as well (Maybe modified to banana hammock?);
4 works;
5 has the comparison aspect inherent, so works sort of, but would ofc. require the added qualification of the Female version qualifying less or not at all for the other points;
6 works,
7 works sort of (maybe Vneck?);
8 doesn't, and I cannot think of an equivalent;
9 might;
10 works;
11 see 7 (or Ab window);
12 works;
13 Defined muscles for the armor? (Though there is some difference in connotation between abs (namely them also being linked to strength) and breasts);
14 works;
15 works;
16 works;
17 works;
18 works;
19 works;
20 works;
21 works;
22 works;
23 works;
24 I mean sort of? Maybe someone has an idea;
25 works
Some of these, looking through, might not necessarily be exclusively seen on sexualised characters; they'd probably have to be weighted or sth if taken as a list. But as a jumpoff point, I shall do that, if anything, later; with maybe some additional qualifications that I'd add.

You label this humerous yourself, and some of it does not seem accurate to me (eg, number 6 would apply to things like horned helmets).Also, it seems that 17/25 relate tot he armour being revealing, and you earlier said that revealing clothes and sexualisation were not the same thing (so for example, this would appear to classify COnan as depicted earlier i the thread as being sexualised). I guess my question is whether this is something you see as humerous, or whether it is something you would actually offer up as an objective measure of sexualisation of characters?


Wikipedia quotes the APA with this:

Which might get a bit subjective in application, but seems like a generally good starting point, and echoes lots of things said in this thread; though it isn't developed to be applied to media depictions specifically. I didn't find anything more specific; but might search on. I'll see, I think the two things might provide enough of a jump-off point.

Yeah, as you say, this seems just as subjective as merely asking if the person is sexualised straight out. While people would agree on obvious cases of sexualisation and non-sexualisation, I imagine there would be widespread disagreement on fringe cases.

Ah, in an American Forum, I assumed. My apologies.
No problem, I frequently make assumptions about people on these forums. I had guessed that you were from England actually.

But, yes, of course. For every stereotype, however in line or not it may be with reality (or even counter to it), there are people who fullfill it. I know I fullfill some, for various things (Talking like a waterfall, for example; and I very literally once went "Oh, squirrel!" mid-sentence. Unintentionally. ...Thinking back it might have been a rabbit, but my point stands :smallwink:). People that fullfill stereotypes exist, and refraining from showing this just because it is also a stereotype won't do much good; especially when we come to stereotypes with bad connotations, that aren't actually unambiguously bad though (such as bisexuals being promiscuous or sth). Even stereotypical people deserve to see themselves in media, so to speak.

Your second question is interesting. Because my initial reaction is "no"; even though that runs completely counter to everything I've argued so far on that point.
But occupation has an interesting difference to the other examples discussed so far (Housespouse being included in "Occupation" here; as would be "jobless"). Because while personality traits, looks and abilities are quite easily represented in Fiction in a wide range of settings (Okay, so depending on the setting driving might not be, or be way more limited, but I hope you get my general point?) without changing too much about settings or story, occupation is somewhat different. Because with jobs, fiction is all over the place representation-wise; taking inspiration from settings with way, way different job ratios, creating jobs nonexistant IRL (Superheroes, or adventurers, for example), and some jobs being way, way less suited to write a story around (Which might not matter much for total representation; but will very likely do so at least for representation amongst protagonists).
I suppose this is about the question where we see the media: As a way to influence the world to be better, or as a mere mirror. In regards to things unchangable like appearance, it might better serve as a mirror - because representing more pretty people will not encourage more people to be pretty. In regards to things changable, such as jobs or leadership positions, it could influence betterment - being able to see that "people like you" can be certain things makes it way more "real" and in a way feel more achievable that you might be that, too. (The power of representation is well documented; I think there is a great Whoopie Goldberg quote about it somewhere).
So while period pieces should probably stick to actually representing the period as accurately as possible (Fantasy worlds "inspired" by these periods are not automatically beholden to the same biases, btw. It is perfectly possible to create a medieval Fantasy with Gender equality. Not that anyone claimed it was, but I see it in media far too often that the biases are merely copied, without thinking if it is actually an important part of the setting), other media might be better served to shoot more in the direction of ideal. Or at least, if the tradeoff has to be made between statistically correct distributions and showing a greater range of (realistically existing) options; to go for the latter.
I thank you for pointing out inconsistencies in my thinking, at any rate.

You start off with "of course", but not everyone sees it the same way.

Interesting, I agree that it comes down to whether you see media as being aspirational on issues such as this or, as you put it, a mirror.

Credit where its due, you have acknowledged the inconsistency and provided a justification for it. Your justification makes sense to me, even though I do not agree with every aspect of it.

Personally, I prefer historic fiction, or stuff set in our own time, to mirror the reality in that regard. I am ok with Sci Fi going whichever way it chooses - who knows what the world will be like in the future. As to fantasy, I prefer it to reflect the historic period (and culture) by which it was inspired, unless it is part of the point of the setting that it was different in that regard - in the same way that you would expect 24 hour day in fantasy unless it was a point of the setting otherwise.

I think we have largely agreed through this limb of the discussion (how media should reflect reality), with just a few disagreements around the fringes.


Yeah, the discussion on discrimination is a rather broad one, and certainly some of them tend to slip under the radar.
The fact that some of those discriminations are or were somewhat less institutionalized than others can be another problem with visibilty. (Well, discrimination against disabled and mentally ill people had plenty institutions behind it, and even against poor people there are things.)
Which ones of these are bigger, have greater impact, or be worse... Is a discussion best not gone into; discrimination of any sort is bad, and all of them can intersect to boot. And, without science behind it, this too, I fear, might be a discussion better left at that - there is discrimination against both women and ugly people, we both agree on that; that is bad; and media depiction for both those groups is not ideal.
And maybe, just maybe, there is a connection between the discrimination and non-ideal media presentation (Or, well, science strongly points to there being one).
Happy to not go into the "which is more" discussion. It was just an aside that I thought was interesting.

Saying that there's a "connection" between two things doesn't mean much. Are you saying that media is the (or a substantial) cause of discrimination? That would seem unlikely given that most of the forms of discrimination preceded the widespread media we know today by some time, and it seems clear that discrimination against women, ethnic minorities and homosexuals has decreased dramatically in the period of widespread media. It seems to me more likely that any causal connection flows the other way.

Floret
2017-08-10, 06:48 AM
Yeah I understand your four caveats:
- Your views are only with regard to television and film fantasy/Sci Fi. We could repeat the exercise for another medium if you like.
- Also, your views only apply to main characters (which is the group you chose), we could repeat for another character grouping if you like.
- Likewise, your views here only apply to whether women are depicted frequently enough, not other aspects of their depiction - although some of the other threads of our conversation (below) touch on that.
- This is al based on rough figures, your best guesstimate.

I was a little surprised that you think that your Sci-Fi figures mean women are under-represented. When we discussed it earlier (post 974) you suggested that it would be ok (although not ideal) if the proportion of the audience of a particular gender was 30%, but the character representation of that gender was only 20%. That seems to be a bigger disparity than your actual estimates for the Sci-Fi genre. Do you think it would be ok to describe female representation in Sci Fi of "ok, but not ideal", subject to the four points above?

Yes. What is currently happening is, from my perspective, basically theoretical discourse over topics of social sciences, more specifically media sciences.
In that framework, those kinds of caveats are important, because overgeneralisation of findings is rather easy to make and rather harmful for a good understanding of the world.

And... Well. Two things. One, I did the thing at the much larger end of the spectrum - the difference between 70 and 80 might be 10; but the difference between 70% and 80% depends on what the base unit is. If we, for the sake of the argument and simplicity, assume that to be 100, the difference is actually 12.5 percent of the 80%. Now, 12.5% of 30? Would be a mere 3,75; setting the border (rounding up) at 26%. Still technically that number, but then again 30 is not 33 :smallwink: The point here is, the same purely numerical difference makes a much larger dent at low percentages than at high ones, and becomes much more impactful as a result.
The second thing? The number wasn't actually 33%; it was a range of 33-50%. If we take that same range with the 10% subtraction we get anywhere between 23 and 40% being the "okay" range. If we now want one, clear number from these guesstimates, I'd find it much more sensible to go with averages instead of lowest possible numbers - meaning in this case 41.5 percent, leading to the "okay" threshold at 31.5%; Fantasy from the headcounts I did made this; Sci-Fi does not.
(Combining both methods would lead to 36.3125%, incidentally)
So my understanding of the numbers I put out says "I wouldn't describe them that way, because that is not the way I'd apply the maths here".


Ok, perhaps we can return to the discussion of MMORPG's in a little bit.

But if we put the discussion of MMORPG's aside for the moment, and instead look at the offline CRPG genre, you agree that there are options (DA2) suitable to you. So is it fair to say that the CRPG genre's treatment of women is not problematic, because they provide options for you as well as potentially options for people who like the sort of stuff you call skeevy?

Difficult. I would still rest on saying "overall, the industry has problematic elements". But, as long as options exist; I might be willing to accept it being that way without loosing sleep over it.
(This, of course betrays the fact that Ashiel is somewhat right and I won't be happy until fans of skeevy content can't get what they want - because I still can't manage to think of a reason to enjoy these things that does not, in some part, rests on sexist thinking (That pretty much everyone of us, including me, still has ingrained in us somewhere, and does not make one a bad person just for the fact), and I think this sort of thinking should best be phased out as soon as possible. So far, the point in favour has not been "no, actually there are a number of reasons to enjoy this beyond that"; but simply "Let people enjoy what the want", which doesn't really counter any of the points. As long as people enjoy these things, they do have reason to exist, but from my current standpoints and knowlege, my problem is that people enjoy these things; or rather that the reason people enjoy these things exists. If that makes any sense?
So, I guess there is a question in there: Are there reasons people enjoy these things that are not rooted in somewhat sexist thinking? Which ones? I'd love to hear - being able to feel more comfortable with the current state of media would be a good thing!
Even without that, I can accept there being people and things I don't like in the world, however. It's part of life. I will do what I can do to try and change it, without causing collateral damage (As censorship, if I could do that, would definitely cause).)


As to Teen Titans, I read the two sources for this that Max Killjoy links in a later post (the other two links relate to different cancelled show. One is an article that presents the idea that Teen Titans was cancelled as being a theory (one of at least two presented in the article). The second appears to be a message board post and although it makes the assertion more strongly, it appears to me to be less credible. On the other hand I see that the Wikipedia page for Teen Titans puts forward two other reasons for the cancellation (that the sixth season pitch was deficient, and that there was never a plan for a sixth season anyway). The reasons suggested by Wikipedia seem more credible to me because they were asserted by an actor on the series, and an editor of it respectively.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teen_Titans_(TV_series)

Even if we accept that there are a few counter-examples, can we agree that it is ONE of the main motivations of makers of media to appeal to a wide audience, even if there are also others?

Also, regarding your comment that profit should not be the only motivator for "all culture humanity produces", remember we are nto talking about all media within a particular genre here. This limb of the conversation is about whether it is ok for some games to depict women in a certain way (their attractiveness being their defining trait) even if there are other options available. In other words, we are discussing the bottom of the barrel (from your perspective) not "all culture humanity produces". Surely it is not that surprising that SOME media within a genre puts profits first and adheres to markets you don't approve of?

It is a motivation of media makers to appeal to an audience, yes. If they accomplish that is another question.
And, no, it is not surprising. I am not surprised, I am merely put off; and also questioning how big the bottom of the barrel actually is, and if it needs to be quite that deep.


You label this humerous yourself, and some of it does not seem accurate to me (eg, number 6 would apply to things like horned helmets).Also, it seems that 17/25 relate tot he armour being revealing, and you earlier said that revealing clothes and sexualisation were not the same thing (so for example, this would appear to classify COnan as depicted earlier i the thread as being sexualised). I guess my question is whether this is something you see as humerous, or whether it is something you would actually offer up as an objective measure of sexualisation of characters?

Yeah, as you say, this seems just as subjective as merely asking if the person is sexualised straight out. While people would agree on obvious cases of sexualisation and non-sexualisation, I imagine there would be widespread disagreement on fringe cases.

Sure. I don't think one can be completely non-subjective in these matters, though. A lot of this is about framing and context.

As for the bingo... In some respects it is more of an "impractical armor" in general than "sexualised armor" specifically.
And, yes, I said sexualisation is not synonymous with skin shown; but 17/25 still leaves 8 to be about something else; and a lot of the ones about showing skin are more specifically about how skin is shown. Sexualisation can easily be done with showing skin, and showing skin can be part of it (Boob windows qualify for both, but it isn't sexualised because of skin; but which skin, and how). Skin-tight clothing generally serves as an alternative way to sexualise, and is by its nature usually way less naked.
One question I have, does the archetypical Conan actually qualify? Looking at the card, from my perspective, most depictions fullfill maybe 1 if generous, 4, 16 (sort of, see my discussion below), 17 (Though mostentimes nipples are left free, but male characters are allowed that more freely), 18, 19, possibly 22. Those are 7 points, which is indeed quite some. On the points from the APA, however... his appeal is far from solely by sexuality or sexual desirability, the second one seems slightly tautological to me, the third and fourth one are difficult within the context of fictional characters. In-narrative, they don't fit him; but ultimately the writers made decisions for him, as fictional characters are not independent actors.

I wouldn't offer up the bingo as-is as a measure for sexualisation, incidentally. Just as a list of points that, if fullfilled, should probably get a look in as to whether or not we have a case of sexualisation.
If we were to take the list as a matter of judging, I'd rework it somewhat (And it'd still be far from a perfect measure). 5 would be an important point for armor that is available to look at in multiple versions: Is the female one identical, or does it take on more of the other elements than the male one (Or vice versa); 1, 3, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16 in the absence of being just completely naked/topless (Which I think the point means to include), 22, 23, 24 (and 25, which would be only applicable to some video games again) serve as good indicators of "yes, this is at least somewhat sexualised". If they are fullfilled, try and answer the question "how does context justify this". If it can't, you're probably looking at sexualised content, the more, the worse.
(Now, I am of course preparing for you (Or someone) finding examples that fullfill them, and that I wouldn't feel are sexualised. I am curious to see what you come up with; and somewhat certain that you will, allowing me to hone in on the specifics more clearly - getting to a final draft might take some back and forth.)
17 is somewhat difficult: This setup can be used in very different ways, to show off muscles and strength, or to show off the body. I feel it is a rather context-sensitive point - if the character in question has realistic, well-toned muscles, I think that could discount the point. The Raider from For Honor, for example, would be an example of the "strength" example (And pretty much equivantly on female and male character models to boot).
(Points 7, 9, 14, 18 and 19 are somewhat more contextual, I feel, when we move beyond armor; they do have certain sexualising aspects to them but can (if not on armor) just be elements of relatively normal clothes. While they are all employed IRL to convey "sexy" (Mostly, thigh-high boots can just be high riding boots), that is, I feel, not synonymous with deliberate sexualisation. The points excluded I feel fall more alongside "impractical", but not necessarily in a sexualised way.)


No problem, I frequently make assumptions about people on these forums. I had guessed that you were from England actually.

England? Now I'm curious, what made you think that? (Just my way to write certain words? Cause I'd have guessed that would be all over the place)


You start off with "of course", but not everyone sees it the same way.

Interesting, I agree that it comes down to whether you see media as being aspirational on issues such as this or, as you put it, a mirror.

Credit where its due, you have acknowledged the inconsistency and provided a justification for it. Your justification makes sense to me, even though I do not agree with every aspect of it.

Personally, I prefer historic fiction, or stuff set in our own time, to mirror the reality in that regard. I am ok with Sci Fi going whichever way it chooses - who knows what the world will be like in the future. As to fantasy, I prefer it to reflect the historic period (and culture) by which it was inspired, unless it is part of the point of the setting that it was different in that regard - in the same way that you would expect 24 hour day in fantasy unless it was a point of the setting otherwise.

I think we have largely agreed through this limb of the discussion (how media should reflect reality), with just a few disagreements around the fringes.

You asked for my opinion. For me, it is a matter of course. :smallwink:
And, yeah, while this discussion does serve as a sounding board more than I have any real belief it will fundamentally change my views, as I said: Show me where my thinking is flawed, and I'll acknowlege it.

But while I can understand why historic fiction and Real-life stuff you'd like it more like a mirror (Even though I have somewhat different opinions, but that might be because current media isn't an accurate mirror in the first place), now I have a question back at you:
Why do you prefer Fantasy to reflect the period and culture by which it was inspired in that regard? What benefit do you see in Fantasy worlds, able to be formed any one way one likes, to reflect real-life discrimination 1:1, or close to that?
I mean, yes, I can see the benefit in some works including it, if the inclusion is meaningful to the story being told, the themes of the work or the points being made (For example, the Song of Ice and Fire series; not so much the GoT TVshow). But, there is also significant benefit, especially in the more wishfullfillment- and escapism-heavy works to just... not reflect the same biases that Real life societies held, and, if to a lesser degree, still hold to that point. Some of the same thematic points I mentioned earlier might even be made with interesting new setups - splitting society up in ways it never really was, and seeing what setting and biases result from there. This article (https://www.thefandomentals.com/homophobia-shouldnt-be-default/)goes into some theoretical depths of the problems with the assumption you seem to be working under (with the example of homophobia, specifically.)
So, again: Why is only one out of those possible ways to go - the one in line with historical and current social discriminations - the one you want to see most often reflected in largely escapist works?
(Yes, this is intentionally phrased provocatively :smallwink: It often helps to get clearer reactions.)


Happy to not go into the "which is more" discussion. It was just an aside that I thought was interesting.

Saying that there's a "connection" between two things doesn't mean much. Are you saying that media is the (or a substantial) cause of discrimination? That would seem unlikely given that most of the forms of discrimination preceded the widespread media we know today by some time, and it seems clear that discrimination against women, ethnic minorities and homosexuals has decreased dramatically in the period of widespread media. It seems to me more likely that any causal connection flows the other way.

Yes, and one that made me realise I strongly believe something I have surprisingly little foundation for.
Well, no, it doesn't mean much. And I didn't want to argue that solely media is the cause of discrimination. Of course real-life influences media depictions - but as these things go, and from my knowlege gathered while studying media and its impact on society, I very firmly belief the connection goes both ways. Media is influenced by society, yes, but it in turn influences it; it just isn't merely a (however defective) mirror. This leads to choices in media best being made consciously, and with at least a guess as to what this says about how society "is", or should be.

Liquor Box
2017-08-10, 08:41 AM
Yes. What is currently happening is, from my perspective, basically theoretical discourse over topics of social sciences, more specifically media sciences.
In that framework, those kinds of caveats are important, because overgeneralisation of findings is rather easy to make and rather harmful for a good understanding of the world.

And... Well. Two things. One, I did the thing at the much larger end of the spectrum - the difference between 70 and 80 might be 10; but the difference between 70% and 80% depends on what the base unit is. If we, for the sake of the argument and simplicity, assume that to be 100, the difference is actually 12.5 percent of the 80%. Now, 12.5% of 30? Would be a mere 3,75; setting the border (rounding up) at 26%. Still technically that number, but then again 30 is not 33 :smallwink: The point here is, the same purely numerical difference makes a much larger dent at low percentages than at high ones, and becomes much more impactful as a result.
The second thing? The number wasn't actually 33%; it was a range of 33-50%. If we take that same range with the 10% subtraction we get anywhere between 23 and 40% being the "okay" range. If we now want one, clear number from these guesstimates, I'd find it much more sensible to go with averages instead of lowest possible numbers - meaning in this case 41.5 percent, leading to the "okay" threshold at 31.5%; Fantasy from the headcounts I did made this; Sci-Fi does not.
(Combining both methods would lead to 36.3125%, incidentally)
So my understanding of the numbers I put out says "I wouldn't describe them that way, because that is not the way I'd apply the maths here".
No criticisms of the caveats - we are not going to cover all possible topics related to gender issues in every genre of media in this thread. If we can understand each other's positions on one or two issues (even if we do not agree), I think we are doing better than the overwhelming majority of threads on polarising issues such as this on this board. If either of us changes our mind ona single point (presumably the new view will be the more informed view) that will be a bonus.

As to your two things:
1.
That you expressed the figures from the upper end of the spectrum last time does not change the underlying realities. An audience of 70% one gender necesarily means 30% of the other (on the assumption you speicifed that they collectively make 100%) - it is two different ways of expressing the same thing.
In both posts we were talking how how close the percentage of characters of the under-represented gender need be to the percentage of the audience that are also that gender before it becomes not OK.
In the hypothetical 20% of the characters were from the under-represented gender, which you said was ok if 30% of the audience was from that gender. 20% x 1.5 = 30%.
In the present situation you estimate 26% of the characters are from the under-represented gender, and you estimate that 33% to 50% of the auidence is from that gender. 26% x 1.5 =39%. 39% is within your range, and just short of the mid-point (41.5% as you identified).

2.
So you weren't comfortable specifying an exact number for percentage of Sci-Fi audiences that are female, which is why you specified a range. Now you are saying that it makes sense that the most likely point within that range is the mid-point (not the average, unless I have misunderstood what your numbers were expressing) which is 41.5%.
41.5% is greater than 39% (from my figures above). So this demonstrates that most of your range (by a small margin) is more than 1.5 times higher than your estimate.


From this I think we can say, based on your estimates and parameters from earlier in the thread, that the under-representation of females in Sci Fi relative to the proportion of females in the audience is probably not ok, but it might be ok. For it to be ok, the true percentage of females in the audience would have to be toward the lower end of the range you gave (slightly below the mid-point).
Do you think that is fair?


Difficult. I would still rest on saying "overall, the industry has problematic elements". But, as long as options exist; I might be willing to accept it being that way without loosing sleep over it.
(This, of course betrays the fact that Ashiel is somewhat right and I won't be happy until fans of skeevy content can't get what they want - because I still can't manage to think of a reason to enjoy these things that does not, in some part, rests on sexist thinking (That pretty much everyone of us, including me, still has ingrained in us somewhere, and does not make one a bad person just for the fact), and I think this sort of thinking should best be phased out as soon as possible. So far, the point in favour has not been "no, actually there are a number of reasons to enjoy this beyond that"; but simply "Let people enjoy what the want", which doesn't really counter any of the points. As long as people enjoy these things, they do have reason to exist, but from my current standpoints and knowlege, my problem is that people enjoy these things; or rather that the reason people enjoy these things exists. If that makes any sense?

Even without that, I can accept there being people and things I don't like in the world, however. It's part of life. I will do what I can do to try and change it, without causing collateral damage (As censorship, if I could do that, would definitely cause).)

I think I broadly understand what you are saying here.


So, I guess there is a question in there: Are there reasons people enjoy these things that are not rooted in somewhat sexist thinking? Which ones? I'd love to hear - being able to feel more comfortable with the current state of media would be a good thing!

First, I disagree with your premise - I don't think it matters why people enjoy it. I look at whether the existance of certain types of media is a bad thing from a good vs harm perspective. There is good that arises from people enjoying media that you or I might find unsavoury - the simply fact that they enjoy it (and regardless of why they enjoy it) is a good outcome of its existance. For its existance to be a bad thing (in my opinion) there must be a harm that outweighs the good.

I'm also going to have hard time answering your question because I think we may have a different idea of what "rooted in sexism" means. In my opinion it is not sexist to enjoy sexy depictions of the gender you are attracted to. I suspect that most people have "the male gaze" or "the female gaze" (or both) to some degree, meaning their eye is drawn to people they find sexually attractive. On an individual basis I don't there is anything sexist about your eye (or mine) being drawn to sexualised images.

Where it may be sexist is at the macro level, not the individual level, if women are sexualised far more often than males. We have sort of started on that discussion, but are stuck on the objective test. But if women are sexualised at a much greater rate than men, while that make the genre of media as a whole sexist, I don't think it makes the individual who appreciates sexualised depictions sexist.


It is a motivation of media makers to appeal to an audience, yes. If they accomplish that is another question.
And, no, it is not surprising. I am not surprised, I am merely put off; and also questioning how big the bottom of the barrel actually is, and if it needs to be quite that deep.

OK, we could talk about how good those that produce media are at gauging what the market wants. But I think I get the sense that you do not think they are very good, whereas I think they are better placed (with their market research etc) than you or I. Can I suggest we agree to disagree on this point?


Sure. I don't think one can be completely non-subjective in these matters, though. A lot of this is about framing and context.

As for the bingo... In some respects it is more of an "impractical armor" in general than "sexualised armor" specifically.
And, yes, I said sexualisation is not synonymous with skin shown; but 17/25 still leaves 8 to be about something else; and a lot of the ones about showing skin are more specifically about how skin is shown. Sexualisation can easily be done with showing skin, and showing skin can be part of it (Boob windows qualify for both, but it isn't sexualised because of skin; but which skin, and how). Skin-tight clothing generally serves as an alternative way to sexualise, and is by its nature usually way less naked.
One question I have, does the archetypical Conan actually qualify? Looking at the card, from my perspective, most depictions fullfill maybe 1 if generous, 4, 16 (sort of, see my discussion below), 17 (Though mostentimes nipples are left free, but male characters are allowed that more freely), 18, 19, possibly 22. Those are 7 points, which is indeed quite some. On the points from the APA, however... his appeal is far from solely by sexuality or sexual desirability, the second one seems slightly tautological to me, the third and fourth one are difficult within the context of fictional characters. In-narrative, they don't fit him; but ultimately the writers made decisions for him, as fictional characters are not independent actors.

Yeah, I wasn't expecting an objective test for something that is so inhrently subjective. As you say, a lot is about context. The downside of that is that it makes it very hard for us to discuss which characters are sexualised and which ones are not, because our subjective perception is likely to be different.

As for Conan, I should of specified which depiction of him I meant. I was referring to the picture of Conan (Arnold Schwarzeneger from the movies) in post 31 (top pf page 2). I count him as meeting 1, 3, 4, 7, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24. I think he fufills 2/4 of the APA characteristics as well.

Do you think that particular depiction of Conan sexualised him (not asking you to apply a test, just your subjective opinion)?


I wouldn't offer up the bingo as-is as a measure for sexualisation, incidentally. Just as a list of points that, if fullfilled, should probably get a look in as to whether or not we have a case of sexualisation.
If we were to take the list as a matter of judging, I'd rework it somewhat (And it'd still be far from a perfect measure). 5 would be an important point for armor that is available to look at in multiple versions: Is the female one identical, or does it take on more of the other elements than the male one (Or vice versa); 1, 3, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16 in the absence of being just completely naked/topless (Which I think the point means to include), 22, 23, 24 (and 25, which would be only applicable to some video games again) serve as good indicators of "yes, this is at least somewhat sexualised". If they are fullfilled, try and answer the question "how does context justify this". If it can't, you're probably looking at sexualised content, the more, the worse.
(Now, I am of course preparing for you (Or someone) finding examples that fullfill them, and that I wouldn't feel are sexualised. I am curious to see what you come up with; and somewhat certain that you will, allowing me to hone in on the specifics more clearly - getting to a final draft might take some back and forth.)
17 is somewhat difficult: This setup can be used in very different ways, to show off muscles and strength, or to show off the body. I feel it is a rather context-sensitive point - if the character in question has realistic, well-toned muscles, I think that could discount the point. The Raider from For Honor, for example, would be an example of the "strength" example (And pretty much equivantly on female and male character models to boot).
(Points 7, 9, 14, 18 and 19 are somewhat more contextual, I feel, when we move beyond armor; they do have certain sexualising aspects to them but can (if not on armor) just be elements of relatively normal clothes. While they are all employed IRL to convey "sexy" (Mostly, thigh-high boots can just be high riding boots), that is, I feel, not synonymous with deliberate sexualisation. The points excluded I feel fall more alongside "impractical", but not necessarily in a sexualised way.)

I was hoping for an objective measure of whether a depiction of a character was sexualised, but you seem to be discussing whether the clothes are sexualised.

I do think your discussion on 17 is interesting though. You say that being skimpily dressed can be one but is not if the person is muscular. That leads to the odd scenario where a person who does not have a good body is being sexualised by it being shown and that a person with a better body is not. By realistic, well toned muscles, does that exlude He-Man (from Master of the Universe) whose muscles are unrealistic? Does it include someone who is athleticly built without obvious muscles?"


England? Now I'm curious, what made you think that? (Just my way to write certain words? Cause I'd have guessed that would be all over the place)

No, nothing like that.

You referred to parliament, and not every country calls their legilsative body a parliament. Your English is good (before you mentioned it is not your first language). And I had a vague impression of your time zone (before you clarified it).



I am going to have to stop there. I will respond to the rest of your post later.

Liquor Box
2017-08-10, 05:38 PM
You asked for my opinion. For me, it is a matter of course. :smallwink:
And, yeah, while this discussion does serve as a sounding board more than I have any real belief it will fundamentally change my views, as I said: Show me where my thinking is flawed, and I'll acknowlege it.

But while I can understand why historic fiction and Real-life stuff you'd like it more like a mirror (Even though I have somewhat different opinions, but that might be because current media isn't an accurate mirror in the first place), now I have a question back at you:
Why do you prefer Fantasy to reflect the period and culture by which it was inspired in that regard? What benefit do you see in Fantasy worlds, able to be formed any one way one likes, to reflect real-life discrimination 1:1, or close to that?
I mean, yes, I can see the benefit in some works including it, if the inclusion is meaningful to the story being told, the themes of the work or the points being made (For example, the Song of Ice and Fire series; not so much the GoT TVshow). But, there is also significant benefit, especially in the more wishfullfillment- and escapism-heavy works to just... not reflect the same biases that Real life societies held, and, if to a lesser degree, still hold to that point. Some of the same thematic points I mentioned earlier might even be made with interesting new setups - splitting society up in ways it never really was, and seeing what setting and biases result from there. This article (https://www.thefandomentals.com/homophobia-shouldnt-be-default/)goes into some theoretical depths of the problems with the assumption you seem to be working under (with the example of homophobia, specifically.)
So, again: Why is only one out of those possible ways to go - the one in line with historical and current social discriminations - the one you want to see most often reflected in largely escapist works?
(Yes, this is intentionally phrased provocatively :smallwink: It often helps to get clearer reactions.)
Thank you for being patient.

It may or may not surprise you to know that I have has much more provocative things than this said to me (even in this thread). :smallbiggrin:

Well because I prefer any fiction that I watch to hold some semblance of likelihood (except in the ways it does not). That is I prefer that is reflect the real world (or the period/culture of the real world that it is inspired by) as much as possible so that I can feel a sense of reality – I can predict how the character will interact. This is not restricted to sexism, but applies to all prejudices from the period/culture, and more broadly to everything else. I like to be able to assume that a day is 24 hours long (unless specified otherwise), that it will be cold in winter warm in summer (unless specified otherwise), that technology will be period appropriate (unless specified otherwise) so I can make a guess that when a ship is on the horizon as to whether it has cannon or not, and that people will interact with each other in certain ways (unless specified otherwise).

As an example, let us return to prejudice against ugly people. If there is a scene where an attractive person is trying to woo a much less attractive person, we can rely on real world prejudices (of any era I think) to assume that the less unattractive person will fail (subject to other stuff like status). That sort of predictability makes the story easier to follow and increases my immersion. I can predict to some extent what will happen when character interact – or if not predict the outcome, at least be aware of the underlying constructs and norms without the show having to explain the.

Of course certain aspects of fantasy do not reflect reality (by definition) – usually the existence of magic and monsters. If a particular piece of fantasy was to specify that in that universe women were seen as equal (unlike medieval Europe) or even women were dominant, then that is fine – that would be one way in which the fantasy world differed from the real one – and because it will be specified it wont detract much from the predictability and immersion of the world. But I do think that the period/culture that inspired the work should be the default for just about everything in the fantasy piece except those things that are shown to be different.

I don’t think that this has to be part of the storyline either. You refer to Game of Thrones which appears to reflect prejudices of the time. You correctly point out that discrimination toward women is important to the storyline, particularly with Cersei. But I think the TV show versions treatment of homosexuality is fine to. In the TV series Renly Baratheon is a homosexual, and his homosexuality is not crucial to the storyline (I think in the books it was only ever implied) – the TV series makes it clear many people who are aware of Renly’s homosexuality are disgusted by it, despite this not being that important to the story.

You refer to escapism and with fulfilment. You may be right that some people would prefer there to be no discrimination of any kind in their fantasy television for this reason, and that is fair enough. But you asked about my preferences, and I don’t think I watch fantasy for that reason – I much prefer GoT (grittier, edgier, with not bright line between good and evil) to the likes of LotR (clear good and evil delineation, happy endings for most hero characters, etc).


Yes, and one that made me realise I strongly believe something I have surprisingly little foundation for.
Well, no, it doesn't mean much. And I didn't want to argue that solely media is the cause of discrimination. Of course real-life influences media depictions - but as these things go, and from my knowlege gathered while studying media and its impact on society, I very firmly belief the connection goes both ways. Media is influenced by society, yes, but it in turn influences it; it just isn't merely a (however defective) mirror. This leads to choices in media best being made consciously, and with at least a guess as to what this says about how society "is", or should be.


If you want to explore the “media’s impact on society”, we could explore the intersection between your views on the impact of violence being depicted on TV (and thereby impacting on society) and the depiction of women in society. But I think we have enough balls in the air at the moment, and discussing the impact of the depiction of women in media seems a little premature when we are still going back and forth on what that depiction is. So, unless you are really keen, can I suggest we leave this point for now?

digiman619
2017-08-10, 06:52 PM
Yeap... Teen Titans and Young Justice both cancelled because their relatively large viewerships weren't in line with the gender-split marketing strategies.

http://emorywheel.com/teen-titans-the-show-that-got-prematurely-cancelled/
https://www.themarysue.com/warner-bros-animation-girl-market/
http://khazm.tumblr.com/post/122436722069/why-was-teen-titans-cancelled
https://moviepilot.com/posts/3772856
What makes that maddening is that it only seems to apply to females interested in a "male" show. Men interested in girly shows like MLP is apparently totally okay, though. Why in the name of all that is holy is this double standard a thing? Do they think girls interested in superhero shows have cooties or something?

CharonsHelper
2017-08-10, 08:52 PM
What makes that maddening is that it only seems to apply to females interested in a "male" show. Men interested in girly shows like MLP is apparently totally okay, though. Why in the name of all that is holy is this double standard a thing? Do they think girls interested in superhero shows have cooties or something?

I think it's just the idea that boys' toy purchases are based more upon what they watch. It's not that girls watching their shows are bad - it's just that they're not nearly as valuable as boy viewers. So - even if total viewership is solid, since a large part of the show's $ comes from selling toys, the boy viewers are worth far more. (I'm not saying they're right - just that there is a logic to it.)

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-10, 09:00 PM
I think it's just the idea that boys' toy purchases are based more upon what they watch. It's not that girls watching their shows are bad - it's just that they're not nearly as valuable as boy viewers. So - even if total viewership is solid, since a large part of the show's $ comes from selling toys, the boy viewers are worth far more. (I'm not saying they're right - just that there is a logic to it.)

Add on that supposedly the girls "should be" over watching the "girl shows" and buying "girl toys" -- and won't buy the "boy toys" if they're watching "boy shows"... and so on.

The marketing idiots can't handle their demographics and targeting getting all muddled up.

CharonsHelper
2017-08-10, 11:55 PM
Add on that supposedly the girls "should be" over watching the "girl shows" and buying "girl toys" -- and won't buy the "boy toys" if they're watching "boy shows"... and so on.

I think that's an overstatement. (not just yours - but I've seen used other places because people are grumpy their favorite shows were canceled)

It's just that boy viewers are more valuable, and they're planning to (or already have) sunk $ into producing various toys, while 'girl shows' generally don't bother producing many toys - and I know that in the case of My Little Pony and the Barbie shows, the process went the other way around.

How I've read it before is just that girls are less likely to have what they watch impact what toys they want to buy. (please don't yell at me for going stereotypical in my example for simplicity) So even if a girl really liked Starfire from Teen Titans she isn't that likely to really want a Starfire action figure, and she'll just want some barbies and baby dolls no matter what she happens to be watching. On the other hand, a boy would want action figures and is more likely to push his parents for that Teen Titans lunch box. (or whatever) Therefore from a marketing perspective each boy viewer is worth more $ than each girl viewer. Therefore a show which has the raw #s to keep going might not if the execs think that another shwo with slightly lower overall #s has a higher % boy audience.

Again - I have no idea what their evidence is of this - just that that's the general vibe I've read in other places.

Satinavian
2017-08-11, 01:53 AM
I think that's an overstatement. (not just yours - but I've seen used other places because people are grumpy their favorite shows were canceled)

It's just that boy viewers are more valuable, and they're planning to (or already have) sunk $ into producing various toys, while 'girl shows' generally don't bother producing many toys - and I know that in the case of My Little Pony and the Barbie shows, the process went the other way around.
No, it is really just that the kind of toys and other accessories meant for boys or girls differ. And producers of girly toys accessories want to licence popular girly shows and vice versa.

See, if you have some toy manecure studio to sell, would you pay for a Barbie, a Disney Princess or a Teen Titans licence ? The latter is unlikely to happen. And if you had a boy who for some reason likes Frozen, would you ever consider buying him an Anna and Elsa manecure studio whithout him explicitely expressing he wants one or would you more likely stick to more unisex license products (if you find any) ?

That is the reason why marketing hates mixed fandoms. It is different with MLP, as that fanbase is girls and men, not girls and boys. Male fans are often collectors actually going for the girly toys.



And there are many cancelled shows aimed at girls with sizable boy viewer percentage. It is just that it is not that well known why those were cancelled as i can't think of one that was overall as popular as the both discussed above. I mean, W.I.T.C.H. had to eventually give way to Winx club which seems to have been better marketable and i still can't understand how that ridiculous pileup of gender stereotypes and onedimensional characters could win that contest.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-11, 07:26 AM
No, it is really just that the kind of toys and other accessories meant for boys or girls differ. And producers of girly toys accessories want to licence popular girly shows and vice versa.

See, if you have some toy manecure studio to sell, would you pay for a Barbie, a Disney Princess or a Teen Titans licence ? The latter is unlikely to happen. And if you had a boy who for some reason likes Frozen, would you ever consider buying him an Anna and Elsa manecure studio whithout him explicitely expressing he wants one or would you more likely stick to more unisex license products (if you find any) ?

That is the reason why marketing hates mixed fandoms. It is different with MLP, as that fanbase is girls and men, not girls and boys. Male fans are often collectors actually going for the girly toys.



And there are many cancelled shows aimed at girls with sizable boy viewer percentage. It is just that it is not that well known why those were cancelled as i can't think of one that was overall as popular as the both discussed above. I mean, W.I.T.C.H. had to eventually give way to Winx club which seems to have been better marketable and i still can't understand how that ridiculous pileup of gender stereotypes and onedimensional characters could win that contest.


Yeah, I left the licensing part of the equation out of my comments -- that's the other piece of it.

Ashiel
2017-08-12, 01:54 PM
Still sparsely on the forums until the coming week when I'm off from work but I read something in the thread that, as a student of art, reminded me of something else.


(This, of course betrays the fact that Ashiel is somewhat right and I won't be happy until fans of skeevy content can't get what they want - because I still can't manage to think of a reason to enjoy these things that does not, in some part, rests on sexist thinking (That pretty much everyone of us, including me, still has ingrained in us somewhere, and does not make one a bad person just for the fact), and I think this sort of thinking should best be phased out as soon as possible.

Link for convenience (https://whenthenextdaycomes.wordpress.com/2012/06/01/case-study-art-during-the-stalin-era-in-the-u-s-s-r/)


When Joseph Stalin became General Secretary of the U.S.S.R in 1922, he was facing an uphill battle with not only those within his country, which he was able to manage with the great purges, but with those outside of his country, particularly the western nations and their capitalistic ideologies. Stalin wanted a way to challenge the ideologies of the West with a singular and formal type of culture. Socialist Realism, art that often glorifies the role of the poor and impoverished and aims to further the goals of socialism and communism, had long been a style of art in the Soviet Union. However, around this time Constructivism suddenly became popular amongst the artists in the Soviet Union as did Impressionism and Cubism, all of which were associated with the Soviet Union prior the revolution. Additionally, these types of art were seen as “bourgeois” and fell in line with western ideals. Subsequently, the Community Party frowned upon any of these forms of art and since those in charge of the government could not understand the art, this type of art could not be used for propaganda and was just seen as a waste of time. Stalin knew that in order for the Soviet Union to present a unified external image which would make them not only look strong, but effectively socialist, he would have to do something about the other forms of art being produced.

Such happy. Much rightness. So innocence.
http://www.science-at-home.net/gallery/art/albums/userpics/normal_Boris_Wladimirskij-Rosen_fuer_Stalin.jpg

EDIT:

Original sin, also called ancestral sin,[1] is the Christian doctrine of humanity's state of sin resulting from the fall of man, stemming from Adam and Eve's rebellion in Eden, namely the sin of disobedience in consuming from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.[2] This condition has been characterized in many ways, ranging from something as insignificant as a slight deficiency, or a tendency toward sin yet without collective guilt, referred to as a "sin nature", to something as drastic as total depravity or automatic guilt of all humans through collective guilt.[3]
Deep inside. Every one. Not bad, just guilty. Much faith. Natural is evil. Go truth. Join and be saved.

EDIT 2:Soviet Art (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_art)

By the 1980s, Mikhail Gorbachev's policies of Perestroika and Glasnost made it virtually impossible for the authorities to place restrictions on artists or their freedom of expression. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the new market economy enabled the development of a gallery system, which meant that artists no longer had to be employed by the state, and could create work according to their own tastes, as well as the tastes of their private patrons. Consequently, after around 1986 the phenomenon of Nonconformist Art in the Soviet Union ceased to exist.

Talakeal
2017-08-12, 03:05 PM
You do not misremember us meeting in that thread; but might be misremembering or misunderstanding my position (Or I did not make myself sufficiently clear back then. Might have been that.). I am a bit confused why you seem my point there runs counter to arguing fictional characters don't make decisions for themselves (That instead are made by their creators (in the widest sense) for them, ideally on the basis of established character traits).
(My point there, to try to explain it as briefly as possible, is that I want for social interactions to be mechanized in RPGs if they are part of the RPG (On par with mechanization of other relevant things), with actual, mechanical rewards for succeeding on rolls as would happen with combat rolls. The details for that; and that ideally a player would only ever face a choice of multiple differently (un)favorable options, to never be told in absolutes "no, your character does this, fullstop" got more complicated as time went on.)

It just seems kind of weird and contradictory to me.

In the previous thread you seemed to say things like "It isn't rape to seduce a fictional character, because even if the controlling player doesn't consent to sex, the CHARACTER does."

And in this thread you seem to be saying things like:

"It is not ok for a fictional character to wear sexualized clothing because, unlike a real person, a fictional character cannot give consent, and thus their choices are purely those of the creator."


[SPOILER=Talakeal on Emotional Power Fantasies]

Sure I do. I do admit that in the focus on traditional male power fantasies I had not thought of that interpretation and thank you for bringing it to mind. I might want to argue that it is not something so easily displayed in fiction, but even as I am writing this I am unsure about the truth behind that. So, yes, this is a form of power Fantasy I had not considered from that lense beforehands; and it might be considered a stereotypically female power Fantasy, even.
But one thing I will argue: It serves much, much worse for a protagonist of... anything, much less most games; than the male one.
(And, of course, though here we both agree I think: Restricting women to this is at least as bad as restricting men to the Conan version of the power Fantasy).

You do not misremember us meeting in that thread; but might be misremembering or misunderstanding my position (Or I did not make myself sufficiently clear back then. Might have been that.). I am a bit confused why you seem my point there runs counter to arguing fictional characters don't make decisions for themselves (That instead are made by their creators (in the widest sense) for them, ideally on the basis of established character traits).
(My point there, to try to explain it as briefly as possible, is that I want for social interactions to be mechanized in RPGs if they are part of the RPG (On par with mechanization of other relevant things), with actual, mechanical rewards for succeeding on rolls as would happen with combat rolls. The details for that; and that ideally a player would only ever face a choice of multiple differently (un)favorable options, to never be told in absolutes "no, your character does this, fullstop" got more complicated as time went on.)

It is indeed rare for a protagonist to display this kind of power, or society tends to picture heroes as using violence / physical means to overcome problems, but it isn't unheard of. IMO the best games are those that allow a social character to triumph in ways that a physical one could not, most of the classic Black Isle games follow this paradigm and are awesome because of it.

SaurOps
2017-08-12, 10:15 PM
Still sparsely on the forums until the coming week when I'm off from work but I read something in the thread that, as a student of art, reminded me of something else.



[URL="https://whenthenextdaycomes.wordpress.com/2012/06/01/case-study-art-during-the-stalin-era-in-the-u-s-s-r/"]Link for convenience



Such happy. Much rightness. So innocence.
[IMG]http://www.science-at-home.net/gallery/art/albums/userpics/normal_Boris_Wladimirskij-Rosen_fuer_Stalin.jpg

EDIT:

Deep inside. Every one. Not bad, just guilty. Much faith. Natural is evil. Go truth. Join and be saved.

EDIT 2:[URL="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_art"]Soviet Art

This is a massive distortion of wanting boob window armor to stay in the bedroom and off of adventurers in locations that they know to be strange and dangerous. We don't praise the characters of the most recent Alien/Prometheus outings for engaging in similar behavior by taking off their helmets on strange planets, so why try to justify not-armor in a dungeon, unless it's one that you built for safe, sane, and consensual purposes?

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-12, 10:25 PM
This is a massive distortion of wanting boob window armor to stay in the bedroom and off of adventurers in locations that they know to be strange and dangerous. We don't praise the characters of the most recent Alien/Prometheus outings for engaging in similar behavior by taking off their helmets on strange planets, so why try to justify not-armor in a dungeon, unless it's one that you built for safe, sane, and consensual purposes?

Massive distortion is all that one has in their quiver, sadly.

Ashiel
2017-08-13, 01:51 AM
This is a massive distortion of wanting boob window armor to stay in the bedroom and off of adventurers in locations that they know to be strange and dangerous. We don't praise the characters of the most recent Alien/Prometheus outings for engaging in similar behavior by taking off their helmets on strange planets, so why try to justify not-armor in a dungeon, unless it's one that you built for safe, sane, and consensual purposes?
See that thing flying way up there? That's the point, and you missed it.


(This, of course betrays the fact that Ashiel is somewhat right and I won't be happy until fans of skeevy content can't get what they want - because I still can't manage to think of a reason to enjoy these things that does not, in some part, rests on sexist thinking (That pretty much everyone of us, including me, still has ingrained in us somewhere, and does not make one a bad person just for the fact), and I think this sort of thinking should best be phased out as soon as possible.
Because as I said before, this is just moral authoritarianism.

We're dealing with a mindset that won't be satisfied unless others are doing without what they like, because they feel like they and everyone else must be saved from some nebulous evil, because they just don't understand the real truth like the person wanting to take away a particularly style of art that they enjoy. It should all be phased out, to lead to a world of rightness.

Not only does that match Stalin's Soviet Russia, in that you have an ideology that wishes to wipe away the unsanctioned artistic expressions it does not see as conductive to the idealized society, it's also very religiously dogmatic, in that it makes assumptions that evil is simply there in the hearts of these people and there's nothing they can really do about it except repent and join you, because if they don't, they're either misinformed, confused, or intentionally evil themselves and trying to lead others astray.

Sorry, it doesn't matter what box you package it in, **** smells like ****. As I noted before, we've spent decades dealing with people like Patricia Pulling, Jackthompson, and Anita Sarkeesian. After a while it gets old man. Just so very old. Especially when there are mountains of art to find illustrations for your tastes.

Or here's a novel idea... (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKFfSl-EBfI&list=PL0373FA2B3CD4C899)

Arbane
2017-08-13, 02:34 AM
Sorry, it doesn't matter what box you package it in, **** smells like ****. As I noted before, we've spent decades dealing with people like Patricia Pulling, Jackthompson, and Anita Sarkeesian. After a while it gets old man. Just so very old. Especially when there are mountains of art to find illustrations for your tastes.


I am confused. What has Anita Sarkeesian done, besides pointing out the sexist cliches in videogames (and as a result, been on the receiving end of a tsunami of screaming hateful nerdfury from misogynistic gaming fanatics)?

And if you seriously think kvetching about boobplate being sexist and un"realistic" is somehow 'totalitarian', it's staggeringly ineffective totalitarianism, as my Tumblr 'fantasy art' tag indicates that boobplate is still flourishing in its native environment.

For gaming books, trying not to actively annoy half of the population is probably good business sense. If you need fantasy-themed porn THAT much, well, the Internet is a big place.

Floret
2017-08-13, 06:05 AM
@LiquorBox: I will respond to you, but that will take... some time to write up, and I thought some other points required a quicker response.


Still sparsely on the forums until the coming week when I'm off from work but I read something in the thread that, as a student of art, reminded me of something else.


(This, of course betrays the fact that Ashiel is somewhat right and I won't be happy until fans of skeevy content can't get what they want - because I still can't manage to think of a reason to enjoy these things that does not, in some part, rests on sexist thinking (That pretty much everyone of us, including me, still has ingrained in us somewhere, and does not make one a bad person just for the fact), and I think this sort of thinking should best be phased out as soon as possible. So far, the point in favour has not been "no, actually there are a number of reasons to enjoy this beyond that"; but simply "Let people enjoy what the want", which doesn't really counter any of the points. As long as people enjoy these things, they do have reason to exist, but from my current standpoints and knowlege, my problem is that people enjoy these things; or rather that the reason people enjoy these things exists. If that makes any sense?
So, I guess there is a question in there: Are there reasons people enjoy these things that are not rooted in somewhat sexist thinking? Which ones? I'd love to hear - being able to feel more comfortable with the current state of media would be a good thing!
Even without that, I can accept there being people and things I don't like in the world, however. It's part of life. I will do what I can do to try and change it, without causing collateral damage (As censorship, if I could do that, would definitely cause).)

Please, can we stop cutting off quotes in the middle to make them say (more) what we want them to say?
Because, let's note what I said AFTER the part that you quoted, shall we? I think two points are somewhat relevant.
1. "If there is a reason for these things that is not sexism, please tell me and correct my misconception. I want to feel comfortable with the current state of affairs but simply cannot with my current view on things."
2. "I am willing to accept the world being a non-ideal place if the alternative is censorship."
Now, the second point is, I think, all I need to say to your accusation of authoritarianism. I am not willing to impose my ideal onto others beyond explaining them, and why I think the world might be better that way. If I fail to convince them, that is my problem.
But: People's tastes aren't some nebulous higher good beyond criticism. "People just like it" is not an argument, people like a lot of terrible things. There are probably people out there that unironically enjoy FATAL. Doesn't mean that game doesn't deserve everything it gets.
Beyond that "It should be legal to be able to do this thing" is not enough reason for doing something. It might be legal to throw your houseplants out of the window, if you don't inflict harm on anyone by doing it (And possibly clean up afterwards). I'd still argue the statement "It is generally a bad idea to do that" holds true.
So, I repeat myself: I work under the assumption that sexism is a bad thing, and society would be better off without it (A). So far, I have been convinced that these kinds of depictions fall in line with sexist assumptions, and (in very, very minor ways) repeat them, and spread them (B). From this follows, that those kinds of depictions are probably also not a good thing, and society would probably be better off without them. Since I so far have the impression you agree with (A), but not with (B): Please tell me where the problem with it is, and what other foundation or reason there is for these things not in line with sexism?


It just seems kind of weird and contradictory to me.

In the previous thread you seemed to say things like "It isn't rape to seduce a fictional character, because even if the controlling player doesn't consent to sex, the CHARACTER does."

And in this thread you seem to be saying things like:

"It is not ok for a fictional character to wear sexualized clothing because, unlike a real person, a fictional character cannot give consent, and thus their choices are purely those of the creator."

Well... sort of. Yes, I am saying things that one could parse this way.
But see, the thing is, while a fictional character not being able to "decide" to wear something (And that is instead put upon them by the creator). Furthermore, the character has no Doylist consent, none that can be violated by real people, because on a Doylist level, the character isn't a person, but a bunch of ideas, maybe a painting, maybe some words.
So... no, a real person cannot rape a fictional character. How would they? In the same way that it is impossible to rape an idea, a painting, or words. They aren't an entity that can give consent on a Doylist level, because they fail to be an entity on that level. But every decision made for them is ultimately decided on that level. (On a Watsonian level, I'd argue the seduction isn't rape, because a successfull seduction just... isn't rape.)
Or are you arguing that by seducing a character in-game, you are, by proxy, raping their player, if they do not consent to the character being seduced? To that, I would say... No, just because a character can't make decisions for themselves (if viewed on a Doylist level), the creator does not become the character, and what happens to the character does not actually happen to the creator.
(Now, you might well be violating the player's agency over their character, but that is another discussion for another thread)


It is indeed rare for a protagonist to display this kind of power, or society tends to picture heroes as using violence / physical means to overcome problems, but it isn't unheard of. IMO the best games are those that allow a social character to triumph in ways that a physical one could not, most of the classic Black Isle games follow this paradigm and are awesome because of it.

Sure, it is a great thing, if it happens. (One of the reasons I argue for Social mechanics in RPGs having mechanical teeth :smallwink:)

Tobtor
2017-08-13, 06:42 AM
See that thing flying way up there? That's the point, and you missed it.


Because as I said before, this is just moral authoritarianism.

We're dealing with a mindset that won't be satisfied unless others are doing without what they like, because they feel like they and everyone else must be saved from some nebulous evil, because they just don't understand the real truth like the person wanting to take away a particularly style of art that they enjoy. It should all be phased out, to lead to a world of rightness.

Not only does that match Stalin's Soviet Russia, in that you have an ideology that wishes to wipe away the unsanctioned artistic expressions it does not see as conductive to the idealized society, it's also very religiously dogmatic, in that it makes assumptions that evil is simply there in the hearts of these people and there's nothing they can really do about it except repent and join you, because if they don't, they're either misinformed, confused, or intentionally evil themselves and trying to lead others astray.

Sorry, it doesn't matter what box you package it in, **** smells like ****. As I noted before, we've spent decades dealing with people like Patricia Pulling, Jackthompson, and Anita Sarkeesian. After a while it gets old man. Just so very old. Especially when there are mountains of art to find illustrations for your tastes.

Or here's a novel idea... (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKFfSl-EBfI&list=PL0373FA2B3CD4C899)

Ashiel: you a far out of line. This thread when from bad to horrible really quickly. I didn't think it could go down from being called a "feminazi", But a whole post arguing that people disagreeing with you are in effect totalitarian Stalinists (and not just a a short throwaway, but a whole post, well actually two).

I tink this will be the last of this thread for me. I would like point out that NONE of us have argued that the government should go in and forbid specific kinds of art, but that we have used our freedom of speech (which I, for one, love) to ARGUE with words that we dislike something in our present stage of out common hobby, and would like that to change (the portrayal of female armour specifically and also female depictions in general).

If you consider disagreeing with you makes people Stalinist and feminazist etc, I think we are done arguing. You are now on my (very short) ignore list. Maybe you consider that totalitarian, but so be it. I consider it reasonably as we will never agree, if you consider opposite opinions to to your own to automatically be equal to some of the worst regimes in history.

Lord Raziere
2017-08-13, 12:04 PM
Well said Tobtor! There is no useful discussion from someone who thinks that these complaints are equivalent to Totalitarianism. Ashiel by doing so, seems to be just as much of a crusader as the one she speaks against. There are probably people out there who think that any skimpiness is bad and must be covered up and probably just as demonizing of the opposition, but two wrongs don't make a right, and two people calling each other the enemy do not make a better world.

