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Thread: LGBT Issues and Vidja Games

  1. #341
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    Hector Garfria's Avatar
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    Check the Pacific Dickery thread on google groups Analoge, Toneman wants to ask you something.

  2. #342
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    Hahaha! I like how this thread has become where people go to tell me things.

  3. #343
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    Don't read too much into this but in Nashville, all the gay clubs are on Church Street and (I'm pretty sure) there are churches on Gay Street. These are literally the street names.

    Google results for "church street nashville"

    Google results for "gay street nashville"


  4. #344
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    Quote Originally Posted by DpadJoe View Post
    Sexual Diversity in games (also touches on Transgender topic):
    Kanji? A "good" gay character?


  5. #345
    [Level 5: Mech] Pixielated's Avatar
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    If you can show us a video game character that is presented better than Kanji, by all means, share it with the class.

    I ask because my understanding is people come to terms with their sexuality and gender identity in a number of ways, but Kanji's case is fairly palatable in a number of ways. I'm not even entirely convinced he's specifically gay so much as pansexual, but he does struggle with the perception of his gender identity a great deal.

    Society tells him that if he likes crafting and likes other guys, that he's not masculine. That's simply not true.

  6. #346
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    I'd be reluctant to say Kanji is anywhere on the queer spectrum, but that could be argued forever...

  7. #347
    [Level 5: Mech] Pixielated's Avatar
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    He was crushing on Naoto when he thought she was a guy, still felt kinda strongly for her after, too. He admits some attraction to men ("You are me"), but pops a nosebleed when Chie and Yukiko are in bikinis. If he can me attracted to women, but also men, and also women of masculine presentation that leads me to believe he's pansexual which is on the spectrum.

    That's not reading anything in, either, its just what Atlus put there, even in the anime, manga and re-release on Vita.

  8. #348
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    When it's put down in black and white like that I can see your point. It's just that the story seems to gloss over anything involving his interest in men after Naoto's dungeon. It's just like, "Phew! She was a girl! Crisis averted!"

  9. #349
    Quote Originally Posted by Pixielated View Post
    Society tells him that if he likes crafting and likes other guys, that he's not masculine. That's simply not true.
    Saying "that's not true" implies masculinity isn't a social construct defined in contradiction to Kanji's interests.

  10. #350
    [Level 5: Mech] Pixielated's Avatar
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    Naoto might be trans* but that does not mean she's transsexual, though. Apparently she had considered all the possibilities, but her feelings about her sex were predicated on the profession she desired. There were certain prejudices she feared regarding that. Those prejudices might not even be real, but she feels they might be so when she's so easily dismissed for her age.

    Again, P4A shows us a rather gender-fluid Naoto, even moreso than in P4. I don't know how much to read into the P4X novel she stars in, but she's still sporting a masculine fashion with a more feminine appearance, so she's become comfortable with her body. Being trans* is different for everyone. Being MTF, FTM or crossdressing are the most common of cases, but Naoto seems to shift her identity as she's comfortable.

    Maybe she does learn her fears are unfounded. Sometimes we do make more of our fears than what's really there, sometimes we're right.

    I'm sure there's also a bit of Atlus playing it safe here. I mean, they're clearly learning and becoming more familiar with this stuff as time goes on. There's a stark contrast between the blatant transphobic moment of Persona 3 and somewhat homophobic tones of Nocturne in demon negotiation on top of some misinformation on the intersexed in DDS.

    The difference is Atlus seems to be learning and evolving these narratives in the right way rather than continuing to move forward and fall backward like Bioware does. I prefer to take the wins where we can find them and make sure to point out the fumbles.

    Quote Originally Posted by BryonicMan
    Saying "that's not true" implies masculinity isn't a social construct defined in contradiction to Kanji's interests.
    Masculinity is a social construct and its one Kanji is comfortable with until people insinuate it should define his interests and sexuality.

    Gender is what's between your ears - this means you get to define what that means on your terms. Gender Role is the social construct, what society tries to push on you and prays it sticks so it doesn't feel uncomfortable around others.

    Kanji is masculine in his own eyes - other people that feel otherwise can, as he would say, get bent. They don't get to define his masculinity.

