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What does "mature" mean, anyway?

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No offense, Merlkir, but you're raging so hard I don't think you're receptive to an actual discussion. If you like, we can get back to this after you've calmed down a little.


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put it simple the more complex a game the more mature it is like take candy crush towards skyrim pack man towards baldurs gate and well  its about the stories the battles the adventures and the lable matures is just to hit parents if its something they want their kidz to play

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@Sharp_one Are you saying that good stories can only be about white, straight, able-bodied men?

 

If not, what are you saying, exactly?


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@Sharp_one Are you saying that good stories can only be about white, straight, able-bodied men?

 

If not, what are you saying, exactly?

 

No, he's talking about arbitrary diversity, where as a content creator you're forced to divert effort and time to token characters and social issues, because just writing whatever you want will get you scolded for not being diverse enough, or not writing about social issues.

 

Also, gaslighting me much? I'm sane and cold headed enough to lay down actual arguments, something you only seem to dance around. Stop looking for excuses and stand up for yourself, or kindly give up the charade..

 

edit: I really dislike derailing the thread, the initial video had quite a few good points and it's a topic worth discussing. Sorry, can't let go of this ridiculous and cowardly pseudo-maybe-or-not-critique of yours.

Edited by Merlkir

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Tokenism is painfully obvious too, and I guarantee it'll get you a bigger scolding from those so inclined than just leaving the token minority out.

 

I just re-read this thread, and I didn't see any arguments you made. Just lots of incoherent rage and assertions without evidence, plus a link to an article that listed many of the obvious ways Tolkien's work is racist, followed by a laughable argument that it's not actually racist at all because hobbits and Christianity.

 

Would you really like me to compile a list of obviously racist and sexist features in Tolkien? I can do that, but it's a bit of work. I'll do it if you promise me to address them point by point, with actual argument, in your own words, and without resorting to the kind of name-calling you've been doing so far.

Edited by PrimeJunta

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Would you really like me to compile a list of obviously racist and sexist features in Tolkien? I can do that, but it's a bit of work. 

 

Just use the links I've provided on the previous page, the majority of them will be either in the articles or the comments.


"Lulz is not the highest aspiration of art and mankind, no matter what the Encyclopedia Dramatica says."

 

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@AlO3 I'd certainly use them for reference, but if I expect to defend a list in debate, it would have to be something I put thought into myself. I'm generally not comfortable defending other people's ideas, even if I agree with them.


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Would you really like me to compile a list of obviously racist and sexist features in Tolkien? I can do that, but it's a bit of work. I'll do it if you promise me to address them point by point, with actual argument, in your own words, and without resorting to the kind of name-calling you've been doing so far.

 

You can bet I will. So, please do.

 

edit: On another note, there's been exactly 0 name calling on my part. Getting defensive by default even before I've started? 

Edited by Merlkir

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Very well. Proceeding. I'll make this a series, with one point per post, otherwise I think the quoting inside one post will get out of hand. I'll even make a mini-essay from each.

 

Point 1. Racial purity and eugenics

 

One of the most central recurring themes in Tolkien is that of bloodlines. These are so important that he actually provided family trees in the appendices to his work. Characters with "pure" bloodlines are longer-lived, better-looking (the word he significantly and characteristically uses is 'fairer', which of course also has a connotation of 'lighter-skinned or haired'). Case in point: Aragorn. He is explicitly described as a throwback to 'pure' Numenorean stock, with a lifespan far longer than ordinary humans. "Miscegenation" is everywhere portrayed as bad, e.g. in the way the Gondorean bloodlines lost their purity and the advantages thereof when the Numenorean descendants there bred with 'lesser Men.' One of the central plot points in LotR is the return of the rightful King -- rightful solely by virtue of carrying the right set of ancestors, which is also the very thing that makes him so obviously superior to Denethor and Boromir of the diluted Gondorean bloodline, both so easily corrupted by the wiles of the Enemy.

 

The same thinking is found everywhere, right down to the characteristics ascribed to the various hobbit bloodlines. Pippin is adventurous and outgoing because he's a Took. Frodo and Bilbo get their unexpected courage and strength of character from the same bloodline. Every single 'heroic' character in Tolkien comes from a 'noble' bloodline... unless you count "heroically supporting your heroic master as a faithful servant or sidekick," as Sam Gamgee does.

 

I could dig up more examples from elven bloodlines, but I think that would be belaboring the point.