I think we can call this thread a success, ladies and gentlemen, between bio-essentialism, a sexy pic freedom crusader who believes that we're totalitarian and another person who unironically used the term "feminazi" I think we adequately demonstrated why this issue still needs work and why we must keep working for reasonable, responsible depictions of female armor appropriate to the situation. You think we don't need to talk about such things, and then we talk about them and its revealed why we talk about them. There are still people with misconceptions about this issue and beliefs that can only lead to conflict which is counterproductive to solving this.

In conclusion I'd say:
While there are some certain niche works where skimpiness is the norm and the point, the general rule is that armor is armor, not fashion. and armor need to protect one by covering up, thats the point. This has nothing to do with realism- a cartoonish overly heavy piece of armor with big pauldrons is just as protective as the most realistic ones considering the silly unrealistic universes they reside within. While its ok for a character to be depicted as skimpy and sexy, protective armor is not a cultural thing, its objective about whether you live or die, and I'd much rather see someone live through battle in cool looking armor then take it off out of battle then be sexy when they're not trying to survive- with good armor, the person has TWO possible looks rather than one, and thus more depth, more focuses than just sexiness, more ways to express themselves. Thus can reasonable armor actually increase freedom in fantasy than restrict it, as you are free to show that they are sensible enough to wear it when need be, yet still enjoy life in skimpier wear when they don't have to. While it is important to show one enjoying life and wearing what they like, its also important to show someone being sensible enough to survive long enough to do so.

Ashiel
2017-08-13, 02:14 PM
I am confused. What has Anita Sarkeesian done, besides pointing out the sexist cliches in videogames (and as a result, been on the receiving end of a tsunami of screaming hateful nerdfury from misogynistic gaming fanatics)?
Being a sexist, lying, con artist is a good start. :smallconfused:

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-13, 02:16 PM
Well said Tobtor! There is no useful discussion from someone who thinks that these complaints are equivalent to Totalitarianism. Ashiel by doing so, seems to be just as much of a crusader as the one she speaks against. There are probably people out there who think that any skimpiness is bad and must be covered up and probably just as demonizing of the opposition, but two wrongs don't make a right, and two people calling each other the enemy do not make a better world.

I think we can call this thread a success, ladies and gentlemen, between bio-essentialism, a sexy pic freedom crusader who believes that we're totalitarian and another person who unironically used the term "feminazi" I think we adequately demonstrated why this issue still needs work and why we must keep working for reasonable, responsible depictions of female armor appropriate to the situation. You think we don't need to talk about such things, and then we talk about them and its revealed why we talk about them. There are still people with misconceptions about this issue and beliefs that can only lead to conflict which is counterproductive to solving this.

In conclusion I'd say:
While there are some certain niche works where skimpiness is the norm and the point, the general rule is that armor is armor, not fashion. and armor need to protect one by covering up, thats the point. This has nothing to do with realism- a cartoonish overly heavy piece of armor with big pauldrons is just as protective as the most realistic ones considering the silly unrealistic universes they reside within. While its ok for a character to be depicted as skimpy and sexy, protective armor is not a cultural thing, its objective about whether you live or die, and I'd much rather see someone live through battle in cool looking armor then take it off out of battle then be sexy when they're not trying to survive- with good armor, the person has TWO possible looks rather than one, and thus more depth, more focuses than just sexiness, more ways to express themselves. Thus can reasonable armor actually increase freedom in fantasy than restrict it, as you are free to show that they are sensible enough to wear it when need be, yet still enjoy life in skimpier wear when they don't have to. While it is important to show one enjoying life and wearing what they like, its also important to show someone being sensible enough to survive long enough to do so.

I was going to respond to your "I can hold my peace no longer" post, but, I waited. I'm not sure this thread will get the wind-down it deserves. So, I shall add the following.

1. So long as men like women, they will like looking at images of fertility.
2. So long as men have territorial goals and frustrations, they will like looking at power fantasies.
3. So long as women like men, they will like displaying their fertility.
4. So long as RPGs exist there will be gaming art.
5. So long as they are not crushed by legal and social rules, artists will produce art depicting fertile women.
6. So long as artists depict fertile women in danger, some or many artists will produce art depicting fertile women who are also power fantasies.

The modern scientific, verisimilar, rational mental framework that's on display in this thread is based on the principle of sufficient reason, that everything must have a reason for being the way it is and not another way. This is not a bad thing in of itself; I agree with the principle. But, it forces some reflection when sought to be applied to something like fertile power fantasies, in order to delaminate our options out of the mists of our psychological naïvete. And, so, we see our options are fourfold:

Option 1. Slap sensible armour (https://i.pinimg.com/736x/0c/43/35/0c4335f48e4b3dec92f80c01f494e426--female-knight-lady-knight.jpg) on all the women combatants.

Option 2. Declare revealing and combat-insensible armour to be magical (https://mygirlfriendisadm.files.wordpress.com/2010/02/caldwell00.jpg).

Option 3. Set the action in environments where skimpiness makes literal sense (http://thewildstars.com/JC-ChessmanThuviaHC.gif).

Option 4. Reject verisimilitude in favour of mythic (https://i2.wp.com/www.shamanhealerwarrior.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/wonder-woman.jpg), archetypal, psychological explanations.

Take your pick, and let me take mine.

Thanks for the interesting debate.

Ashiel
2017-08-13, 02:35 PM
Ashiel: you a far out of line. This thread when from bad to horrible really quickly. I didn't think it could go down from being called a "feminazi", But a whole post arguing that people disagreeing with you are in effect totalitarian Stalinists (and not just a a short throwaway, but a whole post, well actually two).
If you're going to respond to my posts, respond to my posts. I didn't say anyone was a totalitarian Stalinist. I'm drawing a very real parallel with the mindset. It's a very human mindset. Yet it follows the same general flow. It's a sort of pattern that manifests itself in things, including totalitarian regimes.

It's the mindset that I have an issue with. It's the mindset I've seen, in one form or another, many times over the course of my life as someone tells someone else what they should or should not consume for entertainment based on their ideology and an unwillingness to simply live and let live.

If you want to block me for that, go ahead.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVXJmfd3cmg

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-13, 02:37 PM
I was going to respond to your "I can hold my peace no longer" post, but, I waited. I'm not sure this thread will get the wind-down it deserves. So, I shall add the following.

1. So long as men like women, they will like looking at images of fertility.
2. So long as men have territorial goals and frustrations, they will like looking at power fantasies.
3. So long as women like men, they will like displaying their fertility.
4. So long as RPGs exist there will be gaming art.
5. So long as they are not crushed by legal and social rules, artists will produce art depicting fertile women.
6. So long as artists depict fertile women in danger, some or many artists will produce art depicting fertile women who are also power fantasies.


Man, evolutionary psych just won't loose its hold on pop-sci. http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/Smile_sad.gif

There's an element of the pop-science press who loves to repeat that sort of "biology is destiny" and "reproduction drives all men to Y and all women to X" crap as if it's fact, so it's hard to blame people for repeating it as gospel trust, but it's just not true. Evolutionary psychology is largely a collection of just-so stories and rabbit holes, with more than its share of people who will react with outrage and accuse you of being "anti-science" or "a creationist" if you don't go along with their claims.

Some suggested reading on the topic -- seriously, before you repeat that "men, women, fertility" thing again somewhere, at least consider what's said in these.

It Ain't Necessarily So - Evo Psych's "Just So" Stories (http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2012/09/17/it-aint-necessarily-so)
Evolutionary Psychology Is Neither | The Evolution Institute (https://evolution-institute.org/article/evolutionary-psychology-is-neither/)
Evolutionary psychology gets evolution wrong. (http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2005/08/cave_thinkers.html)
αEP: The fundamental failure of the evolutionary psychology premise – Pharyngula (http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/12/10/ep-the-fundamental-failure-of-the-evolutionary-psychology-premise/)
Kenan Malik's essay on the flaws of evolutionary psychology (http://www.kenanmalik.com/essays/fallacy.html)
Four Fallacies of Pop Evolutionary Psychology - Scientific American (https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/four-fallacies-of-pop-evolutionary-2012-12-07/)
A Critique of Evolutionary Psychology — The Psychology In Seattle Podcast (https://psychologyinseattle.squarespace.com/a-critique-of-evolutionary-psychology/)


Whenever you see someone, even a "scientist", start making absolute universal claims about what men like and what women like, based on just-so stories about things that they're asserting to know about our ancestors, go find the biggest grain of salt you can... I'd suggest a solid crystal of at least a pound in weight.

Our lives, our thoughts, and our behaviors, aren't actually all about power and fertility and reproduction, and anyone who claims that they are, is seeking easy simple answers to hard complex questions.

ImNotTrevor
2017-08-13, 02:56 PM
Man, evolutionary psych just won't loose its hold on pop-sci. http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/Smile_sad.gif

Some suggested reading on the topic.

It Ain't Necessarily So - Evo Psych's "Just So" Stories (http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2012/09/17/it-aint-necessarily-so)
Evolutionary Psychology Is Neither | The Evolution Institute (https://evolution-institute.org/article/evolutionary-psychology-is-neither/)
Evolutionary psychology gets evolution wrong. (http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2005/08/cave_thinkers.html)
αEP: The fundamental failure of the evolutionary psychology premise – Pharyngula (http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/12/10/ep-the-fundamental-failure-of-the-evolutionary-psychology-premise/)
Kenan Malik's essay on the flaws of evolutionary psychology (http://www.kenanmalik.com/essays/fallacy.html)
Four Fallacies of Pop Evolutionary Psychology - Scientific American (https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/four-fallacies-of-pop-evolutionary-2012-12-07/)
A Critique of Evolutionary Psychology — The Psychology In Seattle Podcast (https://psychologyinseattle.squarespace.com/a-critique-of-evolutionary-psychology/)


Whenever you see someone, even a "scientist", start making absolute universal claims about what men like and what women like, based on just-so stories about things that they're asserting to know about our ancestors, go find the biggest grain of salt you can... I'd suggest a solid crystal of at least a pound in weight.

Our lives, our thoughts, and our behaviors, aren't actually all about power and fertility and reproduction, and anyone who claims that they are, is seeking easy simple answers to hard complex questions.

*listens to the sound of someone missing the point of a post and feeling self-righteous about it*

"You shall not put words in my mouth. Now shut up and swallow these words!"

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-13, 03:19 PM
Well said Tobtor! There is no useful discussion from someone who thinks that these complaints are equivalent to Totalitarianism. Ashiel by doing so, seems to be just as much of a crusader as the one she speaks against. There are probably people out there who think that any skimpiness is bad and must be covered up and probably just as demonizing of the opposition, but two wrongs don't make a right, and two people calling each other the enemy do not make a better world.

I think we can call this thread a success, ladies and gentlemen, between bio-essentialism, a sexy pic freedom crusader who believes that we're totalitarian and another person who unironically used the term "feminazi" I think we adequately demonstrated why this issue still needs work and why we must keep working for reasonable, responsible depictions of female armor appropriate to the situation. You think we don't need to talk about such things, and then we talk about them and its revealed why we talk about them. There are still people with misconceptions about this issue and beliefs that can only lead to conflict which is counterproductive to solving this.


Sometimes you just have to keep them talking long enough to destroy their own position.




In conclusion I'd say:
While there are some certain niche works where skimpiness is the norm and the point, the general rule is that armor is armor, not fashion. and armor need to protect one by covering up, thats the point. This has nothing to do with realism- a cartoonish overly heavy piece of armor with big pauldrons is just as protective as the most realistic ones considering the silly unrealistic universes they reside within. While its ok for a character to be depicted as skimpy and sexy, protective armor is not a cultural thing, its objective about whether you live or die, and I'd much rather see someone live through battle in cool looking armor then take it off out of battle then be sexy when they're not trying to survive- with good armor, the person has TWO possible looks rather than one, and thus more depth, more focuses than just sexiness, more ways to express themselves. Thus can reasonable armor actually increase freedom in fantasy than restrict it, as you are free to show that they are sensible enough to wear it when need be, yet still enjoy life in skimpier wear when they don't have to. While it is important to show one enjoying life and wearing what they like, its also important to show someone being sensible enough to survive long enough to do so.


Yeap.

There's nothing wrong with a character who is authentically in-character sexy, being sexy in situations where being "sexy" isn't also a huge increase in the chances of failure or death.

Dragonexx
2017-08-13, 04:34 PM
Or as I said before, the simplest explanation is to just do whatever you have fun with. It is a game after all, and trying to police what other people do in their games is stupid and egotistical.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-13, 04:47 PM
Or as I said before, the simplest explanation is to just do whatever you have fun with. It is a game after all, and trying to police what other people do in their games is stupid and egotistical.


Then come back and complain when that's what's actually happening.

Dragonexx
2017-08-13, 04:48 PM
I've been drifting in and out of this discussion for a while once it started to get stupid, so what the hell is going on anymore?

Liquor Box
2017-08-13, 04:53 PM
Ashiel: you a far out of line. This thread when from bad to horrible really quickly. I didn't think it could go down from being called a "feminazi", But a whole post arguing that people disagreeing with you are in effect totalitarian Stalinists (and not just a a short throwaway, but a whole post, well actually two).

I tink this will be the last of this thread for me. I would like point out that NONE of us have argued that the government should go in and forbid specific kinds of art, but that we have used our freedom of speech (which I, for one, love) to ARGUE with words that we dislike something in our present stage of out common hobby, and would like that to change (the portrayal of female armour specifically and also female depictions in general).

If you consider disagreeing with you makes people Stalinist and feminazist etc, I think we are done arguing. You are now on my (very short) ignore list. Maybe you consider that totalitarian, but so be it. I consider it reasonably as we will never agree, if you consider opposite opinions to to your own to automatically be equal to some of the worst regimes in history.
I think you are exaggerating Ashiel's post. Her post did not refer to "people disagreeing with her" as "totalitarian Stalinists". Instead she referred to one single person as having a moral authoritarian attitude toward this issue.

Keep in mind that in the post Ashiel had quoted Floret* had said "Ashiel is somewhat right and I won't be happy until fans of skeevy content can't get what they want". Authoritarian means requiring a strict adherence to the rules at the expense of personal freedom. It seems to me that the thrust of Floret's statement is that she prefers that "fans of skeevy content" adhere to her own moral code at the expense of their freedom to enjoy conduct which Floret considers skeevy. So on the face of it, it appears to me that Ashiel's words "moral authoritarian" are consistent with Floret's own statement (which was framed as confirmation of an earlier similar allegation by Ashiel).

You may argue (as Floret kind of does) that moral authoritarianism is justified in this particular case, because there is no good reason to allow the sort of media she thinks is skeevy. But that does not mean that the words Ashiel used were so off the mark as to justify your response.

The later reference to authoritarianism being similar to what occurred in Soviet Russia, I think was to reinforce Ashiel's opinion that forcing people to adhere to what some authority sees as morally correct is a bad thing.

In that regard, it might be fair to say that Ashiel's words were somewhat provocative, and she could have come up with a much softer way to make the same point - but that criticism would fit many (probably most) in this thread on both sides of the argument.

* To be fair to Floret, she has said in other posts that she does not advocate censorship as a means to keep the skeevy content from its fans, in both that post and others. But in fairness to Ashiel, the reference to censorship in that post was at the end at could possibly have been misread as advocating censorship.

Can I suggest we not take offence to quickly in a thread about a topic that is polarising and nuanced, and thus one where people are sometimes going to get a little frustrated with others who do not agree with a point we see as obvious. Instead can we treat the people who disagree with us in this thread as intelligent (as I am sure the majority are), well meaning people (as I am sure the majority are), who merely have a different perspective to us,We might be able to get some of those who disagree with us to see another side of issue, or better yet, learn to see another side ourselves.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-13, 05:27 PM
I've been drifting in and out of this discussion for a while once it started to get stupid, so what the hell is going on anymore?


Unless it's buried in one of the walls of text, I don't think anyone has suggested telling other people how to run their separate gaming tables. So that's one thing that's not going on.

I don't think anyone is advocating goverment censorship.

I don't think anyone is advocating the total end of all sexually charged artwork.

SaurOps
2017-08-13, 06:25 PM
See that thing flying way up there? That's the point, and you missed it.

Or perhaps you're just bellyaching and making mountains out of molehills? The fact that you're whining about Anita Sarkeesian seems to strongly suggest this. Someone points out that something isn't alright? The sky is falling! I am being attacked! My hand has reflexively launched itself to the pearls that I am wearing, so as to clutch them!

The section below is highly ironic on account of how much outrage you've been piling on to a shadow.



Because as I said before, this is just moral authoritarianism.

We're dealing with a mindset that won't be satisfied unless others are doing without what they like, because they feel like they and everyone else must be saved from some nebulous evil, because they just don't understand the real truth like the person wanting to take away a particularly style of art that they enjoy. It should all be phased out, to lead to a world of rightness.

Not only does that match Stalin's Soviet Russia, in that you have an ideology that wishes to wipe away the unsanctioned artistic expressions it does not see as conductive to the idealized society, it's also very religiously dogmatic, in that it makes assumptions that evil is simply there in the hearts of these people and there's nothing they can really do about it except repent and join you, because if they don't, they're either misinformed, confused, or intentionally evil themselves and trying to lead others astray.

Sorry, it doesn't matter what box you package it in, **** smells like ****. As I noted before, we've spent decades dealing with people like Patricia Pulling, Jackthompson, and Anita Sarkeesian. After a while it gets old man. Just so very old. Especially when there are mountains of art to find illustrations for your tastes.

One of these things if not like the other. Also, it's possible for porn to not be skeevy. And also be in a section where it is clearly marked as porn. You just have to pick up a different book or file collection to get it, as, again, packaging it with a tabletop game tends to be like multiclassing: you can try to make it work, but it's not the optimum condition. That's why The Scroll of Swallowed Darkness is generally fine where it is, but the remainder of 2nd edition Exalted has serious problems due to an infestation of fanservice.



Or here's a novel idea... (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oKFfSl-EBfI&list=PL0373FA2B3CD4C899)

I started practicing with a couple of Loomis books back in 2008. I'm also currently on my tenth sketchbook of practice stuff. So, what was the point that you were trying to make again?

Arbane
2017-08-13, 10:00 PM
Being a sexist, lying, con artist is a good start. :smallconfused:

Uh huh. Go on.

1337 b4k4
2017-08-13, 10:47 PM
There's nothing wrong with a character who is authentically in-character sexy, being sexy in situations where being "sexy" isn't also a huge increase in the chances of failure or death.

The fundamental disagreement here isn't in these statements, its in the statement that they're also nothing wrong with a character who is sexy or being sexy for no reason at all or where it makes no sense either.

Art doesn't have to make sense, or even have internal consistency to be engaging or otherwise entertaining. There's also nothing wrong with finding such art cold, stupid, immersion breaking or even annoying. But your lack of enjoyment from a given piece of art doesn't mean the art is problematic, harmful, dangerous or corrupting.

pres_man
2017-08-13, 11:23 PM
Others: We want to see women dressed in clothing and armor that makes sense! We want to see other representations than the boob windows and mid-drifts and all the other nonsense! In fact it should be possible for no one to be able to tell your sex or gender by what you are wearing!

Me: Where do I sign the petition, I totally support more choices for people in games and artwork. And with the greater acceptance of various types of gender identification, giving people choices include asexual choices certainly makes sense.

Others: All of those other depictions are sexist! Anyone who likes them is sexist! Anyone who supports products that they are produced in is supporting sexism and the patriarchy!

Me: Uh ... can't we all just like what we like and not tell others they are sinners for not liking what we like?

Others: shame ... Shame ... SHame ... SHAme ... SHAMe ... SHAME!

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

That is really my issue. This is not being discuss by some as a topic related to personal preference or even how much of the various types of representation should be included, instead it is literally being discussed as if it is a moral issue.

For example:

So, I repeat myself: I work under the assumption that sexism is a bad thing, and society would be better off without it (A). So far, I have been convinced that these kinds of depictions fall in line with sexist assumptions, and (in very, very minor ways repeat them, and spread them (B). From this follows, that those kinds of depictions are probably also not a good thing, and society would probably be better off without them. Since I so far have the impression you agree with (A), but not with (B): Please tell me where the problem with it is, and what other foundation or reason there is for these things not in line with sexism?

That is a moral description. It is presenting that it is immoral (i.e. sexist) to like these depictions being referred to. This is not merely a difference in preference, but a war for the "souls" of the population, especially the youth who must not be "corrupted" (taught to internalize misogyny for example).

People are right though, they are not calling for government action. But there other ways to apply pressure to others besides the government. Calling people [insert]ists and getting others to join in and shaming them for their "sins" is a common way.

Sorry, I don't belong to your "church", your claims of sins don't concern me.
I don't believe art like this is sexist:

https://i.pinimg.com/736x/f2/55/6a/f2556a47e054b9d140fbe9886a78eeed--conan-the-barbarian-fantasy-artwork.jpg

Now if you want more diversity in representation, I have got your back and am with you. But if you feel the need to try to shame others for their preferences, sorry, I didn't join your "church" and don't subscribe to your views on "sin".

Lord Raziere
2017-08-13, 11:31 PM
@ pres_man and 1337 b4k4:
Just keep beating that strawman you both set up there. I'll be over here when your ready to actually discuss things reasonably.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 12:01 AM
@ pres_man and 1337 b4k4:
Just keep beating that strawman you both set up there. I'll be over here when your ready to actually discuss things reasonably.


And the funny thing is, it's the same sort of strawmen I've been seeing directed against anyone who even questions the contextual applicability / sense of a certain strain of artwork for about 20 years... and I'm pretty sure they were out there before that as well.





I don't believe art like this is sexist:

https://i.pinimg.com/736x/f2/55/6a/f2556a47e054b9d140fbe9886a78eeed--conan-the-barbarian-fantasy-artwork.jpg



It's too ridiculous to be sexist... if anyone tried to depict any of the characters I've ever created going into combat in that outlandish fetish gear, I'd fire them (or "cease and desist" them) on the spot.

Satinavian
2017-08-14, 01:07 AM
Uh huh. Go on.Oh, no, no, no

Can we please let that controversy out of this thread ? It is bad enough as it is. We really don't need to reopen one of the ugliest collections of flamewars in the whole gaming related internet history.



@ pres_man and 1337 b4k4:
Just keep beating that strawman you both set up there. I'll be over here when your ready to actually discuss things reasonably.I don't think that is fair.

We have a significant part of the thread tried to establish motivations and goals via visiting questions like
"Would you be happy if an MMO has normal and skimpy outfits and it is left to player choice ?"
"Would you be happy if some (single player) RPGs have realistic armor and others don't, so everyone can have their kind of game ?"
"Where are non skimpy alternatives for fighting games ?"
"Can just anyone like what he likes and be happy ?"
"It it really about the realisticness of the armor or is it about the sexiness and perceived objectification ?"


If you and Floret and Max_killjoy had ever clearly established that you just want options that appeal to your taste and don't care what other games do and if other tastes also get what they want, we wouldn't be here. Floret even admitted that this was not really the case for her but also stated that she sees the problem with trying to get options other people like out of games.

And the other side has pretty clearly stated that they have no problem with more realistic and diverse art appearing as options as long as they can keep the skimpiness in the stuff they actually play. If hat would have been acceptable the thread would have been over long ago.


So no, it is not a strawman. It is what some people think is actually the position of their opponents. And i am honestly not sure how wrong/right they are.


Of course the real problem is that there are only a couple of high budget video games per year. And there can also only be a handfull of successfull MMOs. Everyone would prefer those would cater to their own tastes and that the other tastes be relegated to niche markets. There can't simply be options for everyone in some segments. The markets are not big enough. This is why the fights are so fierce.




Personally i woule like more female representation (i tend to play female whenever possible) and armor to be more realistic, but have no problem with sexy clothing or attractive characters, even if i would like to see more body shapes present. And if i skip a game because of stupid unrealistic armoe, i don't care at all, if the stupidity is "equal".




I also don't think that Ashiels posts are fair or fitting. While the "live and let live" was not really acepted by people unhappy with the current state, they also did not suggest censorship. It seems to be more a case of "Let's tell people how bad it is and they will agree and the skimpyness with leave the mainstream because no one really liked it anyway because there is no reason to like it". Which obviously does not work with people who actually do like it.
So... what now ?

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 01:32 AM
I think you are exaggerating Ashiel's post. Her post did not refer to "people disagreeing with her" as "totalitarian Stalinists". Instead she referred to one single person as having a moral authoritarian attitude toward this issue.
Thank you for actually reading what I said, and for the rest of your post.


Now if you want more diversity in representation, I have got your back and am with you. But if you feel the need to try to shame others for their preferences, sorry, I didn't join your "church" and don't subscribe to your views on "sin".
Pretty much this. Thanks.


I started practicing with a couple of Loomis books back in 2008. I'm also currently on my tenth sketchbook of practice stuff. So, what was the point that you were trying to make again?
https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t31.0-8/13669414_1318687498158781_3363606352865387901_o.jp g?oh=0996d52e91c6072b5b787d4959fa3a9d&oe=5A2EAE55
https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/13521987_1311839955510202_1148300890388392096_n.jp g?oh=d183090b2a8a477f4594d001c8973b45&oe=59ED673Bhttps://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/15977081_1512897165404479_971116716428177247_n.jpg ?oh=94efff7fb3d7c3ba2e2e33f9d17d6cd3&oe=59F22481https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/15895300_1512898535404342_2833598376155022163_n.jp g?oh=8497b21f0d5ab4664b0f961b5f189d66&oe=5A28D30Dhttps://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/15873547_1512898792070983_114468689840341480_n.jpg ?oh=5a1f88a4ca7dcf03e8a1951e31defb51&oe=5A31498Ehttps://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t31.0-8/15896070_1512900095404186_6451817518253190829_o.jp g?oh=e56d4132cd3418719575097f7c2369fd&oe=5A1D0C4B
https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/15977053_1521265457900983_2456622809491989563_n.jp g?oh=a4c95e04463dc3a7f8aaad7d6d0fdf43&oe=5A3311D0

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 02:00 AM
Oh, no, no, no

Can we please let that controversy out of this thread ? It is bad enough as it is. We really don't need to reopen one of the ugliest collections of flamewars in the whole gaming related internet history.
No worries. It's all on the internet if anyone cares. Anyone curious as to who people like Jack Thompson are can find all the arguments against them easily enough. I've said my piece.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 10:13 AM
I don't think that is fair.

We have a significant part of the thread tried to establish motivations and goals via visiting questions like
"Would you be happy if an MMO has normal and skimpy outfits and it is left to player choice ?"
"Would you be happy if some (single player) RPGs have realistic armor and others don't, so everyone can have their kind of game ?"
"Where are non skimpy alternatives for fighting games ?"
"Can just anyone like what he likes and be happy ?"
"It it really about the realisticness of the armor or is it about the sexiness and perceived objectification ?"


If you and Floret and Max_killjoy had ever clearly established that you just want options that appeal to your taste and don't care what other games do and if other tastes also get what they want, we wouldn't be here. Floret even admitted that this was not really the case for her but also stated that she sees the problem with trying to get options other people like out of games.

And the other side has pretty clearly stated that they have no problem with more realistic and diverse art appearing as options as long as they can keep the skimpiness in the stuff they actually play. If hat would have been acceptable the thread would have been over long ago.


So no, it is not a strawman. It is what some people think is actually the position of their opponents. And i am honestly not sure how wrong/right they are.


Of course the real problem is that there are only a couple of high budget video games per year. And there can also only be a handfull of successfull MMOs. Everyone would prefer those would cater to their own tastes and that the other tastes be relegated to niche markets. There can't simply be options for everyone in some segments. The markets are not big enough. This is why the fights are so fierce.


Personally i woule like more female representation (i tend to play female whenever possible) and armor to be more realistic, but have no problem with sexy clothing or attractive characters, even if i would like to see more body shapes present. And if i skip a game because of stupid unrealistic armoe, i don't care at all, if the stupidity is "equal".


I also don't think that Ashiels posts are fair or fitting. While the "live and let live" was not really acepted by people unhappy with the current state, they also did not suggest censorship. It seems to be more a case of "Let's tell people how bad it is and they will agree and the skimpyness with leave the mainstream because no one really liked it anyway because there is no reason to like it". Which obviously does not work with people who actually do like it.
So... what now ?



Part of the disconnect is perhaps that I look at a piece of artwork and see it as a window into another world, whereas some others see it as strictly something to be looked at and enjoyed by the viewer.


On armor -- the presentation is often equal-opportunity stupid. Giant shoulder spikes and random sharp bits sticking out... plates that make basic human movements impossible... gaps in protection in the worst places. However, there's an added element of (attempted) sexual titillation that's far more prevalent in depictions of female characters in "armor". If a character is wearing armor, it should be functional, or what's the point?

Is the artist really depicting this "fictional reality" accurately, and if they are, what does all this dysfunctional armor, with the added element sexual display primarily of female characters, tell me about the character and the setting?

"But I want to look at sexy ladies!" As far as I'm concerned, there's nothing sexy about horrible fail-armor regardless of which bits the "armor" might display, imply, or "enhance". It makes the character look like an idiot, and stupid isn't attractive. I don't see how characters getting themselves defeated, injured, or killed is "sexy".

This isn't the same as a character wearing no armor in contexts where that makes sense. Wearing something into combat that weighs you down and wears you out faster but doesn't offer protection to the most vital bits... is actively counter-productive regardless of the context.


On the art as art -- quite often, the artwork in question is just bad from a technical point of view... it displays a poor grasp of anatomy, of composition, of context, and so on. Impossible poses, mismatched anatomy, odd angles, failure of basic perspective, failure to understand and convey the character, failure to understand and convey the situation being portrayed, etc. See, the Power Girl side-by-side posted upthread.


On sexualization -- the problem isn't that characters should never be shown to be as sexual entities. It's that they're so often shown as overtly sexualized in situations where it makes no sense, to the detriment of the character... and this is disproportionately done to female characters.

And this often takes the form of them being turned into objects for the gratification of others, rather than as characters in their own right. This is little different from how actual living women are often portrayed in media as well.

This is not the same as characters having sexual elements that make sense within the context of the character and the setting and the situation. Somehow, criticism of sexualization and objectification is taken as an attack on any content that ever depicts the character as a sexual entity of any sort. Somehow, wanting to not objectify the character is taken as an attempt to "sanitize" or "moralize" the character into an ugly prudish neuter.


On impact -- this artwork doesn't exist in a vacuum. Women in our culture, especially young women and even girls from a very young age, are bombarded with messages that it's their appearance, sexual appeal, how they can be pleasing to others, etc, that makes them worthwhile. They're told that "attractive" and "smart" are competing qualities. In some first-world countries, they're still told that being smart or athletic or accomplished aren't "feminine" or "attractive". They're told that they're horribly flawed, and that only be spending money and "perfecting" themselves can they overcome these flaws, and then "complete" themselves by finding a man.

And young men are sent the message that women exist to gratify and please them, that they exist for their enjoyment.


On the irony -- buried in their fallacious outcry that we want to control what they can draw and look at, and that we want to censor sexiness out of art, is their unspoken assertion that only via the display of skin and body parts can a woman be attractive, and that only "signs of fertility" and "displays of power" can be sexy. In accusing us of trying to take "sexy" out of the artwork, they're also in some cases asserting that only a very narrow range of depictions can be attractive or pleasing.


On control and censorship -- there's a difference between saying something should change or that a particular thing shouldn't be done... and demanding that the force of law and the state by applied to make that change a reality. It's even perhaps a bit saddening that in our current culture, people can't tell the difference between "shouldn't" and "not allowed to".


So -- yeah, I'd love to see pandering, demeaning, objectifying artwork go the way of blackface. I just don't want anyone to have the power to force it to happen, because that same power can be turned against other things just as easily.

SaurOps
2017-08-14, 10:47 AM
Represent

I'm afraid that I don't have anything online; hardware wasn't up to the transfer in years past. Also, some other technical skills have eluded me, which brings up another point from when you made the same suggestion many posts ago, and my response to it (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showsinglepost.php?p=22260085&postcount=725). Specifically, the first point; you shouldn't need to have to draw in order to get in to an argument about media produced for mass market consumption. Else, no one would be able to.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 10:53 AM
I'm afraid that I don't have anything online; hardware wasn't up to the transfer in years past. Also, some other technical skills have eluded me, which brings up another point from when you made the same suggestion many posts ago, and my response to it (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showsinglepost.php?p=22260085&postcount=725). Specifically, the first point; you shouldn't need to have to draw in order to get in to an argument about media produced for mass market consumption. Else, no one would be able to.


Ah, yes, I see that they've fallen back on the "I'd like to see you do better" fallacy. :smalltongue:

Floret
2017-08-14, 11:26 AM
As to your two things:
1. That you expressed the figures from the upper end of the spectrum last time does not change the underlying realities. An audience of 70% one gender necesarily means 30% of the other (on the assumption you speicifed that they collectively make 100%) - it is two different ways of expressing the same thing.
In both posts we were talking how how close the percentage of characters of the under-represented gender need be to the percentage of the audience that are also that gender before it becomes not OK.
In the hypothetical 20% of the characters were from the under-represented gender, which you said was ok if 30% of the audience was from that gender. 20% x 1.5 = 30%.
In the present situation you estimate 26% of the characters are from the under-represented gender, and you estimate that 33% to 50% of the auidence is from that gender. 26% x 1.5 =39%. 39% is within your range, and just short of the mid-point (41.5% as you identified).

2. So you weren't comfortable specifying an exact number for percentage of Sci-Fi audiences that are female, which is why you specified a range. Now you are saying that it makes sense that the most likely point within that range is the mid-point (not the average, unless I have misunderstood what your numbers were expressing) which is 41.5%.
41.5% is greater than 39% (from my figures above). So this demonstrates that most of your range (by a small margin) is more than 1.5 times higher than your estimate.

From this I think we can say, based on your estimates and parameters from earlier in the thread, that the under-representation of females in Sci Fi relative to the proportion of females in the audience is probably not ok, but it might be ok. For it to be ok, the true percentage of females in the audience would have to be toward the lower end of the range you gave (slightly below the mid-point).
Do you think that is fair?

1. Alright, I will concede that point. Fair enough, that was some mixed up thinking.
2. I think taking the midwaypoint is at least more honest when comparing a range to one set number; otherwise you are treating the range equivalent to its lowest point.
And, yeah, I think that might be fair. Pure numbers fare better than thought, at least at a quick glance.


First, I disagree with your premise - I don't think it matters why people enjoy it. I look at whether the existance of certain types of media is a bad thing from a good vs harm perspective. There is good that arises from people enjoying media that you or I might find unsavoury - the simply fact that they enjoy it (and regardless of why they enjoy it) is a good outcome of its existance. For its existance to be a bad thing (in my opinion) there must be a harm that outweighs the good.

I'm also going to have hard time answering your question because I think we may have a different idea of what "rooted in sexism" means. In my opinion it is not sexist to enjoy sexy depictions of the gender you are attracted to. I suspect that most people have "the male gaze" or "the female gaze" (or both) to some degree, meaning their eye is drawn to people they find sexually attractive. On an individual basis I don't there is anything sexist about your eye (or mine) being drawn to sexualised images.

Where it may be sexist is at the macro level, not the individual level, if women are sexualised far more often than males. We have sort of started on that discussion, but are stuck on the objective test. But if women are sexualised at a much greater rate than men, while that make the genre of media as a whole sexist, I don't think it makes the individual who appreciates sexualised depictions sexist.

To your first point: I don't think you disagree as much as you think - I just, from my experience (In media studies, as a woman in gaming and on the internet), have arrived at the conclusion that yes, there is (at least in the long run) some bad (reinforcing of sexist ideas) that outweighs the good (People enjoying things).

What I mean by "rooted in sexism" is that the only way I can manage to see these things currently, is that they are perfectly inline with sexist ideas (Women's looks being their most important feature, for example; more important that situational logic, or for men in equivalent situations. This leading to women being depicted with a greater focus on their looks, more sexy poses, and less likely to sport scars, visible muscles, or bodyfat (However unlikely men are to have these as well)). Since they differenciate themselves from other art by these characteristics; preferring them over otherwise similar art on some level says "The sexist ideas underpinning this improve it". Does that make it clearer?
(Just to prevent it: No, "Liking to look at sexy women" is not really much of a point in contention to this ultimately being somewhat rooted in sexism - since sexyness being elevated to a good thing to include for women at the greatest possible amounts of time (slight exaggeration, maybe :smallwink:), kinda is the point in the first place)

And, yes, the macro level is the problem. But... one cannot interact with the macro level except through the micro level. It came into being through distinct decisions, that all in and of themselves might not have been harmful, but taken together, that changes. (2 girls and 3 guys in a 5 man band is a way to get as close to gender parity as possible; but this distribution being taken 10 times leads to 20:30; which is a fair bit off.) To change that, you have to change the micro level, as the macro level is merely aggregatory in nature (So, continuing the example, have some groups with 3 girls and 2 guys. Preferably about half of the ones that are supposed to go for gender parity.)
And, I mean, if noone was intending sexism, why have we arrived at a state of sexist art?
From what I can think of, there are three options:
1. Ignorance. People not intending to repeat sexist stereotypes, but doing so because they don't realise that is what they are doing (See for example the discussion on Dishonored 2 and its creator's statements on why they included different roles for women). Here, explaining that this is what they are doing is helpful, and quite often even appreciated.
2. Not caring. People doing this even though they have seen the points for themselves, or having them pointed out to them, and saying "so what?". The majority of this falls in this category, I think - but the problem with it is, if you intentionally do something that can do harm, it doesn't matter if that is your intent or not, what counts are the (continued) effects. Of course, quite some in this group just don't believe in the negative effects of their work. That is where they differ from me, and I firmly believe they are wrong - convincing them might be difficult, but debating them is at least worthwhile. After all, they have simply drawn different conclusions from the same facts, and showing that and why different conclusions where drawn might be able to convince the other side. I mean, it might in fact convince me of their view. So far, it hasn't. But please keep trying, feeling comfortable with the state of the world in more regards sounds pleasant.
3. Sexism. Actually believing "this is how the world/genders should be", and deliberately writing your work like that. While this does happen (Orson Scott Card springs to mind, though more directly about Homophobic than sexist beliefs), it is as far as I can see, quite rare. And probably not worth much discussion - the disagreement is on too fundamental of points (Women are people and should be equal to men, for example).


OK, we could talk about how good those that produce media are at gauging what the market wants. But I think I get the sense that you do not think they are very good, whereas I think they are better placed (with their market research etc) than you or I. Can I suggest we agree to disagree on this point?

Sure.


Yeah, I wasn't expecting an objective test for something that is so inhrently subjective. As you say, a lot is about context. The downside of that is that it makes it very hard for us to discuss which characters are sexualised and which ones are not, because our subjective perception is likely to be different.

As for Conan, I should of specified which depiction of him I meant. I was referring to the picture of Conan (Arnold Schwarzeneger from the movies) in post 31 (top pf page 2). I count him as meeting 1, 3, 4, 7, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24. I think he fufills 2/4 of the APA characteristics as well.

Do you think that particular depiction of Conan sexualised him (not asking you to apply a test, just your subjective opinion)?

It is a rather significant downside, yeah. I would love to have a more objective measure (Objective measures are great), but social sciences have the annoying tendency to be about humans, and humans are rarely so easily and distincly measured.
Now, Schwarzenegger Conan specifically is interesting. Schwarzenegger isn't really my type, which isn't relevant except it might muddle my perception. He does show off muscles, which as discussed below at least throw in a plausible second explanation for the skin, that might be a point against. The posing in most pictures I found (never saw the movie) is pretty non-sexualising due to being neutral stances, not posing for an audience of onlookers. There are some promo pics that are definitely posing, though, and given its a movie, posing is difficult to asses through images. I'll leave this one open (The pic posted in the thread, I'd say is not sexualised posing).
A definite point in favor would be his pants - in the iconic look, they aren't the loincloth commonly associated with Conan, but rather tight-fitting briefs with what appears to be something like a codpiece, pronouncing just the important (For sexy purposes) bits. From what I could glance (not many pics of that out there) the backside seems to be less focussed on toning his butt, though.
So in conclusion... I wouldn't necessarily say he is unambiguously; and he definitely also serves as a power Fantasy, but I can understand why people might describe that particular depiction of conan as somewhat sexualised.


I was hoping for an objective measure of whether a depiction of a character was sexualised, but you seem to be discussing whether the clothes are sexualised.

I do think your discussion on 17 is interesting though. You say that being skimpily dressed can be one but is not if the person is muscular. That leads to the odd scenario where a person who does not have a good body is being sexualised by it being shown and that a person with a better body is not. By realistic, well toned muscles, does that exlude He-Man (from Master of the Universe) whose muscles are unrealistic? Does it include someone who is athleticly built without obvious muscles?"

Well, the clothing has to do much with sexualisation. If people are completely naked, sexualisation becomes mostly about posing, but if they aren't, what clothes they wear and how they wear them play a great part. The posing question obviously doesn't stop there and remains largely intact and the same; there is just something added on top; which much more nuance to discuss.

And... I might have chosen my words badly. After thinking about it, I think I meant something closer to "visible (and prominent) muscles", as to exclude athletic without obvious muscles (Yeah, a character might be strong and have muscles; but if I don't see them, then showing the parts of skin with them cannot really be about showing off strength - because it isn't readily visible); but include things like He-Man (Even exaggerated muscles are a very visible indicator of strength).
What I was trying to say is "Showing off strength through muscles" is not a sexualising thing, even though it is done by showing (some) skin. I was trying to phrase out the reason for why the naked skin on someone like Conan might be viewed differently than the naked skin on someone like Mialee (Or, funnily enough, after looking through pictures, Red Sonya in most depictions).
Now, posing and clothing can still sexualised visibly muscular people; but pure skin itself is not the issue. Likewise a fat body would mostentimes not be sexualised, regardless of the amount of skin shown, and the fact it lacks visible muscles.


No, nothing like that.

You referred to parliament, and not every country calls their legilsative body a parliament. Your English is good (before you mentioned it is not your first language). And I had a vague impression of your time zone (before you clarified it).

Huh. Interesting. And thanks for the compliment.


It may or may not surprise you to know that I have has much more provocative things than this said to me (even in this thread). :smallbiggrin:

Well because I prefer any fiction that I watch to hold some semblance of likelihood (except in the ways it does not). That is I prefer that is reflect the real world (or the period/culture of the real world that it is inspired by) as much as possible so that I can feel a sense of reality – I can predict how the character will interact. This is not restricted to sexism, but applies to all prejudices from the period/culture, and more broadly to everything else. I like to be able to assume that a day is 24 hours long (unless specified otherwise), that it will be cold in winter warm in summer (unless specified otherwise), that technology will be period appropriate (unless specified otherwise) so I can make a guess that when a ship is on the horizon as to whether it has cannon or not, and that people will interact with each other in certain ways (unless specified otherwise).

As an example, let us return to prejudice against ugly people. If there is a scene where an attractive person is trying to woo a much less attractive person, we can rely on real world prejudices (of any era I think) to assume that the less unattractive person will fail (subject to other stuff like status). That sort of predictability makes the story easier to follow and increases my immersion. I can predict to some extent what will happen when character interact – or if not predict the outcome, at least be aware of the underlying constructs and norms without the show having to explain the.

Of course certain aspects of fantasy do not reflect reality (by definition) – usually the existence of magic and monsters. If a particular piece of fantasy was to specify that in that universe women were seen as equal (unlike medieval Europe) or even women were dominant, then that is fine – that would be one way in which the fantasy world differed from the real one – and because it will be specified it wont detract much from the predictability and immersion of the world. But I do think that the period/culture that inspired the work should be the default for just about everything in the fantasy piece except those things that are shown to be different.

I don’t think that this has to be part of the storyline either. You refer to Game of Thrones which appears to reflect prejudices of the time. You correctly point out that discrimination toward women is important to the storyline, particularly with Cersei. But I think the TV show versions treatment of homosexuality is fine to. In the TV series Renly Baratheon is a homosexual, and his homosexuality is not crucial to the storyline (I think in the books it was only ever implied) – the TV series makes it clear many people who are aware of Renly’s homosexuality are disgusted by it, despite this not being that important to the story.

You refer to escapism and with fulfilment. You may be right that some people would prefer there to be no discrimination of any kind in their fantasy television for this reason, and that is fair enough. But you asked about my preferences, and I don’t think I watch fantasy for that reason – I much prefer GoT (grittier, edgier, with not bright line between good and evil) to the likes of LotR (clear good and evil delineation, happy endings for most hero characters, etc).

It does not surprise me (I have read the thread, after all). I just sometimes like to qualify my provocative statements by adding they are not meant as an attack, but merely to elicit a stronger response.
So you are saying that to you, a world that is sexist, homophobic, etc., is just inherently more believable than one that is not? That it requires some suspension of disbelief for you to imagine it not being?

I mean, I do get most of your other points - unless otherwise specified, basic natural laws should work the same way (Like 24-hour days and cold winters).
I can see how a general feel for technological levels might help with setting expectations, and that knowing what is possible in a setting on at least some level is needed to... well, care about something. If you don't know the stakes, anything might happen, and there is little tension (First Sailor Moon Manga arc fell incredibly flat for be because of that). I might argue that setting mostly establish their own techlevels; baring mostly only passing resemblance to representing any real-world era correctly; and that something throwing in tech that doesn't quite seem to fit the rest mostly just... works; but you migh (correctly) say that this is an element of "this setting works differently".
And I do get your example. I might see your point; you are approaching this from another angle.

But you also concede that it might be readily possible to write settings without these prejudices; so long as that is somewhat specified.
What would you need to count something as specified? Having it spelled out? That might sound a bit weird, except maybe in setting books for RPGs. Most media works by "show, don't tell". Would male-dominated jobs being held by men and women in roughly equal proportions; and female characters in usually male-dominated positions being shown, but not discussed (Because it's nothing unusual in-world) be enough for you?
With that in mind; if you agree settings can easily work with less (or other) discrimination that the real world, as long as they make that clear and stick to that, what do you say to the points raised in the article I linked the last post? That depicting this so frequently reinforces the idea that it is somehow "natural", and going away from that might be better?

I was specifically comparing the books' depiction of sexims to the show's. The different depictions of homosexuality are a different point.

And, as I do like both escapism as well as gritty (Like I said, Abercrombies books are some of my favourites), another question: Do you think discrimination (along real-world lines in the same direction as it is there) is necessary for a setting to be gritty and without clear-cut moralities? Because that seems like a silly assertion to me; varying up discrimination between different factions might in fact be a very good way to showcase grey morality - the trope of "equal opportunity evil" comes to mind (Especially if contrasted with nominal heroes that are not so open-minded).


If you want to explore the “media’s impact on society”, we could explore the intersection between your views on the impact of violence being depicted on TV (and thereby impacting on society) and the depiction of women in society. But I think we have enough balls in the air at the moment, and discussing the impact of the depiction of women in media seems a little premature when we are still going back and forth on what that depiction is. So, unless you are really keen, can I suggest we leave this point for now?

Yeah, sure. I don't even think there is much to discuss on the point of "media influences societies' views", beyond effect strength (Which we can't really do in a forum discussion).


I was going to respond to your "I can hold my peace no longer" post, but, I waited. I'm not sure this thread will get the wind-down it deserves. So, I shall add the following.

1. So long as men like women, they will like looking at images of fertility.
2. So long as men have territorial goals and frustrations, they will like looking at power fantasies.
3. So long as women like men, they will like displaying their fertility.
4. So long as RPGs exist there will be gaming art.
5. So long as they are not crushed by legal and social rules, artists will produce art depicting fertile women.
6. So long as artists depict fertile women in danger, some or many artists will produce art depicting fertile women who are also power fantasies.

The modern scientific, verisimilar, rational mental framework that's on display in this thread is based on the principle of sufficient reason, that everything must have a reason for being the way it is and not another way. This is not a bad thing in of itself; I agree with the principle. But, it forces some reflection when sought to be applied to something like fertile power fantasies, in order to delaminate our options out of the mists of our psychological naïvete.

...What.
1. Please read up on what fertility means. The images discussed here are lots of things, but not images of fertility (For starters, far too small hips). Modern beauty standards are not about fertility. There might be an underpinning of it somewhere deep down, but beyond that they have little to do with each other.
2. Like displaying their fertility? Have you... have you met women? Talked to them?
3. Women like looking at sexy men as well, but somehow that rarely manages to make itself into art; as well as they like power Fantasies that make it somewhat more frequently.
4. Being fertile is not a power fantasy. At least not for any women I know.
5. What even is your point of the last paragraph? And what are you saying? That it is a bad thing to question why things are the way they are? That it is a good thing? That it doesn't apply to some things? (If the latter, why?)


That is really my issue. This is not being discuss by some as a topic related to personal preference or even how much of the various types of representation should be included, instead it is literally being discussed as if it is a moral issue.

That is a moral description. It is presenting that it is immoral (i.e. sexist) to like these depictions being referred to. This is not merely a difference in preference, but a war for the "souls" of the population, especially the youth who must not be "corrupted" (taught to internalize misogyny for example).

People are right though, they are not calling for government action. But there other ways to apply pressure to others besides the government. Calling people [insert]ists and getting others to join in and shaming them for their "sins" is a common way.

Sorry, I don't belong to your "church", your claims of sins don't concern me.
I don't believe art like this is sexist:

https://i.pinimg.com/736x/f2/55/6a/f2556a47e054b9d140fbe9886a78eeed--conan-the-barbarian-fantasy-artwork.jpg

Now if you want more diversity in representation, I have got your back and am with you. But if you feel the need to try to shame others for their preferences, sorry, I didn't join your "church" and don't subscribe to your views on "sin".

I mean, yeah? Because why should it be discussed as a topic of personal preference? If this were purely about personal preference, why should we discuss it? Personal preference is, well, just that. It is different between people. So what?
No, the point why I feel the need to discuss it, is precisely because of the (slight, sure, but still present) negative effects I believe these things have. Because media does things. Media shapes worlviews. And if media projects sexist views, that is not something I am willing to just shrug at.

And if you don't believe that piece of art is sexist... explain how. Explain how it does not paint women differently from men, in a way that is in line with sexist ideas.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-14, 12:21 PM
1. Please read up on what fertility means. The images discussed here are lots of things, but not images of fertility (For starters, far too small hips). Modern beauty standards are not about fertility. There might be an underpinning of it somewhere deep down, but beyond that they have little to do with each other.
2. Like displaying their fertility? Have you... have you met women? Talked to them?
3. Women like looking at sexy men as well, but somehow that rarely manages to make itself into art; as well as they like power Fantasies that make it somewhat more frequently.
4. Being fertile is not a power fantasy. At least not for any women I know.
5. What even is your point of the last paragraph? And what are you saying? That it is a bad thing to question why things are the way they are? That it is a good thing? That it doesn't apply to some things? (If the latter, why?)

1.The girls displayed in all D&D-esque fantasy art I've seen, going back to the old Dragon magazines and such and beyond into Frazetta and Vallejo, were all of child-bearing age. None of them, not one, looked like they were pre-adolescent, or mothers, or menopausal, or grandmothers. I don't care about the damned hip to waist ratio, they're fertile looking to me, they're old enough to menstruate and they look healthy, pretty, and young.
2.Women don't like looking pretty? There isn't a $500 billion worldwide cosmetics industry? Women don't show skin at the beach?
3.I'm not sure what a sexy-to-women man would look like. Handsome face, direct gaze, stylish clothes (partly skin-tight), firm cheeks and his back partly to the viewer? Or do women like the full monty and go to strip parlours at the same rates and for the same reasons as men do? Women basically just have to show up and be half naked to be a fertility fantasy for men. What makes a virility fantasy for women? You're a woman, you tell me--and can you provide any fantasy-art pictures of what you find sexy in a man?
4.I didn't say being fertile is a power fantasy, I said in fantasy art fertility is often coupled with a power fantasy--women warriors (or wizards for that matter).
5.That paragraph bridges between my comments on why we have will always have fertile power fantasies, with how we can approach these things in terms of the principle of sufficient reason. Do you have any comments on those options? Do you accepted the psr??

Vinyadan
2017-08-14, 12:52 PM
I think we are mixing up "looks fertile" with "looks attractive", and "I want to fertilize that woman" with "I want to pork that woman". It's nature's way to trick you into having children.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 01:08 PM
2.Women don't like looking pretty? There isn't a $500 billion worldwide cosmetics industry?


There's a $500 billion worldwide cosmetics industry largely via the efforts of that same industry to convince women that they're ugly worthless hags that can only be saved from a life of pointless loneliness by spending as much as possible on those cosmetic products, in order to fit into a specific narrow version of what's "attractive", and that their worth is defined by their "attractiveness".

Thus, some of what's being discussed in this thread.

Talakeal
2017-08-14, 01:38 PM
"But I want to look at sexy ladies!" As far as I'm concerned, there's nothing sexy about horrible fail-armor regardless of which bits the "armor" might display, imply, or "enhance". It makes the character look like an idiot, and stupid isn't attractive. I don't see how characters getting themselves defeated, injured, or killed is "sexy".

I don't know about you, but I find risk taking to be extremely sexy.

I am told girls like scars, although I am not personally a fan of them. While I think that actual death and dismemberment are turn offs, its a fantasy, that isn't going to happen anyway (or at least, is determined by the rules of the game / narrative causality rather than practical concerns), I do think that minor injuries significantly add to someone's sex appeal. For example, imo the hottest picture ever posted in the dungeons and dreamboats thread was:

https://i.warosu.org/data/tg/img/0303/07/1392673600946.jpg


This is not the same as characters having sexual elements that make sense within the context of the character and the setting and the situation. Somehow, criticism of sexualization and objectification is taken as an attack on any content that ever depicts the character as a sexual entity of any sort. Somehow, wanting to not objectify the character is taken as an attempt to "sanitize" or "moralize" the character into an ugly prudish neuter.

I don't know about that, I would consider the "fixed" Power Girl and Red Sonja we see up thread to be pretty much perfect examples of "ugly neuters".


Good Stuff

Strongly agree.

As I said, I am anti-censorship and pro aesthetics of the human form which puts my on the pro "bikini armor" side more often than not, but I do see both sides of this issue and don't want to see the discussion buried under heated rhetoric or name calling from either side.


Well... sort of. Yes, I am saying things that one could parse this way.
But see, the thing is, while a fictional character not being able to "decide" to wear something (And that is instead put upon them by the creator). Furthermore, the character has no Doylist consent, none that can be violated by real people, because on a Doylist level, the character isn't a person, but a bunch of ideas, maybe a painting, maybe some words.
So... no, a real person cannot rape a fictional character. How would they? In the same way that it is impossible to rape an idea, a painting, or words. They aren't an entity that can give consent on a Doylist level, because they fail to be an entity on that level. But every decision made for them is ultimately decided on that level. (On a Watsonian level, I'd argue the seduction isn't rape, because a successfull seduction just... isn't rape.)
Or are you arguing that by seducing a character in-game, you are, by proxy, raping their player, if they do not consent to the character being seduced? To that, I would say... No, just because a character can't make decisions for themselves (if viewed on a Doylist level), the creator does not become the character, and what happens to the character does not actually happen to the creator.
(Now, you might well be violating the player's agency over their character, but that is another discussion for another thread)

Yes, imo you are absolutely violating the player's agency over their character, and that is indeed a discussion for another thread, my intent was not to derail this one with old arguments.