    Put it this way, last week someone suggested that it's a point of concern that men would be interested in Animal Crossing. When I pressed him for reasons why this would be a "concern" he backpedaled and pointed at statistics saying women favor these kinds of games. He never once said why it would be a concern that a man would enjoy Animal Crossing.

    He's trying to suggest Animal Crossing is feminine. Animal Crossing is a genderless game once you make your avatar, its a light sim of living the life of a single adult. You pay off a mortgage, run errands for neighbors and might even be mayor of the town. There's simply nothing gender-specific about it. You can be a boy that wears pink and has a home full of flowers or a girl whose home interior is entirely metallic and has monster statues in it - Tom Nook doesn't give a shit.

    The guy never came up with an actual reason for why Animal Crossing wasn't for guys. This is why Gender Role enforcement is largely bullshit. The reason for it is "because of reasons" and little more than that.

  11. #351
    Quote Originally Posted by Pixielated View Post
    Masculinity is a social construct and its one Kanji is comfortable with until people insinuate it should define his interests and sexuality.

    Gender is what's between your ears - this means you get to define what that means on your terms. Gender Role is the social construct, what society tries to push on you and prays it sticks so it doesn't feel uncomfortable around others.

    Kanji is masculine in his own eyes - other people that feel otherwise can, as he would say, get bent. They don't get to define his masculinity.
    The problem with this line of thought is that it internalizes existing norms and rehashes them as justified when they come from the horse's mouth.

    The issue is in appealing to Kanji's masculinity as if that's an actual thing, as opposed to something perceived in the context of a warped society. It's not. It's only applied to him insofar as he adheres to cultural notions of masculinity, just as femininity is only applied to women insofar as it refers to a confluence of characteristics assigned by society to incite notions of gender. We can agree that it's offensive when baking and caring are attributed to the domain of women (and things like academia and leadership are granted of men), so why would anyone want to hold up the end concepts of masculinity or femininity as boons of identity?

    Doesn't that only serve to reinforce concepts delivered by a gender binary and seek justification through a tautological and fallacious ontology?

  12. #352
    Quote Originally Posted by Pixielated View Post
    Put it this way, last week someone suggested that it's a point of concern that men would be interested in Animal Crossing. When I pressed him for reasons why this would be a "concern" he backpedaled and pointed at statistics saying women favor these kinds of games. He never once said why it would be a concern that a man would enjoy Animal Crossing.

    He's trying to suggest Animal Crossing is feminine. Animal Crossing is a genderless game once you make your avatar, its a light sim of living the life of a single adult. You pay off a mortgage, run errands for neighbors and might even be mayor of the town. There's simply nothing gender-specific about it. You can be a boy that wears pink and has a home full of flowers or a girl whose home interior is entirely metallic and has monster statues in it - Tom Nook doesn't give a shit.

    The guy never came up with an actual reason for why Animal Crossing wasn't for guys. This is why Gender Role enforcement is largely bullshit. The reason for it is "because of reasons" and little more than that.
    I understand that but my contention lies elsewhere. You can't transcend gender roles or the gender binary by advocating values proposed within. Masculinity and femininity only exist in terms of the gender binary. Fudging the definitions of either in order to displace the concepts being valued fails because it lacks any discernible ontological reference point outside of the gender binary.

    "What does masculinity mean to Kanji?" is a question that begs established gender norms, even if it does not correspond to them. More important to the issue is the question "Why is 'masculinity' important?" Why is it something we should seek? Obviously, because society tells us so. This should be challenged, foremost, and even if as individuals we can't shed the values ingrained within us, we should at least accept that we should shed them, rather than attributing to them intrinsic worth. Kanji would be better off not giving a shit about gender one way or the other than trying to squeeze gender concepts to fit his personality.

    Edit: for example, it would be like if someone were to say Animal Crossing is great because it's so masculine (with XYZ as his criteria of masculinity), as opposed to someone saying Animal Crossing is great because XYZ.

  13. #353
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    Personally, I find it best to not overthink this stuff. Can't really speak to the Kanji discussion, having never played any of the Persona games, but this guy has always been one of my favorites.

