Disco Elysium looks pretty cool, but I really have no interest in playing as an alcoholic white guy. Again.

This is not to say DE is a bad game. I'm sure it's nice in its way.

But we are constantly bombarded with expressions of white anxiety about the future. The Walking Dead, The Hunger Games, Rick and Morty, Westworld, etc. There's just a certain fatalism about the world that all these shows carry that are coming from a specific context.

They all have their place, but I'm just tired of being served the same social context over and over and over again in media.

The world is a big place.


@Are0h This reminds me of something I was posting about a while back, possibly before I got onto Mastodon: This sense of apocalypse and finality, this sense of the world being finite and coming to an end, is based in White Fragility, a Christian vision, in a Western European-North American sense of "progress" where things only get better. The fact is, for most of us, Jews, Black people, indigenous peoples of the Americas, the world has ended constantly and consistently. You just deal with it.

@MoMartin I could not agree with this more.

There are a lot of shows that rhapsodize about the END OF HUMANITY and just regurgitate what oppressed people have gone through multiple times. Yeah, they do it with bombastic threats meteors and bombs, but the devastation is not new to us.

Hunger Games did this and it received endless accolades, but marginalized people experience that brutality everyday.

Most of it is just white people fretting about having to exist as us.

@Are0h Mike Davis, the urbanist, has a whole analysis of disaster fiction in Ecology of Fear, where he says that basically, why is 19-21st century fiction obsessed with blowing up cities? Because that's where black and brown folk live, that's where immigrants live. They're so fucking scared.

@MoMartin Exactly. There's a reason why these rugged, redneck, survive on squirrels and raccoons, motorcycle tough guy narratives are so popular, but the Brown single mom that has been gutting it out for most of her life aren't.

There is a specific investment in particular tropes while completely ignoring the lived experience and histories of folks that have actually gone through loss on a massive scale and survived.

It's obvious and tiresome at this point.

@Are0h @MoMartin not to mention that the few times somewhat popular media does show something approaching the lived history of everyday people, like moonlight or the florida project, the response to it from moneyed interests is often something like "this highlights an important issue, if only Something Could Be Done About This [in a way that involves me not having to do anything]"

@fakemaxkeeble @MoMartin This reminds of the recent Notre Dame situation where BILLIONS were raised in a few days, but an issue like homelessness in the Bay gets constant lip service as being TOO HARD AND COMPLEX to fix.

Nah. It's just greedy bastard creating conditions that harms people and not wanting to take responsibility for fixing the problem.

Which is usually the same narrative a number of Western apocalyptic themed stories.

@Are0h @fakemaxkeeble @MoMartin didn't some cities around the globe fix homelessness by providing housing to the people?

the problem in the bay, of course, is that a great majority of the homeless population is black, so, uhm… yah

maybe they really did something to deserve being homeless¹, and how can you be so sure they don't actually want to be homeless²?

¹ en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Just-wor
² the percentage of these is actually extremely low

@meena @fakemaxkeeble @MoMartin I'd have to look up specific examples, but I know there are a few places that are doing more than yelling "GET A JOB" out of a window and calling the cops when someone sits on their stoop.

But, as with most social issues in the States, it's not about the actual problem, but punishing people that are not liked.

@Are0h @fakemaxkeeble @MoMartin problem with GET A JOB is you need an address for several steps of getting a job and getting paid and getting a new home

@Are0h Only certain people, mostly White, mostly Christian, often men, have the arrogance to assume that something epochal is going to happen, or rather, that people don't survive the ends of epochs all the time, that an epoch doesn't end almost every day.

@MoMartin Hard agree. It just gets to be monotonous when we're being fed these narratives of mass devastation that our cultures have been experiencing for a long time now. And we are able to retain our hopefulness about the world in addition to managing the depth of our loss.

A lot of apocalyptic narratives, I feel, cheapen this experience to make it 'relatable', but in the end it does the opposite because the cultural context is consistent.

And we've seen it a million times before.

@Are0h Exactly. It's tired, and it's played out. It's also a cheap stakes raiser "everything will come to an end" Well, like, have you made me care enough to NOT want that to happen?

@MoMartin Boom. Which is exactly why I was rooting for the White Walkers in Game of Thrones, hahahahahah

From my perspective, everyone was trash and that shit needed to end.

@Are0h I also don't get it, because, like, personally, as a writer, it's more exciting and interesting and CHALLENGING to tell a rich, complicated story in a rich complicated world, than it is to tell some grinding tale of survival, (white) man against cruel nature (brown people)

@Are0h Also if you WANT to tell a story of someone surviving extreme conditions, why go all Jack London "To Light A Fire" grim and not do something interesting, like watching someone indigenous to those conditions going through their daily life, or their ritual life?

@MoMartin LOL, exactly.

There's a reason we always see white guy fall from grace stories, but not, say, the story of how Haiti freed itself from oppression.

There are certain contexts that are being pushed over and over again. This isn't an accident.

@Are0h oh absolutely not, and really comparatively speaking, we live in a golden age, because with a little hunting, you can find self published books and indie films and shit that breaks away. But it would be nice if the kind of resources that get thrown behind these dull ass projects could get thrown behind works by creaters of color and with a fresh perspective.

@MoMartin That's a big part of it. The ease at which this projects can be funded and accessed.

But I'd agree. The amount of content that's out right is pretty unprecedented.

@Are0h Which is another dang reason that it's not a fucking apocalypse, no matter what the NYT opinion columnists think!

@MoMartin @Are0h (repost because I tried to edit something I said then accidentally deleted it) There is a good episode from the For the Wild podcast interviewing two members of the Queer Nature project and one thing they discuss is the the idea of white "survivor" stories and how they are about doing violence to a foreign place (maybe a place the survivor has been dumped randomly) and how this is contrary to the experiences of indigenous people who "survive" (an inadequate word, really) by knowing and inhabiting a place. I recommend it, not that it would be new info for either of you, but there is other good stuff in there

@MoMartin The stories that green lit are indicative of the cultural context of the folks making those decisions.

Most studios would rather waste millions on trying to make 'relatable' stories, i.e. stuff white people like rather than give a chance to someone who has real and provocative ideas.

The excuse is usually Black led projects don't sell, but we know that's a lie.

There's a systemic commitment to push these narratives, even if it costs them money.

@MoMartin @Are0h the fantasy series I'm reading atm, aside from various other allegories, is specifically about a world where cyclical apocalypse is the norm, and society is structured around dealing with that fact.

It's heavy stuff, but a breath of fresh air in a stale space.

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