The Repeater: Realities of Diversity

The RepeaterThe Repeater is a feature in which important discussions are highlighted and linked from other authors to help the information get around to as many eyes and ears as possible. Relevant to video games? Maybe. Relevant to gamers? Definitely. Let these be your food for thought. (Image Source: http://www.devcom.com/)


Ever hear stories about transgender men/women? They probably involve some straight person’s experience “mistaking” or being “tricked” by those men/women during a Saturday night at the bar. Have you ever stopped to wonder about the person behind the gender? Perhaps their own embarrassment, disappointment, or anger at the transaction? Cracked has short list of “5 Shocking Realities of being Transgender the Media Ignores”. It’s a good read and as good a starting point as any for empathizing with people unlike ourselves. I think it funny how we can turn a situation into something that’s about us even though others are involved and are just as affected by it as we are — often differently and often worse. Thanks to Mace at Geekquality.com, where I found the link.

The best comedy mimics the truth. I present you the recently viral Typecast music video.

Representation matters, folks. Let’s remember that in 2014 when 90% of AAA protagonists are white and male. You watch as it happens before your very eyes.

One last article that, if you click none of these other links, click this one. I envy those who can write with such clarity and power as the author, Daniel Jose Older. Occassionally some real gems get published over at Buzzfeed, and this one is a fine piece. It’s title “Diversity is Not Enough: Race, Power, Publishing” delivers exactly that: an analysis of the current state of the publishing industry but while the author talks specifically about books publishing, I couldn’t help see the very same trends that happen in games publishing. This supports the fact that the problem is systemic. It doesn’t matter which industry you’re in, if you’re not part of the dominant group it’s difficult if not impossible to find the success you’re looking for without the “mangling and silencing” of your voice, as Older puts it.

Diversity is not enough.

We’re right to push for diversity, we have to, but it is only step one of a long journey. Lack of racial diversity is a symptom. The underlying illness is institutional racism. It walks hand in hand with sexism, cissexism, homophobia, and classism. To go beyond this same conversation we keep having, again and again, beyond tokens and quick fixes, requires us to look the illness in the face and destroy it. This is work for white people and people of color to do, sometimes together, sometimes apart. It’s work for writers, agents, editors, artists, fans, executives, interns, directors, and publicists. It’s work for reviewers, educators, administrators. It means taking courageous, real-world steps, not just changing mission statements or submissions guidelines. READ MORE

 

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