Again, it just seemed weird that in the other thread you were saying that a character can consent to sex without their creator's approval and in this one saying they cannot consent to wearing sexualized outfits as it is solely their creator's decision.

I suppose, however, it is ultimately an issue of creative control. The DM in the example would be more like the "creepy marketing guy," coming along after the fact and sexualizing the creator's work against their wishes.

And no, of course you aren't raping the player by proxy; you are, however, forcing the player to imagine being raped*, which is going to be extremely unpleasant for me and make me lose enjoyment in the game.


*: I would consider being emotionally manipulated into having sex with someone you aren't attracted to against your wishes to be rape, others might.

Satinavian
2017-08-14, 01:41 PM
To your first point: I don't think you disagree as much as you think - I just, from my experience (In media studies, as a woman in gaming and on the internet), have arrived at the conclusion that yes, there is (at least in the long run) some bad (reinforcing of sexist ideas) that outweighs the good (People enjoying things). See, i and many others here in this thread disagree with this.

I mean, i am against this unrealistic armor because i don't like it. It is immersion breaking and makes it harder to escape in a fantasy.
But iam not convinced in the slightest that it does in fact do any actual harm or is powerfull enough to really influence our culture. Sexy outfits are just that and don't carry deep meanings about the place of women in the society. They carry the creators wish to titilate, nothing more, nothing less.

I mean, there are portrayals of women where you might have a point. But that is nearly exclusively about the relations between fictional persons and who gets to be the hero and problem solver of the story. I might believe that this under certain circumstances might reinforce stupid stereotypes. But sexy armor/clothing ? There really is no stereotype at all about women fighting in fetish gear.


(Just to prevent it: No, "Liking to look at sexy women" is not really much of a point in contention to this ultimately being somewhat rooted in sexism - since sexyness being elevated to a good thing to include for women at the greatest possible amounts of time (slight exaggeration, maybe :smallwink:), kinda is the point in the first place)No, "liking sexy women" is certainly not rooted in sexism. It is just what it is, a positive reaction to thing one is sexually attracted to. Where is the sexism supposed to be in there ?

And, I mean, if noone was intending sexism, why have we arrived at a state of sexist art?I don't know. Because some people still believe porn is mostly for men ? Some leftover gender role that demand that women are shy/keep their sexual desires/fetishes private ?


I don't know why the market for male lewdness and female customers is so much smaller than the other way around. But that kind of asymmetry does not make the pieces with female sexiness sexist or harmful.
If you want people to actually do something about it, you have to prove those things, not just that an asymmetry exists. I mean, not even feminism itself seems to be that sure about that point as you can still find sex positive and sex negative feminists fighting over it.



I mean, yeah? Because why should it be discussed as a topic of personal preference? If this were purely about personal preference, why should we discuss it? Personal preference is, well, just that. It is different between people. So what?People discuss personal preferrence all the time, especcially in hobby-forums. This is what i imagined the thread was actually about and i am certainly not alone with that.

No, the point why I feel the need to discuss it, is precisely because of the (slight, sure, but still present) negative effects I believe these things have. Because media does things. Media shapes worlviews. And if media projects sexist views, that is not something I am willing to just shrug at.Until you made clear that you are discussing not our hobby, but politics and how the media imbedded within are powerful propaganda tools and one should thus make sure they show the correct kind of propaganda.

That is not a step i am willing to go. I grew up in a communist dictatorship and really really hate any attempt to "guide" the art of my hobby into the direction of any ideology. Regardless of if i agree with that ideology or if i like the resulting art. I find the attempt to influence my peers (other hobbyists) insulting and the idea that anyone should be in a moral position to decide and direct what the masses should think to be both narzistic and megalomanic.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 02:08 PM
I'm afraid that I don't have anything online; hardware wasn't up to the transfer in years past. Also, some other technical skills have eluded me, which brings up another point from when you made the same suggestion many posts ago, and my response to it (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showsinglepost.php?p=22260085&postcount=725). Specifically, the first point; you shouldn't need to have to draw in order to get in to an argument about media produced for mass market consumption. Else, no one would be able to.
The thing is, you're not responding to my point. You might think you are, and for that I apologize, but I'm not saything that you can't criticize something that you can't yourself do. Sure, anyone can criticize anything at any time. Some people are really good about giving fair criticisms too (a tiny minority among critics from what I've seen but they're there).

But if nobody is really trying to tell other people what they're not allowed to enjoy, and they're really just interested and concerned with ensuring there's more good art to be found, there's a much more effective way of doing that than telling fans of an art convention that they like is rubbish and they only like it because of their inner demons sexism.

It'd be pretty hard to convince me that wasn't a more effective way. It's not even that hard. Getting started with art is actually pretty easy. I had a friend over who couldn't draw for beans, and insisted that he couldn't draw, and barely even wanted to try. Then I played a little game with him where I showed him how to build some basic figures and start adding onto them, and in about fifteen or twenty minutes he was making some pretty decent stuff. No where near professional level (I'm not pro level either), but good enough that he was pretty proud of his accomplishment. :smallamused:

Also, since I like art dumping.
https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/14051642_1357476910946506_6063561803345729190_n.jp g?oh=9cb39c875f349965a2c32a741ba58c59&oe=5A2AADD7https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t31.0-8/13653055_1318584411502423_7403947731178880261_o.jp g?oh=80713ae27b2feb557cc9cdf18e6df918&oe=5A2EC572https://scontent-iad3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/13606888_1313540772006787_1228929784759971051_n.jp g?oh=1d2ca257fc8ae061f5fba9962e9eb222&oe=59F0CC6F
Fun fact. The bikini elf got way more positive feedback from ladies than the girl with the armor and shield. It's that female gaze y'know. So leery, and gazing. :smallbiggrin:

Zanos
2017-08-14, 02:27 PM
Wow, what a quality thread!


There's a $500 billion worldwide cosmetics industry largely via the efforts of that same industry to convince women that they're ugly worthless hags that can only be saved from a life of pointless loneliness by spending as much as possible on those cosmetic products, in order to fit into a specific narrow version of what's "attractive", and that their worth is defined by their "attractiveness". .
Yeah, and there's a billion dollar industry trying to convince men that unless they're completely ripped they're ugly worthless neckbeards, right? I mean, hell, nobody would ever come up with an entire stereotype about male nerds specifically depreciating them with regards to their appearance. And if you think male fitness is a power male fantasy google "male underwear model", and tell me if you think that's a power fantasy. Gotta say, I personally never wanted to be the guy on the underwear packaging who's thumbing his underwear off. Even if you look up attractive men rated by women you'll find that most of them are between fit and buff, and tend to be fairly masculine with square jawlines.

I guess men at least have the benefit that society can alternatively determine their worth by how much their suit and car are worth. So there's that.

Nobody is free from society's evaluation of status. You've shaped it like there's this bizarre elaborate conspiracy, when really it's just how most animals are. Status is one of the first judgements most animals make. Appearance is part of that. And attractive appearance has almost always been defined by society as what's been difficult to achieve.


Since I haven't actually posted on topic, I'll say that I don't really care about skimpy armor all that much. Options are good, and although I don't usually play a female character when I do I prefer covered but a little bit more aesthetically curved armor. "Fantasy-realism", I guess. Chainmail bikinis are goofy, but I don't really hate them or the people who like them.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 02:29 PM
People discuss personal preferrence all the time, especcially in hobby-forums. This is what i imagined the thread was actually about and i am certainly not alone with that.
Until you made clear that you are discussing not our hobby, but politics and how the media imbedded within are powerful propaganda tools and one should thus make sure they show the correct kind of propaganda.

That is not a step i am willing to go. I grew up in a communist dictatorship and really really hate any attempt to "guide" the art of my hobby into the direction of any ideology. Regardless of if i agree with that ideology or if i like the resulting art. I find the attempt to influence my peers (other hobbyists) insulting and the idea that anyone should be in a moral position to decide and direct what the masses should think to be both narzistic and megalomanic.
Amen. Can I buy you a drink? :smallamused:

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 02:43 PM
Wow, what a quality thread!


Yeah, and there's a billion dollar industry trying to convince men that unless they're completely ripped they're ugly worthless neckbeards, right? I mean, hell, nobody would ever come up with an entire stereotype about male nerds specifically depreciating them with regards to their appearance. And if you think male fitness is a power male fantasy google "male underwear model", and tell me if you think that's a power fantasy. Gotta say, I personally never wanted to be the guy on the underwear packaging who's thumbing his underwear off. Even if you look up attractive men rated by women you'll find that most of them are between fit and buff, and tend to be fairly masculine with square jawlines.

I guess men at least have the benefit that society can alternatively determine their worth by how much their suit and car are worth. So there's that.


Yes, men do have that pressure as well, and it's tied into some really toxic macho crap that's the flip side of what we've been discussing.

However, two things.

1) the ideal that's being sold to men is about being active and aggressive and taking control, whereas the ideal that's being sold to women is quite a bit more about how they should make themselves passively appealing to others

2) there are (as you mention) OTHER ideals that men are told they can aspire to, far more so than what's offered to women... wealth, fame, power, intellect, etc, are all also presented as desirable and attractive and things men can achieve that will make them "desirable".


E: We live in world where even girl-targeted toys are built around turning girls into insecure little consumers and making shopping and appearance core parts of their "identify". Dolls that with voice chips that go on and on about shopping together and fashion and appearance as "friendship bonding". Dolls that are all about going shopping, with playsets that are retail stores for the dolls to shop in. It's hard to tell if this is just really what the people making the toys think it means to "be a woman", or if its cynical as it sounds and they're deliberately trying to create the next generation of insecure retail-therapy addicts.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 02:54 PM
I think we all need to take a break to go clean our rooms.
Let's convene at dawn.

+1 Internets to anyone who gets this joke.

Zanos
2017-08-14, 03:02 PM
Yes, men do have that pressure as well, and it's tied into some really toxic macho crap that's the flip side of what we've been discussing.
Being fit and strong is toxic? I mean, some(guys at my gym are actually pretty cool) gym culture is toxic, but the standards aren't.



However, two things.

1) the ideal that's being sold to men is about being active and aggressive and taking control, whereas the ideal that's being sold to women is quite a bit more about how they should make themselves passively appealing to others
Men are, in the overwhelmingly majority of situations, initiators of romantic and sexual contact. Men being active and women being passive in this context is a reflection of society, not an enforcement on it. I guess if you treat everything like a romantic or sexual encounter you might run into problems regarding roles in other contexts, but that's a reflection on you, personally.

And that actually diminishes the active role of female sexuality. It's there, it's just more subtle than it is for men.



2) there are (as you mention) OTHER ideals that men are told they can aspire to, far more so than what's offered to women... wealth, fame, power, intellect, etc, are all also presented as desirable and attractive and things men can achieve that will make them "desirable".
You're conflating desirability with societal worth. People respect einstein, but they probably don't want to date him. People respect Angela Merkel and Michelle Obama, and they don't want to date them. There's actually a perjorative term for women who go after men who are wealthy but unattractive.

My issue is that you're acting like this is an intentionally engineered campaign by companies to force men and women into specific roles for their own profit. They're not engineering beauty standards, they're capitalizing on what already exists. And you're acting like beauty standards are a bad thing to have at all.


I think we all need to take a break to go clean our rooms.
Let's convene at dawn.

+1 Internets to anyone who gets this joke.
JP?

Lord Raziere
2017-08-14, 03:09 PM
Unfortunately to say that only freedom should be valued without any standards or responsibility only leads to everyone living in slums, aka the internet.

this is the same for artwork. if freedom is all one values, then a random smear of paint on a canvas is equal to the Mona Lisa. the internet proves this quite nicely, as it produces all the bad stuff you could ever want or need for every rare gem. you want an unregulated system for producing scantily clad armor? your in it, go google it if you want to look at it so badly. I have no illusions that even if the media succeeds in portraying women in more reasonable armor that the internet will persist in making boobplate and chainmail bikini artwork until the heat death of the universe and I wouldn't even bother trying to regulate that. the internet is the place for no standards after all.

However, I wouldn't desire having no standards for all media. Sometimes I want higher quality stuff, that y'know actually thinks about its world and makes sense and so on. freedom also means desiring some things to have standards, to have some class, to respect me as more than just some fool who only pays attention to boobs. I want my media to assume I'm better than that and that I don't need some base desires enjoy the story. and that if I want to enjoy boobs, I can just be honest and not involve the story, because if I want something why distract myself with something else?

I mean... Why resort to something so cheap and nonsensical as boob-plate if you have this good story already? Because thats what it is. Cheap. It doesn't add value, and what value it theoretically adds I could get out of media that does it much better because it focuses on that. It just doesn't add to anything, and there is a reason why we have editors to get a second opinion on this sort of thing, because actual writers and such, thats what they have: editors, people who proofread for quality, the actual industry of producing this stuff is full of people looking over this artwork and going "this needs a change to be better" artists don't just magically pop out their art in a fit of free inspiration, they go through drafts and constantly improve themselves and take things into consideration to make sure that they are sending the right message that they want to send. Thats not them being oppressed, thats them being responsible for what they produce, and the best way for the changes we want is to let them know about what we prefer. not gonna force it, but I'm sure as heck gonna keep pointing it out and that I don't like weird scantily clad stuff that makes no sense, I'm free to do that to.

I'm free to have standards, don't act like thats evil. :smallsigh:

BRC
2017-08-14, 03:11 PM
I suppose, however, it is ultimately an issue of creative control. The DM in the example would be more like the "creepy marketing guy," coming along after the fact and sexualizing the creator's work against their wishes.

And no, of course you aren't raping the player by proxy; you are, however, forcing the player to imagine being raped*, which is going to be extremely unpleasant for me and make me lose enjoyment in the game.

The big thing happening here is that the Player is paying the price of the decision, without being convinced of the benefit.

To take things down to PG-13, let's say we're talking about a Sword.

DM: The Merchant tries to sell you this +1 Sword for 5000 gold.
Player: No, I don't want to buy that sword.
DM: Okay, the Merchant tries to convince you to buy the sword, roll to resist his persuasion (Checks are rolled). Okay, you fail, and are convinced to buy the Sword.


From a Watsonian perspective, the merchant was a good salesmen. He did not override the character's will at any point, he just convinced him to buy a sword he would not have otherwise bought. That's what good salesmen do. They make agreeing to something seem tempting and like a good idea. The character may regret buying the sword later, but at the time he genuinely wanted and agreed to buy the sword.

From a Doylist perspective, the Player never heard the Merchant's oh-so convincing sales pitch. Or, even if they did, they were not convinced by it, as the GM didn't have the Merchant's silver tounge. They couldn't see the sword, gleaming and deadly. In a game where they're in control 95% of the time, they're suddenly no longer making decisions for their character, but they're put back in control when the consequences (less money) become relevant.


Now, back to the subject at hand.


That is not a step i am willing to go. I grew up in a communist dictatorship and really really hate any attempt to "guide" the art of my hobby into the direction of any ideology. Regardless of if i agree with that ideology or if i like the resulting art. I find the attempt to influence my peers (other hobbyists) insulting and the idea that anyone should be in a moral position to decide and direct what the masses should think to be both narzistic and megalomanic.


Here's the thing, skimpy armor is, in itself, an Ideology.

Now, I wouldn't go so far as to say it's a political ideology, or that it has any wide-reaching consequences outside the hobby, but it DOES have consequences within the hobby. This ideology is probably unintentional, the tradition of hot fantasy babes in skimpy armor stems from the "Sex Sells" adage, and the assumption that the market in question is going to be heterosexual men.

Now, much hay has been made about the impact such presentation has on developing minds. By making character designs that focus on a woman's sex appeal, rather than her capabilities, you present women primarily as sex objects.
There is a difference between a woman who is presented as attractive, and a woman who is presented as a sex object. The same goes for men, really. A Big, Beefy man may be sexually attractive, but the character design also implies that this person is a formidable fighter. You could draw an attractive woman with lots of muscles to get the same effect, or you could draw an attractive man in a way that makes him look sexy, but not much else. However, that's not usually what happens. Women are drawn to make them look sexy, men are drawn to make them look competent. Everybody is drawn to make them look attractive, because that's what people find aesthetically pleasing, even if sexual attraction doesn't come into it.

The ideology that emerges is that this Hobby is a space primarily for heterosexual men. "Come play our game. If you're a Dude, you can pretend to be this heroic warrior cleaving through his enemies with a sword. If you're a woman, you can pretend to be hot." That's the marketing, that's the fantasy being sold by the product.

Would you refuse to play a game if you flipped through the rulebook, and all the women were presented as just as competent and powerful as the men? The answer is probably no, but there are plenty of people who would flip through a rulebook, see scantily clad women thrusting their chests out, and decide that this game wasn't for them.


Let's drastically oversimplify here, and assume that of a group of 50 men and 50 women, 0 of each gender will play a game whose art presents their gender as sex objects, 20 of each group would ONLY play a game if it presents the other gender as a sex object, and 30 of each group will play any game, so long as it doesn't objectify their gender.

So,



Women Objectified
Nobody Objectified
Men Objectified


Men who play
50
30
0


Women who play
0
30
50


Total
50
60
50



The ideology of the chainmail bikini is that the people making this game would rather appeal to those 20 extra men then any women. That this is not a hobby for women, and that any women who wish to join are not fully welcome here.

Talakeal
2017-08-14, 03:17 PM
The big thing happening here is that the Player is paying the price of the decision, without being convinced of the benefit.

To take things down to PG-13, let's say we're talking about a Sword.

DM: The Merchant tries to sell you this +1 Sword for 5000 gold.
Player: No, I don't want to buy that sword.
DM: Okay, the Merchant tries to convince you to buy the sword, roll to resist his persuasion (Checks are rolled). Okay, you fail, and are convinced to buy the Sword.


From a Watsonian perspective, the merchant was a good salesmen. He did not override the character's will at any point, he just convinced him to buy a sword he would not have otherwise bought. That's what good salesmen do. They make agreeing to something seem tempting and like a good idea. The character may regret buying the sword later, but at the time he genuinely wanted and agreed to buy the sword.

From a Doylist perspective, the Player never heard the Merchant's oh-so convincing sales pitch. Or, even if they did, they were not convinced by it, as the GM didn't have the Merchant's silver tounge. They couldn't see the sword, gleaming and deadly. In a game where they're in control 95% of the time, they're suddenly no longer making decisions for their character, but they're put back in control when the consequences (less money) become relevant.

But in that case the player is still getting a sword out of the deal. Being manipulating into sleeping with someone you find abhorrent is a lose / lose proposition.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 03:20 PM
Being fit and strong is toxic? I mean, some(guys at my gym are actually pretty cool) gym culture is toxic, but the standards aren't.


No. I said it (the "build your power and manhood" sales pitch) ties into toxic macho crap. Specifically strength as a tool of dominance, and the "real men never take no for an answer" undercurrent that bubbles up in boardroom and bedroom aggression.




Men are, in the overwhelmingly majority of situations, initiators of romantic and sexual contact. Men being active and women being passive in this context is a reflection of society, not an enforcement on it.


Feedback loop / self-fulfilling prophecy.




I guess if you treat everything like a romantic or sexual encounter you might run into problems regarding roles in other contexts, but that's a reflection on you, personally.


Nothing of the sort is going on. That is purely your own attempt at some sort of lurid insinuation.

What is it about this discussion that leads (overwhelmingly one side of it) to so quickly resort to ad hom, personal insinuations, and insults?




You're conflating desirability with societal worth. People respect einstein, but they probably don't want to date him. People respect Angela Merkel and Michelle Obama, and they don't want to date them.


Einstein was a player, to put it crudely.

And no, I'm not the one making that conflation. That's a major aspect of the entire cultural problem I'm arguing against -- it conflates attractiveness with social and personal worth.




My issue is that you're acting like this is an intentionally engineered campaign by companies to force men and women into specific roles for their own profit. They're not engineering beauty standards, they're capitalizing on what already exists. And you're acting like beauty standards are a bad thing to have at all.


Feedback loop / self-fulfilling prophecy -- they're reinforcing and breeding the same standards that they're also playing to, and yes, to some degree deliberately. Entire industries are built around selling people largely unattainable standards that those industries have played a deliberate role in creating.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 03:31 PM
Here's the thing, skimpy armor is, in itself, an Ideology.

Now, I wouldn't go so far as to say it's a political ideology, or that it has any wide-reaching consequences outside the hobby, but it DOES have consequences within the hobby. This ideology is probably unintentional, the tradition of hot fantasy babes in skimpy armor stems from the "Sex Sells" adage, and the assumption that the market in question is going to be heterosexual men.

Now, much hay has been made about the impact such presentation has on developing minds. By making character designs that focus on a woman's sex appeal, rather than her capabilities, you present women primarily as sex objects.

There is a difference between a woman who is presented as attractive, and a woman who is presented as a sex object. The same goes for men, really. A Big, Beefy man may be sexually attractive, but the character design also implies that this person is a formidable fighter. You could draw an attractive woman with lots of muscles to get the same effect, or you could draw an attractive man in a way that makes him look sexy, but not much else. However, that's not usually what happens. Women are drawn to make them look sexy, men are drawn to make them look competent. Everybody is drawn to make them look attractive, because that's what people find aesthetically pleasing, even if sexual attraction doesn't come into it.

The ideology that emerges is that this Hobby is a space primarily for heterosexual men. "Come play our game. If you're a Dude, you can pretend to be this heroic warrior cleaving through his enemies with a sword. If you're a woman, you can pretend to be hot." That's the marketing, that's the fantasy being sold by the product.


Exactly. That's the dichotomy that drives me batty.

It's not that visual appeal exists, it's that it becomes the primary aspect of the female characters, whereas for the male characters it's almost always competence. Even when competence comes into it, it's a faux-competence that still focuses on her appeal as an object to be looked at, with boobplate and strategically bare spots.




Would you refuse to play a game if you flipped through the rulebook, and all the women were presented as just as competent and powerful as the men? The answer is probably no, but there are plenty of people who would flip through a rulebook, see scantily clad women thrusting their chests out, and decide that this game wasn't for them.


This may not be fair of me, but I get the impression that a few of them just might refuse (or gripe about it) based on the former (bolded above).

Zanos
2017-08-14, 03:47 PM
No. I said it (the "build your power and manhood" sales pitch) ties into toxic macho crap. Specifically strength as a tool of dominance, and the "real men never take no for an answer" undercurrent that bubbles up in boardroom and bedroom aggression.
A boardroom is a place where you're trying to ruthless compete in an amoral environment, and a misstep can result in the death of your company. Aggression in that context, in some degree, is appropriate and necessary.

Being aggressive like that in a bedroom would make you a rapist. If there's people that can't differentiate between those, they need mental help. But I think this is just another moral panic. Apparently it's not music or tv or video games that will turn your kids violent, it's business. (http://s2.quickmeme.com/img/5d/5d8664cf92e4ce604998ebc905667d3186818aee1c8786b9cf d51712eead636e.jpg)


Feedback loop / self-fulfilling prophecy.
Evolutionary psychology. Due to our reproductive dichotomy men have more leeway in being promiscuous than women, leading to a more active role in these pursuits. It's not necessarily a good or bad thing, it just is.



Nothing of the sort is going on. That is purely your own attempt at some sort of lurid insinuation.

What is it about this discussion that leads (overwhelmingly one side of it) to so quickly resort to ad hom, personal insinuations, and insults?
An if then construct doesn't insinuate anything about anyone who doesn't qualify for the if portion.


Einstein was a player, to put it crudely.
I don't think most people would rate him as attractive these days. I mean, we can easily think of examples of men who aren't seen as sexually desirable but are respected or seen as having high social worth.


And no, I'm not the one making that conflation. That's a major aspect of the entire cultural problem I'm arguing against -- it conflates attractiveness with social and personal worth.
Yeah, and I'm arguing that it's less extreme than you're making it. Sexual desirability and social value are associated to some degree but they aren't inextricable. You can be one without the other as either gender.


Feedback loop / self-fulfilling prophecy -- they're reinforcing and breeding the same standards that they're also playing to, and yes, to some degree deliberately. Entire industries are built around selling people largely unattainable standards that those industries have played a deliberate role in creating.
The standards, in many cases, are not unattainable. They are difficult to attain, sure, and there are some aspects of your body that you can't change, but the vast majority of people can be reasonably attractive with good hygiene, routine exercise, and a good diet.



Now, I wouldn't go so far as to say it's a political ideology, or that it has any wide-reaching consequences outside the hobby, but it DOES have consequences within the hobby. This ideology is probably unintentional, the tradition of hot fantasy babes in skimpy armor stems from the "Sex Sells" adage, and the assumption that the market in question is going to be heterosexual men.

Now, much hay has been made about the impact such presentation has on developing minds. By making character designs that focus on a woman's sex appeal, rather than her capabilities, you present women primarily as sex objects.
There is a difference between a woman who is presented as attractive, and a woman who is presented as a sex object. The same goes for men, really. A Big, Beefy man may be sexually attractive, but the character design also implies that this person is a formidable fighter. You could draw an attractive woman with lots of muscles to get the same effect, or you could draw an attractive man in a way that makes him look sexy, but not much else. However, that's not usually what happens. Women are drawn to make them look sexy, men are drawn to make them look competent. Everybody is drawn to make them look attractive, because that's what people find aesthetically pleasing, even if sexual attraction doesn't come into it.

The ideology that emerges is that this Hobby is a space primarily for heterosexual men. "Come play our game. If you're a Dude, you can pretend to be this heroic warrior cleaving through his enemies with a sword. If you're a woman, you can pretend to be hot." That's the marketing, that's the fantasy being sold by the product.
Your argument is predicated on that being sexually desirable isn't a form of competency. And I disagree. Most people put a lot of effort into that, and it's a perfectly valid fantasy.

And I think you're wrong that skimpy armor drives people away. Were this the case we would have seen capitalism in action, where skimpy armor would have largely fallen to the wayside as a design aspect in favor of more reasonable clothing. But this hasn't been the case. Especially in the MMO sphere, many games continue to be extremely successful, and many even have large female audiences even with skimpy armor. Tera and FF14 are two examples I can think of offhand; skimpy armor being present certainly doesn't seem to drive people away from the overall experience, despite both of those games having a large emphasis on character presentation. League of Legends is massively popular, and I think you would be hard pressed to argue that the women there aren't heavily sexualized, although the audience there is largely male. Same thing for Overwatch with its plethora of skin-tight outfits.

And I don't even like skimpy armor, and here I am defending it. If it's what people want to buy, and it can't be reasonably displayed that someone is being directly harmed, they should be allowed to. That's all I've ever stood for.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 03:50 PM
JP?
You sir win an internet. :smallamused:

Talakeal
2017-08-14, 03:51 PM
I mean... Why resort to something so cheap and nonsensical as boob-plate if you have this good story already? Because thats what it is. Cheap. It doesn't add value, and what value it theoretically adds I could get out of media that does it much better because it focuses on that. It just doesn't add to anything, and there is a reason why we have editors to get a second opinion on this sort of thing, because actual writers and such, thats what they have: editors, people who proofread for quality, the actual industry of producing this stuff is full of people looking over this artwork and going "this needs a change to be better" artists don't just magically pop out their art in a fit of free inspiration, they go through drafts and constantly improve themselves and take things into consideration to make sure that they are sending the right message that they want to send. Thats not them being oppressed, thats them being responsible for what they produce, and the best way for the changes we want is to let them know about what we prefer. not gonna force it, but I'm sure as heck gonna keep pointing it out and that I don't like weird scantily clad stuff that makes no sense, I'm free to do that to.

I think you are in the vast minority here. I would be hard pressed to think of a "great work" that doesn't make more than a few concessions on practicality for the sake of aesthetics, heck I would be hard pressed to find something in real life that follows those practices.

For example, the army doesn't allow visible tattoos because it "doesn't look professional". So they would turn away the best soldier in the history of war, simply because he had, say, a Maori warrior tattoo on his face.

I personally think that, for example, the film Excalibur, is enhanced by its use of boob plate as it makes the villains appear both glorious and decadent and allows them to stand out in otherwise crowded and chaotic battle scenes.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 03:55 PM
Evolutionary psychology.


Let's stop right there.

As addressed upthread in detail. Evo-psych is largely garbage science, full of just-so stories, untestable hypotheses, ignorance of the other fields it would claim to supersede, and heeping doses of bio-essentialism / bio-determinism.

Any argument you're going to make based on that... just don't.




The standards, in many cases, are not unattainable. They are difficult to attain, sure, and there are some aspects of your body that you can't change, but the vast majority of people can be reasonably attractive with good hygiene, routine exercise, and a good diet.


"Reasonable attractive" isn't what's being sold.

The standards are deliberately and methodically crafted to be unattainable for most people. That's the whole point -- to keep people unhappy with their self-image and spending money trying to reach the moving goalposts.




Your argument is predicated on that being sexually desirable isn't a form of competency. And I disagree. Most people put a lot of effort into that, and it's a perfectly valid fantasy.


In the context being presented within much of the art in question... being sexually desirable is an utterly irrelevant "form of competency".

Floret
2017-08-14, 03:55 PM
1.The girls displayed in all D&D-esque fantasy art I've seen, going back to the old Dragon magazines and such and beyond into Frazetta and Vallejo, were all of child-bearing age. None of them, not one, looked like they were pre-adolescent, or mothers, or menopausal, or grandmothers. I don't care about the damned hip to waist ratio, they're fertile looking to me, they're old enough to menstruate and they look healthy, pretty, and young.
2.Women don't like looking pretty? There isn't a $500 billion worldwide cosmetics industry? Women don't show skin at the beach?
3.I'm not sure what a sexy-to-women man would look like. Handsome face, direct gaze, stylish clothes (partly skin-tight), firm cheeks and his back partly to the viewer? Or do women like the full monty and go to strip parlours at the same rates and for the same reasons as men do? Women basically just have to show up and be half naked to be a fertility fantasy for men. What makes a virility fantasy for women? You're a woman, you tell me--and can you provide any fantasy-art pictures of what you find sexy in a man?
4.I didn't say being fertile is a power fantasy, I said in fantasy art fertility is often coupled with a power fantasy--women warriors (or wizards for that matter).
5.That paragraph bridges between my comments on why we have will always have fertile power fantasies, with how we can approach these things in terms of the principle of sufficient reason. Do you have any comments on those options? Do you accepted the psr??

1. Mentioning "mothers" (A group of women that have generally proven their fertility) as one of the groups that would not be fertile-looking seems really, really strange to me. Moreover, "child-baring age, pretty, young and healthy" is a far shot from being anywhere synonymous with "fertile". If you don't care about child-bearing hips, for example, or other things that actually display fertility, please do not pretend that is what you are talking about. Maybe look up "fertility idol", the old stone-age depictions might give a clue to what an actual display of fertility might look like.
What you are doing is pointing at depictions of modern beauty standards, and trying to dress that up as something biological. It is not.
2. Again, "Looking pretty" and "displaying fertility" are not synonymous. Moreover, looking pretty is not necessarily goal-oriented. People try to look pretty for themselves more often than not, and not so that onlookers might be enticed. Showing skin at the beach has little to do with displaying fertility (or even just prettyness) for other people. Going to the beach involves, usually, swimming, something very well served by wearing few clothes. Or sunbathing, which has the same caveats. In fact, most beach activity usually is done with few clothes; as demonstrated by everyone there. To assume a young woman has other motives for wearing little at a beach than a man in his 50s is at least questionable logic.
3. This (http://www.shortpacked.com/2011/comic/book-13/05-the-death-of-snkrs/falseequivalence/)previously linked Shortpacked comic tackles some points. Other than that... The points you mention seem to work, though of course I cannot say I interpret them the same way you intend them. Full Monty on its own is somewhat diminished by penises just looking ****ing weird (Or maybe that's just me). Half-naked women are not about displaying fertility (Again, you are mixing that up), and I don't think quite near the certainty for being a male Fantasy (It requires them to be attractive at the very least), but then again I am no man and cannot say how much more he'd be turned on simply by seeing breasts than I am as a queer woman. As for providing pictures, I don't have any saved up - the picture results from googling "Fantasy art sexy man" were mostly pretty nice (Also, why are there pictures of women when I google that; and if that has to be so why not some of men when googling women?); other than that, my tastes run generally in somewhat atypical directions (Generally being into androgyny (somewhat of a Bishounen look, for example))
4. Ah, okay. I question why that would be necessary to do, though.
5. I am unsure what psr means, and google seems to have failed me. I certainly do not believe your statements for why what you call "fertility fantasies" will always be there are sufficient to prove it, it seems like weird conjectures based on somewhat faulty logic to me. As for your options... 1) is a good one; 2) works, as long as it doesn't only apply to women; 3) Is nonsensical, as there is no environment where it would make sense; 4) Is basically just taking the status quo being this way as a statement that it should be.


I don't know about you, but I find risk taking to be extremely sexy.

I am told girls like scars, although I am not personally a fan of them. While I think that actual death and dismemberment are turn offs, its a fantasy, that isn't going to happen anyway (or at least, is determined by the rules of the game / narrative causality rather than practical concerns), I do think that minor injuries significantly add to someone's sex appeal. For example, imo the hottest picture ever posted in the dungeons and dreamboats thread was:

https://i.warosu.org/data/tg/img/0303/07/1392673600946.jpg

Dang, that's sexy. And I'd say pretty much completely nonsexualised, incidentally :smallwink:
I don't think facing hardships and risk-taking preclude wearing situation-appropriate outfits. I mean, the woman in the pic looks like she's in an underground boxing ring or sth - not something where armor would fit.


Yes, imo you are absolutely violating the player's agency over their character, and that is indeed a discussion for another thread, my intent was not to derail this one with old arguments.

Again, it just seemed weird that in the other thread you were saying that a character can consent to sex without their creator's approval and in this one saying they cannot consent to wearing sexualized outfits as it is solely their creator's decision.

I suppose, however, it is ultimately an issue of creative control. The DM in the example would be more like the "creepy marketing guy," coming along after the fact and sexualizing the creator's work against their wishes.

And no, of course you aren't raping the player by proxy; you are, however, forcing the player to imagine being raped*, which is going to be extremely unpleasant for me and make me lose enjoyment in the game.

*: I would consider being emotionally manipulated into having sex with someone you aren't attracted to against your wishes to be rape, others might.

I wasn't really saying the character can consent without player input. Or maybe I was. Let me try to untangle this: With the seduction, on a fiction level, what is happening is someone seducing someone else, and that person being successfully seduced. On the real-world level dice are being rolled to determine the decision of the character, and decisions are being made by the players (Here, possibly, the player objecting to the result of the dice being followed). The discussion isn't about the character consenting to anything; the fiction level is completely separate. The discussion is solely about creative authority and agency. "What the character wants" doesn't really play into it - we have two creating entities (Player and GM) that have differing opinions on what the character wants. The relevant, real-life level discussion is about agency over the character and how to interpret dicerolls; not the character having any on their own. It is about who gets to put their decision upon the character.*
With the sexy armor, it is similar: Only that here there is only one entity (the creator), having one interpretation of "what the character would do", and putting that upon the character. Here, to, the character themselves has no input.

"being seduced" is not synonymous with emotional manipulation; a successfull seduction attempt results in the "target" wanting to be with the seductor. I think a large part of this continued misunderstanding is that you seem to be using these terms very differently from me. Being emotionally manipulated into sex is, however, something I'd consider rape, yes.

*My opinion is merely that by sitting down at a table and agreeing to let dice handle certain things, you are giving up a certain amount of agency over your character; and for social mechanics to have teeth, that surrendering of control needs to apply to the results of those social mechanics as well. How to do that best is, again, for another thread (though I still find "do this or recieve a penalty" a better option than just "do this").


See, i and many others here in this thread disagree with this.

I mean, i am against this unrealistic armor because i don't like it. It is immersion breaking and makes it harder to escape in a fantasy.
But iam not convinced in the slightest that it does in fact do any actual harm or is powerfull enough to really influence our culture. Sexy outfits are just that and don't carry deep meanings about the place of women in the society. They carry the creators wish to titilate, nothing more, nothing less.

I mean, there are portrayals of women where you might have a point. But that is nearly exclusively about the relations between fictional persons and who gets to be the hero and problem solver of the story. I might believe that this under certain circumstances might reinforce stupid stereotypes. But sexy armor/clothing ? There really is no stereotype at all about women fighting in fetish gear.

No, "liking sexy women" is certainly not rooted in sexism. It is just what it is, a positive reaction to thing one is sexually attracted to. Where is the sexism supposed to be in there ?
I don't know. Because some people still believe porn is mostly for men ? Some leftover gender role that demand that women are shy/keep their sexual desires/fetishes private ?

So your exact problem with my conclusions is that they base off the assumption that depictions of women rooted in sexism might reinforce sexist thinking in the consumers? If that, I shall try if I can unearth the studies that make me believe that.
Or are you criticising the assumption that taking sexyness as a core feature of depicting women is rooted in sexism? If that, please explain to me how it is not; and maybe if you can also in a way that explains how the same standards aren't applied to men?
There is no stereotype about women fighting in fetish gear, but there is the stereotype of a woman's looks being their most/only important feature; that is somewhat reinforced by placing it above such things as logic or versimilitude in depictions of fighting women.

And no, liking sexy women isn't, but that wasn't my statement, now was it?
"sexyness being elevated to a good thing to include for women at the greatest possible amounts of time" was my statement.


I don't know why the market for male lewdness and female customers is so much smaller than the other way around. But that kind of asymmetry does not make the pieces with female sexiness sexist or harmful.
If you want people to actually do something about it, you have to prove those things, not just that an asymmetry exists. I mean, not even feminism itself seems to be that sure about that point as you can still find sex positive and sex negative feminists fighting over it.

No, an asymmetry doesn't prove anything on its own - but it is a datapoint, and those don't come from nothing. There has to be a reason for things being this way. Now, for me, the most logical one would be that the sexism still present in our society informs these depictions. If you have an alternative explanation, please tell it, I just haven't heard any so far.
Sex positive feminism is mostly about women not being shamed for sexuality. This might touch on wearing revealing clothing, but isn't mostly about that. As previously said, fictional characters, contrary to real people, don't decide for themselves how to dress. I myself would consider myself quite sex-positive feminist, if you may believe that. Women being allowed to have and use sexual agency just isn't really linked much with displaying prettyness as women's defining feature.


People discuss personal preferrence all the time, especcially in hobby-forums. This is what i imagined the thread was actually about and i am certainly not alone with that.
Until you made clear that you are discussing not our hobby, but politics and how the media imbedded within are powerful propaganda tools and one should thus make sure they show the correct kind of propaganda.

That is not a step i am willing to go. I grew up in a communist dictatorship and really really hate any attempt to "guide" the art of my hobby into the direction of any ideology. Regardless of if i agree with that ideology or if i like the resulting art. I find the attempt to influence my peers (other hobbyists) insulting and the idea that anyone should be in a moral position to decide and direct what the masses should think to be both narzistic and megalomanic.

If this was purely about preference, and not underlying reasons for those preferences, this would never have gotten so heated. (Or so I'd hope.)
Also, can we please not exaggerate the statements of others? I said media influences people's perception of the world, in some small ways. This is not declaring them powerful propaganda tools. It is just saying media has an influence, and if there could be steps taken for that not to be what we percieve as a negative influence, those steps should be taken (without forcing people to take any steps), that is... largely just having an opinion and wanting it shared. Which, I suppose, is just having an opinion, really.
I can see how that might make you wary of anything resembling that. Sure.
But... as BRC points out, this art is itself an ideology. Nothing in life is completely free of ideology, every action is in some way political. And, having, holding and trying to spread an opinion is megalomaniac? Really?


It'd be pretty hard to convince me that wasn't a more effective way. It's not even that hard. Getting started with art is actually pretty easy. I had a friend over who couldn't draw for beans, and insisted that he couldn't draw, and barely even wanted to try. Then I played a little game with him where I showed him how to build some basic figures and start adding onto them, and in about fifteen or twenty minutes he was making some pretty decent stuff. No where near professional level (I'm not pro level either), but good enough that he was pretty proud of his accomplishment. :smallamused:

Creating art yourself does in no way preclude one from engaging in these sorts of discussions. If there are multiple ways to reach a goal, why not take all of them that you can?
Incidentally, I'm much more of a writer than an artist, but I am creating :smallwink: . (Not that that should have to be necessary to have a voice in these kinds of discussions)

@Zanos (Sorry, you hadn't posted when I set the multiquote): The argument about the market solving itself was brought up already. It requires similar options, equivalent except for sexy armor, to work. This is not currently the case. I know multiple people (Men as well, incidentally) that have been put off from such games because they sexualised women to such a great degree.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 04:04 PM
The standards, in many cases, are not unattainable. They are difficult to attain, sure, and there are some aspects of your body that you can't change, but the vast majority of people can be reasonably attractive with good hygiene, routine exercise, and a good diet.
Yep. Something I've been taking advantage of. I've been being more active, changing my diet, and working out. The results aren't overnight but they're noticeable and it feels good.


And I don't even like skimpy armor, and here I am defending it. If it's what people want to buy, and it can't be reasonably displayed that someone is being directly harmed, they should be allowed to. That's all I've ever stood for.
Ditto. Want to see the picture I'm using for my vampire vitalist character I'm playing right now?

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/52/04/da/5204da87111a616bc252705f54177fc5--character-concept-art-character-design.jpg

She's also not wearing armor. She's doomed! :smalltongue:

Zanos
2017-08-14, 04:07 PM
Let's stop right there.

As addressed upthread in detail. Evo-psych is largely garbage science, full of just-so stories, untestable hypotheses, ignorance of the other fields it would claim to supersede, and heeping doses of bio-essentialism / bio-determinism.

Any argument you're going to make based on that... just don't.

Maybe the term is loaded for you, but the assertion that our brains our somehow free from the process that created them is laughably more ridiculous than the notion that it is impacted by that process.

I'm not a bioessentialist by any means, but our consciousness is definitely impacted by evolution.


"Reasonable attractive" isn't what's being sold.

The standards are deliberately and methodically crafted to be unattainable for most people.

That's the whole point -- to keep people unhappy with their self-image and spending money trying to reach the moving goalposts.

Yeah, now you're back to a global conspiracy to depress the world with unfair standards. I'm going to need a little more than your word to believe that every cosmetic company intentionally crafts standards to be unattainable.

While I agree that overexposure to this does have an affect on developing minds who haven't had enough worldly exposure to really know what attractiveness is, it doesn't have nearly the same impact on mature adults.


@Zanos (Sorry, you hadn't posted when I set the multiquote): The argument about the market solving itself was brought up already. It requires similar options, equivalent except for sexy armor, to work. This is not currently the case. I know multiple people (Men as well, incidentally) that have been put off from such games because they sexualised women to such a great degree.
And I've heard my male acquaintances say they like playing female characters in those games because "if you're going to stare at an ass the whole time, it might as well be a hot one". Not that I share that opinion, but anecdotes are fun.

You're right that comparable products are difficult to isolate with regard to this specifically, although the overwhelming popularity of skimpy armor mods for games(check any bethesda mod site) that have them seems to be at least some indication that there's a significant degree of "opt-in." Even if it's a net negative, which I severely doubt, the impact isn't significant enough for any company to exclude it on a financial basis.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 04:10 PM
Creating art yourself does in no way preclude one from engaging in these sorts of discussions. If there are multiple ways to reach a goal, why not take all of them that you can?
Incidentally, I'm much more of a writer than an artist, but I am creating . (Not that that should have to be necessary to have a voice in these kinds of discussions)
I'm also a writer, more than an artist. Which leads me to me to pick your brain for my own curiosity. Do you have interests in computer programming by chance? :smallconfused:

Anyway, I'm not suggesting that you can't criticize these things if you're not an artist. On the contrary. Your opinion is probably worth more if you've got a bit of experience with what you're criticizing. For example, learning more about programming and game design can radically change the way you look at video games and what you know is or is not reasonable to expect.

EDIT:
Nothing in life is completely free of ideology, every action is in some way political.
Man this makes scratching my ass so awkward.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 04:18 PM
Unfortunately to say that only freedom should be valued without any standards or responsibility only leads to everyone living in slums, aka the internet.

this is the same for artwork. if freedom is all one values, then a random smear of paint on a canvas is equal to the Mona Lisa. the internet proves this quite nicely, as it produces all the bad stuff you could ever want or need for every rare gem. you want an unregulated system for producing scantily clad armor? your in it, go google it if you want to look at it so badly. I have no illusions that even if the media succeeds in portraying women in more reasonable armor that the internet will persist in making boobplate and chainmail bikini artwork until the heat death of the universe and I wouldn't even bother trying to regulate that. the internet is the place for no standards after all.


Indeed. Any search for reference artwork or images to use for characters in-game will demonstrate the above to the Nth degree. :smalleek:




However, I wouldn't desire having no standards for all media. Sometimes I want higher quality stuff, that y'know actually thinks about its world and makes sense and so on. freedom also means desiring some things to have standards, to have some class, to respect me as more than just some fool who only pays attention to boobs. I want my media to assume I'm better than that and that I don't need some base desires enjoy the story. and that if I want to enjoy boobs, I can just be honest and not involve the story, because if I want something why distract myself with something else?


Yeah, as an adult very straight male, I'm actually a bit offended by what is presumed will draw and hold my attention, what I will find attractive, etc. And by the presumption that I'm helplessly addled by my hormones and ruled by things going on below the waistline.

I still recall getting into an argument with an acquaintance in college because he refused to accept that I wouldn't "hit that" ( yuck, BTW ) if a certain blonde, blue-eyed, busting-out starlet made a pass at me. He could not grasp or accept that knowing nothing about her as an actual person made it impossible for me to judge how attracted I might be to her.




I mean... Why resort to something so cheap and nonsensical as boob-plate if you have this good story already? Because thats what it is. Cheap. It doesn't add value, and what value it theoretically adds I could get out of media that does it much better because it focuses on that. It just doesn't add to anything, and there is a reason why we have editors to get a second opinion on this sort of thing, because actual writers and such, thats what they have: editors, people who proofread for quality, the actual industry of producing this stuff is full of people looking over this artwork and going "this needs a change to be better" artists don't just magically pop out their art in a fit of free inspiration, they go through drafts and constantly improve themselves and take things into consideration to make sure that they are sending the right message that they want to send. Thats not them being oppressed, thats them being responsible for what they produce, and the best way for the changes we want is to let them know about what we prefer. not gonna force it, but I'm sure as heck gonna keep pointing it out and that I don't like weird scantily clad stuff that makes no sense, I'm free to do that to.


Context matters.

If a story is good, it doesn't need random sex and explosions turned up to 11.

If a woman is actually an attractive person, she doesn't need to be decked out in boobplate or lingerie-in-all-but-name.




I'm free to have standards, don't act like thats evil. :smallsigh:


Agreed.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 04:23 PM
Maybe the term is loaded for you, but the assertion that our brains our somehow free from the process that created them is laughably more ridiculous than the notion that it is impacted by that process.

I'm not a bioessentialist by any means, but our consciousness is definitely impacted by evolution.


There's a huge excluded middle between what evo-psych claims about that impact, and a claim that there's no impact at all.

Go back a few pages and find the links I posted that go into great detail on the subject.




Yeah, now you're back to a global conspiracy to depress the world with unfair standards. I'm going to need a little more than your word to believe that every cosmetic company intentionally crafts standards to be unattainable.

While I agree that overexposure to this does have an affect on developing minds who haven't had enough worldly exposure to really know what attractiveness is, it doesn't have nearly the same impact on mature adults.


No one claimed a conspiracy.

But when the industry is photoshopping and airbrushing cosmetics and fashion models in their advertising to make them inhumanly "perfect", that's not an accident.

Zanos
2017-08-14, 04:25 PM
Preferences are not standards. Art being sexual does not make it inherently of low quality. More realistic depictions can have little artistic merit, and many famous artists have made a name for themselves painting nude forms.


You sir win an internet. :smallamused:
Not too loudly, some folks don't look kindly on people who would dare listen to what he has to say.


Yep. Something I've been taking advantage of. I've been being more active, changing my diet, and working out. The results aren't overnight but they're noticeable and it feels good.
If you're stateside, exercise puts you above up 60% of the population alone. Maybe our societal standards aren't unattainable enough? :smalltongue:


[Ditto. Want to see the picture I'm using for my vampire vitalist character I'm playing right now?

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/52/04/da/5204da87111a616bc252705f54177fc5--character-concept-art-character-design.jpg

She's also not wearing armor. She's doomed! :smalltongue:
Practicing her tea drinking form?

EDIT:

There's a huge excluded middle between what evo-psych claims about that impact, and a claim that there's no impact at all.

Go back a few pages and find the links I posted that go into great detail on the subject.
Evo Psych is theoretical so I don't think you could really formalize any of their claims. But I don't think it's particularly controversial that sexual selection would be present mentally in humans.


No one claimed a conspiracy.

But when the industry is photoshopping and airbrushing cosmetics and fashion models in their advertising to make them inhumanly "perfect", that's not an accident.
Spoilers: the food you get at McDonalds doesn't look like the ads.

People need to be smarter than that.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 04:33 PM
Zanos, in that post you quoted with the woman in heavy robes, you're seeing one of the reasons this thread went south.

Somehow, the statement that armor that doesn't work as armor because it's full of holes or gaps to show "strategic skin" makes a character look ridiculous, and that a character shown wearing armor should be shown wearing functional armor because the other kind is going to get them killed when they get to whatever combat they're going to, with a snarky reference to "snuff bait" thrown in because of the insistence that fail-armor is "sexy"...

...has been intentionally and endlessly strawmanned by certain participants into a claim that any character not wearing armor is a doomed idiot, and that strawman argued against and belittled as if that's somehow a refutation of the actual position.

So if you see someone arguing against that position, please understand that they're not arguing against a position anyone has actually taken in this thread, ever.

Zanos
2017-08-14, 04:36 PM
Relax, it's just poking fun. I'm in good spirits here.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 04:36 PM
Indeed. Any search for reference artwork or images to use for characters in-game will demonstrate the above to the Nth degree. :smalleek:
What search engine is this guy using? I've been dumping loads of art in this thread found on random image searches that is freaking awesome. :smallconfused:

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 04:38 PM
Evo Psych is theoretical so I don't think you could really formalize any of their claims. But I don't think it's particularly controversial that sexual selection would be present mentally in humans.


The typical evo-psych apostle routinely makes absolute and universal claims about the truth of their assertions about human evolution and psychology.




Spoilers: the food you get at McDonalds doesn't look like the ads.

People need to be smarter than that.


Most people never see what those models actually look like.

Most people have seen a fast food burger.

And if they ARE drawing connections between food and women as products for consumption, maybe that's not a great thing either.

Zanos
2017-08-14, 04:42 PM
The typical evo-psych apostle routinely makes absolute and universal claims about the truth of their assertions about human evolution and psychology.
I didn't ever do that, so....cool, I guess?


Most people never see what those models actually look like.

Most people have seen a fast food burger.
Yeah, but they do see other human beings. Enough to make an evaluation of what is and isn't attractive.


And if they ARE drawing connections between food and women as products for consumption, maybe that's not a great thing either.
What the hell are you talking about?

Talakeal
2017-08-14, 04:42 PM
Zanos, in that post you quoted with the woman in heavy robes, you're seeing one of the reasons this thread went south.

Somehow, the statement that armor that doesn't work as armor because it's full of holes or gaps to show "strategic skin" makes a character look ridiculous, and that a character shown wearing armor should be shown wearing functional armor because the other kind is going to get them killed when they get to whatever combat they're going to, with a snarky reference to "snuff bait" thrown in because of the insistence that fail-armor is "sexy"...

...has been intentionally and endlessly strawmanned by certain participants into a claim that any character not wearing armor is a doomed idiot, and that strawman argued against and belittled as if that's somehow a refutation of the actual position.

So if you see someone arguing against that position, please understand that they're not arguing against a position anyone has actually taken in this thread, ever.

Is it a straw man though?

I legitimately don't understand why Conan and his peers fighting in fur / mail underwear is ridiculous but, say, Robin Hood sword fighting in a green leotard is not.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 04:43 PM
Is it a straw man though?

I legitimately don't understand why Conan and his peers fighting in fur / mail underwear is ridiculous but, say, Robin Hood sword fighting in a green leotard is not.


Robin Hood fighting in a green leotard probably is ridiculous, for several reasons.

Floret
2017-08-14, 04:44 PM
And I've heard my male acquaintances say they like playing female characters in those games because "if you're going to stare at an ass the whole time, it might as well be a hot one". Not that I share that opinion, but anecdotes are fun.

You're right that comparable products are difficult to isolate with regard to this specifically, although the overwhelming popularity of skimpy armor mods for games(check any bethesda mod site) that have them seems to be at least some indication that there's a significant degree of "opt-in." Even if it's a net negative, which I severely doubt, the impact isn't significant enough for any company to exclude it on a financial basis.

I think we all have heard that statement made sometime. I mourn the fact that men get theirs mostly covered (By more than just pants) and game developers seem unable to render male butts in the same quality and attention to detail on what makes them attractive as women's.

Jokes aside, yeah, there are people that want this. I didn't want to dispute that; just the point that the market would have necessarily moved beyond it if there was demand for it - there is, but that might not be readily appearant in sales numbers.
I mean, hell, if people don't buy my game, do I know why they don't? And if they do, do I know what aspects they like, and what they didn't?
Even for interpreting the pure market data correctly such statements as "yes, gameplay great, depiction of women questionable" are incredibly useful to make.


I'm also a writer, more than an artist. Which leads me to me to pick your brain for my own curiosity. Do you have interests in computer programming by chance? :smallconfused:

Anyway, I'm not suggesting that you can't criticize these things if you're not an artist. On the contrary. Your opinion is probably worth more if you've got a bit of experience with what you're criticizing. For example, learning more about programming and game design can radically change the way you look at video games and what you know is or is not reasonable to expect.

Not beyond RPG maker, and what I know of various friends' ability to code (and their tendency to infodump).
(And, "more than an artist" would be quite the understatement for me. I did get good grades in art class (Still not sure those were deserved); and am somewhat competent at drawing maps, but nothing beyond that. I am rather apt at sewing by now, if I do dare say so myself. Larp does things to ones skillset.
No, when it comes to creating, I am a writer/Storyteller through and through.)


EDIT:
Man this makes scratching my ass so awkward.

Well, how do you do it? How do you do it in public? Discreetly? Postpone it? Just full-on go for it? :smallconfused:
Jokes aside, the statement is meant to say one thing, mostly: Everything we do is informed by our opinions and biases, our view of the world, in at least some small way; and if done in view of others, also projects these views outward.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 04:54 PM
I didn't ever do that, so....cool, I guess?


You did, however, straight-up post one of their core unproven claims about actual human behavior:

"Evolutionary psychology. Due to our reproductive dichotomy men have more leeway in being promiscuous than women, leading to a more active role in these pursuits. It's not necessarily a good or bad thing, it just is."

(Some studies actually show that women cheat about as much as men overall -- and that they're almost as promiscuous, in societies where reliable birth control has been a thing for multiple generations... the latter possibly indicating that previous patterns were culturally ingrained and/or consciously based on the very real fears of unwanted and "shameful" pregnancies.)




Yeah, but they do see other human beings. Enough to make an evaluation of what is and isn't attractive.


And having not met the actual models behind the photoshopped images, and not having seen the articles on the subject, many people do not realize that the images they're seeing are not also of other human beings.




