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 CA 101 v3.0

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Sakurelf
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PostSubject: Re: CA 101 v3.0   Mon Sep 19, 2011 8:19 pm

Version 3.5 (Still pretty rough) I posted this for a non- WGW friend who wants to read the latest version. I have not proofread the whole article again for flow.

- moved "words" section below warbonnet and White Chicks
- added to Residential schools, including "kill the indian" and information on introduced alcoholism
- added a section on stereotypes, alcoholism and information (NEEDS CRITIQUE + WORK, very rough)
- Added a section on comparing "art that uses feathers" to appropriation and why
- added to "who to ask, what if they say no?"



Spoiler:
 


Last edited by Sakurelf on Sat Sep 24, 2011 9:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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rae
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PostSubject: Re: CA 101 v3.0   Tue Sep 20, 2011 3:03 am

One nitpick: You might want to phrase the one bit about lactose intolerance just a bit differently, to point out that people who are not lactose intolerant are actually the minority. Most of the world is lactose intolerant, probably about 75% worldwide, since lactase persistence is caused by very specific genetic mutations that are quite recent in origin. Chart showing levels of lactose intolerance worldwide. Most people, at least in America and probably also Europe, don't realize that, probably because Europeans have the highest rate of the mutation. My biology class went into this in depth, which is the only reason I know.

In other words, my mutant power is to drink lots of milk without getting sick.


e: I was cruising mycultureisnotatrend again, and ran across a few points that probably belongs in the warbonnet discussion.

Quote :
Yeah, that’s what really got to me too. He’s operating under the (incorrect) assumption that the warbonnet is superior to women’s regalia, and that this is a universally accepted fact. Just because non-natives attribute so much mis-placed affection for this particular artifact, doesn’t mean that it holds the same context for natives.

I mean, he’s not throwing fits about jingle dresses…
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Reepicheep-chan
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PostSubject: Re: CA 101 v3.0   Wed Sep 21, 2011 12:25 pm

I like it more and more. There is one thing very small thing that is bugging me though:
Quote :
1996.

If you're reading this, you were already born.
Is this essay 18 and up or something? Because a 14-year-old could easily read and understand it, I think.

I mean I get the point you are making; 1996 was really recent, buuuuut that statement made me stop reading to go 'wut'.

My preference it to point out the types of 'modern' things that were going on during a time when trying to point out how antiquated something else was. Something like: '1996. People were already texting each other from their cell phones.' or 'We were finding water on Jupiter's moons in 1996.' I think that helps point out how backward we are on civil rights.
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PostSubject: Re: CA 101 v3.0   Sat Sep 24, 2011 12:54 am

Seeing how you've published the article already, this is a moot post, but the poor thing's been languishing in my drafts for a week so I thought it deserved some kind of closure...*ahem*


Sakurelf wrote:
You say that when I don't know something, I should ask. Who do I ask? What if they say no?

What I am advising is seeking out knowledge before continuing. It may not be a living person, it may be a book or museum that provides the necessary information you're looking for. If you are seeking out the advice or opinion of a real person, look for someone who is not just of that culture, but has studied it and is familiar with history and cultural meaning. Seek multiple references to expand your base of knowledge. If the sources that you seek out keep returning your idea as a “no” you need to seriously think about whether to move forward. If you get bad reactions popping up everywhere about your idea for swastika-print pants, you need to think about what the general reaction will be if you decide to go ahead. Will doing it anyway get you the reaction you want? Or will it only garner you some major dislike from a lot of people?

So, there are a few things that I see going on in this paragraph. You say to find someone who is "not just of that culture." What about people who aren't "of" the culture at all? You do realize that it's possible to not be "of" a culture and still obtain an in-depth knowledge of it? Simply being "of that culture" doesn't necessarily mean that someone will have more accurate knowledge of it; this is especially true with First Nations cultures, where people may have parents or grandparents who descended from a specific tribe but may have gone through the residential schooling process or other "assimilation" efforts and lost all touch with their ancestors' ways of life. Does that mean they're no longer "of" that culture? For that matter, what makes someone "of" a particular culture? Being raised in it? Having genetic material from someone who was raised in it? And how much genetic material?

