Friday, 19 July 2013

The author is dead: on boycotting creations because of their creators

kaberettPosted by kaberett

Here is my premise: I exist.

Over the past few months, there has been ongoing discussion of Orson Scott Card, his vile views on queer people and equal marriage, and the upcoming release of the film adaptation of Ender's Game. Over and over again - as in the most recent such article I've stumbled upon, by John Scalzi - people say:

Personally speaking, I have a pretty high tolerance for artists and creators being obnoxious/offensive/flawed/assholes/otherwise seriously imperfect. This is partly because I believe art is a highly composed, refined, edited and intentional end result of a process that takes place in a mind which can be almost anything. The only thing creators fundamentally have in common is the ability to create, and to shape their creations to speak to others.


So, yeah, I can put up with a lot when it comes to creators. It’s not usually  the art’s fault the brain it came out of is directly connected to an asshole.
To be clear, in fact I think Scalzi is generally competent, and I've deliberately pulled out the most unpleasant part of the article: but it's representative of a broader idea, the idea that a creator's reprehensible views don't affect the art they create.

They do.

It is one thing for me to consume media that doesn't contain queer people, trans people, just because we've been forgotten and overlooked.

It is quite another to consume media from which we have been actively erased.

My boycott isn't about material created by an author who holds irrelevant views. It's about my unwillingness to give money to people who deliberately erase me as an active political position.

I. Exist.

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