What the hell are you talking about?


That I'd be concerned if people were making that easy of a connection between meat patties and models. As in, "staring at her like a piece of meat".

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 05:09 PM
Not beyond RPG maker, and what I know of various friends' ability to code (and their tendency to infodump).
(And, "more than an artist" would be quite the understatement for me. I did get good grades in art class (Still not sure those were deserved); and am somewhat competent at drawing maps, but nothing beyond that. I am rather apt at sewing by now, if I do dare say so myself. Larp does things to ones skillset.
No, when it comes to creating, I am a writer/Storyteller through and through.)
Thanks for humoring my curiosity. :smallsmile:


Well, how do you do it? How do you do it in public? Discreetly? Postpone it? Just full-on go for it? :smallconfused:
Jokes aside, the statement is meant to say one thing, mostly: Everything we do is informed by our opinions and biases, our view of the world, in at least some small way; and if done in view of others, also projects these views outward.
I don't think I would have defined those things as political. The definition of political doesn't really fit. I also think you might be reading too much into it. I suppose you could define the whole of human interaction and activity a sort of diplomatic engagement, which is true, but I don't really see say... two children playing with legos as a political thing in any but the most abstract of senses as far as the children are concerned.

Floret
2017-08-14, 05:21 PM
Thanks for humoring my curiosity. :smallsmile:

No problem. For my own curiosity: Has the PM been lost in data traffic somewhere, or have you just not gotten around to writing it yet?^^


I don't think I would have defined those things as political. The definition of political doesn't really fit. I also think you might be reading too much into it. I suppose you could define the whole of human interaction and activity a sort of diplomatic engagement, which is true, but I don't really see say... two children playing with legos as a political thing in any but the most abstract of senses as far as the children are concerned.

Well, the exact phrasing isn't mine. That comes from it basically being an extension or interpretation of the theory that "the personal is political"; which is a theory that I very much believe holds true (And that actuall informs a lot of my statements in this thread). It holds that society as an abstract concept is enforced, changed, shaped and what have you by individual actions and individual decisions of people; and not a distinct entity from those decisions. It also holds that decisions and actions being made without specific intent, they can and do still have these society-building/shaping effects.
And, yes, it is based on a somewhat broader definition of political.

Zanos
2017-08-14, 05:30 PM
You did, however, straight-up post one of their core unproven claims about actual human behavior:

"Evolutionary psychology. Due to our reproductive dichotomy men have more leeway in being promiscuous than women, leading to a more active role in these pursuits. It's not necessarily a good or bad thing, it just is."

(Some studies actually show that women cheat about as much as men overall -- and that they're almost as promiscuous, in societies where reliable birth control has been a thing for multiple generations... the latter possibly indicating that previous patterns were culturally ingrained and/or consciously based on the very real fears of unwanted and "shameful" pregnancies.)
Fair enough. In truth it's also possible that humans exhibit group evolution, such that excessive promiscuity in either gender would be frowned upon due to it being bad for the group overall.


And having not met the actual models behind the photoshopped images, and not having seen the articles on the subject, many people do not realize that the images they're seeing are not also of other human beings.
This is the same moral panic that moral busybodies always have, that people are so infantile that they can't tell the difference between fantasy and reality. Mortal kombat doesn't make serial killers and cosmetic ads don't create standards adults believe are real. And they must not be trying very hard anyway, considering over 60% of adults are overweight.



That I'd be concerned if people were making that easy of a connection between meat patties and models. As in, "staring at her like a piece of meat".
Don't read subtext where it doesn't exist. This isn't literary criticism 101.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 05:39 PM
This is the same moral panic that moral busybodies always have, that people are so infantile that they can't tell the difference between fantasy and reality. Mortal kombat doesn't make serial killers and cosmetic ads don't create standards adults believe are real. And they must not be trying very hard anyway, considering over 60% of adults are overweight.


At least based on the research I've read, there's a far more solid case for standards of appearance affecting people (overall, individuals vary) than violent videogames.





Don't read subtext where it doesn't exist. This isn't literary criticism 101.


To be clear, it wasn't an accusation against you -- it would have been more bluntly done had that been the case.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-14, 05:42 PM
This is the same moral panic that moral busybodies always have, that people are so infantile that they can't tell the difference between fantasy and reality. Mortal kombat doesn't make serial killers and cosmetic ads don't create standards adults believe are real. And they must not be trying very hard anyway, considering over 60% of adults are overweight.

Study Finds TV Alters Fiji Girls' View of Body (http://www.nytimes.com/1999/05/20/world/study-finds-tv-alters-fiji-girls-view-of-body.html)

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 05:57 PM
No problem. For my own curiosity: Has the PM been lost in data traffic somewhere, or have you just not gotten around to writing it yet?^^
No, I've just been swamped with work and haven't really had time to sit down and really get to writing it. Just been occasionally dropping in between house work and cooking (which is also why my posts have been short). I've been thinking about it at least once daily though. :smallsmile:




Well, the exact phrasing isn't mine. That comes from it basically being an extension or interpretation of the theory that "the personal is political"; which is a theory that I very much believe holds true (And that actuall informs a lot of my statements in this thread). It holds that society as an abstract concept is enforced, changed, shaped and what have you by individual actions and individual decisions of people; and not a distinct entity from those decisions. It also holds that decisions and actions being made without specific intent, they can and do still have these society-building/shaping effects.
And, yes, it is based on a somewhat broader definition of political.I see. Well, I'm willing to agree with that to an extent. I think I might have a slightly different vision of world-altering individuality but it's probably close enough to bump fists on, maybe.

Zanos
2017-08-14, 05:59 PM
Study Finds TV Alters Fiji Girls' View of Body (http://www.nytimes.com/1999/05/20/world/study-finds-tv-alters-fiji-girls-view-of-body.html)
I specifically called out adults.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-14, 06:06 PM
I specifically called out adults.

By extension are you suggesting that adolescent girls who play D&D and are exposed to pictures of chainmail bikinis are more adversely affected by it than women are?

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 06:13 PM
I specifically called out adults.

It's not just about adults, though -- and even regarding adults there's research (which I am looking for good links to) showing adults are as a whole more affected by this sort of thing than by, say, the aforementioned violent videogames.


E: Thing is I want to think that people are more aware than that, that they tune out advertisements and branding and messaging as much as some of us do. That even when they think a commercial is catchy or funny, they say "it's that one commercial for a truck", and don't even remember which truck it was for.

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 06:34 PM
By extension are you suggesting that adolescent girls who play D&D and are exposed to pictures of chainmail bikinis are more adversely affected by it than women are?
Well the adolescent girls I played were kind of preppy. At least the one who had the sexy wizardess thing on. Even shopped at aeropostle. Uggh...pink is so better than orange. :smallannoyed: Anyway, it didn't affect how any of them dressed. If anything, I spent half the time trying to get one to stop acting so slutty in game but eventually gave up. She was like that from day one though. :smallconfused:

I dunno.

Bohandas
2017-08-14, 06:47 PM
It seems to me that any sexism lies not in the female characters being sexualized but in male characters not also being equally sexualized accordingly

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-14, 06:58 PM
It seems to me that any sexism lies not in the female characters being sexualized but in male characters not also being equally sexualized accordingly

That would resolve the discrepancy, at least. :smalltongue:

Ashiel
2017-08-14, 07:02 PM
It seems to me that any sexism lies not in the female characters being sexualized but in male characters not also being equally sexualized accordingly
We can probably fix that. We must first, however, convince people to draw male characters with a near frequency to female characters. I'm probably not the only one who has noticed that for every good picture of a male character, there's a small busload of good pictures of female characters. :smallconfused:

EDIT: Of course, that's because men draw lots of women, and women also draw lots of women. I don't blame them. Women are awesome to draw.

Or we could just start drawing lots of sexy dudebros intentionally, over and over, until we meet whatever quota we're looking for. Speaking of which, what is the quota? I'm supposed to have some time off in the near future, and after I use a portion of that time to engage a side conversation with Floret, I could try drawing some beefcakes. :smallamused:

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-14, 07:16 PM
Oh, is this still going on? :smallconfused:

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-14, 08:04 PM
We can probably fix that. We must first, however, convince people to draw male characters with a near frequency to female characters. I'm probably not the only one who has noticed that for every good picture of a male character, there's a small busload of good pictures of female characters. :smallconfused:

EDIT: Of course, that's because men draw lots of women, and women also draw lots of women. I don't blame them. Women are awesome to draw.

Why do you suppose that is?

Liquor Box
2017-08-14, 10:37 PM
1. Alright, I will concede that point. Fair enough, that was some mixed up thinking.
2. I think taking the midwaypoint is at least more honest when comparing a range to one set number; otherwise you are treating the range equivalent to its lowest point.
And, yeah, I think that might be fair. Pure numbers fare better than thought, at least at a quick glance.

Great, I think we understand each other on this point - whether women are underrepresented as main characters in fantasy or sci-fi television and movies. We could explore some of your caveats if you want to keep going on this line of discussion?


To your first point: I don't think you disagree as much as you think - I just, from my experience (In media studies, as a woman in gaming and on the internet), have arrived at the conclusion that yes, there is (at least in the long run) some bad (reinforcing of sexist ideas) that outweighs the good (People enjoying things).

So does this mean that we are agreed that it is really a discussion of whether media portraying women sexually actually causes harm, and if so to what extent it causes harm?

If so, I am happy to have that conversation, but I'm not sure where it leads. You have made it pretty clear that you are not suggesting censorship (and I agree that a very high threshold should be overcome before censorship is imposed). So where does that leave us if we reach the conclusion that sexualising females does significant harm? Is it just an academic exercise so that we can agree that the world is not ideal. Or is there something that you think should be changed, and if so what, how and by who?


What I mean by "rooted in sexism" is that the only way I can manage to see these things currently, is that they are perfectly inline with sexist ideas (Women's looks being their most important feature, for example; more important that situational logic, or for men in equivalent situations. This leading to women being depicted with a greater focus on their looks, more sexy poses, and less likely to sport scars, visible muscles, or bodyfat (However unlikely men are to have these as well)). Since they differenciate themselves from other art by these characteristics; preferring them over otherwise similar art on some level says "The sexist ideas underpinning this improve it". Does that make it clearer?
(Just to prevent it: No, "Liking to look at sexy women" is not really much of a point in contention to this ultimately being somewhat rooted in sexism - since sexyness being elevated to a good thing to include for women at the greatest possible amounts of time (slight exaggeration, maybe :smallwink:), kinda is the point in the first place)

I think I understand your point, although I'm not sure.

If a random person (Frank) aesthetically appreciates games that depict women in a sexy way (more revealing armour) because he is attracted to women and enjoys a small degree of titilation in a game that is otherwise about something else (killing enemies or something), would Frank be sexist for wanting that?

If we reversed the above, and it was a woman (Lina) who is attracted to men and aesthetically appreciates sexy portrayals of men dressed revealingly, would Lina be sexist?

Or does the sexism arise because Franks preference is (in your opinion) served more frequently than Lina's? In other words there are lots of sexy depictions of women for Frank to enjoy as he battles monsters, but far fewer of men for Lina to enjoy? In this case, neither Frank nor Lina would be sexist, but by meeting Frank's preference and not Lina's the industry as a whole may be.


And, yes, the macro level is the problem. But... one cannot interact with the macro level except through the micro level. It came into being through distinct decisions, that all in and of themselves might not have been harmful, but taken together, that changes. (2 girls and 3 guys in a 5 man band is a way to get as close to gender parity as possible; but this distribution being taken 10 times leads to 20:30; which is a fair bit off.) To change that, you have to change the micro level, as the macro level is merely aggregatory in nature (So, continuing the example, have some groups with 3 girls and 2 guys. Preferably about half of the ones that are supposed to go for gender parity.)
And, I mean, if noone was intending sexism, why have we arrived at a state of sexist art?
From what I can think of, there are three options:
1. Ignorance. People not intending to repeat sexist stereotypes, but doing so because they don't realise that is what they are doing (See for example the discussion on Dishonored 2 and its creator's statements on why they included different roles for women). Here, explaining that this is what they are doing is helpful, and quite often even appreciated.
2. Not caring. People doing this even though they have seen the points for themselves, or having them pointed out to them, and saying "so what?". The majority of this falls in this category, I think - but the problem with it is, if you intentionally do something that can do harm, it doesn't matter if that is your intent or not, what counts are the (continued) effects. Of course, quite some in this group just don't believe in the negative effects of their work. That is where they differ from me, and I firmly believe they are wrong - convincing them might be difficult, but debating them is at least worthwhile. After all, they have simply drawn different conclusions from the same facts, and showing that and why different conclusions where drawn might be able to convince the other side. I mean, it might in fact convince me of their view. So far, it hasn't. But please keep trying, feeling comfortable with the state of the world in more regards sounds pleasant.
3. Sexism. Actually believing "this is how the world/genders should be", and deliberately writing your work like that. While this does happen (Orson Scott Card springs to mind, though more directly about Homophobic than sexist beliefs), it is as far as I can see, quite rare. And probably not worth much discussion - the disagreement is on too fundamental of points (Women are people and should be equal to men, for example).

I don't think I disagree with your first paragraph.

This line of discussion started with you asking me if I could think of a good reason why some people like to see characters portrayed sexually (I answered this above) - ie why there is demand. But it has now meandered into a discussion about whether those who create media should meet that demand. That being the case, I wonder if it would benefit from more specific framing to avoid being so broad as to be un-useful.

As to your question "if noone was intending sexism, why have we arrived at a state of sexist art?" and three answers, I suspect there are lots of possible answers and that it is also possible to examine some of the underlying assumptions in the question.

For example, if the sexism you are referring to is "less likely to sport scars, visible muscles, or bodyfat", one answer might be that it is art imitating real life where women are less likely than men to have visible muscles, scars (I know that hospital admissions for accidents is higher for men, so I think it would follow that they would be more likely to have physical scars) or be overweight (not certain on this last point, but I think so). Whether or not that is a good answer I don't know - the degree to which men are more likely to be fat, scarred or muscular in real life may be exaggerated in media - and that is the sort of issue we are exploring in this thread.

I also think two of your three answers assume certain things. For example, your first answer is that they are ignorant, but if they have thought about sexism and merely disagree with you about whether a particular depiction is sexist, is that ignorance? I'm not sure it qualifies as such.

Again, i think this may be a useful line of discussion. But before going into it I would be really keen to establish:
- whether this is a theoretical discussion of what would be ideal, or whether there is a particular outcome that you are advocating for (this ties into my question above)
- What sexism you are talking about? - is is the sexualisation of female characters which we have been discussing (and you will have addressed below). Or are you here talking more boradly about all sexism in media. If the later I think it may be broad of a question for us to discuss.


It is a rather significant downside, yeah. I would love to have a more objective measure (Objective measures are great), but social sciences have the annoying tendency to be about humans, and humans are rarely so easily and distincly measured.

Yes. Of course the fact that you cannot measure or objectively prove that women are more frequently displayed sexually does not mean that they are not more frequently portrayed sexually. It just means that you are relying on your own subjective perception of whether women are more frequently portrayed sexually, That becomes problematic where people on the other side of the issue have different subjective perceptions from you.

My own subjective perception is that women characters probably are more frequently sexualised than male characters. But I expect my perception is that the extent of any such disparity is far less than your perception.


Now, Schwarzenegger Conan specifically is interesting. Schwarzenegger isn't really my type, which isn't relevant except it might muddle my perception. He does show off muscles, which as discussed below at least throw in a plausible second explanation for the skin, that might be a point against. The posing in most pictures I found (never saw the movie) is pretty non-sexualising due to being neutral stances, not posing for an audience of onlookers. There are some promo pics that are definitely posing, though, and given its a movie, posing is difficult to asses through images. I'll leave this one open (The pic posted in the thread, I'd say is not sexualised posing).
A definite point in favor would be his pants - in the iconic look, they aren't the loincloth commonly associated with Conan, but rather tight-fitting briefs with what appears to be something like a codpiece, pronouncing just the important (For sexy purposes) bits. From what I could glance (not many pics of that out there) the backside seems to be less focussed on toning his butt, though.
So in conclusion... I wouldn't necessarily say he is unambiguously; and he definitely also serves as a power Fantasy, but I can understand why people might describe that particular depiction of conan as somewhat sexualised.

And this is why we probably disagree on the extent to which women are sexualised more than men. My opinion is that this depiction (the one on page 2 of the thread) of Conan is as sexualised to a similar extent to the woman in the picture below (who is not someone specific, but a picture I just found)

https://www.studio92.us/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Mandy-Warrior-edit.jpg

Like Conan (the depiction from page 2) she is conventionally attractive, like Conan she is clothed revealingly, like Conan her stance is neutral, like Conan she is carrying a weapon which suggests both are warriors in addition to being scantily clad, like with Conan there is no particular focus on any body part.



And... I might have chosen my words badly. After thinking about it, I think I meant something closer to "visible (and prominent) muscles", as to exclude athletic without obvious muscles (Yeah, a character might be strong and have muscles; but if I don't see them, then showing the parts of skin with them cannot really be about showing off strength - because it isn't readily visible); but include things like He-Man (Even exaggerated muscles are a very visible indicator of strength).
What I was trying to say is "Showing off strength through muscles" is not a sexualising thing, even though it is done by showing (some) skin. I was trying to phrase out the reason for why the naked skin on someone like Conan might be viewed differently than the naked skin on someone like Mialee (Or, funnily enough, after looking through pictures, Red Sonya in most depictions).
Now, posing and clothing can still sexualised visibly muscular people; but pure skin itself is not the issue. Likewise a fat body would mostentimes not be sexualised, regardless of the amount of skin shown, and the fact it lacks visible muscles.

Your suggestion seems to be that, because showing muscles demonstrates a trait other than (often in addition to) attractiveness it is not part of sexualisation. But the same is true an athletic build - as much as you can assume that obvious muscles mean strength (although this is not true on all occasions) you can also assume that an athletically built person is going to be fitter and more athletic than someone who is not athletically built. Accordingly, an athletic build also signals a quality other than (in addition to) attractiveness.

I think there may be an underlying assumption that where an attractive and muscular character is depicted revealingly, and where the context is otherwise neutral, the purpose of their revealing state must be to display their muscular strength. Is that the assumption? if so, what is it based on?

Does the same assumption apply to an attractive but athletically built character? If an athletic woman warrior is depicted in revealing armour but there is no further sexualising context, do you think she is sexualised? How do you consider the following picture of a man who is athletically built, but not particularly muscular:
https://thumb10.shutterstock.com/display_pic_with_logo/2233535/352476407/stock-photo-half-naked-strong-athletic-man-in-the-image-of-the-ancient-warrior-strikes-with-a-hammer-in-the-352476407.jpg


Huh. Interesting. And thanks for the compliment.

No problem. If I tried to conduct this conversation in a language other than English... well lets just say we may be discussing the squirrel you saw because I would'n't be able to follow the rest of the conversation. I admire people who are fluent in two languages. Where I am from we are not required to take a second language at school, and consequentially I am pretty poor at speaking any language other than English.


It does not surprise me (I have read the thread, after all). I just sometimes like to qualify my provocative statements by adding they are not meant as an attack, but merely to elicit a stronger response.
So you are saying that to you, a world that is sexist, homophobic, etc., is just inherently more believable than one that is not? That it requires some suspension of disbelief for you to imagine it not being?

Not quite that it is preferable or more believable. Rather that a world that reflect our own (the good and the bad of it) is the default. In a fantasy setting, this would be subject to the differences specified by the work, usually including the existence of magic and monsters. On the few occasions where a fantasy setting does have a different attitude toward women or homosexuals (or anything else), I am ok with that to - it's just that I default to assuming that things n the setting will be as they are in our world (or the period in our world which inspired the fantasy).


I mean, I do get most of your other points - unless otherwise specified, basic natural laws should work the same way (Like 24-hour days and cold winters).
I can see how a general feel for technological levels might help with setting expectations, and that knowing what is possible in a setting on at least some level is needed to... well, care about something. If you don't know the stakes, anything might happen, and there is little tension (First Sailor Moon Manga arc fell incredibly flat for be because of that). I might argue that setting mostly establish their own techlevels; baring mostly only passing resemblance to representing any real-world era correctly; and that something throwing in tech that doesn't quite seem to fit the rest mostly just... works; but you migh (correctly) say that this is an element of "this setting works differently".
And I do get your example. I might see your point; you are approaching this from another angle.

Yes. The thing is, I see people's attitude toward each other in the same light as physical laws, tech level etc - in a different setting they may be different, but until I am shown that I assume they are the same.

Another example of where this sort of predictability is useful - If we are shown a homosexual sex scene (assuming based on a period where homosexuality was not accepted), and a third party witnesses it and runs away - are we as viewers to expect that any revelation of the interaction would expose the couple to danger or ridicule? A similar example from GoT was the affair between Cersei and Jamie - I assumed that the taboo against incest was the same as in the real world (and so it turned out to be).


But you also concede that it might be readily possible to write settings without these prejudices; so long as that is somewhat specified.
What would you need to count something as specified? Having it spelled out? That might sound a bit weird, except maybe in setting books for RPGs. Most media works by "show, don't tell". Would male-dominated jobs being held by men and women in roughly equal proportions; and female characters in usually male-dominated positions being shown, but not discussed (Because it's nothing unusual in-world) be enough for you?
With that in mind; if you agree settings can easily work with less (or other) discrimination that the real world, as long as they make that clear and stick to that, what do you say to the points raised in the article I linked the last post? That depicting this so frequently reinforces the idea that it is somehow "natural", and going away from that might be better?

Yes, if someone wants to create a fantasy where men and women are perceived as equally capable of most tasks, and equally likely to hold positions of power on the basis of their own merit, I have no problem with that. I also have no problem if a fantasy work put women more frequently in the position of power.

As to how much I would need to count something as specified - probably more than you given that I am not particularly perceptive or subtle. It depends, but enough so that it because obvious to me. Simply showing females in male dominated jobs would probably be enough.

As to the article, I didn't address that seems to me to be a different discussion. If you want to go into it though, we can. Which points in the article would you like me to address (so I am discussing the issue with you and not with the article itself)?


I was specifically comparing the books' depiction of sexims to the show's. The different depictions of homosexuality are a different point.
Yes, I understood that you were referring to sexism, with your point being that sexism in GoT is appropriate because the story highlights that it is unjustified. I agree, I have no problem with the way that GoT deals with sexism.

I raised its dealings with homosexuality (and now incest) as my own point. Neither is part of the story in the same way as sexism, but I have no problem with the way deals with either - the attitudes of the other characters is in line with real world attitudes, and thus predictable.


And, as I do like both escapism as well as gritty (Like I said, Abercrombies books are some of my favourites), another question: Do you think discrimination (along real-world lines in the same direction as it is there) is necessary for a setting to be gritty and without clear-cut moralities? Because that seems like a silly assertion to me; varying up discrimination between different factions might in fact be a very good way to showcase grey morality - the trope of "equal opportunity evil" comes to mind (Especially if contrasted with nominal heroes that are not so open-minded).

No, discrimination is not required to be gritty (I am not sure I used the right word here), although it may add to it. My preference is that the fantasy reflect that the world is complicated, there is no clear demarcation between good and evil - generally good characters have moral flaws (discrimination could perhaps be an example of this), generally evil characters have admirable qualities (championing a downtrodden group is a possible example - see Redcloak from OotS). I suppose this may be what you meant by gray morality. GoT strikes me as ideal in this regard. Sources of tension are important to a gritty fantasy, and discrimination provides one such source, but there are plenty of other sources o tension that may suffice.

Satinavian
2017-08-15, 02:22 AM
So your exact problem with my conclusions is that they base off the assumption that depictions of women rooted in sexism might reinforce sexist thinking in the consumers? If that, I shall try if I can unearth the studies that make me believe that.Yes, please do. As soon as you say "the harm done this way is big enough that it outweights the joy those who like those pictures have", you need to prove and quantify it. A simple conjecture based on what you know about gender and society is not enough any more. You must prove substantial aczual harm done this way.

Or are you criticising the assumption that taking sexyness as a core feature of depicting women is rooted in sexism? If that, please explain to me how it is not; and maybe if you can also in a way that explains how the same standards aren't applied to men?Yes, sexiness as a core feature of a depiction of a women is not rooted in sexism. It is rooted in wanting to arouse. That is basically how porn works, which is also not inherently sexist. And no, there is no double standard here. A picture of a men with sexiness as a core feature is also not sexist.

There is no stereotype about women fighting in fetish gear, but there is the stereotype of a woman's looks being their most/only important feature; that is somewhat reinforced by placing it above such things as logic or versimilitude in depictions of fighting women.That is not how i see it. It is not placing the look above other features of the displayed women, it is placing sex and sexiness above the fight (or whatever else happens). Not the women gets reduced to a sex object, the whole story gets reduced to a softporn where everything else exists just as justification for the juicy scenes and have no further relevance whatsoever. In short : It is not cheapening the women, it is cheapening the fight.

No, it is completely other types of media that push the idea that the looks is the most important thing on a women. It is stuff where heroines and side characters all still have the age and looks for ideal love interests for the teen/tween male hero, while sporting a CV with accomplishments that would take decades. And in an otherwise serious story. That is cheapening the women and their achievements for the sake of better looks. And i find it really grating. But even there i am not sure if enough actual damage exists to do something about it.


And no, liking sexy women isn't, but that wasn't my statement, now was it?But you are contradicting yourself. You are saying that the art itself is inherently sexist and that making/buying/supporting such art is reinforcing sexism in society and thus itself a sexist act. You clearly stated that you think making or buying those things is actually harmful. That is a moral argument.

Or what are you wanting your point to be "liking sey women is ok, but liking pictures of sexy women and making/supporting art you like is not ?"


Sex positive feminism is mostly about women not being shamed for sexuality.Exactly. And you don't think that could be a proper explaination for that assymmetry ? That women are ashamed for their sexuality and thus reluctant to make and actually publish art appealing to their own sexual tastes ? Or reluctant to buy/support such art when other people might notice ?

Sounds like perfectly fine reasons why such art is rare. From that point of view, the correct action would not be trying to make the sexy women pics disappear by shaming creators and customers of them, it would be promoting sexy men pictures by explaining to everyone, especcially women that there is nothing shamefull in looking at/making/liking sexy art for the sexyness.

I myself would consider myself quite sex-positive feminist, if you may believe that.That is kind of surprising to me as your point is more focused on combatting things appealing to male sexual agenda instead of promoting things based on female sexual agenda to achieve parity.

If this was purely about preference, and not underlying reasons for those preferences, this would never have gotten so heated. (Or so I'd hope.)
Also, can we please not exaggerate the statements of others? I said media influences people's perception of the world, in some small ways. This is not declaring them powerful propaganda tools. It is just saying media has an influence, and if there could be steps taken for that not to be what we percieve as a negative influence, those steps should be taken (without forcing people to take any steps), that is... largely just having an opinion and wanting it shared. Which, I suppose, is just having an opinion, really.I honestly don't see a difference. When you make games/game art not for the sake of entertaining the people your product is made for and appealing to them and instead try to push an agenda, try to influence your customers, it becomes propaganda. One of the most famous propaganda tools in that sense is Monopoly. You should not limit that world to old political ideologies, most of the edutainment stuff and most of the advertising also fit this characterisation very well.

If you were unhappy with the situation and made stuff you like for people like yourself/promote niche titles you like so that they get better coverage/more impact/more future investment so that you and others might find more enjoyable stuff, that would be fine. That is also very different from trying to steer society in a certain direction by careful media placements. However small the effect, suddenly not the fun of customers is relevant, instead social engineering becomes the aim.


. Nothing in life is completely free of ideology, every action is in some way political. And, having, holding and trying to spread an opinion is megalomaniac? Really?I always opposed the "everything is political" mindset. Megalomanic is imho the idea that you really can steer culture in an meaningful way by this subtle manipulation*. That the masses basically are at mercy of the media producers in the question in which direction culture evolves instead of the other way round ( media representation just following whereever culture goes on its own). That comes down again to your claim of harm, which basically asserts that the impact is significant.

Really, we had many cultural shifts in the last century around the world. How many can you remember, where the mainstream! media actually changed before the shift occured ? Nearly every single change ever happened against the current media narratives.


*obviously that changes a bit if you actually have complete control over all news sources. Then you can place your narratives as facts and some will stick, because even sceptics can't know better..

Satinavian
2017-08-15, 02:48 AM
Study Finds TV Alters Fiji Girls' View of Body (http://www.nytimes.com/1999/05/20/world/study-finds-tv-alters-fiji-girls-view-of-body.html)


By extension are you suggesting that adolescent girls who play D&D and are exposed to pictures of chainmail bikinis are more adversely affected by it than women are?See, when it comes to beauty ideals, i can see the damage and know lots of studies about it. I would understand and do support action to shift beauty ideals in more healthy directions.

But the negative impact of near exclusively thin celebreties and models still doesn't prove the negative impact of a chainmail bikini. I mean, we don't really fear that girls actually buy one, do we ? Or is it fear that girls are encouraged to wear more revealing clothing and be more open about their sexuality ? No, that doesn't sound right either.

No, supposedly we fear girls looking at chainmail bikinis and thinking that their role in life should be serving men and their tastes. Which is more than a little stretch. I don't think that actually happens.

Floret
2017-08-15, 08:52 AM
No, I've just been swamped with work and haven't really had time to sit down and really get to writing it. Just been occasionally dropping in between house work and cooking (which is also why my posts have been short). I've been thinking about it at least once daily though. :smallsmile:

I see. Well, I'm willing to agree with that to an extent. I think I might have a slightly different vision of world-altering individuality but it's probably close enough to bump fists on, maybe.

Nice to hear I haven't missed anything^^
And I mean, neither me nor the theory itself proclaim any one individual action to be world-altering. :smallwink: Just, aggregates, and the way to change those are basically just one's own actions, alongside calls to change for other people.


Great, I think we understand each other on this point - whether women are underrepresented as main characters in fantasy or sci-fi television and movies. We could explore some of your caveats if you want to keep going on this line of discussion?

I don't think there is much to discuss on the caveats - it would either require fielding studies, or study-like amounts of work (For exploring whether or not other genres; forms of media; and background characters fall alongside similar lines numbers-wise); or is already part of the discussion (How are women represented, if they are?)


So does this mean that we are agreed that it is really a discussion of whether media portraying women sexually actually causes harm, and if so to what extent it causes harm?

If so, I am happy to have that conversation, but I'm not sure where it leads. You have made it pretty clear that you are not suggesting censorship (and I agree that a very high threshold should be overcome before censorship is imposed). So where does that leave us if we reach the conclusion that sexualising females does significant harm? Is it just an academic exercise so that we can agree that the world is not ideal. Or is there something that you think should be changed, and if so what, how and by who?

Somewhat. I mean, the discussion of "are those depictions sexualised" is still a thing, but that discussion somewhat rests on the assumption that sexualisation is a problem. But mostly it is about this, yes.
As for what to do... as I said, mostly making people aware that their choices might have unintended consequences and effects; and encouraging other ways. Supporting creators that go other ways; and going other ways in ones own work. Done by as many people as possible :smallwink: (Which is in part why I am discussing this - more people being more aware can only be achieved by talking about these issues.)


I think I understand your point, although I'm not sure.

If a random person (Frank) aesthetically appreciates games that depict women in a sexy way (more revealing armour) because he is attracted to women and enjoys a small degree of titilation in a game that is otherwise about something else (killing enemies or something), would Frank be sexist for wanting that?

If we reversed the above, and it was a woman (Lina) who is attracted to men and aesthetically appreciates sexy portrayals of men dressed revealingly, would Lina be sexist?

Or does the sexism arise because Franks preference is (in your opinion) served more frequently than Lina's? In other words there are lots of sexy depictions of women for Frank to enjoy as he battles monsters, but far fewer of men for Lina to enjoy? In this case, neither Frank nor Lina would be sexist, but by meeting Frank's preference and not Lina's the industry as a whole may be.

I think that both would be pretty harmless, but somewhat strange; putting tittilation in a place where... It doesn't really fit. I don't understand their preference, but I don't have to. (If we do take our current culture into account Franks might be informed by attitudes formed by cultural sexism. Lina's might be as well; but they, at least on the surface, do not fall in line with these attitudes.)
I think "more frequently" could almost be replaced by "at all" (If only "almost" because I might have missed something, not because I know any actual counterexamples going further than Dante from the Devil May Cry series.); and yes, I think the industry being this way; especially since it is inline with real world power dynamics, is sexist.


I don't think I disagree with your first paragraph.

This line of discussion started with you asking me if I could think of a good reason why some people like to see characters portrayed sexually (I answered this above) - ie why there is demand. But it has now meandered into a discussion about whether those who create media should meet that demand. That being the case, I wonder if it would benefit from more specific framing to avoid being so broad as to be un-useful.

As to your question "if noone was intending sexism, why have we arrived at a state of sexist art?" and three answers, I suspect there are lots of possible answers and that it is also possible to examine some of the underlying assumptions in the question.

For example, if the sexism you are referring to is "less likely to sport scars, visible muscles, or bodyfat", one answer might be that it is art imitating real life where women are less likely than men to have visible muscles, scars (I know that hospital admissions for accidents is higher for men, so I think it would follow that they would be more likely to have physical scars) or be overweight (not certain on this last point, but I think so). Whether or not that is a good answer I don't know - the degree to which men are more likely to be fat, scarred or muscular in real life may be exaggerated in media - and that is the sort of issue we are exploring in this thread.

I also think two of your three answers assume certain things. For example, your first answer is that they are ignorant, but if they have thought about sexism and merely disagree with you about whether a particular depiction is sexist, is that ignorance? I'm not sure it qualifies as such.

Again, i think this may be a useful line of discussion. But before going into it I would be really keen to establish:
- whether this is a theoretical discussion of what would be ideal, or whether there is a particular outcome that you are advocating for (this ties into my question above)
- What sexism you are talking about? - is is the sexualisation of female characters which we have been discussing (and you will have addressed below). Or are you here talking more boradly about all sexism in media. If the later I think it may be broad of a question for us to discuss.

I suppose "People are just that darn horny" is all the answer I will ever get on this, even though I don't wanna accept it as sufficient.
Since this discussion splits off and meanders all the time - what kind of specific framing would you be looking for?
"Should media meet demands of sexists"?

As for your argument about scars, muscles and fat - again, we'd need content analysis of lots of media to get to concrete numbers; and I think to play the same guesstimating numbers game as before might require lots more work looking at more characters; as all of these criteria are less likely to appear than "Man" or "woman" (Quite sensibly so; but maybe not as sensible in their rarity). If you're interested, I could try and tally up the numbers for the media mentioned before, if I find the time?

And... well; if they have done so, they don't fall under Ignorance anymore, but rather under Indifferent (or disagreeing, which I think I wrote in as an example?).
This is somewhat in between the discussion of an ideal vs. advocacy - discussion of an ideal, that I advocate for being neared, if that makes any sense?
As for the last thing, I am talking about sexism in media in general; with sexualised depictions of women as an expression of that.


Yes. Of course the fact that you cannot measure or objectively prove that women are more frequently displayed sexually does not mean that they are not more frequently portrayed sexually. It just means that you are relying on your own subjective perception of whether women are more frequently portrayed sexually, That becomes problematic where people on the other side of the issue have different subjective perceptions from you.

My own subjective perception is that women characters probably are more frequently sexualised than male characters. But I expect my perception is that the extent of any such disparity is far less than your perception.

Yeah, I agree with this. Trying to explain ones subjective perception and making it as objective as possible would help, but as I said, beyond my tries of adapting the Bingo and changing the list, I am rather blank as to how to do that beyond discussing examples.

And it might well be. But I think we can both live with that?^^


And this is why we probably disagree on the extent to which women are sexualised more than men. My opinion is that this depiction (the one on page 2 of the thread) of Conan is as sexualised to a similar extent to the woman in the picture below (who is not someone specific, but a picture I just found)

https://www.studio92.us/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Mandy-Warrior-edit.jpg

Like Conan (the depiction from page 2) she is conventionally attractive, like Conan she is clothed revealingly, like Conan her stance is neutral, like Conan she is carrying a weapon which suggests both are warriors in addition to being scantily clad, like with Conan there is no particular focus on any body part.

I would actually agree with you that this is about as sexualised as the specific depiction of Conan. Maybe she could do with some more muscle, but on the other hand she is more clothed.
As sexualised as that Conan, ofc, would mean "I wouldn't say it is particularly or clearly sexualised; but could understand how people might think so".
I am not sure this proves any particular reason for us disagreeing :smallwink:


Your suggestion seems to be that, because showing muscles demonstrates a trait other than (often in addition to) attractiveness it is not part of sexualisation. But the same is true an athletic build - as much as you can assume that obvious muscles mean strength (although this is not true on all occasions) you can also assume that an athletically built person is going to be fitter and more athletic than someone who is not athletically built. Accordingly, an athletic build also signals a quality other than (in addition to) attractiveness.

I think there may be an underlying assumption that where an attractive and muscular character is depicted revealingly, and where the context is otherwise neutral, the purpose of their revealing state must be to display their muscular strength. Is that the assumption? if so, what is it based on?

Does the same assumption apply to an attractive but athletically built character? If an athletic woman warrior is depicted in revealing armour but there is no further sexualising context, do you think she is sexualised? How do you consider the following picture of a man who is athletically built, but not particularly muscular:
https://thumb10.shutterstock.com/display_pic_with_logo/2233535/352476407/stock-photo-half-naked-strong-athletic-man-in-the-image-of-the-ancient-warrior-strikes-with-a-hammer-in-the-352476407.jpg

If I don't see the athletic build, I cannot factor it in. To see an athletic build requires visibility of at least some muscles. The picture you link qualifies in the broadest sense as "visible muscles", and the posing is quite clearly nonsexualised.

As to that assumption... Yeah, that is pretty much it. If there is another, clearly discernible reason for depicting this amount of revealing clothes, defaulting to "sexualisation" as an explanation seems unfair and dishonest, equating "skin shown" with "sexualised"; which clearly isn't the case.
Therefor, in the absence of other factors suggesting sexualisation, I am willing to at least give the benefit of the doubt and take these other, discernible reasons for revealed skin as the reason for it being revealed, and not count it as proof for sexualisation on its own.


No problem. If I tried to conduct this conversation in a language other than English... well lets just say we may be discussing the squirrel you saw because I would'n't be able to follow the rest of the conversation. I admire people who are fluent in two languages. Where I am from we are not required to take a second language at school, and consequentially I am pretty poor at speaking any language other than English.

Well, requiring the population to learn English is somewhat useful in the current state of the world; and we both know that one :smallwink:
(And, as I said, I think it might have been a rabbit, and a digital one at that. :smalltongue: )


Not quite that it is preferable or more believable. Rather that a world that reflect our own (the good and the bad of it) is the default. In a fantasy setting, this would be subject to the differences specified by the work, usually including the existence of magic and monsters. On the few occasions where a fantasy setting does have a different attitude toward women or homosexuals (or anything else), I am ok with that to - it's just that I default to assuming that things n the setting will be as they are in our world (or the period in our world which inspired the fantasy).

Yes. The thing is, I see people's attitude toward each other in the same light as physical laws, tech level etc - in a different setting they may be different, but until I am shown that I assume they are the same.

Another example of where this sort of predictability is useful - If we are shown a homosexual sex scene (assuming based on a period where homosexuality was not accepted), and a third party witnesses it and runs away - are we as viewers to expect that any revelation of the interaction would expose the couple to danger or ridicule? A similar example from GoT was the affair between Cersei and Jamie - I assumed that the taboo against incest was the same as in the real world (and so it turned out to be).

I think I can see your point. I strongly agree with predictability being useful for a setting - after all, if I'm not able to make reasonable guesses as to what an action means, or what conclusions might be logical to draw, what consequences would be on the table, then I am left just... awaiting what the work puts upon me next. Speculating about what might happen, or hoping for certain things to (rooting for certain characters, for example) is for many people an important part of their engagement in media.
I still disagree somewhat, mostly because of the missed potential of exploring other dynamics by consistently falling back to real-life ones; as well as the point discussed below (in relation to the article).


Yes, if someone wants to create a fantasy where men and women are perceived as equally capable of most tasks, and equally likely to hold positions of power on the basis of their own merit, I have no problem with that. I also have no problem if a fantasy work put women more frequently in the position of power.

As to how much I would need to count something as specified - probably more than you given that I am not particularly perceptive or subtle. It depends, but enough so that it because obvious to me. Simply showing females in male dominated jobs would probably be enough.

As to the article, I didn't address that seems to me to be a different discussion. If you want to go into it though, we can. Which points in the article would you like me to address (so I am discussing the issue with you and not with the article itself)?

Alright. I mean, the absence of something is difficult to portray - showing there is sexism is as easy as having one scene demonstrate it; showing its absence might be more difficult, but if showing there to be no differences in areas you'd expect some serves as enough of a statement I think we can agree there.
And the article touches on reasons one might not just copy these issues one for one without putting some thought behind it what it means for the story and the worldbuilding. The point I'd most likely want an answer on, I think, would be these paragraphs:

Such (https://www.thefandomentals.com/homophobia-shouldnt-be-default/) a goal is not as inherently problematic as homophobic set dressing, but it’s also not always straightforwardly positive either. You see, an honest wish to explore homophobia may coincide with an assumption that the oppression of non-straight persons is the ‘normal’ or ‘default’ setting for any and all societies. This is especially a problem in speculative fiction settings like science fiction or fantasy (if they bother including queer characters at all) because such genres exist outside of ‘our’ reality.

We often forget that when dealing with speculative fiction, utilizing homophobia in a narrative is a choice. The author or screenwriter has created an entirely different world and cultures from our own. Homophobia isn’t ‘normal’ on Mars or in Middle Earth unless the creator makes it so. However, even a creator who honestly wishes to explore homophobia sensitively in such a setting has, at some level, recreated a system of oppression where none needed to have existed. This may be done for with good intentions, for sure. But it’s worth asking, is this strictly necessary? Such a choice assumes the omnipresence of heteronomativity even when creating worlds and societies that are completely unlike our own.

Such an assumption carries with it the corollary assumption that suffering and struggle are inherent to queer experience. That queer relationships are somehow less ‘honest’ or ‘real’ if the characters do not at some point face systemic opposition for choosing to love who they love. I do not mean to downplay the suffering that women loving women (wlw) or men loving men (mlm) couples face in real life. I am specifically concerned with the assumption that this is somehow necessary in order to tell the stories of queer characters.


Yes, I understood that you were referring to sexism, with your point being that sexism in GoT is appropriate because the story highlights that it is unjustified. I agree, I have no problem with the way that GoT deals with sexism.

I raised its dealings with homosexuality (and now incest) as my own point. Neither is part of the story in the same way as sexism, but I have no problem with the way deals with either - the attitudes of the other characters is in line with real world attitudes, and thus predictable.

Ah, alright, then I misunderstood.
And, yeah, as long as it serves a point, there can well be value to include it.


No, discrimination is not required to be gritty (I am not sure I used the right word here), although it may add to it. My preference is that the fantasy reflect that the world is complicated, there is no clear demarcation between good and evil - generally good characters have moral flaws (discrimination could perhaps be an example of this), generally evil characters have admirable qualities (championing a downtrodden group is a possible example - see Redcloak from OotS). I suppose this may be what you meant by gray morality. GoT strikes me as ideal in this regard. Sources of tension are important to a gritty fantasy, and discrimination provides one such source, but there are plenty of other sources o tension that may suffice.

Good, I didn't think you were making that point, but wanted to make sure.
Yes, this is pretty much exactly what is generally meant by grey or gray morality - no obvious and unambiguous bad guys or good guys. Of course, grittier works might get into black vs. grey morality; where one side is rather unambiguously evil, but the other... still nothing close to actually good.
I guess using discrimination, especially along real-world demarcations as the go-to seems a bit... cheap, to me (It's a bit taking the easy way of characterising people as morally wrong); especially if not fully thought through. (One book I read recently had one side be characterised as morally wrong by making them utterly sexist; with women as property, polygyny and slavery; only to in the end just... forgetting about it while acting as if that culture was redeemed)
And I see a lot of potential of playing with different kinds of discriminations, changing directions of the axis, setting up new ones or shifting the real ones around a bit, that isn't really explored in worlds where one could get all sorts of creative; in favour of... the same old thing we know from reality. Missed potential, mostly.


Yes, please do. As soon as you say "the harm done this way is big enough that it outweights the joy those who like those pictures have", you need to prove and quantify it. A simple conjecture based on what you know about gender and society is not enough any more. You must prove substantial aczual harm done this way.
Yes, sexiness as a core feature of a depiction of a women is not rooted in sexism. It is rooted in wanting to arouse. That is basically how porn works, which is also not inherently sexist. And no, there is no double standard here. A picture of a men with sexiness as a core feature is also not sexist.
That is not how i see it. It is not placing the look above other features of the displayed women, it is placing sex and sexiness above the fight (or whatever else happens). Not the women gets reduced to a sex object, the whole story gets reduced to a softporn where everything else exists just as justification for the juicy scenes and have no further relevance whatsoever. In short : It is not cheapening the women, it is cheapening the fight.

Of course I realise that to prove things I'd need that.
Unfortunately, my current situation seems to make it difficult for me to produce these - lack of access to the databases I'd use for proper research throws a spanner in my works. General studies on "media has effects" I have access to in the same ways as studies on the effects of media violence talked about earlier in this thread; but for sexism I haven't anything concrete enough saved on my PC, and internet research has hit paywalls. I must apologize, and can perfectly understand you not being convinced. If I manage to find anything, I shall come back to that. Maybe when I next get on university servers some of those paywalls will fall, but I cannot say how long that might be.
Out of interest, should I get the time: Would you want to see studies done specifically on sexy armor in Fantasy art, or would a broader point about sexualised depictions of women in media suffice?

I mean, sure, porn can exist, and in porn it'd be far less questionable. Or not at all. The point is, I guess, that the places where this art appears mostly aren't the time and place for arousal; and putting it there says some really strange things about the value of women and the value of being aroused by women.
And, I guess I can see your perspective; and even agree that it is also for the detriment of the story (The description of it being turned into softporn sounds rather apt), but I fail to be convinced how this being done by sexualising the female characters pretty much exclusively is not also to the detriment of them.


No, it is completely other types of media that push the idea that the looks is the most important thing on a women. It is stuff where heroines and side characters all still have the age and looks for ideal love interests for the teen/tween male hero, while sporting a CV with accomplishments that would take decades. And in an otherwise serious story. That is cheapening the women and their achievements for the sake of better looks. And i find it really grating. But even there i am not sure if enough actual damage exists to do something about it.

I can totally agree with you that the issues you mentioned are probably more important than skimpy armor (On the age of heroines I'd like to add this (http://www.vulture.com/2013/04/leading-men-age-but-their-love-interests-dont.html) wonderful collection of charts).
The question is how you define "do something about it"? Does this justify censorship? Of course not. Does it justify pointing out the problems and encouraging media producers to consider doing it differently? Maybe it does. Does it justify doing it differently in ones own works? Probably. I mean, if I have full control over something, why should I put in it things that I don't want there?


But you are contradicting yourself. You are saying that the art itself is inherently sexist and that making/buying/supporting such art is reinforcing sexism in society and thus itself a sexist act. You clearly stated that you think making or buying those things is actually harmful. That is a moral argument.

Or what are you wanting your point to be "liking sey women is ok, but liking pictures of sexy women and making/supporting art you like is not ?"

I am unsure where exactly you see the contradiction? I have already said that for me, this is a moral issue and not one of mere taste.
But... no, I don't wanna say that. More closely, it would be "liking pictures that put sexyness in women above situational logic (in ways they do not do for men) is while okay, still in part caused by appreciating women more for their sexiness than for their skills applicable in the situation at hand".
I mean, to give this whole thing some more perspective: I do not believe in the slightest that skimpy armor and its prevalence are a core pillar of sexism in the world; or even just harmful on its own. But I do believe that in the context of societal sexism, they can serve as reinforments of ideas in some small capacity. And I do not believe either that everyone has to be morally pure. Humans aren't made like that, and people should have the right to enjoy things that are problematic (I like a lot of things that have, from my perspective, problematic elements to them...).


Exactly. And you don't think that could be a proper explaination for that assymmetry ? That women are ashamed for their sexuality and thus reluctant to make and actually publish art appealing to their own sexual tastes ? Or reluctant to buy/support such art when other people might notice ?

Sounds like perfectly fine reasons why such art is rare. From that point of view, the correct action would not be trying to make the sexy women pics disappear by shaming creators and customers of them, it would be promoting sexy men pictures by explaining to everyone, especcially women that there is nothing shamefull in looking at/making/liking sexy art for the sexyness.
That is kind of surprising to me as your point is more focused on combatting things appealing to male sexual agenda instead of promoting things based on female sexual agenda to achieve parity.
I honestly don't see a difference. When you make games/game art not for the sake of entertaining the people your product is made for and appealing to them and instead try to push an agenda, try to influence your customers, it becomes propaganda. One of the most famous propaganda tools in that sense is Monopoly. You should not limit that world to old political ideologies, most of the edutainment stuff and most of the advertising also fit this characterisation very well.

I mean, it might be another point to explain it, but given the studies Max pointed out; that women, in societies with access to reliable birth control and relatively equal opportunities, are pretty much as readily living out their sexuality as men do, it seems not fully satisfactory an explanation. As in, it may well explain part of the discrepancy, but not all of it (The discrepancy not being from a single source I took as somewhat of a given; pretty much nothing in social sciences (to which media sciences belong) is ever monocausal.)
And, sure, in a thread about armor designs for men I might well argue for more sexualised depictions. Heck, I have partially done so in this thread - I think I mentioned sexualised armor sets on women being alright if the male equivalent holds up in that regard (Which it rarely does, sadly); and arguing for more pretty male butts to look at during gaming. However, just like with depictions of women, there is sometimes backlash (http://www.usgamer.net/articles/mobius-mevius-final-fantasy-hero-too-sexy). (I do of course agree with the article that the company was perfectly within their rights to change things due to criticism. Would be weird to argue against the very process I want to see more of; even though this time I don't like the results.) It would be an interesting question of how often this backlash, and from which side, is listened to - in regards to women, I only remember poses being changed; not entire outfits, but I am sure it has happened at some point.
Sex-positivism has little to do with wanting sexualised things; and is not contradicted by the belief that there is a time and a place. I simply believe that time and place is mostly not in combat; fantastical or otherwise.

And I think, given my conviction that it is impossible to actually keep your own biases fully out of media that you produced, that if you expand the term propaganda to include these things, it almost fully looses it's negative connotation, and is just... a statement, really. A rather mundane one, at that. And: Producers are able to multitask, and consider entertaining and educating both valid goals. Just because you let your values influence what you make does not make it impossible to make it in a way meant mostly to entertain.


If you were unhappy with the situation and made stuff you like for people like yourself/promote niche titles you like so that they get better coverage/more impact/more future investment so that you and others might find more enjoyable stuff, that would be fine. That is also very different from trying to steer society in a certain direction by careful media placements. However small the effect, suddenly not the fun of customers is relevant, instead social engineering becomes the aim.

What do you mean by careful media placements? The statement of "Think about what impact what you are doing/producing/putting out there can have on the world; and be sure you can live with that impact"?
What would you say about trying to encourage artists to produce art more to my tastes and the tastes of people who share my opinions? Would that still be something that is fine in your book? What about if that is accompanied by explaining why we like this better (that might well involve the same moral arguments?)
And... content can only influence opinions if it is actually engaged in. Customer/recipient/audience satisfaction and fun may no longer be the only goals; but they still have to be (and should be) amongst the goals.


I always opposed the "everything is political" mindset. Megalomanic is imho the idea that you really can steer culture in an meaningful way by this subtle manipulation*. That the masses basically are at mercy of the media producers in the question in which direction culture evolves instead of the other way round ( media representation just following whereever culture goes on its own). That comes down again to your claim of harm, which basically asserts that the impact is significant.

Really, we had many cultural shifts in the last century around the world. How many can you remember, where the mainstream! media actually changed before the shift occured ? Nearly every single change ever happened against the current media narratives.

*obviously that changes a bit if you actually have complete control over all news sources. Then you can place your narratives as facts and some will stick, because even sceptics can't know better..

Why? What argument would you put forward against the assertion that everything is political in some way (The theory of "The Personal is Political", to name it again)?
And I am not asserting that the masses follow the media, and not the media the masses - I am asserting that the relationship goes both ways. News media has been shown surprisingly capable of putting topics on the public agenda, for example (Not so much at shaping opinions on these topics).

As for examples from the last century...
What kinds of shifts do you mean? Maybe some examples might help me give some back.I don't personally remember many big societal shifts, not that many happening during my lifetime. I do remember a shift in societal perception of homosexuality as acceptable, leading up to same sex marriage being adopted in a great deal of countries - and I do remember media depictions being more positive, while public opinion still remained largely indifferent. Does that count?


See, when it comes to beauty ideals, i can see the damage and know lots of studies about it. I would understand and do support action to shift beauty ideals in more healthy directions.

But the negative impact of near exclusively thin celebreties and models still doesn't prove the negative impact of a chainmail bikini. I mean, we don't really fear that girls actually buy one, do we ? Or is it fear that girls are encouraged to wear more revealing clothing and be more open about their sexuality ? No, that doesn't sound right either.

No, supposedly we fear girls looking at chainmail bikinis and thinking that their role in life should be serving men and their tastes. Which is more than a little stretch. I don't think that actually happens.

It proves that, at least in some cases, there is a connection between media depiction and real life where the media depictions effect perception of reality; and that they can do so in negative ways.
The fears connected to these kinds of depictions fall partially alongside the same lines of beauty ideals (pronouncing the already-present focus on that being put up as a central point of women's "worth"); partially alongside lines of representation mattering with what people aspire to be and consider possible for them (Anecdotally, Whoopie Goldberg talked about the impact this can have (https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CC0NYSVVAAA97Vv.png)); and partially on reinforcing, for men, the impression that women are in some ways there to cater to their needs (of having something to ogle, in this case).

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-15, 09:20 AM
See, when it comes to beauty ideals, i can see the damage and know lots of studies about it. I would understand and do support action to shift beauty ideals in more healthy directions.

But the negative impact of near exclusively thin celebreties and models still doesn't prove the negative impact of a chainmail bikini. I mean, we don't really fear that girls actually buy one, do we ? Or is it fear that girls are encouraged to wear more revealing clothing and be more open about their sexuality ? No, that doesn't sound right either.

No, supposedly we fear girls looking at chainmail bikinis and thinking that their role in life should be serving men and their tastes. Which is more than a little stretch. I don't think that actually happens.


Said getup does however fall into the "wildly impractical armor" category, and in almost no circumstances is it an outfit that makes in-context sense. When it's depicted, it's almost always for the "benefit" of the outside viewer, and not because of the situation at hand for the characters internal to their "world".

"Wearing revealing clothing" and "be more open about their sexuality" aren't the same thing... someone conflating the two just sends us back in the direction of the "empowered woman = throws her sexuality around like a warhammer" fallacy that's been in circulation for decades. (To be clear, this is when artists use "she's an empowered woman in control of her own body and sexuality, so of course she dresses in the least amount of clothing possible and beds any man who strikes her fancy" as an excuse to draw women going into combat 3/4 or more naked and/or in ridiculous "armor" that's clearly designed to be "sexy" (by some standards, I guess) instead of functional.)