 

Challenge: Name a single heroic character from Tolkien who does not have noble blood, excluding the 'heroic servant/sidekick' role.

 

Okay, moving on to the next one. Feel feel to reply to this one while I'm writing.


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Point 2: Racial stereotypes, part 1: Orcs

 

Thesis: Orcs/goblins are a transparent stand-in for Turks/Arabs/Mongols.

 

Evidence: Orcish language, "Black Speech," is phonetically similar to Turkish. They wield scimitars. They come from the East. And here's the man himself on how they look:

 

The Orcs are definitely stated to be corruptions of the 'human' form seen in Elves and Men. They are (or were) squat, broad, flat-nosed, sallow-skinned, with wide mouths and slant eyes: in fact degraded and repulsive versions of the (to Europeans) least lovely Mongol-types. 

 

(Letter 210, paragraph 19, on page 274 of Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, Humphrey Carpenter, ed.)

 

I don't know how you can get more explicitly racist than "least lovely Mongol-types." Seriously.

 

Challenge: Name a single instance of a living non-white character, location, or culture being portrayed in a positive light. Never mind a protagonist, hero, or character with agency; we both know there isn't one anywhere to be found. Getting maudlin over a corpse doesn't count.


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Point 3: Racial stereotypes, part 2: Dwarves as Jews

 

Dwarves are a stand-in for Jews, and embody many of the racist stereotypes associated with them. I'm sure Tolkien would have been extremely upset at being accused of anti-Semitism, and compared to a Joseph Mengele he certainly wasn't. However, he did hold some pretty stereotypical views of the Jews as money-grubbing legalistic insular types, and where he portrays dwarves as truly heroic -- the only real example of that I can think of is Gimli -- that heroism is presented as a story of how he overcomes the deficiencies of his people, in his friendship with Legolas, and later in the way he puts Galadriel on a pedestal and starts worshipping a freakin' hair from her head. (That's a subject for another post in this series, namely, sexism.) 

 

Evidence, exhibit A: The man himself, from letter 176 (Letters, p. 229):

 

I do think of the 'Dwarves' like Jews: at once native and alien in their habitations, speaking the languages of the country, but with an accent due to their own private tongue. ...

 

The ellipsis is the editor's, not mine. I wonder what he felt necessary to excise?

 

Evidence, exhibit B: Primary characteristics associated with the Dwarves: greed and gold and insularity plus suspicious hostility towards everyone else (projecting much?). Thrór sat under the mountain and accumulated a freakin' mountain of gold. The Dwarves betrayed and slaughtered Thingol of Doriath over riches. The Dwarves draw up an insanely complex contract mostly involving payment and money matters when hiring Bilbo, and would've been perfectly at peace with letting him get himself et by a dragon. Thórin throws a fit when Bilbo tries to keep more than what he feels is his fair share of Smaug's treasure, and indeed the main concern of the Dwarves is always some piece of shiny, like the Arkenstone in The Hobbit. The Dwarves are also always an exiled people, their ancestral homeland coincidentally taken over by, surprise surprise, those sallow Turkish-Mongol-Arab stand-ins, the Orcs.


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well i like the creation myth in Tolkien similarities to catholic angels and such and still weary different hmm there where some Arab like pea-pol who work together with the orcs 

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So, having genealogical trees in book is racist? So you're claiming Bible, Tora and Talmud are racist? Thin ice there pal, thin ice.

Genealogical trees is not in and of itself racist, of course. Let's keep the Bible etc. out of this discussion, shall we?

 

My question is: What is your point? In Middle earth having a pure bloodline has certain advantages as you noticed yourself. Why having a noble only characters would be racist? If I want to write a book about crows I will write about crows will it make me racist towards eagles, then? I cannot follow the logic of your claim.

In case you didn't notice, Middle Earth is fiction. Tolkien wrote it. The rules and logic there came from his imagination, his values, his politics, his religion, his views. As much as it at times appears to be so -- and this is for me the main appeal of the damn thing -- it is not real. Heroic Middle Earth bloodlines have to be pure because Tolkien decided they have to be pure. He wrote this at the time when someone else -- a little corporal from Austria -- was kinda obsessed about purity of bloodlines too. It is not coincidental, or irrelevant, or existed in a vacuum. It is very much in tune with one extremely nasty and extremely common way of thinking at the time.