    (also enjoying the discussion, just don't have much else to add atm)
    Last edited by Sir Legendhead; 01-20-2013 at 08:35 AM. Reason: added parentheticals :)

  14. #354
    [Level 5: Mech] Pixielated's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Byronic Man View Post
    I understand that but my contention lies elsewhere. You can't transcend gender roles or the gender binary by advocating values proposed within. Masculinity and femininity only exist in terms of the gender binary. Fudging the definitions of either in order to displace the concepts being valued fails because it lacks any discernible ontological reference point outside of the gender binary.

    "What does masculinity mean to Kanji?" is a question that begs established gender norms, even if it does not correspond to them. More important to the issue is the question "Why is 'masculinity' important?" Why is it something we should seek? Obviously, because society tells us so. This should be challenged, foremost, and even if as individuals we can't shed the values ingrained within us, we should at least accept that we should shed them, rather than attributing to them intrinsic worth. Kanji would be better off not giving a shit about gender one way or the other than trying to squeeze gender concepts to fit his personality.

    Edit: for example, it would be like if someone were to say Animal Crossing is great because it's so masculine (with XYZ as his criteria of masculinity), as opposed to someone saying Animal Crossing is great because XYZ.
    Telling people what they can and can't define for themselves is really what the heart of sexism and gender-policing is, though.

    There are are people that adhere to the masculine and feminine constructs and people that don't - neither are wrong so long as they accepted as points on a spectrum we define for ourselves. There are plenty of gay men that conform to popular, masculine gender roles. In transgender circles, we refer to popular gender conforming as "cis." I personally dislike the term as it can be used like a slur, but it has some uses in making distinctions.

    One of the biggest rifts in the LGBT community commonly occurs because the cisgender gay male and the male-to-female transsexual are sometimes an inverse of each other. Gay men get hazed by society for liking other men - which supposedly only women are supposed to do - and are told liking men makes them effeminate. Some go so far to suggest gay men want to be women when that's probably not true.

    Male-to-female transsexuals, on the other hand, are stigmatized as gay men who want to be women and sexual deviants that want to sneak one past a straight guy. Some MTFs were gay men, that's true, but there are also MTFs that were once heterosexual males. In the process of their transitions that sexuality may or may not change.

    And whether or not anyone transitions at all, no one does so to pull a fast one on straight people. The fact that the stereotype even exists is pure homophobia and transphobia.

    The fact is both the gay man and the MTF transexual have it fairly hard when coming out and both face a lot of bullshit and misinformation, I guess you could just say that the transgender MTF that's a lesbian or FTM that's gay is a bit of a double-whammy and has a slightly bigger uphill battle than someone that's only gay - at least with social acceptance being what it is now. D

    Much of that bullshit and resentment comes from socially policing the gender binary and ignoring that the spectrum exists. I guess you could say that a part of the LGBT community are sadly a lot like radical feminists in that they forgot their group was about equality for all and not just want rights for themselves. Radfems are fucking horrible to transwomen and tend to throw women of color under the bus as well. Its become about the advancement of white women. Sadly, some transwomen are horrible right back, which certainly doesn't help matters.

    I try to stay positive in the face of all that, but its hard not to feel left holding the bag by the rest of the LGBT community at times.

    But getting back on point, it is totally OK to fall into masculine and feminine gender roles and define them for yourself so long as you accept they are two points on this spectrum and not really a binary. Its OK to be purely heterosexual or homosexual so long as you also accept they are two points on a spectrum. You get to define your gender and sexuality for yourself. If we can move away from the binaries as a society, that would be great for everyone.

    Kanji is what I'd perceive as a hyper-masculine pansexual male. Naoto seems to be a genderqueer heterosexual. Would I say this to such people without asking first? Hell no. They get to define that. Its not my place to push labels, but I can have my impressions based on what I know of myself.

  15. #355
    I must admit the concept of a heterosexual male deciding to go trans is pretty novel to me. Hadn't heard of it until a few weeks ago. Still getting used to it.

