Hal Duncan über die Löschung der Facebook Gruppe People Against Racebending, die aufgesetzt wurde um gegen das “Weißwaschen” im Casting von Shymalan’s ‘Avatar, The Last Airbender‘ zu protestieren. Ich halte das einen ausgesprochen dämlichen Namen um rassistische Casting-Entscheidungen zu problematisieren (würde Genderbending als Synonym für Sexismus herangezogen werden?), aber what shalls. Hal Duncan greift das Thema auf um ein paar hörenswerte (wenn auch hyperventilierende) Anmerkungen zur Segregation und Integration von Minderheiten in der Mainstream-Kulturindustrie zu machen.
This is utterly abhorrent. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, this is not some trivial little issue of under-representation in the media. This is not about “political correctness.” This is not about “quotas.” This example in particular brings that home, in the elimination of ethnic diversity that has taken place, and now — now — the closing down of protest: that this is about the fucking active exclusion of the abjected from the mainstream. So the faggots can play the Gay Best Friend, and the niggers — and I use that word as a mark of the fury I feel that this is how people of colour are still being treated — can play the Magic Negro. And the Asians can play the shopkeepers and token friends and sage advisors. But never the hero.
There is a word for what this is.
The Last Airbender movie is not just a movie. In an earlier post on my blog, a sentiment repeated in one of my BSC Review column, writing from my own queer perspective, I said this:
“Segregation still exists in the media, in the movies and the TV shows, where the abject is absented, where there is the default and the deviant, the “normal” and the “abnormal”. In the media, in the mainstream, the default is white, straight, able-bodied, and so on. And those of us who watch those media, as members of any group abjected on the basis of some marker of deviance from that default, we thirst for stories in which we are represented. We thirst for the art and entertainment that refreshes and replenishes. Sometimes we have our own water-fountains to quench that thirst — queer television, queer cinema — movies and shows that deal with our lives, our issues. This is good. But as long as we are excluded, as long as we are allowed into the mainstream only when it is “important to the story,” as long as we can walk into those stories only to carry out set roles in service of the white, straight, able-bodied heroes and heroines — as Magic Negroes or as Gay Best Friends — this is still segregation.”