 

Your book about crows and eagles would have no such problems because crows and eagles have no such connection to real-world politics... unless, of course, your heroic crows were all named Alastair and Grimbold, and your villanous eagles were named Ahmed or Mohammed (or why not Moshe and Yitzhakh if you want to pick another flavor of racism) in which case it would be obviously racist.


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Point 4: Sexism

 

Thesis: Tolkien was a raging sexist. Tolkien's sexism was not the obviously nasty "women are evil creatures who must be kept in their place" kind. It was more the "women are beautiful things to be put on pedestals and admired from a distance, also prizes to be won by heroic men" kind. There are a quite a lot of women in Tolkien. There is, however, exactly one woman with any kind of agency that I can think of: Galadriel. Her original name was Nerwen, which means "Man-maiden." Haha. Funny that, no? And even she can't escape being pedestal-ized, of all people by Gimli. He. Worships. A. Hair! From her head! How freakin' objectifying is that?

 

Every other woman in Tolkien -- every other one -- is purely and totally objectified. They have no agency. They're objects noted for their beauty (e.g. Arwen) who don't actually do anything much, or if they do do something, they do it solely for the benefit of the main hero, the guy they're supposed to be helping. Consider one of the rare cases where a woman has an actual speaking role that goes past a few lines of gossip (hello, Ioreth!): Eowyn. Now she's someone who could actually kick some ass. But does Tolkien let her? No! Instead, she finds fulfilment by... setting aside the sword and shield and becoming a happy little housewife for Faramir. The point of her entire story is that it's all well and good for girls to dream of heroism, but their real calling is to be good little housewives and helpmeets for the men who do the real hero-izing. 

 

I could go on, but instead I'll just make a short list, again from the top of my head.

 

Thingol and Melian. Thingol is a run-of-the-mill elf. Melian is a freakin' maia. Yet Thingol calls the shots, all Melian does is make a border around their kingdom.

 

Beren and Lúthien. Beren is thel hero. Lúthien is the prize to be won. This despite the fact that Lúthien is part Maia and therefore should be inherently miles ahead of Beren in power and majesty. Again, the man himself (letter 131, page 135), which describes really well how Tolkien sees men and women... with a nice little nod at those precious bloodlines of his, too:

 

It is Beren the outlawed mortal who succeeds (with the help of Lúthien, a mere maiden even if an elf of royalty) where all the armies and warriors have failed: he penetrates the stronghold of the Enemy and wrests one of the Silmarilli from the Iron Crown. This he wins the hand of Lúthien and the first marriage of mortal and immortal is achieved.

 

Note the phrasing. It's mentioned in passing that Lúthien 'helps,' but mostly she's a prize to be 'won.' 

 

Fëanor's mom whose name I even forget. She gives all her power to Fëanor and dies, although elves normally don't, and in Valinor certainly don't. 'Cuz, y'know, moms.

 

Rosie Cotton. Besides being a nice set of b00bs to come back to for Sam, what, exactly is she? Does she ever say anything? If she does, is it anything remotely interesting?

 

Ioreth. Look her up.

 

Morwen. Lalaith/Nienor/Niniel. Finduilas. Aredhel and Eöl. And so on and so forth.

 

Challenge: Pick one woman from Tolkien that you would like to be, rather than possess.  Say, play as a character in a cRPG. Galadriel the Man-Maiden doesn't count.

 

Edit: Annnd, I think that's about enough for today. Getting late, plus I need to walk the dog. Looking forward to your thoughts, Merlkir.

Edited by PrimeJunta

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Right, the Ku Klux Klan with raping, killing, crossing and burning black people could not hold a candle to the master racists Tolkien. How could he wrote that Mongol -types are less lovely. He probably was responsible for calling people with Down syndrome "mongoloid", the bastard.

You do know that "the Ku Klux Klan was EVEN MORE racist" doesn't do a thing to demonstrate that JRR was NOT racist, I'm sure?

 

So, Tolkien = Hitler. Thanks, that will be all of my participation in the topic.

Thank you for your contribution. You will be missed. :waves:


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No, I know that Ku Klux Klan was actually racist and Tolkien wasn't.

All right. So demonstrate it. Attempts at sarcasm will only get you so far.


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Sheesh, I'm actually getting warmed up. Been a while since I was properly talking Tolkien. Here's another point for Sharp_One and Merlkir to consider:

In all of Tolkien's corpus, the only good possibly not irredeemably evil Negro is a dead Negro. Discuss.


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No, I know that Ku Klux Klan was actually racist and Tolkien wasn't.

