Holden Shearer Profile picture
Sep 18, 2018 9 tweets 2 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
It's fucking appalling how many fantasy worlds seem to be occupied entirely by white people (with perhaps a few POC crammed in a distant jungle across the sea-- Christ!). Fantasy has possibly the lowest bar to clear for diversity of ANY genre, and yet fails to do so CONSTANTLY.
As diversity becomes a more mainstream subject it also becomes a more nuanced one, with people taking up discussions around #ownvoices and wanting to see their lives and experiences portrayed by people who have... lived them, rather than as imagined by some white guy. Wild.
Which does not, of course, absolve us white guys of a moral obligation to make things better on this front, it just reveals the complexity that was always there.

But! O, fantasy to the rescue!
While many human experiences are universal, -societal- experiences don't have to be when you are literally making up your societies and worlds whole-cloth. The bar is greatly lowered.
You don't have to wrestle with portraying the Black American experience going on nothing but research and secondhand accounts without having lived it because this ain't America, it's Middle-Earth or Narnia or Krynn or Westeros or The Territories or Whatever.
What suffices for good enough in a fantasy world, for representation, for diversity? It's easy. Let your readers
1) See themselves in the story
2) Without being condescended to, marginalized, infantalized, othered into near-orcdom.
There is a certain power in just being able to see people who look like you, who are superficially like you, included as part of a world (and not a fucking stupid part like near-animalistic cannibal jungle shitheads wearing masks as tall as they are).
This is the EASIEST THING IN THE WORLD to do with your fantasy work, and yet in the year of our Lord 2018 idiots are still pitching tantrums about why there must only be white folks in the Witcher's I Can't Believe It's Not Poland (which includes griffons and succubi).
Make it black. Make it queer. Make it intersectional. It's easy, it's ethical, it's what worlds actually look like, and we're generally expected to give a shit about our imaginary creations at least -feeling- like a real place, yes?

Do better, fantasy. This is a fucking gimme.

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Holden Shearer

Holden Shearer Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

More from @HoldenShearer

Oct 7, 2018
If you follow me you should be aware that I ran out of mercy for Nazis and their obedient servants ~2 years ago. Just completely ran out. If that's the mast you pin your colors to in 2018, I genuinely think the world is a better place without you & don't care how you leave it.
In your sleep? Fine. Violently? Also fine. In excruciating agony? Don't care, you did this to you. Which is to say, if Mitch McConnell were to be kidnapped and burned to death on a live internet broadcast I would shed only tears of joy and relief. Don't be surprised.
Used to be, I wasn't like this, but we're in a civilization-level fight for survival. They're trying to disenfranchise and kill my friends, and creating conditions where I'm in constant danger because I can't afford medical care of any kind.
Read 5 tweets
Sep 29, 2018
(1/2) I want to say this as clearly as I can: Public confidence in at least the IDEA that the law has impartiality and integrity, or at least STRIVES for it, undergirds our entire society. It's what makes legal remedies seem POSSIBLE, even if long brutal slogs to obtain.
(2/2) Remove that confidence and you also remove any reason not to solve, say, the problem of a rapist with a lifetime Supreme Court position by the simple expedience of ending his life. Americans are a get-it-done sort of people at heart. The GOP is playing with fire.
On the other side of this, if you are or might be the parent of a current or future Brock Turner? Remove even the fiction that the system might handle him, and someone's father or husband or brother will beat him to death with a shovel instead.
Read 5 tweets
Aug 4, 2018
Hey, since a number of you are new here following me on this dystopic hell site, you may eventually share something about shitty media that I post and have someone slide up into your mentions like "oh yeah let me tell you about that guy."
That person is a cop, but I figure I'll save them the trouble of stalking me and save you the trouble of wondering if they're full of shit: they're not, at least not completely. Like James Gunn, I've said some magnificently stupid and shitty things on the internet years ago.
Also, created some regrettable stuff as an artist I would not sign my name to these days. I have apologized for the shitty posts, grown away from the insensitive art, and tried mightily to do better in the years since.
Read 7 tweets
Jul 31, 2018
Our adult cat who came down with pancreatitis has had basically no appetite for three days now and is going back to see the vet in the morning. I am currently at the absolute limit of what I can spend on vet bills. I am terrified. He's my best friend.

Please God don't let him die. Please God don't make me stand there and let him die.
If you have a big Twitter following, or you know cat lovers, or anything, please get this in front of them, please. I am out of lifelines to toss him otherwise.
Read 5 tweets
Jul 31, 2018
Revisions to the core days before it actually hits shelves, that has to be a record.

This is a wild ride.

"In light of several public controversies surrounding the game’s development, publisher White Wolf has elected to create a revised version of the core rulebook."
"This appendix did not exist prior to Polygon’s playtest of Vampire, one that included a simulated sexual assault."

it fucking what
Read 8 tweets
Jul 29, 2018
It seems dumb but one of the most common Rubicons people who think of themselves as good, egalitarian, progressive, etc don't want to cross is language clean-up: "It's a joke, lighten up." I think the usual response, "That's not funny," is ineffective and misdirected. Here's why:
People won't generally be moved from an established position by an argument or criticism that doesn't make sense to them, and "that's not funny" doesn't make sense because, bluntly, exploitative humor often IS funny. The human laugh reflex doesn't have strong ethics.
George Carlin's joke about Porky Pig raping Daffy Duck had me in stitches the first time I heard it. 50 million people a day laugh at someone eating shit on a dirt bike on Youtube. Incongruities or false congruities amuse the human brain.

But "it's not funny" isn't the problem.
Read 24 tweets

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Don't want to be a Premium member but still want to support us?

Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal

Or Donate anonymously using crypto!


0xfe58350B80634f60Fa6Dc149a72b4DFbc17D341E copy


3ATGMxNzCUFzxpMCHL5sWSt4DVtS8UqXpi copy

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!