What I was trying to get at in my last post is that no one can "give permission" to create artwork of any kind. People can help, or assist, or guide, but not "give permission." The way it's worded now makes me think you're imagining that a person or people within First Nations cultures have the ability or authority to "give permission," and they simply don't. Again, no one has ownership over culture. And by assuming that there is someone within that culture who can say yes or no to a specific representation of that culture is actually a way of "othering" people, first by presuming that they have some inherent knowledge or ownership rights that someone not "of" that culture couldn't possess, and secondly by presuming that there are rigid boundaries of what constitutes that culture (see "homogenization" below).

This comment from your thread is good to take to heart:

Quote :
Although I recognize and embrace the idea of a cultural identity I personally dont feel it cant be shared with others. It certainly cant be 'owned' by some rather than others for commercial purposes like you suggest. The idea that one society can OWN a culture is indeed a western idea;

That's why this:
Quote :
Part of it was to make a point: people are offended that I didn't ask permission and are telling me to remove the thumbs from my article.
was a pretty failtastic idea. The people including headdresses, etc. in their artwork were misusing and possibly disrespecting cultural symbols, but you've disrespected someone's personal property. With cultural symbols, there's no one that you can "ask permission" from, because it doesn't belong to a specific person or people. Is misusing it still a crappy thing to do? Yes. But a specific image created by a person actually does belong to that person, and you could have easily asked them beforehand. It's not quite the same thing.

The wording "ask permission" also has much broader implications. One risk for many minority cultures is becoming homogenized in response to a majority culture (for a lot of reasons). Homogenized as in, this is a proper representation of this culture but that isn't. And yes, even historical accuracy is open to interpretation (as you mentioned in your article). As a really crude example, every once in awhile there's a kerfuffle in the US about artists or activists wanting to burn the American flag. Is that disrespectful to a cultural symbol? Yes. Does that mean it shouldn't be allowed? Not necessarily. Does it make the person burning the flag unpatriotic or un-American? Again, not necessarily. And if the person burning the flag had to "ask permission" beforehand, what would the outcome be? I know that this example is bad for a lot of reasons, but just to illustrate the general principle...

Or, maybe a better example would be the film Fire by Deepa Mehta. Mehta grew up in India but now lives in Canada and produces most of her work there, and she has acknowledged her difficulty with identifying with a particular culture. So, is Mehta "of" Indian culture? Debatable. Does the film Fire misuse some cultural symbols? Possibly. But is there a purpose to it? Absolutely. (And boy was there an uproar when it was shown in India). So I guess what I'm trying to say that even representations of a particular culture that aren't entirely accurate (according to the dominant perspective) can still be totally valid, and assuming that a work that isn't "accurate" is wrong or negative is very, very dangerous.

At this point you're probably thinking, but I'm talking to Idiot Teenagers who clearly don't know what they're doing! Yes, that is entirely true, for the purposes of this article a lot of my probably doesn't apply. But at the same time, it kinda does. I hate to say it, but with art especially, the rules are kinda different. I'm not saying that putting a "native-themed headdress" on a white person and painting random "warpaint" isn't stereotyping and horribly disrespectful, because it is. But a big part of the reason that it's disrespectful is because the artist(s) don't know or care what they're doing. But saying "don't appropriate!" isn't as simple as it seems.
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Sakurelf
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PostSubject: Re: CA 101 v3.0   Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:19 am

I just want to address this right now before I think about your other points.

Quote :
So, there are a few things that I see going on in this paragraph. You say to find someone who is "not just of that culture." What about people who aren't "of" the culture at all? You do realize that it's possible to not be "of" a culture and still obtain an in-depth knowledge of it? Simply being "of that culture" doesn't necessarily mean that someone will have more accurate knowledge of it; this is especially true with First Nations cultures, where people may have parents or grandparents who descended from a specific tribe but may have gone through the residential schooling process or other "assimilation" efforts and lost all touch with their ancestors' ways of life. Does that mean they're no longer "of" that culture? For that matter, what makes someone "of" a particular culture? Being raised in it? Having genetic material from someone who was raised in it? And how much genetic material?

You're very good at catching my tonal issues in writing. What I meant to write is exactly what you are saying, but I think it would have been more effective if I had italicised it, or added more emphasis to the part I wanted to seperate.


"Not just of that culture, but someone with knowledge"

"Not just of that culture, but someone with knowledge"

I.E. Don't go asking your neighbor down the street who is 1/32nd ~Cherokee Princess~ yet is upper-middle class and drives a hummer. Don't cite your co-worker Steve as a source on Jewish history 'cause he's Jewish.

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