Ashiel
2017-08-15, 09:31 AM
Nice to hear I haven't missed anything^^
And I mean, neither me nor the theory itself proclaim any one individual action to be world-altering. :smallwink: Just, aggregates, and the way to change those are basically just one's own actions, alongside calls to change for other people.
Well, that's one of the places where I think our views divide the most. As noted in those stories mentioned in our PMs, I tend to put a lot more stock in the ripples that we as individuals can create within the world and how it shapes society as a reflection of ourselves who in fact make up the society.

I see it as kind of like water in a pool. Lash out at the water and the water crashes back at you. Change yourself in the water and it moves with you and the wake reaches the edges. One is futile, the other is beautiful. The empowerment of the individual is I believe necessary to ensuring the health of the whole society.

Because, as noted in the PM, no level of activism would have changed the minds of those old men. No amount of calling them names could have changed their minds. If anything, it would have only firmed their resolve against me as a problem. But, they fell into my wake and now swim with me. Now when someone says something bad about people like me, they who were against me, now turn and say "Well, y'know, it's not all that bad 'cause y'see, I know this kid..." and now they're continuing that wake.

I realize that it might seem a little metaphysical, and I apologize. It's just what I've seen works. I'd actually use this conversation in this thread as an example. There are multiple posters, myself included, who have already noted that we generally prefer realistic armor on people, but I'll fight you tooth and nail until the end because you and others are trying to enact an authoritarian position on the grounds of your personal morality and/or your personal aesthetic preferences. And to that, I say no. Everyone else has just as much right to enjoy what they enjoy, and it's not your business, nor my business, nor anyone else's business about that.

And before anyone says one side is getting catered to more than the other, I'd like to stop you right there and point out that this thread was about D&D art, and it quickly mutated into being about other mediums because there wasn't enough scanty art to be found from D&D sources. Someone showed a few Elmore pictures and a lady being held by a demon, and then mountains of other fantasy art, including Elmore's art, and other D&D portraits throughout the editions sprang up, showing that not only was the skimpy stuff not a majority but it was largely the minority.


http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-umXJw4iqyRg/VFVRBEh4L9I/AAAAAAAAAZI/7KbA_drDrB4/s1600/lidda%2B2.jpg
https://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/forgottenrealms/images/5/5e/Paladin_Alhandra_PHB3e.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20141003054720
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-SHNIBAUFdqI/UirPXxdu9eI/AAAAAAAAANU/QixGV1kU3yE/s1600/33175.jpg
http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/sigil-city-of-doors-nwn2-persistent-world/images/8/80/33173.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20160618065904
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/99/99/fc/9999fca8ba109bb278ac48807e58172f--game-night-fantasy-characters.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/a5/f8/9d/a5f89dffb26b3ae8644947ab3f8f722d--character-sheet-character-ideas.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/fb/6b/40/fb6b40eaf8fc14db52348dbc2c0ce714.jpg
https://gamewiseacademy.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/soveliss.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/b6/32/bb/b632bb747fcb5cae515d117f18f6a7e2--dungeons-and-dragons-fantasy-characters.jpg
https://i.warosu.org/data/tg/img/0272/52/1379308498341.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/5b/e8/e6/5be8e6a1484d49c705f512117b3679f6--character-names-character-art.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/af/83/98/af83981790416f1bfe1944727e6213db.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/83/8b/e1/838be1a044ec019252287f52e83b65a3--dark-creatures-dungeons-and-dragons.jpg
https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/1423761254/hennet_2.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/55/87/05/558705ea1fcb7b6a2b9d88951e0ad4a7.jpg
https://pre05.deviantart.net/6490/th/pre/i/2007/079/3/9/mialee_prepares_her_spells__by_ralphhorsley.jpg
https://pre10.deviantart.net/98cf/th/pre/i/2007/109/6/a/kicking_back_by_ralphhorsley.jpg
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/forgottenrealms/images/b/b2/Druid_-_phb_3.5.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20081202203737
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-4uTlpz2T70o/VRxSIIVjvxI/AAAAAAAADWI/j4qyXketCmE/s1600/OA3.jpg
http://img15.deviantart.net/f5a7/i/2007/119/2/2/the_endless_maze_by_ralphhorsley.jpg
https://pre12.deviantart.net/ec78/th/pre/f/2016/270/f/8/the_iconic_wizard_by_sirtiefling-daj447r.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/8a/44/b0/8a44b0ae78229cd11ebbf8e6ce7c9470.jpg
https://pre04.deviantart.net/2a4b/th/pre/i/2013/301/3/5/mialee_by_felsus-d6qxlj7.jpg
https://mir-s3-cdn-cf.behance.net/project_modules/disp/4542ea12364963.562674b1279cc.jpg
https://i.warosu.org/data/tg/img/0283/75/1384973297267.jpg
http://static.oper.ru/data/site/100121dd05_resize.jpg
It's interesting to see who gets fanart.

Zanos
2017-08-15, 09:53 AM
By extension are you suggesting that adolescent girls who play D&D and are exposed to pictures of chainmail bikinis are more adversely affected by it than women are?
Exposure to pretty much anything without proper context can create the wrong impression in adolescents. I doubt that playing D&D is particularly worse in this regard than just watching television.

Since you mentioned D&D specifically it's actually been pretty good about armor depictions. At least, there's no metal lingerie that I can remember.


It's not just about adults, though -- and even regarding adults there's research (which I am looking for good links to) showing adults are as a whole more affected by this sort of thing than by, say, the aforementioned violent videogames.
I'll wait for the links.


E: Thing is I want to think that people are more aware than that, that they tune out advertisements and branding and messaging as much as some of us do. That even when they think a commercial is catchy or funny, they say "it's that one commercial for a truck", and don't even remember which truck it was for.
I don't really watch much TV and never understood the purpose of most ads. Seems like it's always for drugs and cars, and I'm not getting any drugs unless a doctor says I need it to not die and I'm not buying something as big as a car without a lot of research.



It's interesting to see who gets fanart.
We need more Hennet fanart.

https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/forgottenrealms/images/b/b8/Hennet_Sam-Wood_PHB3e.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20140912004315

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-15, 09:54 AM
I don't really watch much TV and never understood the purpose of most ads. Seems like it's always for drugs and cars, and I'm not getting any drugs unless a doctor says I need it to not die and I'm not buying something as big as a car without a lot of research.


You and I are not the intended audience for most marketing.

Ashiel
2017-08-15, 10:11 AM
We need more Hennet fanart.

https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/forgottenrealms/images/b/b8/Hennet_Sam-Wood_PHB3e.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20140912004315

Yes we do. My brother also thinks belts stack. It's pretty rad. :smallamused:

Floret
2017-08-15, 11:39 AM
Well, that's one of the places where I think our views divide the most. As noted in those stories mentioned in our PMs, I tend to put a lot more stock in the ripples that we as individuals can create within the world and how it shapes society as a reflection of ourselves who in fact make up the society.

I see it as kind of like water in a pool. Lash out at the water and the water crashes back at you. Change yourself in the water and it moves with you and the wake reaches the edges. One is futile, the other is beautiful. The empowerment of the individual is I believe necessary to ensuring the health of the whole society.

Because, as noted in the PM, no level of activism would have changed the minds of those old men. No amount of calling them names could have changed their minds. If anything, it would have only firmed their resolve against me as a problem. But, they fell into my wake and now swim with me. Now when someone says something bad about people like me, they who were against me, now turn and say "Well, y'know, it's not all that bad 'cause y'see, I know this kid..." and now they're continuing that wake.

I realize that it might seem a little metaphysical, and I apologize. It's just what I've seen works. I'd actually use this conversation in this thread as an example. There are multiple posters, myself included, who have already noted that we generally prefer realistic armor on people, but I'll fight you tooth and nail until the end because you and others are trying to enact an authoritarian position on the grounds of your personal morality and/or your personal aesthetic preferences. And to that, I say no. Everyone else has just as much right to enjoy what they enjoy, and it's not your business, nor my business, nor anyone else's business about that.

And before anyone says one side is getting catered to more than the other, I'd like to stop you right there and point out that this thread was about D&D art, and it quickly mutated into being about other mediums because there wasn't enough scanty art to be found from D&D sources. Someone showed a few Elmore pictures and a lady being held by a demon, and then mountains of other fantasy art, including Elmore's art, and other D&D portraits throughout the editions sprang up, showing that not only was the skimpy stuff not a majority but it was largely the minority.

I don't even think our views differ that much. As I explained there, I tend to go the same route, most of the time - and, as I said, aggregates and stuff. Individual actions shape society. Like, seriously, I agree with the vast majority of your first three paragraphs. When it comes to convincing individuals? Individual action does work wonders.
Just... different tools for different jobs. I believe that when it comes to widespread, systemic inequality, activism is needed. When it comes to unjust laws, or law enforcement, activism is needed. In certain issues, individual change might not be enough, not powerful enough, not fast enough. An issue being made visible, and a problem being made clear and impossible to ignore can do just as much change, if done in the right situations. (As I said, I am pretty certain you are vastly underestimating the effects activism has had in the past, as I am assuming that is what you mean by lashing out at the water.)

I for one am not trying to enact an authoritarian position. I am merely voicing and explaining my opinions and views, in the hope that I can convince people (part of the discussion or otherwise reading) of these opinions and views through that. Because I'd like people to share my opinions. Trying to convice other people of your opinion is, I find, a perfectly legitimate action to take.
And that is where I think the largest disagreement is between us: That enjoyment of media, and personal preferences, are somehow neutral, and not worthy of being questioned, or beyond being questioned. Because I think they aren't. I think there is value in questioning preferences; and I think as they are shaped by society, and through our actions shape society, they are absolutely a valid target of questioning.

And, so, alright, so maybe DnD caters to people equally in that regard. I cannot really comment on that, I have no firsthand experience with DnD (Except a years-old dungeoncrawler boardgame my boyfriend found at a second hand store). But you aren't arguing the whole industry does, are you? Because at least we all agreed that there is a dearth of sexy male characters.



http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-umXJw4iqyRg/VFVRBEh4L9I/AAAAAAAAAZI/7KbA_drDrB4/s1600/lidda%2B2.jpg
https://vignette4.wikia.nocookie.net/forgottenrealms/images/5/5e/Paladin_Alhandra_PHB3e.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20141003054720
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-SHNIBAUFdqI/UirPXxdu9eI/AAAAAAAAANU/QixGV1kU3yE/s1600/33175.jpg
http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/sigil-city-of-doors-nwn2-persistent-world/images/8/80/33173.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20160618065904
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/99/99/fc/9999fca8ba109bb278ac48807e58172f--game-night-fantasy-characters.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/a5/f8/9d/a5f89dffb26b3ae8644947ab3f8f722d--character-sheet-character-ideas.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/fb/6b/40/fb6b40eaf8fc14db52348dbc2c0ce714.jpg
https://gamewiseacademy.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/soveliss.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/b6/32/bb/b632bb747fcb5cae515d117f18f6a7e2--dungeons-and-dragons-fantasy-characters.jpg
https://i.warosu.org/data/tg/img/0272/52/1379308498341.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/5b/e8/e6/5be8e6a1484d49c705f512117b3679f6--character-names-character-art.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/af/83/98/af83981790416f1bfe1944727e6213db.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/83/8b/e1/838be1a044ec019252287f52e83b65a3--dark-creatures-dungeons-and-dragons.jpg
https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/1423761254/hennet_2.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/55/87/05/558705ea1fcb7b6a2b9d88951e0ad4a7.jpg
https://pre05.deviantart.net/6490/th/pre/i/2007/079/3/9/mialee_prepares_her_spells__by_ralphhorsley.jpg
https://pre10.deviantart.net/98cf/th/pre/i/2007/109/6/a/kicking_back_by_ralphhorsley.jpg
https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/forgottenrealms/images/b/b2/Druid_-_phb_3.5.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20081202203737
http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-4uTlpz2T70o/VRxSIIVjvxI/AAAAAAAADWI/j4qyXketCmE/s1600/OA3.jpg
http://img15.deviantart.net/f5a7/i/2007/119/2/2/the_endless_maze_by_ralphhorsley.jpg
https://pre12.deviantart.net/ec78/th/pre/f/2016/270/f/8/the_iconic_wizard_by_sirtiefling-daj447r.jpg
https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/8a/44/b0/8a44b0ae78229cd11ebbf8e6ce7c9470.jpg
https://pre04.deviantart.net/2a4b/th/pre/i/2013/301/3/5/mialee_by_felsus-d6qxlj7.jpg
https://mir-s3-cdn-cf.behance.net/project_modules/disp/4542ea12364963.562674b1279cc.jpg
https://i.warosu.org/data/tg/img/0283/75/1384973297267.jpg
http://static.oper.ru/data/site/100121dd05_resize.jpg
It's interesting to see who gets fanart.

Since you do not mention names, it is hard to look for Fanart amounts and compare them. :smallwink:
Also, I gotta say, dang DnD has many iconics. Doesn't this kinda take away from the impact of their visual recognisability? Or how does DnD use the term iconics?


Exposure to pretty much anything without proper context can create the wrong impression in adolescents. I doubt that playing D&D is particularly worse in this regard than just watching television.

Noone said it was particularly worse; or worse at all. All that has been said has been that it has an effect, in line with other media (Relative to the amount of people exposed to it).


I don't really watch much TV and never understood the purpose of most ads. Seems like it's always for drugs and cars, and I'm not getting any drugs unless a doctor says I need it to not die and I'm not buying something as big as a car without a lot of research.

Just because you aren't affected by it, does not mean most people aren't.
The industry behind it wouldn't be as big if it didn't do something.


We need more Hennet fanart.

https://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/forgottenrealms/images/b/b8/Hennet_Sam-Wood_PHB3e.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20140912004315

We do :smallamused: If sexualisation has to be there, at least equalize it. There are too few sexy men out there.

Satinavian
2017-08-15, 12:23 PM
Of course I realise that to prove things I'd need that.
Unfortunately, my current situation seems to make it difficult for me to produce these - lack of access to the databases I'd use for proper research throws a spanner in my works. General studies on "media has effects" I have access to in the same ways as studies on the effects of media violence talked about earlier in this thread; but for sexism I haven't anything concrete enough saved on my PC, and internet research has hit paywalls. I must apologize, and can perfectly understand you not being convinced. If I manage to find anything, I shall come back to that. Maybe when I next get on university servers some of those paywalls will fall, but I cannot say how long that might be.
Out of interest, should I get the time: Would you want to see studies done specifically on sexy armor in Fantasy art, or would a broader point about sexualised depictions of women in media suffice?
thanks, i really appreciate that you are willing to provide actual science instead of hiding behind "it makes sense"

To motivate to do something against sexy armor in Fantasy beyond expressing a different taste and buy different products, i probably would need studies about that. But i am actually interested in the broader point too, even outside of this particular discussion and would certainly welcome the others too. And as you might have guessed,, i can read German too (social science still sometimes publish in other languages)


The question is how you define "do something about it"? Does this justify censorship? Of course not. Does it justify pointing out the problems and encouraging media producers to consider doing it differently? Maybe it does. Does it justify doing it differently in ones own works? Probably. I mean, if I have full control over something, why should I put in it things that I don't want there?I am not sure. As long as it is personal taste, i just don't buy it and don't produce it. If i think, it is harmfull, i would additionally complain about it, hoping that some people would try to look at it in a new light and revisit their opinion. But i think i would not try to attack producers or buyers, i would not try to build social pressure to discourage people from making/using it. Just making people aware would be appropriate. That is the caese because i think this kind of portayal is more harmful than the sexy stuff (which warrants hardly more than just not buying if not interested), but still far far less dangerous than e.g. advertising tabacco at minors which should come with at least a lot of social pressure and maybe even laws against it.

However, just like with depictions of women, there is sometimes backlash (http://www.usgamer.net/articles/mobius-mevius-final-fantasy-hero-too-sexy).I know this kind of backlash. And would be always willing to argue against the inherent double standard (and the fear of male nudity). But that kind of also touches cultural sensitivities, as the standards of how much/what kind of nudity is allowed vary wildly (and the US always tends to get the last word due to having the biggest market)


And I think, given my conviction that it is impossible to actually keep your own biases fully out of media that you produced, that if you expand the term propaganda to include these things, it almost fully looses it's negative connotation, and is just... a statement, really. A rather mundane one, at that. And: Producers are able to multitask, and consider entertaining and educating both valid goals. Just because you let your values influence what you make does not make it impossible to make it in a way meant mostly to entertain.No, it is not always that easy to distinguish a work with a message and a work that just conforms to the worldview of the creator. Or better, if you can see the difference, the wlhole thing was already far too heavy handed.

That works that show different wordviews exist, is not actually a bad thing, just the opposite, it helps broaden the horizon. So you could say i am not really against the creation of media elements with a deeper meaning or even a message.
But it gets instantly bad when it comes to distribution and people want works that don't agree with their own view pushed backed, fearing the influence those works might have. There are few cases where i might accept that. There must be a lot of harm done before i agree that those kinds of worldviews should be actively fought by making casting creators/users social outcasts and maybe later lobbying for a law.

What do you mean by careful media placements? The statement of "Think about what impact what you are doing/producing/putting out there can have on the world; and be sure you can live with that impact"?No, subtle manipulation. Casting the villain of the week as a loser with posters of scantly clad women in their room while the heroes of the story show their disgust. Making the boss of the heroine leecherous, ugly and incompetent instilling more rightous anger in the viewership against sexist acts. Let the heroine always be proven right in the end and her plan succeed after the plan of some male (who obviously gets to try first) fails. Letting the women being contantly be interrupted by a man, when the viewership already knows that she has something important to say, while having nearly no interruptions in other scenes. Showing acts of classical chivalry in the context of either being utterly unhelpful or being pretext to hit on someone.
Stuff like that. As a media expert you probably know that at a certain point pretty much all heroes stopped smoking while at the same time villians, especcially henchmen started.


What would you say about trying to encourage artists to produce art more to my tastes and the tastes of people who share my opinions? Would that still be something that is fine in your book? What about if that is accompanied by explaining why we like this better (that might well involve the same moral arguments?) Yes, that would be fine. As long as you take a no for a no and don't start a social media campaign about this sexist behavior to apply preassure.

Why? What argument would you put forward against the assertion that everything is political in some way (The theory of "The Personal is Political", to name it again)? I am physicist. That workes best when we stick to the numbers, the experiments, the equations, the theories.

Sure, you can always try to find links to politics, there is big money involved in some experiments, there is prestige, there are the universities and cities, there are the political views of the researchers. There are all the little interpersonal relations. But all that only clouds the mind, harms the ability to look at the numbers without prejudice. It is bad, it is a distraction. Never when politics got mingled with physics anything good came from it, just look at the utter stupidity that was "Deutsche Physik". And the Soviet Union always performed worse whenever important party members expressed favoritism to some scientific theory and scientists tried to please them with their findings.
One of the most important abilities in a scientist is the ability to accept having been wrong. To admit that the last couple of years were a waste of time trying to verify something that does not exist. It is really not helpfull at all to be additionally emotionally invested in the political ramnifications of your research.


News media has been shown surprisingly capable of putting topics on the public agenda, for example (Not so much at shaping opinions on these topics).I actually agree with that one.


As for examples from the last century...
What kinds of shifts do you mean? Maybe some examples might help me give some back.I don't personally remember many big societal shifts, not that many happening during my lifetime. I do remember a shift in societal perception of homosexuality as acceptable, leading up to same sex marriage being adopted in a great deal of countries - and I do remember media depictions being more positive, while public opinion still remained largely indifferent. Does that count?I was more thinking about e.g. the civil rights movement in the US or the various (violent or nonviolent) revolutions where the media in the hands of the current rulers never had a good word for those trying to topple them.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-15, 12:53 PM
If sexualisation has to be there, at least equalize it. There are too few sexy men out there.

Can you supply us with some "sexy men" fantasy art, if there is such a thing? I mean men sexualised along with power fantasy the way that women are, in a D&D context with magic and/or monsters and such, not just beefcake wrestlers or something.

Smon
2017-08-15, 03:28 PM
So I was wondering, over the few editions of D&D, how did armor look for female characters?

I'd imagine it got a bit more modest as the years went by, considering D&D's audience in the early years...

1e era had few female characters depicted, but they generally had fairly practical clothing, as much as the males (it varied by artist) - Morgan Ironwolf had skintight chain shirt but Aleena's armour would have kept her alive if magic missile had still rolled to hit...

2e era started to go bikiniplate, then 3e was the Britney Spears midriff-bearing armour era. 4e had boobplate dwarves. 5e has gone back to a very Old School aesthetic of practical armour.

Talakeal
2017-08-15, 03:56 PM
I really wish people would stop bringing up sex and pornography as if they were synonymous with finding the human form aesthetically pleasing.

Unless I am trying to convey a specific tone or bit of information I like everything in art to be good looking.

For example, I like pretty girls (and guys) in the same way that I like knights to be wearing good looking and well polished armor rather than something that is rusty and battle dented, or I like a large healthy dragon with shimmering scales over a withered elderly dragon with broken teeth and scars, or a bowl of fruit to depict large ripe fruit rather than withered and rotting husks, or a wolf to be fearsome and healthy rather than old and mangy.

Physical beauty =/= pornography.


Robin Hood fighting in a green leotard probably is ridiculous, for several reasons.

Joking aide though, plenty of genres (many of which are based in real world history) have protagonists wearing clothing which would do nothing to protect them into battle, but for some reason people only seem to bring it up if it is "sexy" or shows a lot of skin. Now you personally seem to be a stickler for realism more than some sort of "moral guardian," but for a lot of these discussions it seems like that is the real underlying objection and the "impractical and dangerous" aspect is just a smoke screen.


You know, its kind of funny, people were posting the "bikini armor rhetoric bingo," but one could easily do the opposite. These discussions always seem to go in the same circle, people bring up an objection, people counter it with a justification, and then people counter the counter by bringing up another objection, and then people counter than objection with another justification, and so on in circles with both sides preferring to shift the goal post rather than countering specific arguments.

But like I said, you seem to be consistently in the camp of wanting pure fidelity to reality. Which is really nice when we are talking about the "but dragons," fallacy or getting narrative elements out of our RPGs, but goes a bit too far for me when it comes to fashion and aesthetics.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-15, 04:14 PM
I really wish people would stop bringing up sex and pornography as if they were synonymous with finding the human form aesthetically pleasing.

Unless I am trying to convey a specific tone or bit of information I like everything in art to be good looking.

For example, I like pretty girls (and guys) in the same way that I like knights to be wearing good looking and well polished armor rather than something that is rusty and battle dented, or I like a large healthy dragon with shimmering scales over a withered elderly dragon with broken teeth and scars, or a bowl of fruit to depict large ripe fruit rather than withered and rotting husks, or a wolf to be fearsome and healthy rather than old and mangy.

Physical beauty =/= pornography.

Good point. However, it might be more confused that that. Look at tv commercials for food, for example. Yes, they will show clean, tasty, appealing food, but also more often than not do so in a pornographic fashion. Glistening tomatoes that gleefully slice up in slow-motion, rivers of drizzling chocolate, delectable lips eating cookies and all that. Food porn is very popular--look at any food package. So, how can we separate out "healthy, pretty girl in armour with sword" from a kind of eroticism that is one step away from the pornographic? Of course there's eroticism in those kinds of images, beyond just "healthy, young dragons" or "fearsome, healthy wolf" or somesuch; I'd say "healthy, pretty girl in armour with a sword" is virtually unavoidably erotic. Not porn, but not like a picture of an shiny apple or a fine house or something either.

Zanos
2017-08-15, 04:17 PM
Good point. However, it might be more confused that that. Look at tv commercials for food, for example. Yes, they will show clean, tasty, appealing food, but also more often than not do so in a pornographic fashion. Glistening tomatoes that gleefully slice up in slow-motion, rivers of drizzling chocolate, delectable lips eating cookies and all that. Food porn is very popular--look at any food package. So, how can we separate out "healthy, pretty girl in armour with sword" from a kind of eroticism that is one step away from the pornographic? Of course there's eroticism in those kinds of images, beyond just "healthy, young dragons" or "fearsome, healthy wolf" or somesuch; I'd say "healthy, pretty girl in armour with a sword" is virtually unavoidably erotic. Not porn, but not like a picture of an shiny apple or a fine house or something either.
There's actual nude images I wouldn't describe as pornography, so I guess the difference is whether or not your pants are on when viewing it.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-15, 04:26 PM
I really wish people would stop bringing up sex and pornography as if they were synonymous with finding the human form aesthetically pleasing.

Unless I am trying to convey a specific tone or bit of information I like everything in art to be good looking.

For example, I like pretty girls (and guys) in the same way that I like knights to be wearing good looking and well polished armor rather than something that is rusty and battle dented, or I like a large healthy dragon with shimmering scales over a withered elderly dragon with broken teeth and scars, or a bowl of fruit to depict large ripe fruit rather than withered and rotting husks, or a wolf to be fearsome and healthy rather than old and mangy.

Physical beauty =/= pornography.


Who said that they were synonymous?

But whether we're talking about sexual appeal or aesthetic appeal, if a character is wearing contextually impractical / unlikely clothing and/or armor, without a solid explanation grounded in their character and the setting and the circumstances... then my objections remain the same.




Joking aide though, plenty of genres (many of which are based in real world history) have protagonists wearing clothing which would do nothing to protect them into battle, but for some reason people only seem to bring it up if it is "sexy" or shows a lot of skin. Now you personally seem to be a stickler for realism more than some sort of "moral guardian," but for a lot of these discussions it seems like that is the real underlying objection and the "impractical and dangerous" aspect is just a smoke screen.


Not strict realism... verisimilitude, and fidelity to reality only as it serves to maintain it.

In the times and places in real world history that those other genres are based on, did people in the same context as these protagonists wear any sort of armor? Does it make sense in the context of the fiction for the character to be wearing armor? Is the armor that they're wearing somehow practical and functional and appear to be armor that would actually work?




You know, its kind of funny, people were posting the "bikini armor rhetoric bingo," but one could easily do the opposite. These discussions always seem to go in the same circle, people bring up an objection, people counter it with a justification, and then people counter the counter by bringing up another objection, and then people counter than objection with another justification, and so on in circles with both sides preferring to shift the goal post rather than countering specific arguments.


This impression largely comes from the blatant, deliberate, and continuing misrepresentation of one side's arguments by the other side. When one side constantly has to take their own goalposts and put them back where they originally planted them, because the other side has been trying to put them somewhere else... it looks like both sides are moving goalposts.




But like I said, you seem to be consistently in the camp of wanting pure fidelity to reality. Which is really nice when we are talking about the "but dragons," fallacy or getting narrative elements out of our RPGs, but goes a bit too far for me when it comes to fashion and aesthetics.


See signature. It's not about absolute fidelity to reality, it's about internal consistency, internal coherence, and the sense that the setting could be a real place and time, and that the characters could be real people.

If a character is in situation and context where they're wearing armor, then having them wear armor that is useless or even actively counterproductive, is damaging to the sense of verisimilitude.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-15, 04:35 PM
Good point. However, it might be more confused that that. Look at tv commercials for food, for example. Yes, they will show clean, tasty, appealing food, but also more often than not do so in a pornographic fashion. Glistening tomatoes that gleefully slice up in slow-motion, rivers of drizzling chocolate, delectable lips eating cookies and all that. Food porn is very popular--look at any food package. So, how can we separate out "healthy, pretty girl in armour with sword" from a kind of eroticism that is one step away from the pornographic? Of course there's eroticism in those kinds of images, beyond just "healthy, young dragons" or "fearsome, healthy wolf" or somesuch; I'd say "healthy, pretty girl in armour with a sword" is virtually unavoidably erotic. Not porn, but not like a picture of an shiny apple or a fine house or something either.

This appears to be a far broader definition of "erotic" than I'd care to use.

(Note that I don't consider "erotic" to mean "filthy", either...)

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-15, 05:09 PM
This appears to be a far broader definition of "erotic" than I'd care to use.

(Note that I don't consider "erotic" to mean "filthy", either...)

I worked at a library a few years ago and saw a young man at a computer terminal, watching clip after clip of automobiles crashing into each other and into solid objects. I went over and remarked to him, "Watching car crash porn, huh?" He looked at me oddly. A few days later he came up to me and said (paraphrasing) "I'm here to watch more car crash porn."

Jumping back a bit, here is an interesting interviewlet (https://youtu.be/Z2GQ99DujIU?t=717) concerning evolutionary psychology which you might enjoy.

Floret
2017-08-15, 05:47 PM
thanks, i really appreciate that you are willing to provide actual science instead of hiding behind "it makes sense".

To motivate to do something against sexy armor in Fantasy beyond expressing a different taste and buy different products, i probably would need studies about that. But i am actually interested in the broader point too, even outside of this particular discussion and would certainly welcome the others too. And as you might have guessed,, i can read German too (social science still sometimes publish in other languages)

No problem. I am somewhat annoyed myself that I cannot provide at the moment, because my memory claims there is something, but without the links to prove it, none of my claims in that regard matter particularly much.
And, yes. Truisms and Statements of facts can serve as argumentative points, and might just be convincing, but can't really be definitive proof either way. There's a lot of ways to make sense of situations "by logic" (I once mad the argument for violence in books being more impactful than in movies. Was perfectly logical, and on top of that unproven; what was pretty much the point of the thought experiment). "It's obvious" is neither proof, nor a particularly good argument.

And, alright. I don't think there are studies on sexy armor in Fantasy specifically, but there might be some of somewhat similar or related topics.
I'd have guessed so, yes^^ (When I first saw your username, actually; you being familiar with TDE pretty much confirmed it for me)


I am not sure. As long as it is personal taste, i just don't buy it and don't produce it. If i think, it is harmfull, i would additionally complain about it, hoping that some people would try to look at it in a new light and revisit their opinion. But i think i would not try to attack producers or buyers, i would not try to build social pressure to discourage people from making/using it. Just making people aware would be appropriate. That is the caese because i think this kind of portayal is more harmful than the sexy stuff (which warrants hardly more than just not buying if not interested), but still far far less dangerous than e.g. advertising tabacco at minors which should come with at least a lot of social pressure and maybe even laws against it.
I know this kind of backlash. And would be always willing to argue against the inherent double standard (and the fear of male nudity). But that kind of also touches cultural sensitivities, as the standards of how much/what kind of nudity is allowed vary wildly (and the US always tends to get the last word due to having the biggest market)

Alright. I think the only disagreement we might have on these points is what counts as social pressure or attacking the producers. (I would agree those are going too far; but wouldn't count pointing out "creator does some stuff I find sexist, and does this, by own admission, intentionally, because they don't care" would not as an attack. It might be useful information to some people wanting to support creators that share their values.)
I mean, that and where on the scale we put skimpy armor (You put it in with personal taste; I with thinking it is in some ways harmful), but we have been over that and won't get much further with the current supply of research :smallwink:)


No, it is not always that easy to distinguish a work with a message and a work that just conforms to the worldview of the creator. Or better, if you can see the difference, the wlhole thing was already far too heavy handed.

Alright, so if you cannot distinguish between the two in any meaningful way, what do you think the problem is? If it becomes so heavy-handed as to detract from enjoyment of the media; or already when the input is in some way intentional?
Would me creating a world deliberatly in a way without homophobic discrimination, in part to showcase it being possible, be a violation of that? (In other parts because I might just have no reason for it to exist in the story; and I like to write about non-straight characters, something serviced by that being possible to be acted on openly.)


That works that show different wordviews exist, is not actually a bad thing, just the opposite, it helps broaden the horizon. So you could say i am not really against the creation of media elements with a deeper meaning or even a message.
But it gets instantly bad when it comes to distribution and people want works that don't agree with their own view pushed backed, fearing the influence those works might have. There are few cases where i might accept that. There must be a lot of harm done before i agree that those kinds of worldviews should be actively fought by making casting creators/users social outcasts and maybe later lobbying for a law.
No, subtle manipulation. Casting the villain of the week as a loser with posters of scantly clad women in their room while the heroes of the story show their disgust. Making the boss of the heroine leecherous, ugly and incompetent instilling more rightous anger in the viewership against sexist acts. Let the heroine always be proven right in the end and her plan succeed after the plan of some male (who obviously gets to try first) fails. Letting the women being contantly be interrupted by a man, when the viewership already knows that she has something important to say, while having nearly no interruptions in other scenes. Showing acts of classical chivalry in the context of either being utterly unhelpful or being pretext to hit on someone.
Stuff like that. As a media expert you probably know that at a certain point pretty much all heroes stopped smoking while at the same time villians, especcially henchmen started.


Yes, that would be fine. As long as you take a no for a no and don't start a social media campaign about this sexist behavior to apply preassure.

I think it might be a matter of degree in some respects - at which point becomes "pointing out to your friends that you have noticed a problem, and encouraging them to voice opinions in line with yours to the creators" a social media campaign to apply pressure? Some developers might not be willing to act on one single person's claims (and why should they, someone will probably always complain); but hearing the same concerns from a number of people might value the situation differently.
It's a difficult question, I find, where to draw the line exactly. Certainly some people have stepped over it, and an unambiguous "no, never, this is my artistic vision get your hands off it" is, of course, unambiguous, as would be a person, when faced with criticism explicitly asking their audience for input; but what about the grey area in between? Where there is no clear statement either way about the criticism? Is more input, and encouraging other people to give input alright then?


I am physicist. That workes best when we stick to the numbers, the experiments, the equations, the theories.

Sure, you can always try to find links to politics, there is big money involved in some experiments, there is prestige, there are the universities and cities, there are the political views of the researchers. There are all the little interpersonal relations. But all that only clouds the mind, harms the ability to look at the numbers without prejudice. It is bad, it is a distraction. Never when politics got mingled with physics anything good came from it, just look at the utter stupidity that was "Deutsche Physik". And the Soviet Union always performed worse whenever important party members expressed favoritism to some scientific theory and scientists tried to please them with their findings.
One of the most important abilities in a scientist is the ability to accept having been wrong. To admit that the last couple of years were a waste of time trying to verify something that does not exist. It is really not helpfull at all to be additionally emotionally invested in the political ramnifications of your research.

Sure, that works for Phsyics - But I fear that the approach of natural sciences is ill-suited to social sciences; the ability to perform controlled experiments is just way more limited; the data more muddled; effect strengths weaker. The results (not necessarily the interpreations; looking at the factors you mentioned) of phsysics experiments can easily be fully free of ideological influences ("politics"); raw numbers and measurements of nature, but for the subjects of social sciences, that simply isn't the case. And we aren't talking about a subject of natural sciences :smallwink:

On top of that, I think you might be taking the word politics more literally than I applied it. Of course I, as a student of German, am more than familiar with the dangers of politics instrumentalising research, and the kind of behaviour you describe. (Those were some dark times for all of science... My boyfriend studied archeology. They have horror stories in that subject...)
And, no, it might not be helpful in that specific regard. But the general position of "be conscious of what you are doing, and question your motivations for doing it" it suggests, might be. Questioning if your interpretations of data (the point where some subjectivity is able to seep into physics) is lead by personal ideologies might be a very good way to keep them out of there; not a way to let them in.


I was more thinking about e.g. the civil rights movement in the US or the various (violent or nonviolent) revolutions where the media in the hands of the current rulers never had a good word for those trying to topple them.

Well, there were cases where media tried to prevent societal change and failed, sure, but that doesn't mean that was the only way around it ever happened? And, sure, if you have media in the hands of the powers that be, they won't report against themselves, but in a more democratic setting?
More to the point, would you agree that a situation where the media adapts to a positive as opposed to an indifferent position before the populous counts?


Can you supply us with some "sexy men" fantasy art, if there is such a thing? I mean men sexualised along with power fantasy the way that women are, in a D&D context with magic and/or monsters and such, not just beefcake wrestlers or something.

Quoting the relevant bits from an answer I gave you earlier:

3. This (http://www.shortpacked.com/2011/comic/book-13/05-the-death-of-snkrs/falseequivalence/)previously linked Shortpacked comic tackles some points. Other than that... The points you mention seem to work, though of course I cannot say I interpret them the same way you intend them. Full Monty on its own is somewhat diminished by penises just looking ****ing weird (Or maybe that's just me). As for providing pictures, I don't have any saved up - the picture results from googling "Fantasy art sexy man" were mostly pretty nice.
Beyond that, the aforementioned protagonist from Final Fantasy Mobius (https://i0.wp.com/www.gamerbraves.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Mobius-Final-Fantasy.jpg?fit=1000%2C523), especially pre-redesign works. I would give some points to the Hennet guy linked.
Some Fantasy Yaoi manga might service examples, though because of what that genre is I won't link any examples. The Daydreamer's Finery (https://wiki.guildwars2.com/wiki/Daydreamer%27s_Finery_Outfit) from Guild Wars 2, while not a character is an outfit skin that is reasonably unambiguously sexualised on men (Which gets weird with Charr wearing it, but well.)
Do you want more, something more specific, something else? I mean, it is there; its just way rarer than the equivalent for women. Heck, the google image search for "Fantasy art sexy man" mentioned above resulted in a good part of the images being of women (While there were no men interspersed in an equivalent search replacing "man" with "woman").

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-15, 06:09 PM
I worked at a library a few years ago and saw a young man at a computer terminal, watching clip after clip of automobiles crashing into each other and into solid objects. I went over and remarked to him, "Watching car crash porn, huh?" He looked at me oddly. A few days later he came up to me and said (paraphrasing) "I'm here to watch more car crash porn."


That's also a far broader use of that word than I'd endorse -- unless he was literally, actually, sexually aroused by watching cars crash.

Keltest
2017-08-15, 06:44 PM
That's also a far broader use of that word than I'd endorse -- unless he was literally, actually, sexually aroused by watching cars crash.

And even then, I would hesitate to use the term porn seriously unless the videos were specifically created and edited for people with that specific fetish.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-15, 06:49 PM
And even then, I would hesitate to use the term porn seriously unless the videos were specifically created and edited for people with that specific fetish.

Yeah, I'd agree with that.

Amazon
2017-08-15, 06:50 PM
Can you supply us with some "sexy men" fantasy art, if there is such a thing? I mean men sexualised along with power fantasy the way that women are, in a D&D context with magic and/or monsters and such, not just beefcake wrestlers or something.

I don’t think such thing exist, nor it should; sexualized characters are bad* characters, I rather have character with deep toughs, personality and motivations.

That being said I’m not against fan service or characters being sexual, the problem is when they are overly sexualized in other worlds reduced to nothing but a sexual role, prize to be won or being forced in sexual costumes/situations all the time.

Doing the same to male characters would be silly and counterproductive.

*: bad in the sense of boring, not morally bad.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-15, 07:23 PM
1. Mentioning "mothers" (A group of women that have generally proven their fertility) as one of the groups that would not be fertile-looking seems really, really strange to me. Moreover, "child-baring age, pretty, young and healthy" is a far shot from being anywhere synonymous with "fertile". If you don't care about child-bearing hips, for example, or other things that actually display fertility, please do not pretend that is what you are talking about. Maybe look up "fertility idol", the old stone-age depictions might give a clue to what an actual display of fertility might look like. What you are doing is pointing at depictions of modern beauty standards, and trying to dress that up as something biological. It is not.

Prettiness doesn't indicate fertility per se, but, it indicates someone whose genes a man would like to have continue to exist. Health and youth are contributors to fertility (ill health and age generally mitigate against it). And, physical characteristics typical of fertile women—menstrual cycles, breasts, body hair, hips—are hardly irrelevant. So, I will grant that boyish hips on D&D women are contemporary beauty standards at work, but, again, what of it?--most of the list is still there, or implicitly there. Add also personality—not too many sour glances, grimacing mouths, and matted hair among women in D&D fantasy art, as best I can recall.

By the way, I've never met, nor heard of, anyone who finds putative paleolithic standards of feminine beauty attractive. Have you? Also, mothers aren't necessarily infertile, of course, but normally they're spoken for, and it's easy to see why, loosely speaking, mothers would be displaced by virgins in terms of fantasy art.


2. Again, "Looking pretty" and "displaying fertility" are not synonymous. Moreover, looking pretty is not necessarily goal-oriented. People try to look pretty for themselves more often than not, and not so that onlookers might be enticed. Showing skin at the beach has little to do with displaying fertility (or even just prettyness) for other people. Going to the beach involves, usually, swimming, something very well served by wearing few clothes. Or sunbathing, which has the same caveats. In fact, most beach activity usually is done with few clothes; as demonstrated by everyone there. To assume a young woman has other motives for wearing little at a beach than a man in his 50s is at least questionable logic.

(a) You missed the cosmetics question.

(b) No, people would not take care of themselves or dress nicely outside of a social context, even if that context exists solely in their past—think “Last man on Earth” dressing in tails and tux for an evening out at a deserted fancy restaurant. People who think they “just prefer” to dress a certain way and that it's not “for other people” or otherwise related to their upbringing are delusional.

(c) I think few young women are wholly unaware of how their virtually naked, luscious physical appearance affects men, young or otherwise. Not knowing that would require an impressive brainwashing by culture, which I don't think operates currently. Either that or you genuinely are insensible to the male gaze (which I think you indicate is the case below).


3.*This*previously linked Shortpacked comic tackles some points. Other than that... The points you mention seem to work, though of course I cannot say I interpret them the same way you intend them. Full Monty on its own is somewhat diminished by penises just looking ****ing weird (Or maybe that's just me). Half-naked women are not about displaying fertility (Again, you are mixing that up), and I don't think quite near the certainty for being a male Fantasy (It requires them to be attractive at the very least), but then again I am no man and cannot say how much more he'd be turned on simply by seeing breasts than I am as a queer woman. As for providing pictures, I don't have any saved up - the picture results from googling "Fantasy art sexy man" were mostly pretty nice (Also, why are there pictures of women when I google that; and if that has to be so why not some of men when googling women?); other than that, my tastes run generally in somewhat atypical directions (Generally being into androgyny (somewhat of a Bishounen look, for example))

The comic is good. I find it curious that men, like the man in the comic, would feel threatened by it. But, I suppose the reason is that it and male power fantasy images, like cheesecake and credible female (martial) power fantasies, represent competing strains of fantasy art and narrative. How compatible do you suppose these two competing strains are, or do you think “there can only be one”?

If (heterosexual) men can get over female genitalia, I think (with all this talk of psychological equality) (heterosexual) women can get over male.


4. Ah, okay. I question why that would be necessary to do, though.

Because men like sexy and martial prowess can spike sexy. I've never met or heard of any man who doesn't like or at least keep mum about chicks with swords or doing kung fu moves.


5. I am unsure what psr means, and google seems to have failed me. I certainly do not believe your statements for why what you call "fertility fantasies" will always be there are sufficient to prove it, it seems like weird conjectures based on somewhat faulty logic to me. As for your options... 1) is a good one; 2) works, as long as it doesn't only apply to women; 3) Is nonsensical, as there is no environment where it would make sense; 4) Is basically just taking the status quo being this way as a statement that it should be.

5.That paragraph bridges between my comments on why we have will always have fertile power fantasies, with how we can approach these things in terms of the principle of sufficient reason. Do you have any comments on those options? Do you accepted the psr??

There may come a day, a fell day, when all cheesecake is verboten, and all women wear Mao suits, but it is not this day!

Re: options:
1. Okay.
2. I have no problem with this, provided it does not harden into an oppressive consuetude.
3. Didn't you click the link I gave? Burrough's Mars is exactly the kind of place justifying skin.
4. It's a possibility, and none the less for that—consider also something tangential to D&D fantasy art, like Tarot cards, or paintings.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-15, 07:28 PM
I don’t think such thing exist, nor it should; sexualized characters are bad* characters, I rather have character with deep toughs, personality and motivations.

That being said I’m not against fan service or characters being sexual, the problem is when they are overly sexualized in other worlds reduced to nothing but a sexual role, prize to be won or being forced in sexual costumes/situations all the time.

Doing the same to male characters would be silly and counterproductive.

*: bad in the sense of boring, not morally bad.

I might be out of the loop. Aside from my 1ed DMG's cover, I can't recall ever seeing what I have bolded above. Could you link to something instantiating it?

Liquor Box
2017-08-15, 09:28 PM
I don't think there is much to discuss on the caveats - it would either require fielding studies, or study-like amounts of work (For exploring whether or not other genres; forms of media; and background characters fall alongside similar lines numbers-wise); or is already part of the discussion (How are women represented, if they are?)

Well we could go off your estimates like we did with the original discussion (what percentage of the audience is female vs what percentage of the characters). But I do think we have a lot of points of discussion going at the moment (and you also have many with others), so no need.


Somewhat. I mean, the discussion of "are those depictions sexualised" is still a thing, but that discussion somewhat rests on the assumption that sexualisation is a problem. But mostly it is about this, yes.
As for what to do... as I said, mostly making people aware that their choices might have unintended consequences and effects; and encouraging other ways. Supporting creators that go other ways; and going other ways in ones own work. Done by as many people as possible :smallwink: (Which is in part why I am discussing this - more people being more aware can only be achieved by talking about these issues.)

I am trying to get a little bit of a better understanding of the "as for what to do" element. Are you able to be a little bit more precise as to what you would like to see happen? For example are you hoping that all people who currently prefer games with scantily clad characters should go against their own preferences and refuse to buy such games? Are you hoping that all producers of media should refuse to publish games and other media depicting people in a sexual way? Or would you be happy if you felt that your views were heard, regardless of whether any change happened to the industry?

I have seen several times in the last few pages people saying the likes of "you want to police what we are able to watch" and the reply being along the lines of "nobody is actually saying that". I am hoping to avoid finding myself in that situation by understanding precisely what it is you are saying should happen. Also, it may be that I simply agree with you (we have found we agreed on several points already), meaning no further discussion is necessary.

One place where I do agree with you is that open discussion is a great thing. I think that applies to both perspectives (yours and mine) on this issue. It is problematic when one side of this debate seeks to exclude the perspective of those on the other side.


I think that both would be pretty harmless, but somewhat strange; putting tittilation in a place where... It doesn't really fit. I don't understand their preference, but I don't have to. (If we do take our current culture into account Franks might be informed by attitudes formed by cultural sexism. Lina's might be as well; but they, at least on the surface, do not fall in line with these attitudes.)


While you may not prefer to see titillating elements inserted into media that is not primarily focused on titillation, can we agree that some others might not see it that way? I mean there are numerous movies with a steamy sex scene where the focus of the movie is something else (a thriller say - or even our favorite example Game of Thrones)? So even you find it somewhat strange, some (and I kind of think the majority) do not.

Anyway, putting aside the question of whether them wanting to mix a little titillation into their game/movie is strange, we can agree that it is not sexist? That is, there are non-sexist reasons for people to want to see scantily clad and attractive depictions of the gender they are attracted to?


I think "more frequently" could almost be replaced by "at all" (If only "almost" because I might have missed something, not because I know any actual counterexamples going further than Dante from the Devil May Cry series.); and yes, I think the industry being this way; especially since it is inline with real world power dynamics, is sexist.

Whether it is "more frequently" or "at all" is something that I think we address later in our discussion.

Can I come back to the "industry bring this way... is sexist" question in a little bit?


I suppose "People are just that darn horny" is all the answer I will ever get on this, even though I don't wanna accept it as sufficient.
Since this discussion splits off and meanders all the time - what kind of specific framing would you be looking for?
"Should media meet demands of sexists"?

When you say "i don't wanna accept it as sufficient" about people being horny, do you mean that you don't believe that is an accurate reason for the existence of sexualised content? Or do you mean that you would prefer that it not be the reason for the existence of sexualised content?

In terms of framing, I just think that it is incredibly broad to say "why does sexism exist". I mean you might be able to point to a hundred types of sexism in media, and there might be twenty different answers to the "why does it exist" question. I think it would be helpful to our discussion to limit it to a specific type of sexism in a specific genre and medium - for example "why are female characters more frequently sexualised in fantasy movies" or something. Or, as you put it in your question "Should media meet the demands of viewers to see scantily clad female characters in fantasy movies, on the assumption that such depictions are sexist?"


As for your argument about scars, muscles and fat - again, we'd need content analysis of lots of media to get to concrete numbers; and I think to play the same guesstimating numbers game as before might require lots more work looking at more characters; as all of these criteria are less likely to appear than "Man" or "woman" (Quite sensibly so; but maybe not as sensible in their rarity). If you're interested, I could try and tally up the numbers for the media mentioned before, if I find the time?

You might be right, I was only putting that out there as a possible reason that doesn't fit neatly within the three answers you gave. I'm happy if you want to do a tally, but please don't do it on my account - there are lots of demands on your time in this thread, and I am not at all wed to the point - I am not at all sure whether it stands true or not.


And... well; if they have done so, they don't fall under Ignorance anymore, but rather under Indifferent (or disagreeing, which I think I wrote in as an example?).
This is somewhat in between the discussion of an ideal vs. advocacy - discussion of an ideal, that I advocate for being neared, if that makes any sense?
As for the last thing, I am talking about sexism in media in general; with sexualised depictions of women as an expression of that.

I see you did put is as an example of not caring. You said:
"Of course, quite some in this group just don't believe in the negative effects of their work. That is where they differ from me, and I firmly believe they are wrong - convincing them might be difficult, but debating them is at least worthwhile. After all, they have simply drawn different conclusions from the same facts, and showing that and why different conclusions where drawn might be able to convince the other side. I mean, it might in fact convince me of their view. So far, it hasn't. But please keep trying, feeling comfortable with the state of the world in more regards sounds pleasant"

I'm not sure that drawing a different conclusion from the same facts is correctly categorised as an example of not caring though. Again, I do agree that debating is worthwhile. Even our own discussion appears to ahve changed your perspective on a few (perhaps minor in the scheme of things) points, and my understanding of your perspective has also improved. So constructive discussion is always positive.


Yeah, I agree with this. Trying to explain ones subjective perception and making it as objective as possible would help, but as I said, beyond my tries of adapting the Bingo and changing the list, I am rather blank as to how to do that beyond discussing examples.

And it might well be. But I think we can both live with that?^^

I think we are generally on the same page here, except that I am not sure what it is that you are saying we can both live with?


I would actually agree with you that this is about as sexualised as the specific depiction of Conan. Maybe she could do with some more muscle, but on the other hand she is more clothed.
As sexualised as that Conan, ofc, would mean "I wouldn't say it is particularly or clearly sexualised; but could understand how people might think so".
I am not sure this proves any particular reason for us disagreeing :smallwink:

Interesting that we do not disagree on that. So dressing an attractive person scantily (when the setting does not require it) is not sufficient to sexualise them? You need something more, like emphasis on a body part, or something?


If I don't see the athletic build, I cannot factor it in. To see an athletic build requires visibility of at least some muscles. The picture you link qualifies in the broadest sense as "visible muscles", and the posing is quite clearly nonsexualised.

As to that assumption... Yeah, that is pretty much it. If there is another, clearly discernible reason for depicting this amount of revealing clothes, defaulting to "sexualisation" as an explanation seems unfair and dishonest, equating "skin shown" with "sexualised"; which clearly isn't the case.
Therefor, in the absence of other factors suggesting sexualisation, I am willing to at least give the benefit of the doubt and take these other, discernible reasons for revealed skin as the reason for it being revealed, and not count it as proof for sexualisation on its own.

I don't think that what is conventionally understood as an athletic build would require visible muscle - for example the female warrior I linked to as comparable to Conan I think would usually be thought of as athletic, although her musculature probably falls within the norm for a woman who is not overweight. Likewise the image I linked to of a man is a build I would think of as athletic, although his musculature probably falls within the norm for a man who is not overweight.

If you disagree, perhaps we can avoid further argument about what 'athletic' means, by referring to a body that appears healthy. Most people are overweight, and displaying body that is not overweight suggests health, fitness and (in a video game type environment) the ability to complete athletic feats like running and jumping. Certainly both the male and female picture from my previous post have the appearance of being fit and healthy and capable of participating in an action environment, despite neither being particularly muscular for their gender.

Just to explore the "another clear discernible explanation" point - are you saying that it is clear that every time a man with discernable muscles (which means all men who are not overweight, or who have below average musculature) are depicted with their shirts off, it is to display their strength? If so, how do you address the perverse outcome I mentioned earlier - that a man with an attractive body (at least some visible muscles) with his shirt off would not be sexualised, but a man with an unattractive body (with less muscles than is the norm, or overweigt to hide those muscles) would be seen as sexulaised?



Well, requiring the population to learn English is somewhat useful in the current state of the world; and we both know that one :smallwink:
(And, as I said, I think it might have been a rabbit, and a digital one at that. :smalltongue: )]
That's useful, because I exagerated my language ability in my previous post. I don't think I know the word for squirrel in any other language, but I do know the word for rabbit in a couple.


I think I can see your point. I strongly agree with predictability being useful for a setting - after all, if I'm not able to make reasonable guesses as to what an action means, or what conclusions might be logical to draw, what consequences would be on the table, then I am left just... awaiting what the work puts upon me next. Speculating about what might happen, or hoping for certain things to (rooting for certain characters, for example) is for many people an important part of their engagement in media.
I still disagree somewhat, mostly because of the missed potential of exploring other dynamics by consistently falling back to real-life ones; as well as the point discussed below (in relation to the article).

Yeah, I don't think we are too far off each other on this sub-point.

I don't think there is a missed opportunity - I think they should still (and sometimes do still) explore other dynamics.


Alright. I mean, the absence of something is difficult to portray - showing there is sexism is as easy as having one scene demonstrate it; showing its absence might be more difficult, but if showing there to be no differences in areas you'd expect some serves as enough of a statement I think we can agree there.
And the article touches on reasons one might not just copy these issues one for one without putting some thought behind it what it means for the story and the worldbuilding. The point I'd most likely want an answer on, I think, would be these paragraphs:


I'm going to come back to you on the article if that is ok - just because I have a meeting soon, and I want to address the rest of your post.


Good, I didn't think you were making that point, but wanted to make sure.
Yes, this is pretty much exactly what is generally meant by grey or gray morality - no obvious and unambiguous bad guys or good guys. Of course, grittier works might get into black vs. grey morality; where one side is rather unambiguously evil, but the other... still nothing close to actually good.
I guess using discrimination, especially along real-world demarcations as the go-to seems a bit... cheap, to me (It's a bit taking the easy way of characterising people as morally wrong); especially if not fully thought through. (One book I read recently had one side be characterised as morally wrong by making them utterly sexist; with women as property, polygyny and slavery; only to in the end just... forgetting about it while acting as if that culture was redeemed)
And I see a lot of potential of playing with different kinds of discriminations, changing directions of the axis, setting up new ones or shifting the real ones around a bit, that isn't really explored in worlds where one could get all sorts of creative; in favour of... the same old thing we know from reality. Missed potential, mostly.

yes, I think I agree with most of this.

Floret
2017-08-16, 07:09 AM
Prettiness doesn't indicate fertility per se, but, it indicates someone whose genes a man would like to have continue to exist. Health and youth are contributors to fertility (ill health and age generally mitigate against it). And, physical characteristics typical of fertile women—menstrual cycles, breasts, body hair, hips—are hardly irrelevant. So, I will grant that boyish hips on D&D women are contemporary beauty standards at work, but, again, what of it?--most of the list is still there, or implicitly there. Add also personality—not too many sour glances, grimacing mouths, and matted hair among women in D&D fantasy art, as best I can recall.

By the way, I've never met, nor heard of, anyone who finds putative paleolithic standards of feminine beauty attractive. Have you? Also, mothers aren't necessarily infertile, of course, but normally they're spoken for, and it's easy to see why, loosely speaking, mothers would be displaced by virgins in terms of fantasy art.

