August 11th, 2009

wood cat

WorldCon: for the record

So I have a lot of things to say about WorldCon—some panel notes ready to go, mental notes for an overall summary, hopes of doing at least an impressionistic summary of the "Fans Aren't Slans" panel since I don't know if anyone was taking notes, etc.

Before all that, however, I see that L. Jagi Lamplighter, who was a participant on a panel I moderated called "Writing Racial and Ethnic Diversity in Geographic Terms," has made two posts objecting to things that I and karnythia said in response to her: The Race Question: Who Is Going To Win?, which is about the panel overall, and Part Two: Running With Race, which is about karnythia specifically. (Tobias Buckell said similar things; I note that she did not mention him at all, while karnythia and I are unnamed "girls.")

I wish to put on the record (my record, that is) what I said there:

Hi. I was the moderator.

You will recall that I said at the panel that I thought it important to point out statements based on harmful assumptions, that doing so did not mean that I thought that people were evil people, but that racist attitudes permeate our society.

In that spirit, I was going to engage with your comments (for instance, I dispute your accuracy of at least one thing I said).

However, this post [about karnythia] is sufficiently disrespectful that I cannot discuss this topic with you.

Very truly yours,

Kate Nepveu

I work very hard to remember that understanding racism is a difficult and long process. But I have already said much of what I would have to Ms. Lamplighter in person during the panel, and as all it got me was condescension and insult behind my back (no names in the post = I'd never have seen it if karnythia hadn't found it somewhere and linked), I choose to conserve my energy until such time as Ms. Lamplighter is willing to discuss this topic without being astonishingly rude and dismissive to women of color.

(Was anyone taking notes at the actual panel?)

Some further reading:

wood cat

WorldCon: Anatomy for Writers, Heroes and Tavern Brawlers

Panel notes that I edited yesterday in a brief moment of downtime.

Anatomy for Writers, Heroes and Tavern Brawlers
Sean McMullen assisted by Jetse de Vries
Author, karate instructor, fencer and first aid officer Sean McMullen provides a tour of how the human body can and cannot be damaged. Want to know where a hero can be punched without any effect? Worried about his vascular dilation? Curious about the real-life version of Mr Spock’s nerve pinch? Not sure whether a really long sword fight is three hours or seven seconds? Wondering why readers are laughing because your hero has microsecond reactions? Come along and find out in complete safety.

This was in a much, much too small room: practical stuff like this, that promises to be fun too, is always really popular. McMullen was I think very recently off a plane from the other side of the world and so a little discombobulated, but he had thorough notes and did a good job getting through them.

A lot of these descriptions are of physical moves and may not be very clear; don't hesitate to ask for clarification. Everything is McMullen's statements unless otherwise noted.

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wood cat

WorldCon: White is Good, Curves are Great, but Seldom a Purple Face to Be Seen

When did it get so late? Arrgh.

White is Good, Curves are Great, but Seldom a Purple Face to Be Seen
Rani Graff, Doselle Young (M), Michelle Kendall, N.K. Jemisin
Despite the ubiquity of aliens in a range of pretty colours, SF and fantasy art still seems to be rather averse to the presentation of humans in their full spectrum. How much of this is the market? How much is it thoughtlessness? How much is it a fear of “exoticizing” and exploitation? How much is just old fashioned discrimination?

I came in late and missed all the introductions (which since the participant bios aren't anywhere to be found, even though I know people submitted them, means I must now rely on Google & inference). Young, Kendall, and Jemisin are all African-American; Young writes for American comics; Kendall (karnythia) is a writer and co-founder of Verb Noire, a new publisher; Jemisin is a writer. Graff is from Israel and the founder of Graff Publishing, a small press.

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