This time, with 100% more snark and incisive commentary!
I suppose I should begin by apologizing on behalf of myself and Bat Cat for disappearing for so long without notice. Finishing my thesis on top of, well, trying to get in some sleep and live a normal life and what not, made it nearly impossible to find the time not just to write for the blog, but also to do the required things that give me topics and issues to write about.
I’ve missed the blog. I’d gotten used to having a mouthpiece for my frustrations, a place to articulate and formulate my stances on social issues and more frivolous geeky problems. Although geekalitarian is still a pretty small mouthpiece, writing here has made me feel braver (even as I hide behind only my first name) and more useful. I feel more comfortable calling out problematic things in real life, without worrying about alienating people. The experiences I’ve gained here have helped me to remember that people who are upset or offended when I call out sexism and racism probably aren’t people whose opinions of me should matter very much.
This brings me to the teaser for our first, post-hiatus post: how the attribution of rigid racial characteristics in high fantasy helps to normalize racism in real life. A few months ago, my D&D group started playing with a couple who I now define by their casual racism. At the same time, (presumably by coincidence) our DM has been ascribing more moral/immoral racial traits to NPCs. It’s become common for an NPC to say something like, “Never trust a [member of some ‘evil’ race].” By responding, in character, with a joking-but-not-joking “That’s racist!” I feel (perhaps absurdly) more able to confront the IRL racism of people I’m supposed to like. But more on that in the coming week or so!
We’re in the process of giving the site a makeover. (And I may even sort through the daunting mess that is the blog’s tags, with the intention of making them actually useful.) Once we’re done with that, expect regular weekly updates!
So, to long-time readers: It’s great to be back! And to new readers: Welcome, and enjoy your stay!