If I find people attractive, I am generally not thinking about if I want their genes to exist further, but rather if I want to have mutual fun with them. To act as if attraction were about continuing the gene pool is, while one of the major staples of evopsych, not actually corroborated by reality.
The existance of non-heterosexual people stand against that. The existance of a majority of sex acts stands against that. The existance of beauty standards actively harmful to fertility (Thin; petite) stands against that; the ostracising of somewhat overweight women stands against that. Heck, mentions of menstrual cycles being relegated to "please don't talk about that" by a majority of men stands against that. Fertility has little to do with conventional beauty standards; and beauty standards everything with sexy fantasy art.
And, are you really saying that personality can be an indicator of fertility? How would that even work? Women being restricted in the amount of emotions "allowed" to them (In art as well as real life) for being "pretty ones" is a bad thing. Not an indication of fertility; maybe an indication of beauty standards

No, I haven't. But that wasn't the point, right? You were talking about depictions of fertility, as if they were synonymous with attractiveness. I was arguing that they aren't, and these idols are an image of fertility. Them being unattractive to you, and most modern people, is the point.
Being taken should have little to no consequence on looking fertile. It does have consequences for "do I wanna try and get with that person". That factoid has little to no relation to fertility; even if you are arguing that it does.


(a) You missed the cosmetics question.

(b) No, people would not take care of themselves or dress nicely outside of a social context, even if that context exists solely in their past—think “Last man on Earth” dressing in tails and tux for an evening out at a deserted fancy restaurant. People who think they “just prefer” to dress a certain way and that it's not “for other people” or otherwise related to their upbringing are delusional.

(c) I think few young women are wholly unaware of how their virtually naked, luscious physical appearance affects men, young or otherwise. Not knowing that would require an impressive brainwashing by culture, which I don't think operates currently. Either that or you genuinely are insensible to the male gaze (which I think you indicate is the case below).

(a) Did I? I don't think so. "People aren't making themselves pretty just for other's". Also, what Max said in response: The industry spends lots of money on telling women they need it. It is not something that arose naturally in any way. Take for example women shaving their legs - part of conventional beauty standards. First coming up during the world wars; the time razor companies didn't have that many men to sell to anymore and started campaigning for it.

(b) That... wasn't necessarily what I said. I said people don't want to look nice to attract mates, or for displaying fertility or whatever. There is a social component to it, certainly, but that isn't in line with "displaying fertility".
But, thanks for clarifying that you see that this isn't about anything natural, but about social and cultural values :smallwink:

(c) My point was everyone, regardless of attractiveness or gender, is dressing the same amount of revealing at the beach, for a myriad of reasons, that for most people cannot be or even include displaying their attractiveness. Why this would be inherently different for attractive people isn't quite clear to me. The reactions, sure, but the reasons?
I mean, you do realise, that just because someone is attractive, they don't necessarily want to be ogled, right? That women do not want to be catcalled, and many, many women mourn not being able to put on clothes that look pretty but might incidentally also be revealing, without getting comments and looks?

And, trust me, women are aware of that. It's just, for the most part, really not something that we like or particularly aim for, as you posit. Most of us just want to be left in peace, and not constantly thought of as a dating/sexing target.


The comic is good. I find it curious that men, like the man in the comic, would feel threatened by it. But, I suppose the reason is that it and male power fantasy images, like cheesecake and credible female (martial) power fantasies, represent competing strains of fantasy art and narrative. How compatible do you suppose these two competing strains are, or do you think “there can only be one”?

If (heterosexual) men can get over female genitalia, I think (with all this talk of psychological equality) (heterosexual) women can get over male.

Many men have very fragile masculities. Men (especially ones that also serve as figures of identification) being turned into passive objects of attraction might violate their sensibilities of how the world "should be".
I think people can both look attractive and powerful, if that is what you ask? A powerful, attractive woman to me just doesn't look like the bikini armor models.

Getting over it? I think you misinterpret what I was saying. I said "Penises look weird, therefor seeing them directly does not necessarily contribute to someone looking attractive". I didn't say they were something one had to get over with (...must not make crude joke). Hell, I said a visible bulge in tight pants can contribute to attractiveness. But it's more the thought of the thing and what could be done with it, than the actual visual of it naked.
(And, seriously, why do you describe vaginas as something you need to get over? With that, and the asking for sexy men pics, you might wanna do some soulsearching...)


Because men like sexy and martial prowess can spike sexy. I've never met or heard of any man who doesn't like or at least keep mum about chicks with swords or doing kung fu moves.

Yeah, they can be attractive; but why do they also have to look like strippers at the same time? I mean... that distracts from the martial prowess bit...
I guess men are just that horny? Testosterone can be a bitch, I sympathise.


There may come a day, a fell day, when all cheesecake is verboten, and all women wear Mao suits, but it is not this day!

Re: options:
1. Okay.
2. I have no problem with this, provided it does not harden into an oppressive consuetude.
3. Didn't you click the link I gave? Burrough's Mars is exactly the kind of place justifying skin.
4. It's a possibility, and none the less for that—consider also something tangential to D&D fantasy art, like Tarot cards, or paintings.

Hey, nothing against women in suits. Women in suits can look damn fine.
And, sure, again, noone is arguing for actually forbidding anything. Please fight your strawmen somewhere else.

2. I am unsure how those words fit together (Might be the translations having different connotations); but I suppose you are arguing that there should be some leeway? If so, I am inclined to agree. Or are you arguing that if a setting sets its rules as "magic armor over sexyness" should be allowed to apply this to women, but not men? If so, I suppose I agree there shouldn't be a law against it, but It'd be a very clear indication of the creators actual reasons for this not being logic; and that they quite possibly are somewhat sexist.
3. I did. And no, it isn't. No environment, taken from whatever point in the real world, or however constructed (Apart from a literal, gamy "anti-armor field") can actually explain there being no armor. I guarantee you for any such setting proposed there are ways to still wear armor, at a cost less than the enormous risk of death through not wearing it.
4. Yes, it is possible to accept the status quo as-is, sure. I didn't argue that. I argue that "This is an element that is present in culture" is in any way an argument for this solution being ideal or acceptable. It basically amounts to "shut up and let people like what they like", to which my reply can be found in other places in this thread already.


Well we could go off your estimates like we did with the original discussion (what percentage of the audience is female vs what percentage of the characters). But I do think we have a lot of points of discussion going at the moment (and you also have many with others), so no need.

I am confused, I thought we already did that? Or are you suggesting estimating percentages of the audience as attractive women; comparing that; as overweight women; women that can drive, and comparing that? If so, that'd be way to much conjecture for me to feel comfortable making statments. Let's let this rest^^


I am trying to get a little bit of a better understanding of the "as for what to do" element. Are you able to be a little bit more precise as to what you would like to see happen? For example are you hoping that all people who currently prefer games with scantily clad characters should go against their own preferences and refuse to buy such games? Are you hoping that all producers of media should refuse to publish games and other media depicting people in a sexual way? Or would you be happy if you felt that your views were heard, regardless of whether any change happened to the industry?

I have seen several times in the last few pages people saying the likes of "you want to police what we are able to watch" and the reply being along the lines of "nobody is actually saying that". I am hoping to avoid finding myself in that situation by understanding precisely what it is you are saying should happen. Also, it may be that I simply agree with you (we have found we agreed on several points already), meaning no further discussion is necessary.

One place where I do agree with you is that open discussion is a great thing. I think that applies to both perspectives (yours and mine) on this issue. It is problematic when one side of this debate seeks to exclude the perspective of those on the other side.

Well, for your examples...
1. No, I am not hoping people go against their own preferences. If anything I am hoping to convince people to change their preferences; or to at least reflect on them.
2. It depends. Requiring publishers to refuse this would be just censorship, of course. Convincing publishers of my view, so that they refuse them out of their own convictions, yes. Sure, if all publishers were convinced that would be similar in result, but in an age of crowdfunding and kickstarter I think that is a bearable situation. (Also, note that this applies to my previous assertion of "illogically sexualised (in an unequal fashion)". Depicting people as sexual and having sexuality be a part of games, is not something I am against.)
3. Since change in the industry would be the indication that my views were heard in a way that matters, I don't think I'd be too happy (Given that this is the current situation I can however confidently say that I am generally very able to live with this imperfection).

Basically, my hope is to convince people of my worldview, resulting in them applying the same standards and principles to their creations as I do to mine; or at least getting closer to them.
(Amongst others: Don't oversexualise characters unnecessarily, especially against logic; represent people from different backgrounds, different sexualities, genders, ethnicities (or Fantasy equivalents thereof; I would count the setting of Avatar (The series) as representing Asian people, for example); make sure in your worldbuilding you are putting things there intentionally and think them through; and reflect on your creations. Take a step back to count how many female characters you have introduced, for example. Ask people from the groups you are representing if you have ****ed up in that representation, if possible.)


While you may not prefer to see titillating elements inserted into media that is not primarily focused on titillation, can we agree that some others might not see it that way? I mean there are numerous movies with a steamy sex scene where the focus of the movie is something else (a thriller say - or even our favorite example Game of Thrones)? So even you find it somewhat strange, some (and I kind of think the majority) do not.

Anyway, putting aside the question of whether them wanting to mix a little titillation into their game/movie is strange, we can agree that it is not sexist? That is, there are non-sexist reasons for people to want to see scantily clad and attractive depictions of the gender they are attracted to?

We can agree that it isn't necessarily sexist, yes.


Whether it is "more frequently" or "at all" is something that I think we address later in our discussion.

Can I come back to the "industry bring this way... is sexist" question in a little bit?

Sure.


When you say "i don't wanna accept it as sufficient" about people being horny, do you mean that you don't believe that is an accurate reason for the existence of sexualised content? Or do you mean that you would prefer that it not be the reason for the existence of sexualised content?

In terms of framing, I just think that it is incredibly broad to say "why does sexism exist". I mean you might be able to point to a hundred types of sexism in media, and there might be twenty different answers to the "why does it exist" question. I think it would be helpful to our discussion to limit it to a specific type of sexism in a specific genre and medium - for example "why are female characters more frequently sexualised in fantasy movies" or something. Or, as you put it in your question "Should media meet the demands of viewers to see scantily clad female characters in fantasy movies, on the assumption that such depictions are sexist?"

I believe that it might be an accurate reason; but I'd prefer something more substancial, I guess? Like "Really, you are constantly putting sexyness before logic? Don't you have porn for that?" I just really, really don't understand the need, or how one could be that horny (And I am certainly not asexual).
I mean, coming back to your examples from above, the way GoT does it is different, I feel. Sex scenes, or scenes alluding to sex or sexuality (In the sense of "people being sexual beings"; not in the sense of "gay or straight") in general in non-porn can contribute to the story, setting, atmosphere, what have you. Sexyness being in parts of a thing, in the places it makes sense, is different from sexyness being tacked onto scenes where it makes little sense.

Hm. I don't think there is much value to discuss these points. Or much discussion to be had on such points, apart from comparing opinions.
I mean, the answer to "why are women more frequently sexualised" is pretty clear, from my perspective.
And the answer to the second one... "If people want sexist art, they should make it themselves and not expect the industry to cater to them." Beyond that, they of course have the same rights as I have to argue for their perspective to be reflected, even if I don't like their perspective.


You might be right, I was only putting that out there as a possible reason that doesn't fit neatly within the three answers you gave. I'm happy if you want to do a tally, but please don't do it on my account - there are lots of demands on your time in this thread, and I am not at all wed to the point - I am not at all sure whether it stands true or not.

It is a possible reason, yeah, though now I am wondering if women that get into combat situations (As most characters we are talking about do) are any less likely to spot scars than men who do. I'd suspect they aren't, and that the gendered differences might largely disappear when controlling for profession and the like - meaning that if true, fictional fighters, adventurers and risk-takers should, if supposed to reflect reality, spot them relatively equally. Of course, that is the point where we'd need real-life numbers, "logical deduction" can get to multiple results.
Part of me wants to do it now, just to see if I can make you walk away with the same "Huh, guess my perception was a bit warped" as I had when doing the last tally^^


I'm not sure that drawing a different conclusion from the same facts is correctly categorised as an example of not caring though. Again, I do agree that debating is worthwhile. Even our own discussion appears to ahve changed your perspective on a few (perhaps minor in the scheme of things) points, and my understanding of your perspective has also improved. So constructive discussion is always positive.

Yeah, with including that, the category might have been mislabeled. I feel it falls into very similar patterns, which is why I included it.
Well, it has somewhat forced me to reflect, and face some numbers I wouldn't have expected, which is always a good thing. I might not like being proven wrong, but I like it better than being wrong :smallwink:


I think we are generally on the same page here, except that I am not sure what it is that you are saying we can both live with?

With a difference in our perception, and you (probably) judging the disparity as smaller.


Interesting that we do not disagree on that. So dressing an attractive person scantily (when the setting does not require it) is not sufficient to sexualise them? You need something more, like emphasis on a body part, or something?

Yes, it is not necessarily sufficient. Leaving aside the ambiguous Conan; Kratos from God of War is definitely scantily dressed, though the setting might call for something more sensible; but I'd strongly argue he isn't sexualised (The points in favour of Schwarzenegger Conan being don't apply to him either).
As for what could serve as additional argument, clothing positioned as to pronounce certain things (e.g. cleavage; tight pants; (Maybe midriff-baring), boobwindows, sideboob, panties/strings; catsuits (especially with cleavage-level opened zipper in the front) would count in a similar vein even though little skin is shown) or Posing to pronounce these body parts or sexyness. At what point the collection of factors pushes over the edge gets into subjective territory again.


I don't think that what is conventionally understood as an athletic build would require visible muscle - for example the female warrior I linked to as comparable to Conan I think would usually be thought of as athletic, although her musculature probably falls within the norm for a woman who is not overweight. Likewise the image I linked to of a man is a build I would think of as athletic, although his musculature probably falls within the norm for a man who is not overweight.

If you disagree, perhaps we can avoid further argument about what 'athletic' means, by referring to a body that appears healthy. Most people are overweight, and displaying body that is not overweight suggests health, fitness and (in a video game type environment) the ability to complete athletic feats like running and jumping. Certainly both the male and female picture from my previous post have the appearance of being fit and healthy and capable of participating in an action environment, despite neither being particularly muscular for their gender.

Just to explore the "another clear discernible explanation" point - are you saying that it is clear that every time a man with discernable muscles (which means all men who are not overweight, or who have below average musculature) are depicted with their shirts off, it is to display their strength? If so, how do you address the perverse outcome I mentioned earlier - that a man with an attractive body (at least some visible muscles) with his shirt off would not be sexualised, but a man with an unattractive body (with less muscles than is the norm, or overweigt to hide those muscles) would be seen as sexulaised?

While an athletic build might not, I think that showcasing that a build is athletic does, in some parts, require visible muscle; to differenciate it from a person who is merely slender, but not athletic. They do look differently, but might not intuitively appear as such.
And, no, trust me, that woman rather visibly works out at least a bit. A stomach of an untrained person does not really look like that. Could be more pronounced, but there are hints in there. Same goes for the guy. Their muscles don't look like those of an average non-overweight person.
Maybe this is a cultural thing - but at least around here, the majority of people who aren't overweight (And I'd even think that the majority of people aren't overweight) aren't automatically trained. If that is all you see of non-overweight people it might be easy to mix the two up; but as I said: There is a clear difference between a simply slender, untrained person; and a trained one.

I am saying that it is a clearly visible second option for why he his depicted shirtlessly.
And I would combat that by including "having a generally/conventionally attractive body" as a prerequisite for being sexualised (Applying the same principles of dressing onto characters without these bodys is pretty much only done for comedy). An implicit assumption so far (after all, to be able to look sexy, you have to kinda be sexy), but I guess there might be value to making it explicit.


That's useful, because I exagerated my language ability in my previous post. I don't think I know the word for squirrel in any other language, but I do know the word for rabbit in a couple.

German version would be "Eichhörnchen", however hard to pronounce it might be for non-German speakers :smallwink:


Yeah, I don't think we are too far off each other on this sub-point.

I don't think there is a missed opportunity - I think they should still (and sometimes do still) explore other dynamics.

My point is that I see creators falling back on real-life patterns far more often than necessary, thereby missing out on opportunities of other setups; that I have met rather rarely.
But I don't think "Creators should get more creative" is really much of a point of contention?


I'm going to come back to you on the article if that is ok - just because I have a meeting soon, and I want to address the rest of your post.

Alright, no pressure. Looking forward to it, though^^

Calthropstu
2017-08-16, 08:38 AM
Wow, did this thread REALLY need over 1k posts? Seriously, we either have freedom of speech, in which case artists are free to depict whatever they like, or we don't... and we have to depict what a certain subsection of the society wants.
You are free to depict armor for women however you wish, as are other artists. From boob plate and bikini plate to leather or spandex to a ball shaped rock surrounding her form... anything should go. If you find a particular artist distasteful... TOO ****ING BAD.
It's art, which means the artist is free to depict whatever he or she wants.
It shouldn't need a thousand posts to realize this.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 08:48 AM
If artists have freedom of speech to create what they wish, then others have freedom of speech to crtique, criticize, and discuss the broader implications and effects.

It's like somewhere along the way, "freedom of speech" became "all negative response is censorship".

Koo Rehtorb
2017-08-16, 09:51 AM
You also have the freedom not to read the topic if you dislike it. So much freedom all over the place. Wow.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-16, 11:27 AM
The fact you have a sex drive at all is evo-psych. The “biological exuberance” that you display doesn't detract from the fact that sex primarily exists to reproduce the species. Heterosexual men are going to be looking for a close-enough-to-ideal woman to mate with, and youth, beauty, fertility*, and health are the parameters that hem in that ideal. Few men look for age, ugliness/disfigurement, barrenness, and illness/disability. That's my point: what men typically look for in a mate corresponds more or less with fertility, not with infertility. And, personality is part of that, of effective fertility, with regards to mating with someone who isn't a harridan or an abuser or a slob or probably unfaithful or probably carrying a venereal disease or whatever. It's a mistake to think men simply look for menstruating women with wide hips, or something simplistic like that. It's no coincidence men look for women who look capable of continuing their genes.

*Slim hips—virginal hips—women who have yet to mate—an attractant. As most of the women in these art works look like they haven't mated yet, given how none of them look like mothers.

I've not been arguing that pure biological fertility alone is attractive; if it were men would only be attracted to women for a week or so out of every month. Rather, “fertility” is a concept of “would make a good mate, someone to pass on genes with” which again in the case of rainbow sexualities amounts to a displacement of basic reproductive drive toward purely relational or recreational ends—though increasingly homosexual couples are expressing their reproductive drives otherwise thwarted by their sexual psychology, through other means

(a) Cosmetic campaigns would have no success if they weren't selling to basic drives. People don't buy rotten food no matter how much it might be advertised. Women are buying to look attractive to other people. If there were no other people, women would not wear makeup.
(b) Cosmetic companies sell (successfully) to women the implicit idea that they should look fifteen. Why not twelve? Why not fifty? If it's all just social conditioning there's no reason why the companies should pick that particular age. They pick it because it most conforms with the ideal of virginal fertility, which is the undercurrent here.
(c) Few people look at the hairy fifty-year-old fat guy in a speedo on the beach except to go “Oh brother,” and avert their eyes. Eyes are drawn towards beauty etc.. The male lustful gaze (and the female envious one) is an occupational hazard when one is a young, fertile-looking female. That this male appreciation of female beauty can be done without being aggressive or obscene goes without saying, and without the need to a consuetude muzzling men or putting bags over women (there are plenty of places in the Middle East where women don't have to worry about being ogled).

The comic is good. I find it curious that men, like the man in the comic, would feel threatened by it. But, I suppose the reason is that it and male power fantasy images, like cheesecake and credible female (martial) power fantasies, represent competing strains of fantasy art and narrative. How compatible do you suppose these two competing strains are, or do you think “there can only be one”?

If (heterosexual) men can get over female genitalia, I think (with all this talk of psychological equality) (heterosexual) women can get over male.


How do you know many men have very fragile masculinities?

The problem is that men's power fantasies discord with the dewy-eyed slender hunk shown in the comic-in-a-comic. Men want to kick ass, and look like they're about to kick ass. Dewy-eye Batman doesn't look like that. That's the problem.

It seems like comics should just produce two versions, one for each sex's general preferences: one featuring hard-bitten rock-bod Batman and sexy Batgirl, and the other featuring dewy-eye Batboy and solid-set, grim (yet with great hair) Batwoman.

I think genitalia in general are weird. They're an unexpected divergence from the ordinary flow of the human body, like finding a frog in your refrigerator. But, when you're a given sex, you have ample time to get used to your own genitalia. When you encounter the other sex's, that weirdness can revive. I'm sure many men can relate to this.

Well, to be fair, no one can fight like movie characters fight anyway, so it's all BS isn't it? If it's all BS then why not look like strippers?

The general lean of your side of the argument against cheesecake fantasy art is towards making it go away, even if you're not officially forbidding or criminalising anything.

2. I'm arguing that artists shouldn't feel obligated to include one-for-one representations of women in magic revealing armour and men in magic revealing armour. Let the archetypal chips fall where the way, rather than making it ideological.

3. All those National Geographic photos of nearly naked African spearmen were wrong?

4. As I said, here I will go with archetypal versus ideological.

Footnotes

1. You mentioned overweight women: I think the reason they are passed over by many men, is not cultural so much as that fat conceals the female form, making it look odd—as if a woman is not so healthy (which is often the case with severely overweight people), not so fertile (no hourglass figure), not so young (excessive fat takes some time to accrue), and not primevally pretty (goddess figures aside).

2. I find most of the art I've been defending as cheesecake to be total crap, especially a lot of the videogame pasty-suit armour. I hate that kind of stuff and think most art depicting women dressing like strippers is dumb. But, someone has to defend the cover of the 1st ed. DMG.

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-16, 11:45 AM
It's like somewhere along the way, "freedom of speech" became "all negative response is censorship".

This is so perfect. It summarizes so much of what I think. :smallbiggrin:

Lord Raziere
2017-08-16, 12:00 PM
If artists have freedom of speech to create what they wish, then others have freedom of speech to crtique, criticize, and discuss the broader implications and effects.

It's like somewhere along the way, "freedom of speech" became "all negative response is censorship".

Much truth, good sir. Freedom is both the positives and the negatives. If you don't take the valleys of freedom, how can you claim the mountaintops?

Floret
2017-08-16, 12:26 PM
Wow, did this thread REALLY need over 1k posts? Seriously, we either have freedom of speech, in which case artists are free to depict whatever they like, or we don't... and we have to depict what a certain subsection of the society wants.
You are free to depict armor for women however you wish, as are other artists. From boob plate and bikini plate to leather or spandex to a ball shaped rock surrounding her form... anything should go. If you find a particular artist distasteful... TOO ****ING BAD.
It's art, which means the artist is free to depict whatever he or she wants.
It shouldn't need a thousand posts to realize this.

What novel idea.
Maybe if you had read the thousand posts you'd have realised this isn't new input for anyone here; why we discuss this anyways, and why "people should be allowed to draw what they want" was not the end to the discussion. Beyond that, what Max said.


The fact you have a sex drive at all is evo-psych. The “biological exuberance” that you display doesn't detract from the fact that sex primarily exists to reproduce the species. Heterosexual men are going to be looking for a close-enough-to-ideal woman to mate with, and youth, beauty, fertility*, and health are the parameters that hem in that ideal. Few men look for age, ugliness/disfigurement, barrenness, and illness/disability. That's my point: what men typically look for in a mate corresponds more or less with fertility, not with infertility. And, personality is part of that, of effective fertility, with regards to mating with someone who isn't a harridan or an abuser or a slob or probably unfaithful or probably carrying a venereal disease or whatever. It's a mistake to think men simply look for menstruating women with wide hips, or something simplistic like that. It's no coincidence men look for women who look capable of continuing their genes.
*Slim hips—virginal hips—women who have yet to mate—an attractant. As most of the women in these art works look like they haven't mated yet, given how none of them look like mothers.
I've not been arguing that pure biological fertility alone is attractive; if it were men would only be attracted to women for a week or so out of every month. Rather, “fertility” is a concept of “would make a good mate, someone to pass on genes with” which again in the case of rainbow sexualities amounts to a displacement of basic reproductive drive toward purely relational or recreational ends—though increasingly homosexual couples are expressing their reproductive drives otherwise thwarted by their sexual psychology, through other means

The fact that I have a sex drive is a mix of biological factors, that came about through evolution in addition to cultural ones, yes. I wouldn't call that idea Evopsych.
And... what biological exuberance do I display? :smallconfused:
If you are arguing with fertility, stick to arguing with fertility. Do not bring in other points that people select for in partners; if you want to argue fertility, argue. for. fertility. What men look for in mates correlates rather poorly with indicators of fertility, beyond maybe "health", but then again our culture makes that synonymous with "slender" which it really, really isn't and... No. If you want to argue nature, argue nature. But if you mix in expressions of cultural beauty standards as an example of nature, you are just getting ridiculous.
And, no, men do not look for women capable of continuing their genes. They look for women they are attracted to, and those are not the same thing. One last thing: Virginity is not an indicator of fertility. How... how would it even be? That doesn't even make sense if I'd accept your conceipt that looking for partners is about looking for genepools.


(a) Cosmetic campaigns would have no success if they weren't selling to basic drives. People don't buy rotten food no matter how much it might be advertised. Women are buying to look attractive to other people. If there were no other people, women would not wear makeup.
(b) Cosmetic companies sell (successfully) to women the implicit idea that they should look fifteen. Why not twelve? Why not fifty? If it's all just social conditioning there's no reason why the companies should pick that particular age. They pick it because it most conforms with the ideal of virginal fertility, which is the undercurrent here.
(c) Few people look at the hairy fifty-year-old fat guy in a speedo on the beach except to go “Oh brother,” and avert their eyes. Eyes are drawn towards beauty etc... The male lustful gaze (and the female envious one) is an occupational hazard when one is a young, fertile-looking female. That this male appreciation of female beauty can be done without being aggressive or obscene goes without saying, and without the need to a consuetude muzzling men or putting bags over women (there are plenty of places in the Middle East where women don't have to worry about being ogled).

(a) Are you arguing that all cosmetics companies sell is appealing to natural urges? Because that makes no goddamn sense. It is impossible for there to be a natural urge to have your nails painted. Or painted-on eyebrows. Or pretty much any cosmetic product.
And you yourself are arguing for this to be about culture.
(b) Let me stop you right there. You are, right now, legitimately arguing, that the perfect image of fertility, that it is completely natural for any man to be attracted to, is FIFTEEN YEARS OLD? You are arguing that literal pedophilia is not only acceptable, but NATURAL?
(And, no, it is not, and (beyond this argument being disgusting) it has never been the natural image of beauty (Not that there would be one, it has always been cultural), much less fertility. To top it off, "just after starting to menstruate" is actually a terrible age for fertility, and women become of proper child-bearing age (with less risks of complications, or death in childbirth) when menstrual cycles have stabilised in their twenties. Technically being able to concieve before that does not make them more fertile, or look that way.)
(c) ...Yes, that is a perfect answer to what I was saying. Not.
Let me break down the point:
1. You argued that women wear revealing clothing at the beach, as an example of women wearing revealing clothing to "display their fertility".
2. I argued that, since everyone, even people noone wants to look at, wear just as revealing clothing on the beach, for any variety of reasons, it is more likely that these reasons are the ones for attractive women to do the same thing. You have so far avoided answering this.
3. The fact that men are attracted to something, and lust after something, is no evidence, proof, or in any relation, to the question whether or not something was done because of that fact. "Men are into women doing this" is not a sufficient argument to prove "women are doing this for men".
4. Men are perfectly able to control themselves and not send lustful gazes everywhere. I mean, I am bisexual, and on top of that attracted to rather many people. I still manage to not stare lustfully. Even in locker rooms. Even when there are attractive, naked people walking around me. It is possible to have selfcontrol.
It might be an occupational hazard (for something young, attractive women didn't actually choose); but it is only so because culture normalises this kind of behaviour.


How do you know many men have very fragile masculinities?
The problem is that men's power fantasies discord with the dewy-eyed slender hunk shown in the comic-in-a-comic. Men want to kick ass, and look like they're about to kick ass. Dewy-eye Batman doesn't look like that. That's the problem.
It seems like comics should just produce two versions, one for each sex's general preferences: one featuring hard-bitten rock-bod Batman and sexy Batgirl, and the other featuring dewy-eye Batboy and solid-set, grim (yet with great hair) Batwoman.
I think genitalia in general are weird. They're an unexpected divergence from the ordinary flow of the human body, like finding a frog in your refrigerator. But, when you're a given sex, you have ample time to get used to your own genitalia. When you encounter the other sex's, that weirdness can revive. I'm sure many men can relate to this.

I know men. And I have been on the internet.
You have correctly identified the problem with oversexualised characters. Now imagine the problem women face when looking at female characters that don't look like they're about to kick ass, but rather about to enter a beach fashion contest.

...Wait a second, you, the person who argues for human interaction to be a great deal about procreation, and that the brain is wired to search for procreation material... argues that the brain is also wired in a way that discourages interacting with the things that are actually necessary for procreation? That the bits you need to want most for procreating (what, according to you, we are wired to do) are actually actively repellant without acclimatisation?
That seems counterintuitive at best.


Well, to be fair, no one can fight like movie characters fight anyway, so it's all BS isn't it? If it's all BS then why not look like strippers?

Because depending on the movie, game or setting they might actually, and because looking like strippers increases the BS-factor by quite a bit.
Even if everything is BS, some things are less BS.


The general lean of your side of the argument against cheesecake fantasy art is towards making it go away, even if you're not officially forbidding or criminalising anything.

2. I'm arguing that artists shouldn't feel obligated to include one-for-one representations of women in magic revealing armour and men in magic revealing armour. Let the archetypal chips fall where the way, rather than making it ideological.

3. All those National Geographic photos of nearly naked African spearmen were wrong?

4. As I said, here I will go with archetypal versus ideological.

And how is that forbidding it? I mean, if people, after reflecting on it, realise they don't want to see it, who are you to tell them otherwise?

2. Why? Why can I not criticise art for the shortcomings I percieve it has, as long as I do not advocate for it to be mandated to change by law?
3. No, but from cultures that didn't have access to metallurgy, mining and resources in a capacity and level necessary to produce useful armor; nor to the clothproduction that would make cloth armor feasible. It's a cultural situation, not a purely environmental one.
4. You can accept the status quo. Sure, that is an option.


Footnotes
1. You mentioned overweight women: I think the reason they are passed over by many men, is not cultural so much as that fat conceals the female form, making it look odd—as if a woman is not so healthy (which is often the case with severely overweight people), not so fertile (no hourglass figure), not so young (excessive fat takes some time to accrue), and not primevally pretty (goddess figures aside).
2. I find most of the art I've been defending as cheesecake to be total crap, especially a lot of the videogame pasty-suit armour. I hate that kind of stuff and think most art depicting women dressing like strippers is dumb. But, someone has to defend the cover of the 1st ed. DMGt.

1. You thinking something isn't an argument; when numerous cultures throught the ages have had very different ideas of how to rate the beauty of overweight women. An hourglass figure doesn't have anything to do with fertility, no matter how often you claim that (And if you are convinced that it does, please provide proof).
2. Good to know. But one question: Why? Why is there need for someone to defend this?

And, if I may have one request: Please take more care with your quotes. This lack of clarity what is a quote, and from whom it is is really annoying to work with.
(Quotes in quotes are usually unnecessary, btw, since the quotes as generated by the forum come with handy buttons to go back to the source post)

Zanos
2017-08-16, 12:43 PM
If artists have freedom of speech to create what they wish, then others have freedom of speech to crtique, criticize, and discuss the broader implications and effects.

It's like somewhere along the way, "freedom of speech" became "all negative response is censorship".
No, but censorship is censorship. If your point of view is that something is so harmful that it needs to be restricted, you're making a moral argument to censor something. I'm not saying that you're advocating for that, but I have seen views expressed in this thread that chainmail bikinis are so harmful that nobody should enjoy material containing them.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 01:57 PM
The fact that I have a sex drive is a mix of biological factors, that came about through evolution in addition to cultural ones, yes. I wouldn't call that idea Evopsych.
And... what biological exuberance do I display? :smallconfused:
If you are arguing with fertility, stick to arguing with fertility. Do not bring in other points that people select for in partners; if you want to argue fertility, argue. for. fertility. What men look for in mates correlates rather poorly with indicators of fertility, beyond maybe "health", but then again our culture makes that synonymous with "slender" which it really, really isn't and... No. If you want to argue nature, argue nature. But if you mix in expressions of cultural beauty standards as an example of nature, you are just getting ridiculous.
And, no, men do not look for women capable of continuing their genes. They look for women they are attracted to, and those are not the same thing. One last thing: Virginity is not an indicator of fertility. How... how would it even be? That doesn't even make sense if I'd accept your conceipt that looking for partners is about looking for genepools.


(a) Are you arguing that all cosmetics companies sell is appealing to natural urges? Because that makes no goddamn sense. It is impossible for there to be a natural urge to have your nails painted. Or painted-on eyebrows. Or pretty much any cosmetic product.
And you yourself are arguing for this to be about culture.
(b) Let me stop you right there. You are, right now, legitimately arguing, that the perfect image of fertility, that it is completely natural for any man to be attracted to, is FIFTEEN YEARS OLD? You are arguing that literal pedophilia is not only acceptable, but NATURAL?
(And, no, it is not, and (beyond this argument being disgusting) it has never been the natural image of beauty (Not that there would be one, it has always been cultural), much less fertility. To top it off, "just after starting to menstruate" is actually a terrible age for fertility, and women become of proper child-bearing age (with less risks of complications, or death in childbirth) when menstrual cycles have stabilised in their twenties. Technically being able to concieve before that does not make them more fertile, or look that way.)
(c) ...Yes, that is a perfect answer to what I was saying. Not.
Let me break down the point:
1. You argued that women wear revealing clothing at the beach, as an example of women wearing revealing clothing to "display their fertility".
2. I argued that, since everyone, even people noone wants to look at, wear just as revealing clothing on the beach, for any variety of reasons, it is more likely that these reasons are the ones for attractive women to do the same thing. You have so far avoided answering this.
3. The fact that men are attracted to something, and lust after something, is no evidence, proof, or in any relation, to the question whether or not something was done because of that fact. "Men are into women doing this" is not a sufficient argument to prove "women are doing this for men".
4. Men are perfectly able to control themselves and not send lustful gazes everywhere. I mean, I am bisexual, and on top of that attracted to rather many people. I still manage to not stare lustfully. Even in locker rooms. Even when there are attractive, naked people walking around me. It is possible to have selfcontrol.
It might be an occupational hazard (for something young, attractive women didn't actually choose); but it is only so because culture normalises this kind of behaviour.



Welcome to dealing with evo-psych's convoluted, self-contradictory, insulting, and sometimes downright creepy "theories".

CharonsHelper
2017-08-16, 02:23 PM
Welcome to dealing with evo-psych's convoluted, self-contradictory, insulting, and sometimes downright creepy "theories".

Isn't that true of most psych theories, evo or not?

Talakeal
2017-08-16, 02:24 PM
Who said that they were synonymous?

No one directly said that, but people keep saying things in the vein of "If I wanted to see scantily clad people I would just watch porn!" or "The emphasis on physical beauty degrades the work into soft core pornography!"


This impression largely comes from the blatant, deliberate, and continuing misrepresentation of one side's arguments by the other side. When one side constantly has to take their own goalposts and put them back where they originally planted them, because the other side has been trying to put them somewhere else... it looks like both sides are moving goalposts.

In my experience deliberate straw manning is pretty rare outside of a few very obvious (or very skilled) trolls. I think misunderstandings are far more common, especially when communicating in this manner without tone of voice or body language (not to mention a tendency people have to zone out while reading large blocks of text) are missing.


See signature. It's not about absolute fidelity to reality, it's about internal consistency, internal coherence, and the sense that the setting could be a real place and time, and that the characters could be real people.

If a character is in situation and context where they're wearing armor, then having them wear armor that is useless or even actively counterproductive, is damaging to the sense of verisimilitude.

Ok, yeah, I am aware of the difference between realism and verisimilitude, I should have used more precise language rather than using one as shorthand for the other.

Now that you have me thinking about it though, where do you draw the line?

For example, are you ok with fantasy creatures being handwaved in standard fantast? For example dragons flying and breathing fire or giant spiders being able to breathe and walk up walls? If so, why doesn't a similar handwave work for fantasy armor (and weapon) designs?


Would you have a problem with a fantasy setting where it made sense?

For example, say I make a campaign world where:


It is very hot and tropical. Heavy clothing (or armor) cannot be worn for long periods of time, and the society has no taboos against public nudity.

It is a fiercely matriarchal culture. Woman are expected to dress in a manner that shows off their virility, while men are often treated as property and are told to keep covered as a sign of ownership.

For whatever reason the weapon's technology vastly outperforms the defensive capabilities of armor. Maybe metal is too rare to make full suits of armor but still plentiful enough for weapons, maybe we have a situation like Star Wars where laser weapons (or the magical equivalent) render even the heaviest armor useless, maybe people are protected by Chi energy (or force fields) that are deactivated in the presence of a lot of metal. In any case, it is always a better idea to avoid an attack than to be hit and armor will impede the latter without really helping with the former.

Certain silly design elements have cultural or religious significance. Maybe random spikes, nipple pasties, high heels, or those stupid metal wrist covers are signs of status in the same way that many religious leaders in our world wear oversized and overly elaborate hats, shawls, collars, etc.


Yeah, they can be attractive; but why do they also have to look like strippers at the same time? I mean... that distracts from the martial prowess bit...
I guess men are just that horny? Testosterone can be a bitch, I sympathise.


I would personally prefer them to dress like athletes, not strippers.

But, as I said way back when, ancient athletes attire (or lack thereof) would look pornographic to modern audiences, and modern active wear would look anachronistic, so we have to create these weird hybrids when imagining what athletic women would wear in an ancient world that didn't have the same mixture of misogyny and prudishness as our own.

Zanos
2017-08-16, 02:46 PM
Armor spikes are completely practical. Where else are you going to mount the severed heads of your fallen foes? (http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/spikey_bits_sm_7452.jpg)

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-16, 03:20 PM
But, as I said way back when, ancient athletes attire (or lack thereof) would look pornographic to modern audiences, and modern active wear would look anachronistic, so we have to create these weird hybrids when imagining what athletic women would wear in an ancient world that didn't have the same mixture of misogyny and prudishness as our own.

Nude =/= pornographic

Besides:

http://artmight.com/albums/artists/Pierre-Narcisse-Guerin/Phedre-et-Hippolyte.jpg

That woman with the bow and the dogs, beated hercules in wrestling, what's your point?

She is not nude nor she is dressed in a pornographic way.

Lord Raziere
2017-08-16, 03:32 PM
For example, say I make a campaign world where:

It is very hot and tropical. Heavy clothing (or armor) cannot be worn for long periods of time, and the society has no taboos against public nudity.

It is a fiercely matriarchal culture. Woman are expected to dress in a manner that shows off their virility, while men are often treated as property and are told to keep covered as a sign of ownership.

For whatever reason the weapon's technology vastly outperforms the defensive capabilities of armor. Maybe metal is too rare to make full suits of armor but still plentiful enough for weapons, maybe we have a situation like Star Wars where laser weapons (or the magical equivalent) render even the heaviest armor useless, maybe people are protected by Chi energy (or force fields) that are deactivated in the presence of a lot of metal. In any case, it is always a better idea to avoid an attack than to be hit and armor will impede the latter without really helping with the former.

Certain silly design elements have cultural or religious significance. Maybe random spikes, nipple pasties, high heels, or those stupid metal wrist covers are signs of status in the same way that many religious leaders in our world wear oversized and overly elaborate hats, shawls, collars, etc.

Allow me to respond with a hypothetical of my own:
In a perfect world, there would be no confusion what is sexist, there would be no sexism, no confusion over what is bad or good, and no need to send signals that one is supporting feminism or at least anti-sexism, no confusion over what is necessary to support feminism, no disagreement over what it should be, it would just be something we all cooperate and agree upon, there would be no one ignorant enough to impulsively declare that sexist anyways because they don't care for your justifications and don't care what reasons you make for that happen. In a perfect world, you could have this without anyone making a problem over it, and we could still have whatever we want. There would simply be confusion and answer would be easily as saying "yes you can have this setting, no need to worry about anything."

Do we live in a perfect world? No. We have people who are confused over what the ideology is, what it represents, we have people still believing in ignorant things, still confused over what is ignorant and is not, what is opinion and what is not, we live in a world where we aren't just in disagreement over our opinions we are in disagreement what is acceptable sources to solve or base those opinions on. We live in a world where a minority of people honestly believe things proven to be wrong centuries ago. We live in a world where they might reject your world simply because you included chi because that is too "weeaboo" rather than anything involving sexism or feminism, and so on. We live in a world that is increasingly polarized and fractured in its views by the very medium we are using right now.

That doesn't mean you can't do that, but you have to prepared for people rejecting it anyways, for reasons you don't even consider, and your responsible for what you put out. If you don't consider the reactions people will have to it, thats on you. and if the reaction is bad, well yeah you can go "well thats the fan reaction I don't have responsibility" and thus do nothing about it, but thats just passing the buck to a fanbase that won't ever change, because fans don't change, once they are there they just perpetuate their own warped view of the work, that often ends up not being completely accurate to the work or its intentions in question. There can be numerous reactions to what you just posted, some ignorant some more knowledgeable. Some more accepting, some less. You don't know whether that will be positive or negative until its out, and by then its too late.

So what reaction are you going for? Are you trying to shock, not shock me? What are you trying to say? Whats the point of the setting? What message are you trying to send? Whats the intention of the work, because even "its all in good fun" is a message your sending. Like it or not, there is no guarantee everyone will get that message, interpret that message positively even if they do get it, or like the fact that its that message at all even if they acknowledge that its meant to be positive. Are you trying to subtle with your views or not? Does it come with a disclaimer about your actual views? Where are going with this? Whats the actual story being told here? Why are you doing this? If there is no point to what you made, and you just made it for the love of making, well you have to take responsibility for its existence anyways for good or ill. If someone finds and points some legitimate problem they have with the setting, what will you do? Will you blow them off? Apologize and clarify your views? change the setting in a later installment? Whats your point in showing this to me, what are you trying to SAY? This is a thing you communicating to me, what does it EXPRESS? If your change is disliked by other people when you do it, what will you do then? What will you do if you don't change it all and thus let peoples criticisms stand and tear apart the setting for it? This setting could be very controversial, are you prepared for what it might spark? What if there is flame wars over it? What if people constantly pester you over the setting oddities and ask questions about things you even thought about?

What reactions, what fans, what opinions, what challenges are you willing to face and endure for this setting to work? How far are you willing to work for it? Whats your intentions for it, and how much are you going to invest into it? What things are worth this setting? How much is it worth the potential upsides vs. the potential downsides? How much is it worth potentially offending one group you might like vs. appealing to one you don't like? How much is it worth appealing to only the group you like at the expense of becoming an echo chamber? How much is it worth changing the setting for more money? What if it turns out that your setting will only make more money if you take away the things you like about it and make it unique? Is it worth making less money just so your setting can stay true to your vision? What will you accept as valid criticism about your vision? If the answer is none, why do you think its good to share it if your not going to let it develop from the interaction with other people? What parts of the setting are you willing to defend and keep no matter what? what parts of the setting are you willing to sacrifice? How much is it worth trying to preserve as much of the setting as you can at the risk of coming across as stubborn and married to the status quo? If the men carried out a bloody revolution that went too far and carried atrocities upon the women, would it ruin the setting?

Whats the point your trying to make, what criticisms will you accept of that point, and what are you willing to keep or sacrifice to make the point? What responsibility will you take for this? And if your point is nothing, your acceptance of criticism is nothing and your willingness to sacrifice for any of this is nothing, why did you speak up at all?

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-16, 03:41 PM
For example, say I make a campaign world where:


It is very hot and tropical. Heavy clothing (or armor) cannot be worn for long periods of time, and the society has no taboos against public nudity.

It is a fiercely matriarchal culture. Woman are expected to dress in a manner that shows off their virility, while men are often treated as property and are told to keep covered as a sign of ownership.

For whatever reason the weapon's technology vastly outperforms the defensive capabilities of armor. Maybe metal is too rare to make full suits of armor but still plentiful enough for weapons, maybe we have a situation like Star Wars where laser weapons (or the magical equivalent) render even the heaviest armor useless, maybe people are protected by Chi energy (or force fields) that are deactivated in the presence of a lot of metal. In any case, it is always a better idea to avoid an attack than to be hit and armor will impede the latter without really helping with the former.

Certain silly design elements have cultural or religious significance. Maybe random spikes, nipple pasties, high heels, or those stupid metal wrist covers are signs of status in the same way that many religious leaders in our world wear oversized and overly elaborate hats, shawls, collars, etc.



I would personally prefer them to dress like athletes, not strippers.

But, as I said way back when, ancient athletes attire (or lack thereof) would look pornographic to modern audiences, and modern active wear would look anachronistic, so we have to create these weird hybrids when imagining what athletic women would wear in an ancient world that didn't have the same mixture of misogyny and prudishness as our own.

Are ok with me making a fantasy setting where there is a race of fey creatures who are lazy, feed on water melons and chicken. They also have pitch black skin and huge red lips? It's my fantasy, my creation, my art, my views, why should I be prevented from creating such fantasy race?

Zanos
2017-08-16, 04:11 PM
Are ok with me making a fantasy setting where there is a race of fey creatures who are lazy, feed on water melons and chicken. They also have pitch black skin and huge red lips? It's my fantasy, my creation, my art, my views, why should I be prevented from creating such fantasy race?
I'm not going to stop you from doing that, but I'm not going to buy it, play it, or tell other people to play it. If they ask me for my opinion on it, I will tell them I don't like it and that if they value my opinion that they would probably not enjoy it.

I will not attempt to get your work censored, as worthless as it might be. I will not harass people who do purchase it, or boycott outlets that carry it.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 04:14 PM
No one directly said that, but people keep saying things in the vein of "If I wanted to see scantily clad people I would just watch porn!" or "The emphasis on physical beauty degrades the work into soft core pornography!"


I think the concern has been "emphasis on (supposed) sexiness over everything else degrades the work into soft core porn".

While I think over-emphasis on physical beauty is its own semi-related problem, I don't think the two are synonymous.




Ok, yeah, I am aware of the difference between realism and verisimilitude, I should have used more precise language rather than using one as shorthand for the other.

Now that you have me thinking about it though, where do you draw the line?

For example, are you ok with fantasy creatures being handwaved in standard fantast? For example dragons flying and breathing fire or giant spiders being able to breathe and walk up walls? If so, why doesn't a similar handwave work for fantasy armor (and weapon) designs?


Would you have a problem with a fantasy setting where it made sense?

For example, say I make a campaign world where:


It is very hot and tropical. Heavy clothing (or armor) cannot be worn for long periods of time, and the society has no taboos against public nudity.

It is a fiercely matriarchal culture. Woman are expected to dress in a manner that shows off their virility, while men are often treated as property and are told to keep covered as a sign of ownership.

For whatever reason the weapon's technology vastly outperforms the defensive capabilities of armor. Maybe metal is too rare to make full suits of armor but still plentiful enough for weapons, maybe we have a situation like Star Wars where laser weapons (or the magical equivalent) render even the heaviest armor useless, maybe people are protected by Chi energy (or force fields) that are deactivated in the presence of a lot of metal. In any case, it is always a better idea to avoid an attack than to be hit and armor will impede the latter without really helping with the former.

Certain silly design elements have cultural or religious significance. Maybe random spikes, nipple pasties, high heels, or those stupid metal wrist covers are signs of status in the same way that many religious leaders in our world wear oversized and overly elaborate hats, shawls, collars, etc.


This thread has seen repeated conflation of "armor that doesn't work as armor", "the specific context is not one in which the character would be wearing armor", and "the setting doesn't feature armor".

In most of those cases you describe, the character wouldn't be wearing armor, or wouldn't be wearing it some contexts, which is not synonymous with wearing armor that is blatantly non-functional as armor.

I'm not sure how boob windows and plate armor bustiers and stealthed-in fetish gear really serve to enhance the setting and gameplay in the way that fantastic creatures might. Dragons need a little leeway to be dragons... armor doesn't need "playfully" exposed skin to be armor.




I would personally prefer them to dress like athletes, not strippers.

But, as I said way back when, ancient athletes attire (or lack thereof) would look pornographic to modern audiences, and modern active wear would look anachronistic, so we have to create these weird hybrids when imagining what athletic women would wear in an ancient world that didn't have the same mixture of misogyny and prudishness as our own.


I think even ancient athletes might have appreciated the practical aspects of modern athletic wear, separate from any discussion of prudishness or misogyny.

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-16, 04:30 PM
I'm not going to stop you from doing that, but I'm not going to buy it, play it, or tell other people to play it. If they ask me for my opinion on it, I will tell them I don't like it and that if they value my opinion that they would probably not enjoy it.

I will not attempt to get your work censored, as worthless as it might be. I will not harass people who do purchase it, or boycott outlets that carry it.

Thanks god people are not like you otherwise we would not be able to watch looney toons... Like ever.

But thankfully people sat down discussed, criticized and showed their point of view, now we can enjoy funny cartoons and they are not horrible anymore...

You know how many people lost stuff or were negatively affected with all this? NONE!

Dragonexx
2017-08-16, 04:36 PM
Are ok with me making a fantasy setting where there is a race of fey creatures who are lazy, feed on water melons and chicken. They also have pitch black skin and huge red lips? It's my fantasy, my creation, my art, my views, why should I be prevented from creating such fantasy race?

Go right ahead. I've said repeatedly, that the only people you need to please are the people you play with. I probably wouldn't play that game, but I don't care if you and your friends do.

For the record (for weirdos who seem to care about such things), I am black.

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-16, 04:43 PM
Go right ahead. I've said repeatedly, that the only people you need to please are the people you play with. I probably wouldn't play that game, but I don't care if you and your friends do.

For the record (for weirdos who seem to care about such things), I am black.

Haven't we moved past personal games and are now talking about art and media in general?

Zanos
2017-08-16, 05:46 PM
Thanks god people are not like you otherwise we would not be able to watch looney toons... Like ever.

But thankfully people sat down discussed, criticized and showed their point of view, now we can enjoy funny cartoons and they are not horrible anymore...

You know how many people lost stuff or were negatively affected with all this? NONE!
I vote with my wallet and my viewership. If you don't like something, don't consume it. Consume things you like instead.

Lord Raziere
2017-08-16, 05:49 PM
I vote with my wallet and my viewership. If you don't like something, don't consume it. Consume things you like instead.

How do you know you don't like it if you don't consume it?

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 05:54 PM
How do you know you don't like it if you don't consume it?


While I think that changing things goes a bit beyond silently voting with your wallet, it's also entirely possible to know you won't like something without "consuming" it. There's a big difference between a sniff, a look, and a quick taste; versus sitting down to eat the whole thing.

Lord Raziere
2017-08-16, 06:08 PM
While I think that changing things goes a bit beyond silently voting with your wallet, it's also entirely possible to know you won't like something without "consuming" it. There's a big difference between a sniff, a look, and a quick taste; versus sitting down to eat the whole thing.

Well I agree with going a bit beyond silently voting with your wallet. I guess there is a difference, but its not like I know since my family makes me sit down to eat the whole thing for new foods rather than just accepting the quick taste. But its not like expanding your horizons is a bad thing, if you met me before I played Undertale, I would've said I like action games and don't care for pacifist solutions. If you met me before I played Dark Souls 3, I would've said I don't like settings that dark and difficult, but here I am now and I like both for what they are. The only way I changed and grew because of it is by taking the risk and finding out what they're like for myself. The quick taste only gets you so much.

Point is you need prior experience to know what you like and don't like. and sometimes you need to try new things to expand that experience. When to do so is a matter of judgement, and opportunity.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-16, 06:23 PM
The fact that I have a sex drive is a mix of biological factors, that came about through evolution in addition to cultural ones, yes. I wouldn't call that idea Evopsych.

Your sex drive comes to you courtesy of evolution. That sex drive can be dented, warped, altered, or even erased by circumstance, but the only reason you have it at all is because your parents had it, and their parents had it, unto time immemorial.


And... what biological exuberance do I display?

I thought you said you were queer. Generally don't get babies that way, though increasing numbers of queer people who want to have children are solving this problem in various ways.


If you are arguing with fertility, stick to arguing with fertility. Do not bring in other points that people select for in partners; if you want to argue fertility, argue. for. fertility. What men look for in mates correlates rather poorly with indicators of fertility, beyond maybe "health", but then again our culture makes that synonymous with "slender" which it really, really isn't and... No. If you want to argue nature, argue nature. But if you mix in expressions of cultural beauty standards as an example of nature, you are just getting ridiculous.
And, no, men do not look for women capable of continuing their genes. They look for women they are attracted to, and those are not the same thing. One last thing: Virginity is not an indicator of fertility. How... how would it even be? That doesn't even make sense if I'd accept your conceipt that looking for partners is about looking for genepools.

No, virginity by itself is not an indicator of fertility, since a female can be virginal at any age. But, a woman who is portrayed as healthy, pretty, and with fertile traits (breasts, hips), will be all the more desirable on average. Bundle these things together and we have the greatest attractant to the greatest number of men, and this attraction is mostly due to the human desire to reproduce. My goodness, what do parents say when they have a baby? “He has your nose” “She has your eyes” etc.--people pick mates that will be good mates, that they want to be the mother or father of their children. It would be unreal if people didn't consider their choice of mate when considering their possible offspring.


(a) Are you arguing that all cosmetics companies sell is appealing to natural urges? Because that makes no goddamn sense. It is impossible for there to be a natural urge to have your nails painted. Or painted-on eyebrows. Or pretty much any cosmetic product.
And you yourself are arguing for this to be about culture.

Cosmetic marketters seek to inflame instincts already present.


(b) Let me stop you right there. You are, right now, legitimately arguing, that the perfect image of fertility, that it is completely natural for any man to be attracted to, is*FIFTEEN YEARS OLD? You are arguing that*literal pedophilia*is not only acceptable, but NATURAL?

Calm down, no one's advocating or defending paedophilia or condoning acting in any criminal manner. Being marriageable at fifteen only seems young if you live in the US, where age of marriage is often 18, but, that's not universal. Canada used to be 14, recently upped to 16. It's 14 in Germany according to Wikipedia. It's 13 in Argentina(!). Do we then live in a world catering to paedophiles? No. These laws by turns recognise that 13-18, or, loosely, 15, is the time when people become fertile, become sexual, notice the opposite sex seriously, and have often matured enough to begin to approach sexual relationships. It's also, unsurprisingly, when people are in their flower of beauty.

To use a macabre analogy, look at a stereotypical evil cult that is going to sacrifice someone to its evil god. Whom do they traditionally pick? A menopausal woman? An old man? No, they pick someone who is in their flower of beauty and fertility—someone most valuable to the tribe—a real sacrifice to lose--like a 15-year-old girl. That's what is instinctively the most valuable person to pick.