All right. So demonstrate it. Attempts at sarcasm will only get you so far.

 

Simplest thing. There is no evidence of Tolkien performing single racist act, nor the single racist statement of his.

 

But again, I'm done with this conversation it's off topic and I lately done my share of talking to raging, politically corrected delusional people.

 

 

OK. So, Orcs as "degraded and repulsive versions of the (to Europeans) least lovely Mongol-types"  is not racist, because...?


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So? There is no single black girl I banged nor a single one that I would consider attractive, does that makes me racist?

Actually yes, yes it does. Banging not required obviously, but "there is not a single black girl I would consider attractive" is pretty damn racist, now that you mention it.

 

Edit: Unless it was a trick question and you're actually not into girls, of course.

Edited by PrimeJunta

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Because it's not? You are not a horse because?

It's a description of orcs.

That's the best you can do? Seriously? And you really consider that a winning argument? "It's not because I say so! And now I'm taking my toys and going home, you mean liberal politically correct indoctrinated person you!"

 

So, despite having nearly 40 black origin friends of both sexes I'm racist because of my taste of women? So much fun, I need to show them this conversation they will laugh their asses of.

Ah, the "some of my best friends are black" defense. Never would've seen that coming.

 

Are you really that indoctrinated that you placed the edit in case I was gay and would call you homophobic? LOL.

It occurred to me that you might be trying to score cheap rhetorical points. You have a habit of switching between definitions of a word as it suits you, like right here:

 

And why is that gay guy would not be racist if he would call black women unattractive? Are gay people judged by different standard? No that is sexist.

It was obvious from context (mention of 'banging') that by 'attractive' you meant 'sexually attractive.' Here you're using 'attractive' in its broader sense, since I would expect that a 100% gay man or 100% straight woman would could state 'there is not a single black girl I find sexually attractive' without lying. The 'black' qualifier could be there to make it the trick question.

 

(I wasn't just thinking you might be a gay man, by the way. I was also thinking you might be a straight woman. To my recollection, your gender has never come up in these discussions, and your avatar and handle are sexually ambiguous.)

 

That's what you get for having a history of weaseling with words, you know. People get careful and start adding caveats. It also makes you a somewhat tedious person to converse with, since you spend so much time evading points with little rhetorical tricks rather than addressing them.

 

Also, I thought you said you were leaving...?

Edited by PrimeJunta

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Actually yes, yes it does. Banging not required obviously, but "there is not a single black girl I would consider attractive" is pretty damn racist, now that you mention it.

 

Edit: Unless it was a trick question and you're actually not into girls, of course.

That's a pretty loaded statement.

Are you saying he is required to feel sexual attraction to black women or that makes him racist?

Does that mean that all gay men/women are sexist?

Are you saying that a gay man is required to feel sexual attraction to women or be called sexist?

It's a sexual preference

Edited by Cubiq

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Actually yes, yes it does. Banging not required obviously, but "there is not a single black girl I would consider attractive" is pretty damn racist, now that you mention it.

 

Edit: Unless it was a trick question and you're actually not into girls, of course.

That's a pretty loaded statement.

Are you saying he is required to feel sexual attraction to black women or that makes him racist?

Does that mean that all gay men/women are sexist?

Are you saying that a gay man is required to feel sexual attraction to women or be called sexist?

 

I already addressed the orientation aspect in the above post, so I won't repeat that here.

 

As to the other point, "there is not a single black girl I could find sexually attractive" is racist. For one thing, it demonstrates that you see black girls primarily as black girls, i.e., members of a group, rather than individuals whom you may or may not find sexually attractive. That makes the categorical statement, in and of itself, racist. FWIW, "I find black girls sexually attractive" is also racist, for the same reason.

Edited by PrimeJunta

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I already addressed the orientation aspect in the above post, so I won't repeat that here.

 

As to the other point, "there is not a single black girl I could find sexually attractive" is racist. For one thing, it demonstrates that you see black girls primarily as black girls, i.e., members of a group, rather than individuals whom you may or may not find sexually attractive. That makes the categorical statement, in and of itself, racist. FWIW, "I find black girls sexually attractive" is also racist, for the same reason.

 

Yeah i read it and it makes no sense.

You can say the exact same statement about gay people. "A gay male sees all women as the "female" sex i.e. members of a group, rather than individuals whom you may or may not find sexually attractive."

I think you're trying to take the moral high ground for no reason whatsoever.

Edited by Cubiq

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