  16. #356
    Quote Originally Posted by Pixielated View Post
    Telling people what they can and can't define for themselves is really what the heart of sexism and gender-policing is, though.
    Allowing everybody to assign to any label any definition as they please, or to identify themselves any way they wish, is not the solution to this. It's the means by which people try to identify Thatcher as a feminist icon, which is pure bullshit, or address themselves as the seventh reincarnation of an Ancient Egyptian Pharaoh. Which I agree that gender policing is an issue, the other extreme of a semiotic free-for-all offers little more than a conceptually garbled tautology.

    snip
    Just as a heads up, you don't need to explain to me the notion of a gender spectrum, cisnormativity, stigma facing trans men and women, etc.

    Much of that bullshit and resentment comes from socially policing the gender binary and ignoring that the spectrum exists. I guess you could say that a part of the LGBT community are sadly a lot like radical feminists in that they forgot their group was about equality for all and not just want rights for themselves. Radfems are fucking horrible to transwomen and tend to throw women of color under the bus as well. Its become about the advancement of white women. Sadly, some transwomen are horrible right back, which certainly doesn't help matters.

    I try to stay positive in the face of all that, but its hard not to feel left holding the bag by the rest of the LGBT community at times.

    But getting back on point, it is totally OK to fall into masculine and feminine gender roles and define them for yourself so long as you accept they are two points on this spectrum and not really a binary. Its OK to be purely heterosexual or homosexual so long as you also accept they are two points on a spectrum. You get to define your gender and sexuality for yourself. If we can move away from the binaries as a society, that would be great for everyone.

    Kanji is what I'd perceive as a hyper-masculine pansexual male. Naoto seems to be a genderqueer heterosexual. Would I say this to such people without asking first? Hell no. They get to define that. Its not my place to push labels, but I can have my impressions based on what I know of myself.
    I'm not saying identifying oneself as masculine, feminine or anything else is inherently bad, per se. My problem lies in the attribution of language and identifiers such as gender queer do not detract from the gender binary at its core, they merely serve as additions on the scale. The theory still advocates that masculinity lies on one end and femininity on the other extreme, with the male sex being attributed to concepts of masculine and the female sex to feminine. This is the framework that a lot of queer theory works within. Genderqueer doesn't challenge the attribution of masculine traits to the male sex, it operates alongside it as an exception to the social norm.

    By operating within the existent gender spectrum based on the binary, more problems arise when people advance a particular set of traits as correlating to the socially agreed sex. "Naoto presents as male" connects and underlines the profession and attitudes he carries as masculine, as male. Implicitly, feminine and female is denoted by crafting and being compassionate. Isn't that just the gender binary, reapplied? Aren't we trying to move away from those oppressive social constructs?

    My question then becomes, shouldn't the polemic simply do away with the gender binary (and its expansion into a spectrum) rather than play into it? What good is served by presenting a weak, structurally flawed compromise that lacks any cohesive ontological grounding, simply because it is existentially comforting and easy?

    To get back to the point of Kanji's masculinity, to me, saying "my masculinity is tailor defined to convenience me" is about as sensible as saying "my fascism is the nice kind, where I'm a socialist and I don't believe in an aggressive dictatorship." If you found out your self-identity as a fascist didn't correspond to what fascism actually is, wouldn't you simply stop calling yourself a fascist and start calling yourself, for example, a socialist?

  17. #357
    [Level 5: Mech] Skagzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victor View Post
    I must admit the concept of a heterosexual male deciding to go trans is pretty novel to me. Hadn't heard of it until a few weeks ago. Still getting used to it.
    It varies from person to person, but it's probably useful to think of them likely having been trans for awhile and just hiding it. Not all trans people know for a long time, but most do. So it's less of a 'heterosexual male going trans' than 'a trans woman/trans feminine person/etc not pretending to be a man anymore', her sexuality is whatever it is. As always, YMMV between each trans person but that's often the case of how it plays out. Lots of trans people have it figured out long before anyone else does (who'd have thought, right?).

  18. #358
    I think I worded my thoughts poorly.

  19. #359
    [Level 5: Mech] Skagzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victor View Post
    I think I worded my thoughts poorly.
    I'll look deep within my heart, and forgive you

    But if you have any questions about trans* stuff, feel free to PM me or whatever.

  20. #360
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pixielated View Post
    If you can show us a video game character that is presented better than Kanji, by all means, share it with the class.

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