And, outside of all custom, law, and knowledge of her numerical age that might trigger a backpedalling response, given their dithers most men would rate teenage girls as being the most beautiful of all. There are plenty of exceptions, not all women attain their full beauty immediately; some old women are more pulchritudinous than when they were young, but archetypically, generally, teenage girls are what men—not paedophiles, who lust after children, but ordinary heterosexual men –find most attractive, and what women would most like to look like (complicating factors like “used to oneself” or “look better with some character” etc., aside).


And, no, it is not, and (beyond this argument being disgusting) it has never been the natural image of beauty (Not that there would be one, it has always been cultural), much less fertility. To top it off, "just after starting to menstruate" is actually a terrible age for fertility, and women become of proper child-bearing age (with less risks of complications, or death in childbirth) when menstrual cycles have stabilised in their twenties. Technically being able to concieve before that does not make them more fertile, or look that way.)

You're overcomplicating it. Men naturally see breasts and think, instinctively, that this person is fertile.


2. I argued that, since everyone, even people noone wants to look at, wear just as revealing clothing on the beach, for any variety of reasons, it is more likely that these reasons are the ones for attractive women to do the same thing. You have so far avoided answering this.

Because it's wrong. Women who aren't insane or stupid will know that their bare skin is a mild sexual signal to men young and old. And, why stop there? Why not make other sexual signals, go naked and expose oneself to everyone while making disgusting...you get the idea.


3. The fact that men are attracted to something, and lust after something, is no evidence, proof, or in any relation, to the question whether or not something was done*because of that fact. "Men are into women doing this" is not a sufficient argument to prove "women are doing this for men".

Women who think they need to wear bikinis “just for themselves” are fooling themselves, every bit as their European analogues who go to topless beaches “just for themselves” (for their tan!) are fooling themselves.


4. Men are perfectly able to control themselves and not send lustful gazes everywhere. I mean, I am bisexual, and on top of that attracted to rather many people. I still manage to not stare lustfully. Even in locker rooms. Even when there are attractive, naked people walking around me. It is possible to have selfcontrol.

There is nothing wrong with noticing people and enjoying their appearance.


It might be an occupational hazard (for something young, attractive women didn't actually choose); but it is only so because culture normalises this kind of behaviour.

Culture that de-normalises male appreciation of feminine beauty is sick.


I know men. And I have been on the internet.
You have correctly identified the problem with oversexualised characters. Now imagine the problem women face when looking at female characters that don't look like they're about to kick ass, but rather about to enter a beach fashion contest.

...Wait a second, you, the person who argues for human interaction to be a great deal about procreation, and that the brain is wired to search for procreation material... argues that the brain is also wired in a way that discourages interacting with the things that are actually necessary for procreation? That the bits you need to want most for procreating (what, according to you, we are wired to do) are actually actively repellant without acclimatisation?
That seems counterintuitive at*best.
You'll know that sexual encounters are not uncomplicated affairs, however breezy the media likes to portray them as. Men and women constitute mysteries, because reproduction is heavy stuff and needs to be approached with care. And, that's why Batman comics aren't orgies with explicit art.



Well, to be fair, no one can fight like movie characters fight anyway, so it's all BS isn't it? If it's all BS then why not look like strippers?Because depending on the movie, game or setting they might actually, and because looking like strippers increases the BS-factor by quite a bit.
Even if everything is BS, some things are*less*BS.

Touché.


And how is that forbidding it? I mean, if people, after reflecting on it, realise they don't want to see it, who are you to tell them otherwise?

Culture can reinforce, or squash instincts both healthy and unhealthy.


2. Why? Why can I not criticise art for the shortcomings I percieve it has, as long as I do not advocate for it to be mandated to change by law?

You are free to criticise. I am saying that squashing the instincts artists have is pointless at best, deleterious to D&D culture at worst.


3. No, but from cultures that didn't have access to metallurgy, mining and resources in a capacity and level necessary to produce useful armor; nor to the clothproduction that would make cloth armor feasible. It's a cultural situation, not a purely environmental one.

They had wood didn't they? The Zulus had shields. They could have built an approximation of samurai armour if they wanted. They never felt the need to develop these things.


You thinking something isn't an argument; when numerous cultures throught the ages have had very different ideas of how to rate the beauty of overweight women. An hourglass figure doesn't have anything to do with fertility, no matter how often you claim that (And if you are convinced that it does, please provide proof).

No need to be testy. But, on the contrary, if you'd care to provide any examples of cultures where obese or morbidly obese women were the beauty standard par excellance, I'd like to see them. Ruben doesn't count. Nor does who-knows-what -they-meant Paleolithic "fertility idols".


2. Good to know. But one question: Why? Why is there need for someone to defend this?

Because I believe in human sexual dichotomy and the archetypal/symbolic nature informing much of culture. I think that evil cults sacrificing virgin girls makes artistic sense, even if there are other versions that involve killing a king, or felling a magic tree. I think damsels in distress is a relevant trope to our world, that will become ever more relevant as things spiral into the second century of industrialised catastrophe. I think the hero as a power fantasy and the hero as a romantic/sex fantasy are two overlapping concepts, and it won't do to pretend that outside of a brutal cultural hammer “hero” will ever fully mean “man or woman of martial virtue” or similar formulation. I think it matters to retaining Tradition in the face of the culture-wreckers who are chipping away at it in a time (of fabulous and terrifying change) when the stability of tradition is badly needed. That's why we need the 1st ed. DMG defended.


And, if I may have one request: Please take more care with your quotes. This lack of clarity what is a quote, and from whom it is is really annoying to work with.

Sorry about that, I was in a hurry and didn't post the cleaned up version.

Amazon
2017-08-16, 06:27 PM
If you don't like something, don't consume it. Consume things you like instead.

What happens when you like the thing but dislike one aspect of it? Do I have to stop doing the thing I love or just shut up and keep submitting myself to something that I perceived as harmful?

Can't I notify the creator, establish dialogue and hope for an improvement?

Zanos
2017-08-16, 06:59 PM
What happens when you like the thing but dislike one aspect of it? Do I have to stop doing the thing I love or just shut up and keep submitting myself to something that I perceived as harmful?

Can't I notify the creator, establish dialogue and hope for an improvement?
Well, you don't have to ask me for permission to do anything. You're an individual. :smalltongue:

If you're asking for my perspective, then there's a difference between giving a developer honest feedback and lambasting them for not kowtowing to what you like.

Amazon
2017-08-16, 07:01 PM
If you're asking for my perspective, then there's a difference between giving a developer honest feedback and lambasting them for not kowtowing to what you like.

And who is doing that?

Dragonexx
2017-08-16, 07:11 PM
Nobody is accusing anyone.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 07:18 PM
You're overcomplicating it. Men naturally see breasts and think, instinctively, that this person is fertile.

This is of course why different men have very different, um, tastes in such things. http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/Smile_smile.gif




Women who think they need to wear bikinis “just for themselves” are fooling themselves, every bit as their European analogues who go to topless beaches “just for themselves” (for their tan!) are fooling themselves.

So a woman hanging out at a private pool with female friends, or in her own fenced-off back yard is, what.. "subconsciously" hoping that a male will show up and find her a desirable mate? http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/Smile_smile.gif




Culture that de-normalises male appreciation of feminine beauty is sick.


Female beauty, or some presently / culturally normative "feminine" beauty that evo-psych mistakes for "the result of evolution"? http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/facepalmic.gif


Pretending that everything humans do is "about sex" is just as belittling, insulting, and ignorant as pretending that sex is some sort of dirty vile thing that we should all be ashamed of.

It's kinda funny how evo-psych with its pretensions of being "purely scientific" and a certain vein of religion with its pretensions of being "purely moral" twist themselves around so hard that they meet up at the asinine assertion that sex purely for reproduction.

Amazon
2017-08-16, 08:09 PM
This is of course why different men have very different, um, tastes in such things. http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/Smile_smile.gif



So a woman hanging out at a private pool with female friends, or in her own fenced-off back yard is, what.. "subconsciously" hoping that a male will show up and find her a desirable mate? http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/Smile_smile.gif




Female beauty, or some presently / culturally normative "feminine" beauty that evo-psych mistakes for "the result of evolution"? http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/facepalmic.gif


Pretending that everything humans do is "about sex" is just as belittling, insulting, and ignorant as pretending that sex is some sort of dirty vile thing that we should all be ashamed of.

It's kinda funny how evo-psych with its pretensions of being "purely scientific" and a certain vein of religion with its pretensions of being "purely moral" twist themselves around so hard that they meet up at the asinine assertion that sex purely for reproduction.

Wow I'm acutally disgusted by Donnadogsoth posts, I hope you grow out of this retrograde phase. :smallconfused:

I'm concerned for your health :smallannoyed:

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 08:22 PM
Wow I'm acutally disgusted by Donnadogsoth posts, I hope you grow out of this retrograde phase. :smallconfused:

I'm concerned for your health :smallannoyed:


My health?

Dragonexx
2017-08-16, 08:27 PM
Seriously, Donnadogsoth. I was agreeing with you way earlier in the thread, but then you go way off the deep end into bat**** ****ing crazytown.

Evolutionary psychology is a thing, however it is nowhere near as influential on behaviors as you seem to think it is.

Amazon
2017-08-16, 08:40 PM
My health?

No, Donnadogsoth health.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-16, 08:48 PM
So a woman hanging out at a private pool with female friends, or in her own fenced-off back yard is, what.. "subconsciously" hoping that a male will show up and find her a desirable mate? http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/Smile_smile.gif

You've just exampled why it's nice for women to have time apart from men, to free themselves from sexual anxiety.


Female beauty, or some presently / culturally normative "feminine" beauty that evo-psych mistakes for "the result of evolution"? http://cdn-frm-us.wargaming.net/4.5/style_emoticons/wot/facepalmic.gif

Pretending that everything humans do is "about sex" is just as belittling, insulting, and ignorant as pretending that sex is some sort of dirty vile thing that we should all be ashamed of.

It's kinda funny how evo-psych with its pretensions of being "purely scientific" and a certain vein of religion with its pretensions of being "purely moral" twist themselves around so hard that they meet up at the asinine assertion that sex purely for reproduction.

Freud is important but he is not all-important. The human mind is--or can be--or should be--bigger than its bestial drives, but that doesn't mean those drives aren't large and powerful, whether they're caged in the dungeon of the subconscious or not. You seem to be painting me as if my mind were 100% consumed by evo-psych--I don't even care if evolution put the human mind together or if something else did--to the point of viewing human sexuality as solely in terms of reproduction. This is false and you should have enough good faith to realise it. I am arguing here in favour of archetypal representations in fantasy art, derived from the deep mind. Sexuality enters into it but circumstance can certainly alter how sexuality is expressed.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 08:54 PM
You've just exampled why it's nice for women to have time apart from men, to free themselves from sexual anxiety.


You appear to have said that women cannot wear certain clothing for any reason other than "being appealing", even if they don't consciously realize it.



Women who think they need to wear bikinis “just for themselves” are fooling themselves, every bit as their European analogues who go to topless beaches “just for themselves” (for their tan!) are fooling themselves.







Freud is important but he is not all-important.


Freud was nothing more than someone who got famous projecting his own issues on the entirety of the human population.




The human mind is--or can be--or should be--bigger than its bestial drives, but that doesn't mean those drives aren't large and powerful, whether they're caged in the dungeon of the subconscious or not. You seem to be painting me as if my mind were 100% consumed by evo-psych--I don't even care if evolution put the human mind together or if something else did--to the point of viewing human sexuality as solely in terms of reproduction. This is false and you should have enough good faith to realise it. I am arguing here in favour of archetypal representations in fantasy art, derived from the deep mind. Sexuality enters into it but circumstance can certainly alter how sexuality is expressed.


Archetypes mean nothing to me. They're nothing but another potential hazard to be avoided in writing / worldbuilding.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-16, 09:05 PM
Seriously, Donnadogsoth. I was agreeing with you way earlier in the thread, but then you go way off the deep end into bat**** ****ing crazytown.

Evolutionary psychology is a thing, however it is nowhere near as influential on behaviors as you seem to think it is.

I think people are tangling my arguments up in "evolutionary psychology" when I (as said above) don't really care where these instincts came from. The point is, human have instincts. Survival, sex, social life, meaning. I mean, does anyone deny that testosterone has a psychological effect? That's genetic in origin. So are the psychological changes associated with the menstrual cycle. So, I don't see how what I am saying--"men like looking at the fantasy art they do because they are wired to"--is so controversial, much less bat**** ****ing insane.

Zanos
2017-08-16, 09:12 PM
It's kinda funny how evo-psych with its pretensions of being "purely scientific" and a certain vein of religion with its pretensions of being "purely moral" twist themselves around so hard that they meet up at the asinine assertion that sex purely for reproduction.
I don't think any evo-psycher other than the strawmen you've created would argue that. Both biologists and psychologists have known for a long time that human sex is important for social bonding and pleasure, and has been for a long time. Reproduction is obviously it's primary purpose, as we are biological animals, but it's not its only purpose.


Archetypes mean nothing to me. They're nothing but another potential hazard to be avoided in writing / worldbuilding.
What's wrong with archetypes? Magic hard to learn in my setting and requires years of dedicated study -> most skilled wizards are reclusive bookworms. That seems fine to me.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-16, 09:24 PM
So, I don't see how what I am saying--"men like looking at the fantasy art they do because they are wired to"--is so controversial, much less bat**** ****ing insane.


It's controversial because it's a gross oversimplification -- and because it paints men in the same unsavory and animalistic sort of "but they can't help it, that's how they're wired" light that when taken to another order of magnitude makes for some pretty ugly excuses for other behaviors.




I don't think any evo-psycher other than the strawmen you've created would argue that. Both biologists and psychologists have known for a long time that human sex is important for social bonding and pleasure, and has been for a long time. Reproduction is obviously it's primary purpose, as we are biological animals, but it's not its only purpose.


If it's a strawman, it's not my strawman... man.





It Ain't Necessarily So - Evo Psych's "Just So" Stories (http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2012/09/17/it-aint-necessarily-so)
Evolutionary Psychology Is Neither | The Evolution Institute (https://evolution-institute.org/article/evolutionary-psychology-is-neither/)
Evolutionary psychology gets evolution wrong. (http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2005/08/cave_thinkers.html)
αEP: The fundamental failure of the evolutionary psychology premise – Pharyngula (http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2012/12/10/ep-the-fundamental-failure-of-the-evolutionary-psychology-premise/)
Kenan Malik's essay on the flaws of evolutionary psychology (http://www.kenanmalik.com/essays/fallacy.html)
Four Fallacies of Pop Evolutionary Psychology - Scientific American (https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/four-fallacies-of-pop-evolutionary-2012-12-07/)
A Critique of Evolutionary Psychology — The Psychology In Seattle Podcast (https://psychologyinseattle.squarespace.com/a-critique-of-evolutionary-psychology/)





All those articles were written in response to actual claims made by actual apostles of actual evo-psych.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-16, 09:35 PM
You appear to have said that women cannot wear certain clothing for any reason other than "being appealing", even if they don't consciously realize it.

I am naïve enough to expect charitable interpretations of what I may or may not have phrased perfectly, complete with umlauts and curlicues. My point is that one unavoidable (outside of tyranny) aspect of the womanly experience is dealing with the male gaze, so that whatever other reasons they may have to wear their bikini--better tan, like polka dots and yellow, want to fit in, etc.--one reason around men, that they would have to be crazy or stupid to miss, is that men like looking at nearly naked women.


Freud was nothing more than someone who got famous projecting his own issues on the entirety of the human population.

Freud came up with the id, which a big world religion needs to function properly, so on those grounds I can't help but agree with him. If you're interested in an investigation and possibly quasi-defence of Freud, you can do worse than investigating Jordan Peterson (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFWLwYyrMRE).


Archetypes mean nothing to me. They're nothing but another potential hazard to be avoided in writing / worldbuilding.

Well, we might be sophisticating ourselves to death. To dump the archetypes, however, really smacks of the Hebraic lineage of thought, if you think about it. The archetypes, seen in Joseph Campbell's works such as Hero With a Thousand Faces have something pagan or heathen about them, a recurring, cyclical nature. The Hebraic line, extending to the present day among a couple of contemporary religions and the civilisation they have made, is very much a movement of unique happenstance. There are great themes and certain cyclical events, but the essence is a movement towards ever increasing order that is paralleled—adopted—by the secular ideas of scientific and social progress. To that we could add the progress of worldbuilding and storytelling. Perhaps the archetypes will find themselves echoing more and more faintly as this progress, er, progresses.


It's controversial because it's a gross oversimplification -- and because it paints men in the same unsavory and animalistic sort of "but they can't help it, that's how they're wired" light that when taken to another order of magnitude makes for some pretty ugly excuses for other behaviors.

I don't think the statement "most men like looking at women's bodies" is a gross oversimplification. And humans are not animals, we can, barring insanity or brain damage, control our destructive impulses. I think you're talking the way you do because we've been talking closely about these issues without standing up and getting a breather to modes of human intercourse that have less to do with thorny issues around sex and instinct. As I like to put it, humans are not fundamentally good, but they are fundamentally worthwhile, they are capable of following the light side, so to speak, and it is not my intention, and I resent any insinuation or charge that it is, to suggest that my understanding of human instincts in any way excuses people's wickedness.

Talakeal
2017-08-16, 09:48 PM
Are ok with me making a fantasy setting where there is a race of fey creatures who are lazy, feed on water melons and chicken. They also have pitch black skin and huge red lips? It's my fantasy, my creation, my art, my views, why should I be prevented from creating such fantasy race?

Um... huh?

I think you are failing to look at what I was responding to, which was Max's view that skimpy outfits are only a problem because they break verisimilitude. (Which, Max, if you are still listening, I think this is a pretty good example of the shifting of the goalposts which I was referring to).

Even so, what does my post have to do with a setting based on offensive stereotypes? Which stereotype am I using? That cultures in warmer climates have fewer taboos about public nudity? Or that patriarchal cultures tend to cover up their women more? I don't quite follow.



Nude =/= pornographic

Besides:

http://artmight.com/albums/artists/Pierre-Narcisse-Guerin/Phedre-et-Hippolyte.jpg

That woman with the bow and the dogs, beated hercules in wrestling, what's your point?

She is not nude nor she is dressed in a pornographic way.

As I have said many times in this thread, I fully agree that nudity is not pornographic. But, as evidenced by the fact that I have needed to say it many times in this thread, most people perceive nudity as pornographic.

Public nudity is outlawed in much of the world, as are depictions of it in media. This very website has, IIRC, guidelines against posting images which contain nudity.


(b) Let me stop you right there. You are, right now, legitimately arguing, that the perfect image of fertility, that it is completely natural for any man to be attracted to, is FIFTEEN YEARS OLD? You are arguing that literal pedophilia is not only acceptable, but NATURAL?

Ugh, I hate to be that guy, but...

Fifteen years old is not literally pedophilia. This might just be a language issue, but pedophilia is attraction to (usually pre-pubescent) children, and, atleast in the USA, generally has a cut off of about 12.

Relationships between fifteen year olds would be considered statutory rape in the USA, not pedophilia, as she is still not old enough to have the sound judgement required to give legal consent.

But that's just the USA (where the age of consent is usually 16 but is as high as 18 in some places), there are modern first world countries where 15 year olds are allowed to give consent to sexual relationships with older adults, and if we look at ancient times (or the third world) I think we would find that 15 is well past typical marriageable age, so I find it hard to swallow the idea that men being attracted to fifteen year olds is unnatural.

But, to be clear, I am just trying to clarify some facts, I do not in any way support relationships between fifteen year olds and adults.

As a related note, I believe that scientists have found that men of all age groups typically rate 22 as the "ideal" age for female beauty.

Calthropstu
2017-08-17, 01:31 AM
If artists have freedom of speech to create what they wish, then others have freedom of speech to crtique, criticize, and discuss the broader implications and effects.

It's like somewhere along the way, "freedom of speech" became "all negative response is censorship".

While a fair point, many of the posts on this thread are bordering on calls for censorship. And critique is one thing, but that really isn't what is going on here.
I'd rather not see this forum become yet another avenue for the SJW bickerfests that are cropping up everywhere.

Calthropstu
2017-08-17, 02:17 AM
Um... huh?

I think you are failing to look at what I was responding to, which was Max's view that skimpy outfits are only a problem because they break verisimilitude. (Which, Max, if you are still listening, I think this is a pretty good example of the shifting of the goalposts which I was referring to).

Even so, what does my post have to do with a setting based on offensive stereotypes? Which stereotype am I using? That cultures in warmer climates have fewer taboos about public nudity? Or that patriarchal cultures tend to cover up their women more? I don't quite follow.




As I have said many times in this thread, I fully agree that nudity is not pornographic. But, as evidenced by the fact that I have needed to say it many times in this thread, most people perceive nudity as pornographic.

Public nudity is outlawed in much of the world, as are depictions of it in media. This very website has, IIRC, guidelines against posting images which contain nudity.



Ugh, I hate to be that guy, but...

Fifteen years old is not literally pedophilia. This might just be a language issue, but pedophilia is attraction to (usually pre-pubescent) children, and, atleast in the USA, generally has a cut off of about 12.

Relationships between fifteen year olds would be considered statutory rape in the USA, not pedophilia, as she is still not old enough to have the sound judgement required to give legal consent.

But that's just the USA (where the age of consent is usually 16 but is as high as 18 in some places), there are modern first world countries where 15 year olds are allowed to give consent to sexual relationships with older adults, and if we look at ancient times (or the third world) I think we would find that 15 is well past typical marriageable age, so I find it hard to swallow the idea that men being attracted to fifteen year olds is unnatural.

But, to be clear, I am just trying to clarify some facts, I do not in any way support relationships between fifteen year olds and adults.

As a related note, I believe that scientists have found that men of all age groups typically rate 22 as the "ideal" age for female beauty.

You are wholly correct. As a matter of fact, literally the youngest possible marriage age here in the US is actually 13. It requires both court and parental approval... both difficult to obtain. Also, some marriages performed out of the country are recognized in the US for immigrants.
Not to mention Romeo clauses exist in most states.
I personally dealt with a 13 year old girl trying to come onto me quite strongly, and know for a fact that this is actually quite common.
Years later I talked with her and she thanked me for turning her down.
It is literally perfectly natural. Problem is, we know nature and society do not have identical interests. So while a 15 year old might be attractive to many, we know logically it's simply not a good idea in most cases.

Frozen_Feet
2017-08-17, 04:49 AM
I see the "attraction to 15-year-olds is not pedophilia" angle has been tackled. Just to add something anyone who had sex ed in primary school, or read the relevant Wikipedia article, (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Puberty) ought to know:

The onset of puberty has become several years earlier in last two hundred years than it used to be. Contemporarily, puberty for girls begins at ages 10 to 11, and ends at 15 to 17. So if a contemporary 15-year-old looks attractive to a normal adult male, it's because that girl looks essentially like their adult self.

By contract, a 15-year-old in 19th century might just be entering puberty. So a contemporary 15-year-old looks like 20 to 22-years-old would've looked 200 years ago.

Hence, it is possible to argue contemporary men have an evolutionary reason to be attracted to 15-year-olds; but it's not because they look juvenile, it's because girls today literally grow up faster and hence look adult at an earlier age.

Floret
2017-08-17, 06:11 AM
Would you have a problem with a fantasy setting where it made sense?

For example, say I make a campaign world where:
It is very hot and tropical. Heavy clothing (or armor) cannot be worn for long periods of time, and the society has no taboos against public nudity.
It is a fiercely matriarchal culture. Woman are expected to dress in a manner that shows off their virility, while men are often treated as property and are told to keep covered as a sign of ownership.

For whatever reason the weapon's technology vastly outperforms the defensive capabilities of armor. Maybe metal is too rare to make full suits of armor but still plentiful enough for weapons, maybe we have a situation like Star Wars where laser weapons (or the magical equivalent) render even the heaviest armor useless, maybe people are protected by Chi energy (or force fields) that are deactivated in the presence of a lot of metal. In any case, it is always a better idea to avoid an attack than to be hit and armor will impede the latter without really helping with the former.

Certain silly design elements have cultural or religious significance. Maybe random spikes, nipple pasties, high heels, or those stupid metal wrist covers are signs of status in the same way that many religious leaders in our world wear oversized and overly elaborate hats, shawls, collars, etc.

See, beyond what LordRaziere already commented on that:
It is always better to avoid an attack than to be hit by it. In every setting. The likelyhood of getting hit in a realistic context is just so high already, that increasing it by a bit in return for making a hit less devastating is a really good tradeoff. But I assume what you mean is making that tradeoff less ideal?
Are these different settings? Because some of those factors contradict each other. When armor is made useless; people don't stop wearing clothes, there are lots of reasons for those ("cold" being one of them).
And, if you make that setting without intention for it to be an excuse for softporn: Make sure that shows. Every single one of the decisions you describe is just that, a decision you made. If those decisions are made with the intent to justify skimpy armor or no armor, that might just show. And constructing an in-world reason for skimpy armor; or high-heels in battle, or nipple pasties, does not absolve you from the fact that out-world, you made that decision , and made the rest of the setting fit to that desire. You can, of course, do it, and I would advocate against laws stopping you from it - but an in-setting justification is irrelevant for judging if a work is sexist or not.
The design of Quiet from the newest Metal Gear is not redeemed, or excused by an in-world justification. Because as long as the design stands first, and the justification afterwards, in-universe explanations can't justify ****.


I would personally prefer them to dress like athletes, not strippers.

But, as I said way back when, ancient athletes attire (or lack thereof) would look pornographic to modern audiences, and modern active wear would look anachronistic, so we have to create these weird hybrids when imagining what athletic women would wear in an ancient world that didn't have the same mixture of misogyny and prudishness as our own.

You would prefer characters in combat dressed like athletes? I would prefer them to be dressed like warriors, of appropriate setting and time period.
(Which does mean like athletes in a setting of a fencing/boxing/other combat sport competition or training session, but not beyond that)

I wouldn't call actual athlete wear pornographic. It's perfectly possible for a person completely in the nude to be non-pornographic and non-sexualised. Posing becomes most everything in that regard, but its perfectly possible.


Your sex drive comes to you courtesy of evolution. That sex drive can be dented, warped, altered, or even erased by circumstance, but the only reason you have it at all is because your parents had it, and their parents had it, unto time immemorial.

"You have a sexdrive because evolution" is something we can agree on. The conclusions you draw from that, I am more doubtful on.


I thought you said you were queer. Generally don't get babies that way, though increasing numbers of queer people who want to have children are solving this problem in various ways.

I also said I am bisexual and have a boyfriend :smallwink:
But I generally find adoption a very sensible route - too many children grow up without parents already; why not take the free slots for "caring for a child" we have and fill them with those, rather than with new ones?
(Also, I think I take offense to queerness being described as "biological exuberance", but will give you the benefit of the doubt of that getting added in translation.)


No, virginity by itself is not an indicator of fertility, since a female can be virginal at any age. But, a woman who is portrayed as healthy, pretty, and with fertile traits (breasts, hips), will be all the more desirable on average. Bundle these things together and we have the greatest attractant to the greatest number of men, and this attraction is mostly due to the human desire to reproduce. My goodness, what do parents say when they have a baby? “He has your nose” “She has your eyes” etc.--people pick mates that will be good mates, that they want to be the mother or father of their children. It would be unreal if people didn't consider their choice of mate when considering their possible offspring.

...Why? Why does increase virginity sexual desirability; or desirability for being the one to reproduce with?
Please lay out the line of logic behind this statement. (Also, if you want, I'd be interested in how one can see virginity in drawings of sexy armor, but that is another point)
And I am doubtful how "people see features of themselves or their partner in their children" is any proof of... anthing, other than that they realise features can get passed down genetically and like to find patterns. See, for most people, choosing a mate comes way, way before the question of possible offspring arises. They pick mates they want to hang out with, and spend their life with (Though even that often comes as a decision after being with the other for a while).
Seriously. Do you look at people and think "Oh, she's hot" or do you think "We'd have great babies together"? If the latter, then I hate to tell you you are by far in the minority. People don't think that much about these things.


Cosmetic marketters seek to inflame instincts already present.

Sure. Culturally implanted instincts, by generations of marketters and cultural beauty standards. If you have another reasoning, please outline to me the natural source of the desire of painted nails.
And, if you can, also how there can be a natural pattern that makes men biologically or naturally more attracted to women with nailpolish.


Calm down, no one's advocating or defending paedophilia or condoning acting in any criminal manner. Being marriageable at fifteen only seems young if you live in the US, where age of marriage is often 18, but, that's not universal. Canada used to be 14, recently upped to 16. It's 14 in Germany according to Wikipedia. It's 13 in Argentina(!). Do we then live in a world catering to paedophiles? No. These laws by turns recognise that 13-18, or, loosely, 15, is the time when people become fertile, become sexual, notice the opposite sex seriously, and have often matured enough to begin to approach sexual relationships. It's also, unsurprisingly, when people are in their flower of beauty.

To use a macabre analogy, look at a stereotypical evil cult that is going to sacrifice someone to its evil god. Whom do they traditionally pick? A menopausal woman? An old man? No, they pick someone who is in their flower of beauty and fertility—someone most valuable to the tribe—a real sacrifice to lose--like a 15-year-old girl. That's what is instinctively the most valuable person to pick.

And, outside of all custom, law, and knowledge of her numerical age that might trigger a backpedalling response, given their dithers most men would rate teenage girls as being the most beautiful of all. There are plenty of exceptions, not all women attain their full beauty immediately; some old women are more pulchritudinous than when they were young, but archetypically, generally, teenage girls are what men—not paedophiles, who lust after children, but ordinary heterosexual men –find most attractive, and what women would most like to look like (complicating factors like “used to oneself” or “look better with some character” etc., aside).

Fifteen years old is not literally pedophilia. This might just be a language issue, but pedophilia is attraction to (usually pre-pubescent) children, and, atleast in the USA, generally has a cut off of about 12.

Relationships between fifteen year olds would be considered statutory rape in the USA, not pedophilia, as she is still not old enough to have the sound judgement required to give legal consent.

But that's just the USA (where the age of consent is usually 16 but is as high as 18 in some places), there are modern first world countries where 15 year olds are allowed to give consent to sexual relationships with older adults, and if we look at ancient times (or the third world) I think we would find that 15 is well past typical marriageable age, so I find it hard to swallow the idea that men being attracted to fifteen year olds is unnatural.

But, to be clear, I am just trying to clarify some facts, I do not in any way support relationships between fifteen year olds and adults.

As a related note, I believe that scientists have found that men of all age groups typically rate 22 as the "ideal" age for female beauty.

You are wholly correct. As a matter of fact, literally the youngest possible marriage age here in the US is actually 13. It requires both court and parental approval... both difficult to obtain. Also, some marriages performed out of the country are recognized in the US for immigrants.
Not to mention Romeo clauses exist in most states.
I personally dealt with a 13 year old girl trying to come onto me quite strongly, and know for a fact that this is actually quite common.
Years later I talked with her and she thanked me for turning her down.
It is literally perfectly natural. Problem is, we know nature and society do not have identical interests. So while a 15 year old might be attractive to many, we know logically it's simply not a good idea in most cases.

1. Alright, "pedophilia" might not technically have been the correct term. It is commonly used for any attraction to underage women; or women not fully adult enough to consent; at least that is what I intended to say.
2. Marriagable age in Germany is 18; though there are technically exceptions in very rare cases. But, beyond that: Something being legal is not the same as something being moral. Age of consent in some parts of the world is 12. Is that an argument that everyone should lower it to that?
3. I am highly dubious of the claim that most women have reached the end of puberty at 15. My experience says otherwise. 15 years old look a lot differently from 20 year olds, even today; and the body has not fully reached maturity at 15; even though age of puberty onset has advanced.
4. Even beyond that, as Calthropstu points out: Physical maturity has little to do with mental maturity. And there has been little proof mental maturity has gone down in "at what age is it reached" as much as physical.
5. I am highly doubtful of the claim that the classical virign of the tales is typically, or on average or whatever, 15.
6. Marriagable age, incidentally, was not way below 15 in the past. Or... sometimes it was, but the marriage wasn't consummated until way later. Most marriages in older times took place in people's 20s; and the ones that didn't were political ties by noble houses. To top that off, they were usually between people of similar age - 15 year old wanting each other is not something I wanted to call a problem.
7. Saying that the ideal age of beauty for women is 15, and it is perfectly natural to find girls at this age arousing just reeks of justifications for interactions with them on that basis, I'm sorry. The claim normalises an attraction that it is highly, highly questionable in ethics if ever acted upon (because of emotional maturity even moreso than any theoretical physical one) - a normalisation that can very well lead to rationalisations. Taking it as the most natural even moreso.
(I mean, it depends on the age gap, of course. An 18 year old and a 15 year old are a very different question to a 25 year old and a 15 year old.)


You're overcomplicating it. Men naturally see breasts and think, instinctively, that this person is fertile.

Men don't think "fertile". Men mostly don't think at all about all boobs they encounter.
If they are experiencing attraction, men mostly think "boobies", in my experience. They do not think about anything related to procreation.
(For that matter, most women I know think "boobies", but I might just know too many non-straight people.)


Because it's wrong. Women who aren't insane or stupid will know that their bare skin is a mild sexual signal to men young and old. And, why stop there? Why not make other sexual signals, go naked and expose oneself to everyone while making disgusting...you get the idea.

Alright, so you are arguing that (young, attractive) women are, for the exact same behaviour (wearing revealing clothing at a beach) fundamentally driven by different desires and reasons than all other people?
And your logic for that is that other people judge the result differently?


Women who think they need to wear bikinis “just for themselves” are fooling themselves, every bit as their European analogues who go to topless beaches “just for themselves” (for their tan!) are fooling themselves.

Yes, of course; and all nudists actually want people to ogle them, and the reasons they give for just not liking clothes are a sham. Every person that, first thing fter coming home, takes of their pants is actually doing that for other people. There are numerous reasons for people to wear revealing, or no clothes; and most of them have little to do with looking sexy; especially at a beach. If you argue that women who wear bikinis cannot possibly do this just for themselves; the same has to apply to the overweight 50-year old man in his speedo.
And ...No. You are fooling yourself into thinking human behaviour is in any way so focussed on eliciting reactions from other people; and sexual reactions at that.


There is nothing wrong with noticing people and enjoying their appearance.

Culture that de-normalises male appreciation of feminine beauty is sick.

Culture that normalises objectification of women by leering, staring men, and excuses them for that behaviour by claiming it is all about "appreciation of feminine beauty" places mens sense of satisfaction over safety of women. The freedom of one person ends where it takes the freedom of others. If you normalize behaviour that routinely takes the freedom of women to be safe, just to satisfy the freedom of men to stare, you are overstepping lots of lines.
That is something I'd call sick.
(I am not talking about seeing people, and thinking to yourself "huh, pretty/cute/hot", or even sneaking in a second look. I am talking about staring, and leering; what you described as "lustful gazes".)


You'll know that sexual encounters are not uncomplicated affairs, however breezy the media likes to portray them as. Men and women constitute mysteries, because reproduction is heavy stuff and needs to be approached with care. And, that's why Batman comics aren't orgies with explicit art.

Yeah, no. Men and women do not constitute mysteries, and neither do sexual encounters. Being nice, open and willing to communicate is pretty much all it needs. Perhaps a certain willingness to care for personal hygene and appearance, and treating other people as people first and foremost, and as potential sexual partners a distant second or third (Though I'd sum that up under "being nice").
Sure, there are details that make it more complicated, but those details really, really pale in comparison and can nearly always be beaten by the tool of "honest and open communication".


Culture can reinforce, or squash instincts both healthy and unhealthy.

You are free to criticise. I am saying that squashing the instincts artists have is pointless at best, deleterious to D&D culture at worst.

So? Try your best to encourage what you find healthy, and discourage what you find unhealthy. Make sure to not enforce things by law that do not need to be enforced by law.
There is reason to defend a person's rights to their positions, but if a position itself is being discussed and attacked, there is no need to defend that. If a person holds beliefs worth holding, they should be able to defend them themselves. This isn't squashing instincts, this is requiring people to stand by their opinions and actions; and not defending those because they are opinions. Not every opinion is worthwhile to hold. It is not up to me, or you, or lawmakers to decide which those are, but acting as if opinions are precious and may never be discussed, called out or scratched is ridiculous and puts them on more of a pedestal than they deserve.


They had wood didn't they? The Zulus had shields. They could have built an approximation of samurai armour if they wanted. They never felt the need to develop these things.

Samurai armor wasn't made of wood, and there is about as much evidence of wooden armor being in use historically as of leather armor - that is, not very much; not in large quantities, or outside of small tribes in Northern America, really.
(Wood, due to its inflexibility, makes rather poor armor anyways, and in the rare cases it existed was an add-on to leather or cloth in something like brigantines. For purposes of functional protection, you need it at a thickness that gets really uncomfortable to wear in large bits. Also, due to other factors really can't be worn on skin (Like pretty much all armor), which makes the lack of cloth production relevant again. Trust me, armor doesn't work properly without clothes under it.)
"Not feeling the need for something" is a rather poor understanding of how some technological advances are necessary to make others feasible; and a poor understanding of how technological process generally comes about. (Hint: Similar to evolution, in the sense of people discovering things relatively randomly, and then applying and spreading them; leaving the groundwork for other tech. Before you can get to armor, you first need other things.)


No need to be testy. But, on the contrary, if you'd care to provide any examples of cultures where obese or morbidly obese women were the beauty standard par excellance, I'd like to see them. Ruben doesn't count. Nor does who-knows-what -they-meant Paleolithic "fertility idols".

"Who knows what they mean" is cutting a bit short; the fact that we have examples of depictions of obese women, but not of non-obese ones does require more than just a quick glance and being discarded. But up into the middle ages, being overweight was seen as a symbol of status; you were rich, could afford this - "you have a fat wife", iirc, being a compliment in ancient China.
Whether or not those were the beauty standard par excellence is debatable, sure; but I said "treated differently", not "standard par excellence". A wider standard of beauty, or multiple ones, still satisfy my claims.


Because I believe in human sexual dichotomy and the archetypal/symbolic nature informing much of culture. I think that evil cults sacrificing virgin girls makes artistic sense, even if there are other versions that involve killing a king, or felling a magic tree. I think damsels in distress is a relevant trope to our world, that will become ever more relevant as things spiral into the second century of industrialised catastrophe. I think the hero as a power fantasy and the hero as a romantic/sex fantasy are two overlapping concepts, and it won't do to pretend that outside of a brutal cultural hammer “hero” will ever fully mean “man or woman of martial virtue” or similar formulation. I think it matters to retaining Tradition in the face of the culture-wreckers who are chipping away at it in a time (of fabulous and terrifying change) when the stability of tradition is badly needed. That's why we need the 1st ed. DMG defended.

Alright. That is... a lot to unpack here.
I think I might start with "Retaining tradition in the face of culture-wreckers who are chipping away at it". Because... what? Culture, like language, is a thing of flux. It is not an entity worth preserving for its own rights, things worth preserving have to provide some value to achieve that worth. "Status quo is status quo" is not an argument for preserving it.
"A time when the stability of tradition is badly needed"... By whom? Do you have any proof? Extrapolate, please, because this isn't logical.
The fact that you think sexism will never be fully eradicated is irrelevant for the question whether or not that is a good thing. You seem to think it is. I do not, and am somewhat appaled at the suggestion.
Human sexual dichotomy is not what you think it is. And, especially psychologically, not as big as you think it is. Humans aren't two distinct categories; they might be two categories, but with gigantic amounts of overlap far outclassing the difference.
And finally... "Relevant trope to our world, that will become even more relevant as things spiral into the second century of industrialised catastophe"... Is this just conspiracy theory, certainty that you know the future, or... what is this? Because it really doesn't resemble any facts I know. And I don't know how keeping the trope that women are weak and have to be rescued by men helps anything against the problems the world faces today, or might in the future. Because those aren't dragons (or even robbers or evil cults) kidnapping virgins, and no hero can save a damsel from large-scale, structural, societal inequalities and problems.


While a fair point, many of the posts on this thread are bordering on calls for censorship. And critique is one thing, but that really isn't what is going on here.
I'd rather not see this forum become yet another avenue for the SJW bickerfests that are cropping up everywhere.

What posts, exactly? The ones consistently pointing out that censorship would be the wrong way to go about things?
And, what is going on here, if it is not critique, and explaining that critique and why we think it is valid to posit that critique? What do you see happening?

Lastly... I've always considered myself more of a bard, yaknow. Maybe a cleric.

2D8HP
2017-08-17, 06:58 AM
*Slim hips—virginal hips—women who have yet to mate—an attractant.


????? Sure, maybe..., if you're a kid yourself!

Otherwise, no I really don't think so.


Cosmetic companies sell (successfully) to women the implicit idea that they should look fifteen.


That may be what is being sold, and some women buy because of some weird advertising/marketing/cultural conditioning, and maybe I'm projecting, but I really don't think that the majority of adult men find "adolescent slim" bodies all that attractive.


Few people look at the hairy fifty-year-old fat guy in a speedo on the beach except to go “Oh brother,” and avert their eyes


Oh dang!


someone has to defend the cover of the 1st ed. DMG.


I think you may have just successfully un-defended it.

Calthropstu
2017-08-17, 07:32 AM
Trying to deny that virginity is an attractant is kinda silly. Many do consider it so, which is a huge factor throughout history.
Hell, the whole "white wedding" thing is proof enough. In fact, a marriage in many cases worldwide can be nullified if the woman lies about being a virgin.

Edit: even many vampire mythos requires virginity to be a factor.

Satinavian
2017-08-17, 08:16 AM
Trying to deny that virginity is an attractant is kinda silly. Many do consider it so, which is a huge factor throughout history.
Hell, the whole "white wedding" thing is proof enough. In fact, a marriage in many cases worldwide can be nullified if the woman lies about being a virgin.

Edit: even many vampire mythos requires virginity to be a factor.
Yes, but attraction to virginity is most probably cultural, rooted in uncertainty of paternity. (And it is also likely to vanish nowadays as paternity tests are a thing)


I mean, i do believe that some things about attractiveness are biological. The fact that age plays a far bigger wole for female attractiveness than for male is very likely a result of age being a far bigger factor for female fertility than for male.
But many other things about attraction are probably pure culture. How people react to body hair for example.


But we don't know all of that. E.g. there have been recent studies about attractiveness of body fat that do suggest that there are biological triggers influencing it, that having seen phases of hunger while growing up leads to attraction to fatter people, even beyond cultural effects. But it is still not really certain or fully understood. We basically only know that attraction is really complicated and isolating the many many influences hard if not even impossible.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-17, 08:24 AM
Trying to deny that virginity is an attractant is kinda silly. Many do consider it so, which is a huge factor throughout history.
Hell, the whole "white wedding" thing is proof enough. In fact, a marriage in many cases worldwide can be nullified if the woman lies about being a virgin.

Edit: even many vampire mythos requires virginity to be a factor.

Likely to be largely cultural.

And looking at history, the "virgin thing" turns out to be overstated due to Victorian* biases (sadly, what hasn't been tainted by that?) and the tendency for documentation and past historians both to focus on a small sliver of the population where it was highly emphasized. For many people outside the upper classes, in many places and times, the "virgin thing" was honored more in the breach than in the observance. There were many, ahem, "premature births" fewer months after the honeymoon than simple math might indicate.


(Edit -- * and others of similar ilk in that time frame.)

Amazon
2017-08-17, 08:43 AM
You've just exampled why it's nice for women to have time apart from men, to free themselves from sexual anxiety.
Donnadogsoth lives in a world where men can't control their sexual urges and women exist only to please the male gaze. Rather than wearing a bikini in the beach because... Well... They are on the beach. Ugh. I'm disgusted.


Even so, what does my post have to do with a setting based on offensive stereotypes? Which stereotype am I using? That cultures in warmer climates have fewer taboos about public nudity? Or that patriarchal cultures tend to cover up their women more? I don't quite follow.

That women are only valuable for their beauty. That's an stereotype we still have to fight and deal with on a daily basis. If your fantasy land helps reinforce this stereotype it's a harmful piece of fiction just as fiction that reinforce racial stereotypes.


While a fair point, many of the posts on this thread are bordering on calls for censorship. And critique is one thing, but that really isn't what is going on here.
I'd rather not see this forum become yet another avenue for the SJW bickerfests that are cropping up everywhere.

Stop being so paranoid no one is doing that.


Trying to deny that virginity is an attractant is kinda silly. Many do consider it so, which is a huge factor throughout history.
Hell, the whole "white wedding" thing is proof enough. In fact, a marriage in many cases worldwide can be nullified if the woman lies about being a virgin.

Edit: even many vampire mythos requires virginity to be a factor.

That's because we live in a conservative society that associate's sex with impurity.

Frozen_Feet
2017-08-17, 09:03 AM
1. Alright, "pedophilia" might not technically have been the correct term. It is commonly used for any attraction to underage women; or women not fully adult enough to consent; at least that is what I intended to say.

The common use of the word "pedophilia" is both technically wrong and misleading. Pedophilia is attraction to prepubescents, and is rare enough to be considered a paraphilia. More, actual pedophiles target boys as often as girls, as prepubescent children look quite similar. Attraction to early and mid adolescents is properly called hebephilia. Attraction to late adolescents is called ephebophilia. However, none of these refer to coincidental attraction to minors caused by the fact that the individual minor had gone through puberty particularly soon. Neither ephebophilia nor coincidental attraction can be fairly considered paraphilias, nor is there any evidence that they are source of major societal problems.

There are relevant clinical and criminological differences between each case. To give an easy-to-understand example: a 15-year-old steals her 18-year-old sister's personal ids and goes into a bar. She looks close enough to pass and gets in. Some guy hits on her, offers her a drink, and takes her home. Next day, her parents (etc.) find this out and file statutory rape charges against the guy. The guy appeals that he thought she was 18. The court looks at the girl and agrees that yes, she does indeed look like her older sister, and the guy had a reason to think she was 18 because the bouncer had let her in. Hence, the verdict is not guilty, or the guy gets minimal sentence.

Every single time this happens, there are a thousand stupid people calling for the "dirty pedophile" to be hanged, castrated, isolated from kids etc., not realizing the guy would've never committed any crime due to if not for the girl's own actions, and never was nor would've been any danger to any prepubescent kids in any normal situation involving prepubescent kids.


2. Marriagable age in Germany is 18; though there are technically exceptions in very rare cases. But, beyond that: Something being legal is not the same as something being moral. Age of consent in some parts of the world is 12. Is that an argument that everyone should lower it to that?

Minimum marriable age is not good indicator of anything. Neither is age of consent. These are largely arbitrary legal guidelines, put in because the line needs to be drawn somewhere. They rarely reflect actual practice and attitudes of people.

Also remember, that while legal is not the same as moral, neither is illegal the same as immoral. The morality of an act is best left to be judged on case-by-case basis, rather than trying to cement it in rule of law.


3. I am highly dubious of the claim that most women have reached the end of puberty at 15. My experience says otherwise. 15 years old look a lot differently from 20 year olds, even today; and the body has not fully reached maturity at 15; even though age of puberty onset has advanced.

Contemporary women typically reach end of puberty at 15 to 17 years of age. 17 was the mode last I checked, but that was years ago, so more recent statistics might differ. (As noted before, this used to be higher by several years only 200 years ago.) Your experience is probably biased by several things: first, there are more women who reach end of puberty well past age 17, than there are women who reach it well before 14. Second, you are unlikely to recognize those 15-years-olds who have reached full physical maturity as 15-year-olds, because they don't fit your mental image of people of that age. Third, when you compare immature-looking 15-year-olds with mature-looking 20-year-olds, you only reinforce this image. What you ought to do, is find people who really did finish puberty at 15, and compare them to how they look at 20. Barring abysmal lifestyle choices, the difference is usually minimal.


4. Even beyond that, as Calthropstu points out: Physical maturity has little to do with mental maturity. And there has been little proof mental maturity has gone down in "at what age is it reached" as much as physical.

"Mental maturity" is largely a social construct. There is no good, culture-independent definition of such. But at least in Finland, an argument can be made that the age of mental maturity has gone up: people enter working life, settle down and have kids much later than they used to. There's a trend of people of both sexes carrying youthfull or adolescent-like behaviour well into their twenties. So while physical and sexual adulthood are reached earlier, mental and especially social maturity seems to be reached later.

Whether this is a good or bad thing is another debate entirely; as is how much this should affect considerations of the mere act of sex, specifically. Because many of the reasons why we don't want adolescents to boink (lack of financial security, pregnancies, disease etc.) are increasingly mitigated by modern technology and social services. It may be the most relevant problems in sexual relationships between adolescents and adults have nothing at all to do with physical and mental maturity, but rather, economical and social inequality.


5. I am highly doubtful of the claim that the classical virign of the tales is typically, or on average or whatever, 15.

So do I; I doubt there is even a good statistics for a niche question like this.


6. Marriagable age, incidentally, was not way below 15 in the past. Or... sometimes it was, but the marriage wasn't consummated until way later. Most marriages in older times took place in people's 20s; and the ones that didn't were political ties by noble houses. To top that off, they were usually between people of similar age - 15 year old wanting each other is not something I wanted to call a problem.

Marriage also wasn't generally based on mutual attraction between participants, it was based on agreement between families. Also, again, as noted before, people reached end of puberty later in the past; so it is in fact not logically sound to justify marriages at young ages by attraction to post-pubescent traits. For example, if a girl was married off at the age of 15 more than 200 years in the past, it's dubious they would've looked as "fertile" as a contemporary 15-year-old.

The conclusion I'd draw from this is that marriages at young ages (15 and below) were and are primarily social constructs, with only a feeble link to biology and psychology of attraction.


7. Saying that the ideal age of beauty for women is 15, and it is perfectly natural to find girls at this age arousing just reeks of justifications for interactions with them on that basis, I'm sorry. The claim normalises an attraction that it is highly, highly questionable in ethics if ever acted upon (because of emotional maturity even moreso than any theoretical physical one) - a normalisation that can very well lead to rationalisations. Taking it as the most natural even moreso.
(I mean, it depends on the age gap, of course. An 18 year old and a 15 year old are a very different question to a 25 year old and a 15 year old.)

As I hope to have established by the extensive talk on how the onset and end of puberty have shifted, there is no set "ideal age" for beauty. There may be some ideal of beauty that is appealing to vast majority of men and women both; but what numerical age that ideal is achieved at, and how long a person can maintain it, will vary by environment and conditions. Even if all people on this thread agreed that "ideal beauty" is "statistically most commonly found in contemporary 15 year olds", it would be trivial to show there are loads and loads of women who achieve such beauty later, or maintain it well into their twenties.

As for the "normalisation/rationalisation" line of thought: if there is, indeed, some biologically hardwired "ideal beauty", then by definition Floret you lost the fight before it even began. In some ways you lose it even now: again, there are 15-year-olds who are attractive to adult men by virtue of looking like normal adult women, for the place and time they inhabit. Hence normal adult males need no special rationalisation, as their feelings are already normal. That's why things like the bar example I gave earlier happen. If you take it as a primarily ethical problem, you will rapidly find yourself pushing for increasingly absurd cultural norms yourself.

Of course, despite all of the above, I have seen little proof that men actually do find 15-year-olds as ideal targets of pursuit; they actually seem most fixated on women on their early twenties.

S@tanicoaldo
2017-08-17, 09:17 AM
Because it's wrong. Women who aren't insane or stupid will know that their bare skin is a mild sexual signal to men young and old. And, why stop there? Why not make other sexual signals, go naked and expose oneself to everyone while making disgusting...you get the idea.

Are ok there buddy? You do realize you kind of sound crazy in this post right? Cause you do.


Women who think they need to wear bikinis “just for themselves” are fooling themselves, every bit as their European analogues who go to topless beaches “just for themselves” (for their tan!) are fooling themselves.

Duly noted, next time I will make sure to wear arctic gear. ;p

hamishspence
2017-08-17, 09:34 AM
To give an easy-to-understand example: a 15-year-old steals her 18-year-old sister's personal ids and goes into a bar. She looks close enough to pass and gets in. Some guy hits on her, offers her a drink, and takes her home. Next day, her parents (etc.) find this out and file statutory rape charges against the guy. The guy appeals that he thought she was 18. The court looks at the girl and agrees that yes, she does indeed look like her older sister, and the guy had a reason to think she was 18 because the bouncer had let her in. Hence, the verdict is not guilty, or the guy gets minimal sentence.

Minimum sentence, maybe, but legally speaking, no amount of "reason to think they were older" matters - the charge itself is not dependent on that factor, and mens rea (intent to break the law), does not apply - at least, that's what I read.

CharonsHelper
2017-08-17, 09:42 AM
Minimum sentence, maybe, but legally speaking, no amount of "reason to think they were older" matters - the charge itself is not dependent on that factor, and mens rea (intent to break the law), does not apply - at least, that's what I read.

That's going to vary by country, and I don't think that Frozen Feet is from the US. (I'm not going to try to weigh in on the legalese - I don't even like to do that in finance where I know the terminology.)

But even where they are 100% legally guilty of statutory rape, there is still prosecutorial discretion.

Interesting tidbit:

And heck - in some states it's totally legal for a couple of 17 yr olds to have sex, but as soon as one of them turns 18 it becomes statutory rape until the other turns 18 as well, though most states' laws on it make more sense than that.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-17, 09:49 AM
That's going to vary by country, and I don't think that Frozen Feet is from the US. (I'm not going to try to weigh in on the legalese - I don't even like to do that in finance where I know the terminology.)

But even where they are 100% legally guilty of statutory rape, there is still prosecutorial discretion.

Interesting tidbit:

And heck - in some states it's totally legal for a couple of 17 yr olds to have sex, but as soon as one of them turns 18 it becomes statutory rape until the other turns 18 as well, though most states' laws on it make more sense than that.

In most states it's also something that doesn't get prosecuted a lot because it requires someone to push the issue.

And then every once in a while a crusading prosecutor will start hunting for those cases to go after.

Floret
2017-08-17, 09:52 AM
Since this discussion is really, really tangential, and also pretty darn unnecessarily long, I am putting it all behind a spoiler...

The common use of the word "pedophilia" is both technically wrong and misleading. Pedophilia is attraction to prepubescents, and is rare enough to be considered a paraphilia. More, actual pedophiles target boys as often as girls, as prepubescent children look quite similar. Attraction to early and mid adolescents is properly called hebephilia. Attraction to late adolescents is called ephebophilia. However, none of these refer to coincidental attraction to minors caused by the fact that the individual minor had gone through puberty particularly soon. Neither ephebophilia nor coincidental attraction can be fairly considered paraphilias, nor is there any evidence that they are source of major societal problems.

There are relevant clinical and criminological differences between each case. To give an easy-to-understand example: a 15-year-old steals her 18-year-old sister's personal ids and goes into a bar. She looks close enough to pass and gets in. Some guy hits on her, offers her a drink, and takes her home. Next day, her parents (etc.) find this out and file statutory rape charges against the guy. The guy appeals that he thought she was 18. The court looks at the girl and agrees that yes, she does indeed look like her older sister, and the guy had a reason to think she was 18 because the bouncer had let her in. Hence, the verdict is not guilty, or the guy gets minimal sentence.

Every single time this happens, there are a thousand stupid people calling for the "dirty pedophile" to be hanged, castrated, isolated from kids etc., not realizing the guy would've never committed any crime due to if not for the girl's own actions, and never was nor would've been any danger to any prepubescent kids in any normal situation involving prepubescent kids.

Yeah... I was wrong to use the common usage; I just didn't have the correct terms onhand and (somewhat) overreacted to what I see as a very, very dangerous line of thinking. The typical 15yearolds I remember from being that age myself (Which was less then a decade ago) would squarely fall under hebephilia; which I'd still classify as a paraphilia (Unless you are in those age groups yourself).
And, sure. With only these factors, I'd very much agree with the verdict. I mean, there are also other problems in that public attitude beyond the lynchmob on people in such situations - it makes it more difficult for the somewhat unfortunate people with actual problems in that regard to open up about it and seek help to prevent any action that would be immoral and damaging. ...I suppose my actions earlier somewhat contradict my actual opinion on the subject, it is just one rarely treated with the nuance it deserves; and such attraction being the norm has been a claim made a few too many times by quite despicable people to not set off alarm bells and reflexes of mine.
It is not the claim that some attraction to people looking old, but not technically adults by an arbitrary legal barrier that offset these reflexes, it was the claim that ideal beauty and attractiveness peaked at 15. And that? That is... something.


Minimum marriable age is not good indicator of anything. Neither is age of consent. These are largely arbitrary legal guidelines, put in because the line needs to be drawn somewhere. They rarely reflect actual practice and attitudes of people.

Also remember, that while legal is not the same as moral, neither is illegal the same as immoral. The morality of an act is best left to be judged on case-by-case basis, rather than trying to cement it in rule of law.

I mean, yes. That was my point :smallwink:. Morality and legality are... hopefully most of the time, but not necessarily linked; so putting the legal situation as an argument for something being alright in any but a strickly legal sense was a poor argument.


Contemporary women typically reach end of puberty at 15 to 17 years of age. 17 was the mode last I checked, but that was years ago, so more recent statistics might differ. (As noted before, this used to be higher by several years only 200 years ago.) Your experience is probably biased by several things: first, there are more women who reach end of puberty well past age 17, than there are women who reach it well before 14. Second, you are unlikely to recognize those 15-years-olds who have reached full physical maturity as 15-year-olds, because they don't fit your mental image of people of that age. Third, when you compare immature-looking 15-year-olds with mature-looking 20-year-olds, you only reinforce this image. What you ought to do, is find people who really did finish puberty at 15, and compare them to how they look at 20. Barring abysmal lifestyle choices, the difference is usually minimal.

I was referencing my own experiences of circles of friends and classmates; groups of people whose age I knew rather well :smallwink:. As written above, this is memory less than a decade old in my case.
But these data does heavily suggest that the majority of girls have not reached the end of puberty, being indistinguishable from 20somethings. I wasn't really trying to argue against there being some cases of plausible confusion (I know there are); I was trying to argue against any norm in that regard being sensible.


"Mental maturity" is largely a social construct. There is no good, culture-independent definition of such. But at least in Finland, an argument can be made that the age of mental maturity has gone up: people enter working life, settle down and have kids much later than they used to. There's a trend of people of both sexes carrying youthfull or adolescent-like behaviour well into their twenties. So while physical and sexual adulthood are reached earlier, mental and especially social maturity seems to be reached later.

Whether this is a good or bad thing is another debate entirely; as is how much this should affect considerations of the mere act of sex, specifically. Because many of the reasons why we don't want adolescents to boink (lack of financial security, pregnancies, disease etc.) are increasingly mitigated by modern technology and social services. It may be the most relevant problems in sexual relationships between adolescents and adults have nothing at all to do with physical and mental maturity, but rather, economical and social inequality.

I mean... yeah?^^ I am unsure about what exactly I said that made you think I disagree, but I apologize for creating confusion.


Marriage also wasn't generally based on mutual attraction between participants, it was based on agreement between families. Also, again, as noted before, people reached end of puberty later in the past; so it is in fact not logically sound to justify marriages at young ages by attraction to post-pubescent traits. For example, if a girl was married off at the age of 15 more than 200 years in the past, it's dubious they would've looked as "fertile" as a contemporary 15-year-old.

The conclusion I'd draw from this is that marriages at young ages (15 and below) were and are primarily social constructs, with only a feeble link to biology and psychology of attraction.

Yes. Pretty exactly what I wanted to say.


As I hope to have established by the extensive talk on how the onset and end of puberty have shifted, there is no set "ideal age" for beauty. There may be some ideal of beauty that is appealing to vast majority of men and women both; but what numerical age that ideal is achieved at, and how long a person can maintain it, will vary by environment and conditions. Even if all people on this thread agreed that "ideal beauty" is "statistically most commonly found in contemporary 15 year olds", it would be trivial to show there are loads and loads of women who achieve such beauty later, or maintain it well into their twenties.

Uhm... sure, you have; though I am not sure I needed convincing of that in the first place.


As for the "normalisation/rationalisation" line of thought: if there is, indeed, some biologically hardwired "ideal beauty", then by definition Floret you lost the fight before it even began. In some ways you lose it even now: again, there are 15-year-olds who are attractive to adult men by virtue of looking like normal adult women, for the place and time they inhabit. Hence normal adult males need no special rationalisation, as their feelings are already normal. That's why things like the bar example I gave earlier happen. If you take it as a primarily ethical problem, you will rapidly find yourself pushing for increasingly absurd cultural norms yourself.

The question would be what fight I am even fighting :smallwink: I think I have somehow projected a very different image of that than I actually do.
(...Really one of these days I have to figure out how to phrase, in written text, opinions I hold strongly without making me sound like an extremist. It seems to become a problem...)
Because what I am arguing for is not a strict moral principle adhearance to the letter of any law; but rather an adherence to "make as sure as you can that any person you interact with is able to consent, and understands what is going on as well as you do". Or "don't take intentional advantage of the naivety of others". 15year olds generally have a much poorer understanding of what's going on in these regards than most adults. And it should be the more experienced party that takes responsibility - generally, that will be the older party. I don't think this is bound to expand much :smallwink:
(Generally the older, there are of course, because human development is messy and doesn't follow patterns, cases where this is not the case)


Of course, despite all of the above, I have seen little proof that men actually do find 15-year-olds as ideal targets of pursuit; they actually seem most fixated on women on their early twenties.

Yeah. Which made the claim Donnadogsoth made even more dubious, and heavily contributed to setting of alarm bells of mine.
Note: I am not saying Donnadogsoth is advocating for anything; just that his rhetoric falls in very (un)comfortably with other rhetoric of people with definitively amoral aims and beliefs.


Trying to deny that virginity is an attractant is kinda silly. Many do consider it so, which is a huge factor throughout history.
Hell, the whole "white wedding" thing is proof enough. In fact, a marriage in many cases worldwide can be nullified if the woman lies about being a virgin.

Edit: even many vampire mythos requires virginity to be a factor.

Virginity might be a factor for some places, yes, but attitudes to this are pretty much exclusively cultural in nature. As others have pointed out, our view on the past has been warped through societies rather recently pushing their own views on us. (Even beyond the political sphere of Victorian England, Germany's Biedermeier really wasn't much different (And about as stuck-up as that word sounds. At least to Germans.)

Incidentally many places claim that "virginal blood" cited for magical rituals used to mean "Not used for a ritual before", rather than "from a virgin".

2D8HP
2017-08-17, 10:42 AM
....data does heavily suggest that the majority of girls have not reached the end of puberty, being indistinguishable from 20somethings.


Not just girls, boys too.

Wow, I really underestimated how far afield this thread would get.

I will just throw my two coppers in, 17 year-olds are not yet adults!

Even 18 year-olds are only legally adults, as their amygdala and pre-frontal cortex are still developing (https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/risky-behavior-by-teens-can-be-explained-in-part-by-how-their-brains-change/2014/08/29/28405df0-27d2-11e4-8593-da634b334390_story.html?utm_term=.52fe15cfbf9a).

Most get an "adult" brain by their mid 20'.IIRC, some studies show that some who still have "teenage" brains into their 20's, may more easily learn new information than those who's brains become "adult" earlier, but "adolescent" brains do not have the same emotional control.

A 20 year-old is far more likely to commit a murder than a 26 year-old.

They're as tall (or taller) than adults, but they're still kids.

Frankly even a 29 year-old dating a 20 year-old still feels wrong to me (which is the age difference of my now long divorced parents). Yeah, my grandmother was 16 when she married my then 22 year-old grandfather, but this isn't 1941, and besides they didn't have my mother until '46, so I don't think they were "together" much, and I really don't think the standards of then are applicable BECAUSE 16 YEAR-OLDS SHOULD NOT BE GETTING MARRIED IN THE 21st CENTURY!

Clear?

Vote Greyview!

Floret
2017-08-17, 10:50 AM
Not just girls, boys too.

Of course. My language was rather focussed because noone was discussing them.
An oversight; though I do believe I phrased at least some relevant parts neutral enough :smallwink:

Bohandas
2017-08-17, 11:12 AM
Men and women constitute mysteries, because reproduction is heavy stuff and needs to be approached with care.

No, it's banal. Rats, worms, and flies can figure it out. I think humans have got it covered.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-17, 11:22 AM
No, it's banal. Rats, worms, and flies can figure it out. I think humans have got it covered.

"Reproduction" for humans is a lot more than "make a bunch of babies".

Of note is that the three you listed are all r-strategy, while humans are extremely K-strategy. And beyond that there's a lot of social and financial complexity for many humans.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R/K_selection_theory

Dragonexx
2017-08-17, 12:06 PM
http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/029/970/trainn.jpg?1260328965

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-17, 12:46 PM
I blame goblins.

Talakeal
2017-08-17, 12:48 PM
@Floret:

About Fictional Settings:

Again, keep in mind that I was responding to Max's assertion that it is only the verisimilitude / realism aspects of bikini armor he objected to. If you are arguing about any sort of inherent sexism, or moralism, or authorial intent you are (almost certainly unintentionally) attacking a straw-man.

Also, if it is always better to avoid an attack than deflect it, why would anyone ever wear armor? 50+ pounds of metal would impede one's ability to dodge, that's just basic physics. I was specifically comparing a situation like Rapiers vs. Full Plate against something like Star Wars blasters against Storm Trooper armor, the former makes the weapon all but useless, the latter makes the armor all but useless.


About Athletes:

Keep in mind that adventurers are not soldiers. Adventurers spend a lot more time exploring and trekking through the wilderness than they actually do fighting.

Aside from that, military uniforms are made to make people look, well, uniform. Part of being a hero, for me, is being able to look unique, and part of the artistic appeal is being able to show off a heroic physique rather than having to hide it under 50 pounds of steel.

I, personally, hate wearing restrictive / covering clothing in real life. Part of the fantasy is being able to wear things that I find comfortable and look good while doing it.


About Statutory Rape:

Again, not trying to justify behavior, just clarifying terms.

I also don't think that declaring something natural has any baring on morality, for example if someone is sleeping with my wife I feel it to be a perfectly natural response to want to beat his head in with a rock as a display of primal dominance, but that is still murder and neither ethical nor legal. IMO it is intellectually dishonest to pretend something is unnatural just because it is immoral or illegal.

Frozen_Feet
2017-08-17, 01:33 PM
@Hamisphence: the legal nittygrits are outside the scope of these threads to discuss. Suffice to say, you'd be absolutely right in some jurisdictions, less so in others

@CharonsHelper: yes, unsurprisingly, the cultural alien who claims to be from Finland and often uses Finland as an example case is, in fact, not from USA. :smallwink:

@Floret: I was neither arguing for nor against you; your post just included a convenient set of talking points that I used as an excuse to provide more information. It's there for people who read it to take from it what they will.

@2D8HP: I didn't feel the need to talk about boys, as the tangent was about what men find attractive in women. But in general, it's well known puberty begins and ends later for boys. Likewise, changes in the brain continue well past physical puberty, but those changes are not outwardly visible, so they do not factor into attraction save for where they affect behaviour. An argument could be made that immature behaviour in a mature-looking individuals is off-putting; which might explain why, even if older men find adolescent women attractive, they would rather seek relationship with women over twenty. But this is guesswork, I know of no recent studies nor statistics concerning this.

---

All of this got me thinking how age could potentially affect use of armour in a setting. Would younger people, especially young men, be more reckless and hence use less armor than older men and women? In general, women are less prone to risk-taking and more concerned with personal safety, so given an opportunity, it'd be plausible for women to drift towards more defensive equipment and fighting styles. What "defensive" means may be counterintuitive, however. In studies on adolescent violence, boys tended to grapple and brawl; that is, use tactics relying on size and strength. Meanwhile, girls tended to kick, bite, scratch and throw objects; that is, use pain and projection of force over distance to avoid being physically overwhelmed.

In real combat, this would translate to polearms, ranged weapons and dirty fighting. Controlling distance, hard and fast strikes to dissuade an enemy from attacking or injuring them before they injure you.

In real life, some of this may have factored into how, for example, Naginata was consired a women's weapon.

Floret
2017-08-17, 01:33 PM
Again, keep in mind that I was responding to Max's assertion that it is only the verisimilitude / realism aspects of bikini armor he objected to. If you are arguing about any sort of inherent sexism, or moralism, or authorial intent you are (almost certainly unintentionally) attacking a straw-man.

Also, if it is always better to avoid an attack than deflect it, why would anyone ever wear armor? 50+ pounds of metal would impede one's ability to dodge, that's just basic physics. I was specifically comparing a situation like Rapiers vs. Full Plate against something like Star Wars blasters against Storm Trooper armor, the former makes the weapon all but useless, the latter makes the armor all but useless.

I think that got somewhat confused, I apologize.
I still retain that if your setting is basing itself on "this is gonna justify bikini armor", you should better have some damn good reason for wanting that, if you want to avoid (somewhat justified) criticism. I am not directing that at you, or trying to say you are trying to do that - just in general.

As for the armor and not getting hit...
1. 50 pounds certainly is the upper end of the spectrum, afaik. Most armor is lighter than that. (I think my mail clocks in at maybe 20-25 pounds? Bit more with the gambeson, but nowhere near 50.)
2. Yes, armor does certainly impede your ability to move - I have some first-hand experience. :smallwink: It might do so quite a bit less than many people imagine, though. I dunno how informed you are on that subject generally.
3. "Not getting hit" is always the preferable option. That is just simple logic. A hit that doesn't strike you is one that cannot deal damage.
4. However, noone is, in reality, that good at evading blows, especially when it comes to mass battle (Which is probably most historical combat?). Noone can fully, reliably, avoid everything.
5. If something hits, it wearing something that can compensate (some of) the hit is, obviously, preferable.
6. So, all in all, it is a tradeoff. You sacrifice some of your chance to avoid attacks entirely for your ability to survive them if they do hit - Preferring a 10% increased risk of injury if it means a 50% decrease in chance of death. The question of wearing armor is always about this tradeoff (Though calculating it exactly is basically impossible IRL).
7. For your examples: Even in full plate, it is better to not get hit by a rapier. Sure, it might bounce off? But it also might find a crack, or an unprotected part (As armor always has weakspots, because metal isn't form-fitting enough to not involve straps). Not getting hit is preferable. Blasters vs. Storm trooper armor just changes this tradeoff - you still have the 10% increased chance of getting hit, but gain almost no decrease in chance of death in return.
8. Bonus fact: Armor is obviously also a tradeoff in other areas (weight, speed of getting dressed); and armor design works very much with such tradeoffs. Some regions of the world had mail shirts that were open at the front, closable with clasps. A glaring gap in protection - but one worth it, under some circumstances, since you can put that on much faster, and in a much more defensible stance.


Keep in mind that adventurers are not soldiers. Adventurers spend a lot more time exploring and trekking through the wilderness than they actually do fighting.

Aside from that, military uniforms are made to make people look, well, uniform. Part of being a hero, for me, is being able to look unique, and part of the artistic appeal is being able to show off a heroic physique rather than having to hide it under 50 pounds of steel.

I, personally, hate wearing restrictive / covering clothing in real life. Part of the fantasy is being able to wear things that I find comfortable and look good while doing it.

Well, I wouldn't want my adventurer or combatant to be dressed like an athlete, either, to be honest. The wilderness presents quite different requirements for clothes from a sports court. (Being fully covered can be extremely helpful, in most all cases, amongst other things. Exposed skin is the devil in a forest. Or a desert. Or a snowstorm. Pretty much everywhere, tbh. On open fields it can be okay, but winds and weather (or tall grass) might get you even there.)
Beyond that I'd like to point out that I specifically said "warriors", not "soldiers". I never argued for a uniform. (Though I do see quite some appeal in them being used as part of a character's outfit; but that is personal taste) Neither is "warrior" synonymous with 50-pound armor; though showing off the heroic physique (I suppose suns out, guns out style?) will always conflict with realism in a combat situation somewhat. You do you, of course. Just don't approach this from any angle of realism (Not that I am certain you have).


Again, not trying to justify behavior, just clarifying terms.

I also don't think that declaring something natural has any baring on morality, for example if someone is sleeping with my wife I feel it to be a perfectly natural response to want to beat his head in with a rock as a display of primal dominance, but that is still murder and neither ethical nor legal. IMO it is intellectually dishonest to pretend something is unnatural just because it is immoral or illegal.

I know you aren't.

And... yes, I'd agree. But the context of the post seemed to make it rather clear to me that "This is natural" was used as an argument for "This is acceptable" - and for me, the assumption that it was natural at all seemed more important to call out than the appeal to nature fallacy (Or whatever that is called technically?)
I did not mean to put natural and moral in any more of a relationship than legal and moral - Both assumptions are fallacies, in all directions.


@Floret: I was neither arguing for nor against you; your post just included a convenient set of talking points that I used as an excuse to provide more information. It's there for people who read it to take from it what they will.

Alright, good to know^^ In the whole debating thing I read your posts differently, but good to have that cleared up. You're welcome for the talking points :smallwink:


All of this got me thinking how age could potentially affect use of armour in a setting. Would younger people, especially young men, be more reckless and hence use less armor than older men and women? In general, women are less prone to risk-taking and more concerned with personal safety, so given an opportunity, it'd be plausible for women to drift towards more defensive equipment and fighting styles. What "defensive" means may be counterintuitive, however. In studies on adolescent violence, boys tended to grapple and brawl; that is, use tactics relying on size and strength. Meanwhile, girls tended to kick, bite, scratch and throw objects; that is, use pain and projection of force over distance to avoid being physically overwhelmed.

In real combat, this would translate to polearms, ranged weapons and dirty fighting. Controlling distance, hard and fast strikes to dissuade an enemy from attacking or injuring them before they injure you.

In real life, some of this may have factored into how, for example, Naginata was consired a women's weapon.

Interesting question, and possibly an interesting thing to explore in a setting (With greater gender equality; but still - other - gender stereotypes).

I would mention the fact that as far as ranged weapons go; bows at least are surprisingly (If looking at who gets what weapons in CRPGs) less suited to women on average, because they need, especially warbows, considerable arm strength, something that is easier to obtain when on testosterone. (Like I said... average. Overlap between women and men is much greater than the difference in averages or peaks; so if this were a factor, it might end up (with no further societal gender bias) at maybe 30%-40% women in archery units or sth; below 50, but way above 0 :smallwink:) Of course that doesn't apply to arquebuses or crossbows.

How great to portray these differences I'd be somewhat iffy on, but it is an interesting question, though sadly not really something possible to measure out.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-17, 01:35 PM
@Floret:

About Fictional Settings:

Again, keep in mind that I was responding to Max's assertion that it is only the verisimilitude / realism aspects of bikini armor he objected to. If you are arguing about any sort of inherent sexism, or moralism, or authorial intent you are (almost certainly unintentionally) attacking a straw-man.


"Bikini armor" has intersections with other issues that get into objectification, etc, but I'm trying to keep them unentangled.




About Athletes:

Keep in mind that adventurers are not soldiers. Adventurers spend a lot more time exploring and trekking through the wilderness than they actually do fighting.

Aside from that, military uniforms are made to make people look, well, uniform. Part of being a hero, for me, is being able to look unique, and part of the artistic appeal is being able to show off a heroic physique rather than having to hide it under 50 pounds of steel.

I, personally, hate wearing restrictive / covering clothing in real life. Part of the fantasy is being able to wear things that I find comfortable and look good while doing it.


Which would be a character specific explanation.

What some of us have long since lost any regard or patience for, going back years before this thread existed, is the repeated use of character-specific explanations for characters they clearly don't apply to, or as blanket excuses for all instances of the sort of artwork in question.

I'd also suggest that a character for whom a revealing or lightweight or whatever outfit would make sense, can also still be depicted in a more or less objectifying, demeaning manner -- based on physique incongruity, posing, context, etc.

Ashiel
2017-08-17, 05:25 PM
Go right ahead. I've said repeatedly, that the only people you need to please are the people you play with. I probably wouldn't play that game, but I don't care if you and your friends do.

For the record (for weirdos who seem to care about such things), I am black.
I know they were getting at a racial stereotype but it also basically describes most southern Americans as well. The only reason I even like summer is because it means eating lots of watermelon with my chicken. :smallamused:
http://files.sharenator.com/Sexy_drow_ranger1-s355x533-409005.jpg

Bohandas
2017-08-17, 05:32 PM
Minimum sentence, maybe, but legally speaking, no amount of "reason to think they were older" matters - the charge itself is not dependent on that factor, and mens rea (intent to break the law), does not apply - at least, that's what I read.

Yeah, that's my understanding too. They put a lot of force behind a law that doesn't really even need to exist in the first place.

The people worrying about this that think this law is necessary concern me, they seem to harbor romantic ideas about sex that go beyond their own personal relationships. I worry that they may also think it acceptable to beat a cheating partner or punish other violations of their fatuous ideals about love. The law needs to be dispassionate, objective, emotionless, not a knee-jerk response to a meaningless exchange of carbon compounds.

Talakeal
2017-08-17, 06:34 PM
That women are only valuable for their beauty. That's an stereotype we still have to fight and deal with on a daily basis. If your fantasy land helps reinforce this stereotype it's a harmful piece of fiction just as fiction that reinforce racial stereotypes.

Ok... but when did I say anything like that?

Liquor Box
2017-08-17, 06:35 PM
And the article touches on reasons one might not just copy these issues one for one without putting some thought behind it what it means for the story and the worldbuilding. The point I'd most likely want an answer on, I think, would be these paragraphs:
"Such a goal is not as inherently problematic as homophobic set dressing, but it’s also not always straightforwardly positive either. You see, an honest wish to explore homophobia may coincide with an assumption that the oppression of non-straight persons is the ‘normal’ or ‘default’ setting for any and all societies. This is especially a problem in speculative fiction settings like science fiction or fantasy (if they bother including queer characters at all) because such genres exist outside of ‘our’ reality.

We often forget that when dealing with speculative fiction, utilizing homophobia in a narrative is a choice. The author or screenwriter has created an entirely different world and cultures from our own. Homophobia isn’t ‘normal’ on Mars or in Middle Earth unless the creator makes it so. However, even a creator who honestly wishes to explore homophobia sensitively in such a setting has, at some level, recreated a system of oppression where none needed to have existed. This may be done for with good intentions, for sure. But it’s worth asking, is this strictly necessary? Such a choice assumes the omnipresence of heteronomativity even when creating worlds and societies that are completely unlike our own.

Such an assumption carries with it the corollary assumption that suffering and struggle are inherent to queer experience. That queer relationships are somehow less ‘honest’ or ‘real’ if the characters do not at some point face systemic opposition for choosing to love who they love. I do not mean to downplay the suffering that women loving women (wlw) or men loving men (mlm) couples face in real life. I am specifically concerned with the assumption that this is somehow necessary in order to tell the stories of queer characters."


The article appears to me to suggest that portraying discrimination against homosexuality in a fantasy setting assumes that homosexuality is the norm generally. The contention is that because the setting is fantastic, it should not be the norm for such discrimination to exist, and where it does exist that means the settings author has recreated it.

I don't think that is right, because I don't think most fantasy settings are created from scratch. I think that fantasy settings are generally based on a real world period and culture.

To go back to GoT as an example, I think that the Seven Kingdoms (with the exceptions of Dorn and the Iron Isles, both of which appear to reflect different real world cultures/periods) largely reflects British culture from the medieval period - although there are unique aspects, generally the society operates under similar social systems, has similar attitudes, the military works similarly. Accordingly, Martin has not created a whole new society, he has copied a real world society and tinkered with aspects of it. As such, I would expect attitudes toward homosexuality to be similar from the Seven Kingdoms to Medieval England, unless that is one of the things that Martin specifically tinkered with.

Of course that also applies the other way. If a fantasy setting was based on a culture where homosexuality was not discriminated against (for example indigenous americans) I would expect people in the setting to not discriminate.

Where I agree with the article is if the setting is completely different to any real world culture. That might occur where a fantasy setting is so removed from resembling any real world culture that it can be said to have been truly created by the author. It also might occur in science fiction, particularly amongst alien races. For example, there is no good reason for Klingon or Vulcan races to default to discriminating against homosexuality (well there might be, but not in terms of what we have been talking about).

Liquor Box
2017-08-17, 07:31 PM
Well, for your examples...
1. No, I am not hoping people go against their own preferences. If anything I am hoping to convince people to change their preferences; or to at least reflect on them.
2. It depends. Requiring publishers to refuse this would be just censorship, of course. Convincing publishers of my view, so that they refuse them out of their own convictions, yes. Sure, if all publishers were convinced that would be similar in result, but in an age of crowdfunding and kickstarter I think that is a bearable situation. (Also, note that this applies to my previous assertion of "illogically sexualised (in an unequal fashion)". Depicting people as sexual and having sexuality be a part of games, is not something I am against.)
3. Since change in the industry would be the indication that my views were heard in a way that matters, I don't think I'd be too happy (Given that this is the current situation I can however confidently say that I am generally very able to live with this imperfection).


1. Persuading people to change their preferences is an interesting goal. Do you think that preferences of this nature are informed by conscious thought and rationality? Surely seeking to persuade someone to change their preferences as to this sort of thing is akin to persuading them to change the flavour of ice cream they prefer? I suppose advertising does seek to persuade people's preferences and tastes at a subliminal level, but that doesn't seem to be what you are going for?

2. This one I can understand. It seems to me that you would need to persuade creators of media that (a) a particular element is sexist; (b) that element occurs; (c) that sexist element is harmful; and (d) the creator should put avoidance of the harm caused by the sexist element ahead of any perceived benefit to it of continuing with the sexist element. Does that sound right?


We can agree that it isn't necessarily sexist, yes.

Ok. That you think people's reasons for preferring media with sexualised portrayals of women is not necessarily sexist,sort of ties into the above discussion about changing people's preferences.



I believe that it might be an accurate reason; but I'd prefer something more substancial, I guess? Like "Really, you are constantly putting sexyness before logic? Don't you have porn for that?" I just really, really don't understand the need, or how one could be that horny (And I am certainly not asexual).
I mean, coming back to your examples from above, the way GoT does it is different, I feel. Sex scenes, or scenes alluding to sex or sexuality (In the sense of "people being sexual beings"; not in the sense of "gay or straight") in general in non-porn can contribute to the story, setting, atmosphere, what have you. Sexyness being in parts of a thing, in the places it makes sense, is different from sexyness being tacked onto scenes where it makes little sense.

Yeah, I guess we are all wired differently. There's a phrase in English "there's no accounting for taste", which is usually used to refer to the strange tastes of another person, and means that there is no rational way to explain those tastes.


Hm. I don't think there is much value to discuss these points. Or much discussion to be had on such points, apart from comparing opinions.
I mean, the answer to "why are women more frequently sexualised" is pretty clear, from my perspective.
And the answer to the second one... "If people want sexist art, they should make it themselves and not expect the industry to cater to them." Beyond that, they of course have the same rights as I have to argue for their perspective to be reflected, even if I don't like their perspective.

I wonder if we may have misscommunicated with each other here. You spoke about sexism in media at a very broad level, and I just didn't feel able to respond at such a level because not all sexism is the same. That is why I suggested narrowing our discussion to a particular type of sexism.

I did not intend to pose those question of you. That was just my way of putting your broad questions (directed at me) as more specific questions in the context of a particular type of sexism we have been discussing (sexualisation of characters).


It is a possible reason, yeah, though now I am wondering if women that get into combat situations (As most characters we are talking about do) are any less likely to spot scars than men who do. I'd suspect they aren't, and that the gendered differences might largely disappear when controlling for profession and the like - meaning that if true, fictional fighters, adventurers and risk-takers should, if supposed to reflect reality, spot them relatively equally. Of course, that is the point where we'd need real-life numbers, "logical deduction" can get to multiple results.
Part of me wants to do it now, just to see if I can make you walk away with the same "Huh, guess my perception was a bit warped" as I had when doing the last tally^^

It is a possible reason and was intended to be no more than that. Your counterpoint with regard to scars strikes me as intuitively likely though.

Happy to go though it with you though.


Yes, it is not necessarily sufficient. Leaving aside the ambiguous Conan; Kratos from God of War is definitely scantily dressed, though the setting might call for something more sensible; but I'd strongly argue he isn't sexualised (The points in favour of Schwarzenegger Conan being don't apply to him either).
As for what could serve as additional argument, clothing positioned as to pronounce certain things (e.g. cleavage; tight pants; (Maybe midriff-baring), boobwindows, sideboob, panties/strings; catsuits (especially with cleavage-level opened zipper in the front) would count in a similar vein even though little skin is shown) or Posing to pronounce these body parts or sexyness. At what point the collection of factors pushes over the edge gets into subjective territory again.

So you think that additional clothes might make a character more sexualised? In other words, a person who is topless would be less sexualised than a person with sideboobs, or boobwindows (I am guessing what that means)? A woman with a midriff baring outfit would be more sexualised than a woman wearing the equivilent of a bikini (like the picture I compared to Conan, which you said was not sexualised)? It seems to me that we are in highly subjective territory well before we get to the question of extent.


While an athletic build might not, I think that showcasing that a build is athletic does, in some parts, require visible muscle; to differenciate it from a person who is merely slender, but not athletic. They do look differently, but might not intuitively appear as such.
And, no, trust me, that woman rather visibly works out at least a bit. A stomach of an untrained person does not really look like that. Could be more pronounced, but there are hints in there. Same goes for the guy. Their muscles don't look like those of an average non-overweight person.
Maybe this is a cultural thing - but at least around here, the majority of people who aren't overweight (And I'd even think that the majority of people aren't overweight) aren't automatically trained. If that is all you see of non-overweight people it might be easy to mix the two up; but as I said: There is a clear difference between a simply slender, untrained person; and a trained one.

Ok, fair enough then. If a person has a flat stomach and little visible fat, that is sufficient to suggest that work out a bit. So, lets abandon the label 'athletic' and instead say that there is clearly a reason for depicting a person as shirtless because their body is such (flat stomach or visible muscles, perhaps other stuff) that is shows that they work out a bit (or in a fantasy setting, have a fit body from all their adventuring)?


I am saying that it is a clearly visible second option for why he his depicted shirtlessly.
And I would combat that by including "having a generally/conventionally attractive body" as a prerequisite for being sexualised (Applying the same principles of dressing onto characters without these bodys is pretty much only done for comedy). An implicit assumption so far (after all, to be able to look sexy, you have to kinda be sexy), but I guess there might be value to making it explicit.
Yes, I tend to agree here - I think being conventionally unattractive detracts from the sexualisation of a character.

[quote]German version would be "Eichhörnchen", however hard to pronounce it might be for non-German speakers :smallwink:[/quote[
Thanks. I wont try to pronounce it, but I may try to slip the written word into something at some stage.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-17, 09:26 PM
Donnadogsoth lives in a world where men can't control their sexual urges and women exist only to please the male gaze. Rather than wearing a bikini in the beach because... Well... They are on the beach. Ugh. I'm disgusted.

Oh, good grief, Amazon. You're going to play such slandering Internet games?? Please quote where I said "men can't control their sexual urges" and "women exist only to please the male gaze" before I write you off as acting in bad faith.

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-17, 09:37 PM
No, it's banal. Rats, worms, and flies can figure it out. I think humans have got it covered.

Are they your role models?

Donnadogsoth
2017-08-17, 09:40 PM
*snip*

Appreciate your response. Will return to this soon.

2D8HP
2017-08-17, 10:25 PM
...No, I am not hoping people go against their own preferences. If anything I am hoping to convince people to change their preferences; or to at least reflect on them...


Well, this thread has made me reflect.

I started being very defensive of the art in old D&D (which still doesn't look that bad to my eyes), but reading some of the other defenses of some of that art, makes me reconsider my defense.



Oh, good grief, Amazon. You're going to play such slandering Internet games?? .


:confused:

Really Donnadogsoth?

It just looked to me likeAmazon just did a short synopsis of your post.

I must have mis-read you.

Please detail how you differ.

Calthropstu
2017-08-17, 11:53 PM
6. Marriagable age, incidentally, was not way below 15 in the past. Or... sometimes it was, but the marriage wasn't consummated until way later. Most marriages in older times took place in people's 20s; and the ones that didn't were political ties by noble houses. To top that off, they were usually between people of similar age - 15 year old wanting each other is not something I wanted to call a problem.
Ummm... you are wrong. VERY VERY WRONG.
Until 1908, the lowest legal marriage age in the United states was 7.
During the days of Christopher Columbus, native brides were shipped to Portugal. In his memiors, requests for virgin brides (typically ranging between 8 and 12) was so high he could not keep up with demand.
Hell, even the bible mentions virgin untouched brides going so far back as the days of Moses (though it does not mention age)
The Koran, the holy book of Islam, openly states the legal marriage age should be 9.
In India, child brides are STILL a common thing, going down to 11 years old. This has been a tradition for thousands of years.
It was actually the British who started the trend of raising the legal marriage age. This is a very recent development, less than 200 years. Up until then, the marriage age average was very very low.

Edit: To be fair, however, there IS the fact that life expectancy was also much lower so it does kind of make sense.

Max_Killjoy
2017-08-18, 12:34 AM
Ummm... you are wrong. VERY VERY WRONG.
Until 1908, the lowest legal marriage age in the United states was 7.
During the days of Christopher Columbus, native brides were shipped to Portugal. In his memiors, requests for virgin brides (typically ranging between 8 and 12) was so high he could not keep up with demand.
Hell, even the bible mentions virgin untouched brides going so far back as the days of Moses (though it does not mention age)
The Koran, the holy book of Islam, openly states the legal marriage age should be 9.
In India, child brides are STILL a common thing, going down to 11 years old. This has been a tradition for thousands of years.
It was actually the British who started the trend of raising the legal marriage age. This is a very recent development, less than 200 years. Up until then, the marriage age average was very very low.

Edit: To be fair, however, there IS the fact that life expectancy was also much lower so it does kind of make sense.

There's been a lot of recent research calling into question the past "knowns" of historical marriage age.

Frozen_Feet
2017-08-18, 12:59 AM
@Calthropstu: your collection of historical tidbits may be correct. They're just not good proof for the argument that desire for virginal brides is natural, as opposed to cultural.

Calthropstu
2017-08-18, 02:25 AM
There's been a lot of recent research calling into question the past "knowns" of historical marriage age.

I have SEEN the letters of Columbus, so that is quite verifiable. I have also read the Koran and seen the fact that it does, in fact, show the prophet bedding his 9yo wife.
Your "recent research..." what are your sources? Mine are historical documents easily verifiable.
Old laws, verifiable documents, well documented abuses, old slave trade records from the roman empire and beyond...
So what, pray tell, are these sources that refute this?

Bohandas
2017-08-18, 02:28 AM
Old laws, verifiable documents, well documented abuses, old slave trade records from the roman empire and beyond...

Isn't "old slave trade records from the roman empire and beyond" redundant with both "verifiable documents" and "well documented abuses"

Bohandas
2017-08-18, 02:32 AM
Are they your role models?

No, they're not very bright. But then again that's the point. Dim as they are they're bright enough to figure sex out.

Also, you put them down now but they're going to eat your body after you're dead. (Maybe not mine though, I plan to be plastinated.)

Princess
2017-08-18, 02:46 AM
I have SEEN the letters of Columbus, so that is quite verifiable. I have also read the Koran and seen the fact that it does, in fact, show the prophet bedding his 9yo wife.
Your "recent research..." what are your sources? Mine are historical documents easily verifiable.
Old laws, verifiable documents, well documented abuses, old slave trade records from the roman empire and beyond...
So what, pray tell, are these sources that refute this?

They are all historical examples, but they are piecemeal and do not guarantee universality. There is significant reason to believe arranged marriages could go years without consummation, evidenced by many surviving genealogies in Asia indicating 20 years or more between generations. It's also very hard to establish what the intent was in certain documents where taboos existed about what could or could not be explicitly clarified. Most likely, it varied substantially between cultures and individuals. Because human behavior is complicated and there is an element of apparent randomness in many attitudes. As a counter example to the Quranic reference you make, its worth mentioning that Muhammad's first marriage was to a woman 15 years older than himself who initiated the proposal. It is still considered normal, despite Chinese government disapproval, for Tibetan women to marry multiple younger men, and wait a few years before actually having any children with as many of them as they feel like.

It has been widely accepted that marrying very young was a past custom, but there's not enough evidence to conclude it was broadly true of "the past" in general, mostly because there's never been enough evidence to make any broad, general conclusions about ancient hominids apart from that they existed and did "stuff."

snowblizz
2017-08-18, 03:25 AM
It has been widely accepted that marrying very young was a past custom, but there's not enough evidence to conclude it was broadly true of "the past" in general, mostly because there's never been enough evidence to make any broad, general conclusions about ancient hominids apart from that they existed and did "stuff."
Marrying old was also a past custom. And younger men marrying older women. And many variants in between. It was quite common in medieval times for an apprentice to marry his master's widow (often 10+ years his senior) so the business and livelyhood could continue.

There's two really good BBC (think both were, one coulda been some kind of open university thing) documentaries about marrige and sex in medieaval times which debunk a lot of the things we take for granted. Broadly speaking more common folk would marry quite late, at an age we'd see more in this day and age due to the need to establish an economic foundation for the marriage. Which incidentally was it's main purpose. And probably not to "child brides" since what you needed was someone to share the workload of a farm or household. This also lead to quite "modern families" as opposed to Victorian or classic 1950s "nuclear families" as when your spouse died you found a new one, who probably also had a previous family. If you lived long enough, and most did, could easily go through 2-3 or more marriages.

Conversly in parts of society where marriage was a politicla tool girls very young would be bethrothed and married to boys or men largely depending on politics. So eg the daughters of Henry VIII were put up as brides multiple times as the political winds blew between England, France and Spain/HRE. Even then could take years for the marriage to be properly concluded if bride or groom (or both) were very young.

Calthropstu
2017-08-18, 03:25 AM
They are all historical examples, but they are piecemeal and do not guarantee universality. There is significant reason to believe arranged marriages could go years without consummation, evidenced by many surviving genealogies in Asia indicating 20 years or more between generations. It's also very hard to establish what the intent was in certain documents where taboos existed about what could or could not be explicitly clarified. Most likely, it varied substantially between cultures and individuals. Because human behavior is complicated and there is an element of apparent randomness in many attitudes. As a counter example to the Quranic reference you make, its worth mentioning that Muhammad's first marriage was to a woman 15 years older than himself who initiated the proposal. It is still considered normal, despite Chinese government disapproval, for Tibetan women to marry multiple younger men, and wait a few years before actually having any children with as many of them as they feel like.

It has been widely accepted that marrying very young was a past custom, but there's not enough evidence to conclude it was broadly true of "the past" in general, mostly because there's never been enough evidence to make any broad, general conclusions about ancient hominids apart from that they existed and did "stuff."

If you are going back before written history, sure. With no records, all we have are oral histories passed down through generations eventually written... which is not reliable at all.
What we do have:
Written documents detailing the practices of native americans from the spanish, french, english an portuguese. These seem to indicate young relationships.
Written documentation from the Roman Empire.
Written documentation from Arab nations.
Written documentation from Asian empires.
Written documentation from people who traveled the world.
Written documentation of people who worked in the slave trade.
Now sure, we can completely disregard all of that, and draw whatever conclusions we want. But I call bull****.

Bohandas
2017-08-18, 03:37 AM
To be fair there's also written documentation of unicorns and miracles

hamishspence
2017-08-18, 03:58 AM
Conversly in parts of society where marriage was a politicla tool girls very young would be bethrothed and married to boys or men largely depending on politics. So eg the daughters of Henry VIII were put up as brides multiple times as the political winds blew between England, France and Spain/HRE. Even then could take years for the marriage to be properly concluded if bride or groom (or both) were very young.

A notable historical example of "married at 12, pregnant at 13" - Henry VII's mother:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Beaufort,_Countess_of_Richmond_and_Derby

And because she was not fully grown - the damage done meant she could never give birth again.

It wouldn't surprise me if there were dozens of other historical examples - despite it clearly being counterproductive to guaranteeing offspring from a marriage, people still acted that way.

Floret
2017-08-18, 04:26 AM
The article appears to me to suggest that portraying discrimination against homosexuality in a fantasy setting assumes that homosexuality is the norm generally. The contention is that because the setting is fantastic, it should not be the norm for such discrimination to exist, and where it does exist that means the settings author has recreated it.

I don't think that is right, because I don't think most fantasy settings are created from scratch. I think that fantasy settings are generally based on a real world period and culture.

To go back to GoT as an example, I think that the Seven Kingdoms (with the exceptions of Dorn and the Iron Isles, both of which appear to reflect different real world cultures/periods) largely reflects British culture from the medieval period - although there are unique aspects, generally the society operates under similar social systems, has similar attitudes, the military works similarly. Accordingly, Martin has not created a whole new society, he has copied a real world society and tinkered with aspects of it. As such, I would expect attitudes toward homosexuality to be similar from the Seven Kingdoms to Medieval England, unless that is one of the things that Martin specifically tinkered with.

Of course that also applies the other way. If a fantasy setting was based on a culture where homosexuality was not discriminated against (for example indigenous americans) I would expect people in the setting to not discriminate.

Where I agree with the article is if the setting is completely different to any real world culture. That might occur where a fantasy setting is so removed from resembling any real world culture that it can be said to have been truly created by the author. It also might occur in science fiction, particularly amongst alien races. For example, there is no good reason for Klingon or Vulcan races to default to discriminating against homosexuality (well there might be, but not in terms of what we have been talking about).

That is pretty much the point I want to discuss, yes.
And... no, they are. Taking bits of other settings or real life as inspiration is just that: Taking them as inspiration, but not in a way that in any way forces you to accept everything that comes with it (obviously). Just because you are adding a whole bunch of facts to your setting simultaneously, that come in a neat little package, doesn't excuse you from the responsibility for every little thing you do put in there.

Mabye an example: Firstly, The Dark Eye is probably as based in Real-life cultures as you can get - everytime I explain the setting to a new player, I end up going "Basically Spain"; "Basically Russia" or "Basically Vikings" somewhere in there (And, for pretty much every single culture). With that, they took clothing styles, technology, sometimes political systems (The "Russia" even has a ghetto in its capital, housing... Goblins; not the Jew-inspired culture). But at the same time, most of the continent follows not one, but twelve gods (plus numerous demigods and other beings); one of which preaches entertainments; festivals; pleasures and free love; the acceptance of that god making in most parts of the world homosexuality an open secret at worst. Most of the continent also has full gender equality (Or it would, if the authors actually knew what that meant.). Here, taking real-world analogues are still very visible, but at the same time the structures of discrimination dissolved.

If that is possible and easily accepted; I cannot see "this was based on a real-world equivalent" as much of an argument. The Fantasy culture was crafted from scratch, even though with inspiration (And noone is free of inspiration). Everything an author writes and puts there, they have created. That they were somewhat lazy and put in a bunch of things at once without thinking about the impact of those things is not an excuse.
As I said, I am not saying "don't put this in". But I am saying "think before you do".


1. Persuading people to change their preferences is an interesting goal. Do you think that preferences of this nature are informed by conscious thought and rationality? Surely seeking to persuade someone to change their preferences as to this sort of thing is akin to persuading them to change the flavour of ice cream they prefer? I suppose advertising does seek to persuade people's preferences and tastes at a subliminal level, but that doesn't seem to be what you are going for?

2. This one I can understand. It seems to me that you would need to persuade creators of media that (a) a particular element is sexist; (b) that element occurs; (c) that sexist element is harmful; and (d) the creator should put avoidance of the harm caused by the sexist element ahead of any perceived benefit to it of continuing with the sexist element. Does that sound right?

1. I think they are partially informed by attitudes that can be changed with rational thought, if reflected on. Ice cream flavour is pretty much just tastebud reactions; but media preferences are somewhat more complex. To change attitudes about ice cream, I'd need to change tastebuds (or put in another factor - veganism might come to mind, bringing in factors of morale; possibly trumping the tastebuds for milk icecream.).
Media preference... Pulls of media are largely more complex, and going off of factors less "innate" (Except maybe lyric-less music; but that can't really project any values :smallwink:). "This confirms to my views" is always a big pull for media (Which should be obvious how to possibly change); "this feels good to watch" as well (And elements making you uncomfortable after thinking about it can change this). It's fascinating how different media can look when you are aware of possible issues.
Maybe imagine a song where there is some dissonance between lyrics and melody - and the difference between actually hearing the text, and not doing that. You might be able to go back to trying to hear the song without the lyrics afterwards, consciously repressing your knowlege to enjoy it. But you might not want to do that (Of course, with such songs it usually enhances hearing experience, rather than diminish it.)
2. Yeah, sounds about right.


Yeah, I guess we are all wired differently. There's a phrase in English "there's no accounting for taste", which is usually used to refer to the strange tastes of another person, and means that there is no rational way to explain those tastes.

Yeah... In some areas I doubt that; most of the time everything can be explained in some way, but as everything about humanity is pretty multicausal, it might not be worth it to dredge through it. Especially since most of the time, taste doesn't do any harm. "To each his own" is a saying I know in multiple dialects and languages, and its pretty much unchanged in all of them (Except Kölsch, which has to include references to carnival because of course it does).
I think I'm just somewhat confused how my tastes ended up so differently from, appearantly, vast amounts of the population; considering I am not that unusual in the factors I'd think relevant^^


I wonder if we may have misscommunicated with each other here. You spoke about sexism in media at a very broad level, and I just didn't feel able to respond at such a level because not all sexism is the same. That is why I suggested narrowing our discussion to a particular type of sexism.

I did not intend to pose those question of you. That was just my way of putting your broad questions (directed at me) as more specific questions in the context of a particular type of sexism we have been discussing (sexualisation of characters).

Ah, alright. Then maybe we can just drop this thread of discussion, I think the other ones are worthwhile enough and touch on enough of this, that I don't have any need for additional ones in that regard.


It is a possible reason and was intended to be no more than that. Your counterpoint with regard to scars strikes me as intuitively likely though.

Happy to go though it with you though.

I mean, it might not make all the difference - testosterone makes people more likely to take risks (Though I'd assume getting into such situations would control somewhat for women with higher testo...). Which brings us to the ultimate question: Are women on their periods more likely to gain scars than those off their periods? Are post-menopausal women the least likely in the world (Alongside maybe trans women post-HRT, if controlling for hate crimes?) ...Yes, this is getting a bit silly, but thinking logical assumptions through can be fun. :smallwink:

I'll come back to the counting, alright? Maybe sometime in the evening (Whenever that might be on your time).


So you think that additional clothes might make a character more sexualised? In other words, a person who is topless would be less sexualised than a person with sideboobs, or boobwindows (I am guessing what that means)? A woman with a midriff baring outfit would be more sexualised than a woman wearing the equivilent of a bikini (like the picture I compared to Conan, which you said was not sexualised)? It seems to me that we are in highly subjective territory well before we get to the question of extent.

Yes. I would argue that this (https://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/marvel_dc/images/e/eb/Kara_Zor-El_Earth_2_003.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20130420210903) is quite a bit more sexualised than this (http://the-dark-eye.com/_bd/0/5.png). (Sadly, the picture I actually wanted to link for the second one, while a woman from the same Dark Eye culture, doesn't seem to be on the internet - she is turned toward the viewer, making her breasts visible but nonetheless unsexualised. I think this works as well, though.) The difference, for me, is, that a boobwindow or cleavage draws in the eye, puts the breasts in focus - in a way that a simply topless woman in a non-sexy pose doesn't, the breasts are merely part of what's going on (Unless posing).
Because the point is, if we accept the claim that nakedness is not inherently sexual (or sexualised); then there need to be additional factors. A nude body may be sexualised, through posing; a clothed body can put emphasis on certain specific parts of a body by the way the clothes are cut. I wouldn't see this as too subjective? Unless you want to maybe argue that Nakedness is inherently sexualised?


Ok, fair enough then. If a person has a flat stomach and little visible fat, that is sufficient to suggest that work out a bit. So, lets abandon the label 'athletic' and instead say that there is clearly a reason for depicting a person as shirtless because their body is such (flat stomach or visible muscles, perhaps other stuff) that is shows that they work out a bit (or in a fantasy setting, have a fit body from all their adventuring)?

I wouldn't actually call that sufficient, tbh, not from my own experience.
And... yeah, that is about what I wanted to say. That there can be other reasons for depicting people as non-fully dressed; and "showing off athleticism/training/strength" seems like a rather plausible candidate. Of course, it is still possible to sexualise people with athletic, trained and strong bodies; but it needs more than merely showing them - posing, emphases on... certain bits (Bulges, butts and boobs, for example), things like that.


Yes, I tend to agree here - I think being conventionally unattractive detracts from the sexualisation of a character.

Alright, so we fixed that issue :smallwink:


Appreciate your response. Will return to this soon.

Looking forward to it.


Well, this thread has made me reflect.

I started being very defensive of the art in old D&D (which still doesn't look that bad to my eyes), but reading some of the other defenses of some of that art, makes me reconsider my defense.

Nice to hear^^
To be fair, most of the early DnD art linked really doesn't, not even to mine. The absence of women is probably a bigger issue than the depiction of the ones there. (Maybe for 2nd ed.? I really don't know much about DnD.)
But... yeah, the problem isn't necessarily the thing itself, just the attitudes it can represent and reinforce.


Ummm... you are wrong. VERY VERY WRONG.
Until 1908, the lowest legal marriage age in the United states was 7.
During the days of Christopher Columbus, native brides were shipped to Portugal. In his memiors, requests for virgin brides (typically ranging between 8 and 12) was so high he could not keep up with demand.
Hell, even the bible mentions virgin untouched brides going so far back as the days of Moses (though it does not mention age)
The Koran, the holy book of Islam, openly states the legal marriage age should be 9.
In India, child brides are STILL a common thing, going down to 11 years old. This has been a tradition for thousands of years.
It was actually the British who started the trend of raising the legal marriage age. This is a very recent development, less than 200 years. Up until then, the marriage age average was very very low.

Edit: To be fair, however, there IS the fact that life expectancy was also much lower so it does kind of make sense.

1. I think that was something I said, and not Donnadogsoth
2. I didn't even argue that it wasn't ever legal... Just that is was, at all, common. Citing examples of legal codes, or of examples of it happening, doesn't really prove a counterpoint.
3. Really, "still a common thing"? Statistics on that, please. On both the fact that it is common (Not that it happens, I know that), as well as that it has been thousands of years, as well as that those marriages are usually anything but symbolic before something we'd consider "not statuatory rape".
4. No, it really doesn't, not in the face of the kinds of examples Princess and snowblizz cite.

Calthropstu
2017-08-18, 08:41 AM
1. I think that was something I said, and not Donnadogsoth
2. I didn't even argue that it wasn't ever legal... Just that is was, at all, common. Citing examples of legal codes, or of examples of it happening, doesn't really prove a counterpoint.
3. Really, "still a common thing"? Statistics on that, please. On both the fact that it is common (Not that it happens, I know that), as well as that it has been thousands of years, as well as that those marriages are usually anything but symbolic before something we'd consider "not statuatory rape".
4. No, it really doesn't, not in the face of the kinds of examples Princess and snowblizz cite.

At least 3% of girls are married before 15 in the middle east. News articles abound of marriages at very young ages. One cleric in the Middle East a few months ago was arrested for trying to marry, and consummate, a 5 year old... clear violation of both religious and civil laws. (Easily verified with a quick google search)
3% may not seem like much, but it's about 3x as common as seeing a police officer in the US.

In India, the statistics are far far worse. A quick look at wikipedia, which cites UNICEF data, fully 1/5 of girls in India are married between 13 and 16. And a good 3-6% are married by age 13. Since India comprises a massive portion of the world's population, that number is HUGE. So yeah, that's kind of a thing.
And to think that is a recent thing is rather silly. It is easy enough to trace these practices to the start of the British Empire when they first took control of India at the very least. A quick search of child marriage history mentions Imperial China, England, middle ages Europe, India, ancient Israel, Persia... in fact, it looks like child marriage was not just common it was the NORM. For both genders.

So your (and others) arguments are hardly valid. I know this subject quite well.

However, I once again point to the longer life expectancy as making such young marriages a necessity. Being a grandparent at 30 would be expected when you wouldn't be living past 40. Nature may not understand that (seeing as how puberty still happens around 12) but most of society certainly does. So I again point to the disparity of nature and society.

Let's tie all of this back to the original topic though... if we look at the history of women warriors, there really aren't that many examples. The above is why... with most women being married off at very young ages, few had the luxury of weapons training.
In fact, having women fight is genetically suicidal. Wipe out 90% of any male mammillian population, and the remaining 10% can easily take up the slack. Do the same to females and the next generation will be immensely diminished. So sending women to war makes little sense. And I think on some level this was understood. (No quotes here, this is my own personal theory)
So women and armor is largely fantasy anyways. A quick look at female fighters in history confirms this. For example, some women fought in the Trojan war, but had to crossdress as men to do so.
There are many mentions of female commanders in history, but it is always listing as leading men. We can assume some women were mixed in, but the numbers of women is far less than 1%.
Ever watch the Disney movie Mulan? The book that movie is based off of was far far darker... with Mulan being executed by her father for bringing dishonor to the family.
And in China, we can look to Sun Tzu, author of The Art of War. To prove his skill as a general, he was ordered to train 140 women. This shows that women were thought to be far more difficult to train for battle than men (I personally disagree, women make perfectly fine soldiers in the modern era though probably not in those days where strength to wield a weapon was a necessity)
Looking through articles right now, I can easily infer the rate at which women participated in combat was very very small, and most who did used the exact same equipment as their male counterparts. But women commanders on the other hand, would want to flaunt their gender. So looking for actual depictions of actual female commanders would be the easiest way to settle historical debate on that subject.

Edit: I found such a depiction. On wikipedia there is a picture of a statue erected depicting Fu Hao, and she is depicted as having armor that did, in fact, depict her breasts.

Vinyadan
2017-08-18, 08:53 AM
Isn't "old slave trade records from the roman empire and beyond" redundant with both "verifiable documents" and "well documented abuses"

Please someone send me the bibliographic information about critical editions of old slave trade records from the Roman Empire. Is there a collection? Or are they in CIL?

Also, RL religions: the rules. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/announcement.php?a=1)

Calthropstu
2017-08-18, 09:07 AM
Please someone send me the bibliographic information about critical editions of old slave trade records from the Roman Empire. Is there a collection? Or are they in CIL?

Also, RL religions: the rules. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/announcement.php?a=1)

I'll be honest, I have never seen such, but just read from people who have. Good point on the religion thing. And to be honest, the content of this discussion is a bit... uncomfortable. Having to check my old research in this subject (I wrote a paper on it years ago) is unpleasant. There's a lot of messed up stuff in the world... and when I saw that there was actually a state in the USA that had a printed marriage age of 7, all i could think was WTF?

SO let's go back to talking about women and armor and sexy busty leather armor that shows cleavage and looks hot eh?