So, a brief sidebar for all my usual readers whom I love and adore; yours truly has participated in Bitch Magazine’s blog carnival celebrating all manner of feminist click and anti-click. I wrote an article about the meaning of online gaming to me as a trans woman and as a feminist and posted it on The Border House. You may find it in all its glory here. The essence of the article is that I learned a tremendous deal about what it meant to be a woman in contemporary society- vivifying the second half of Susan Stryker’s famous (to me) definition of womanhood: “A woman is one who says she is and then does what woman means.” I learned, in ways both empowering and painful, what being a woman meant.
What’s more, I would come to terms with who I was, and most important of all, roleplaying showed me that there was courage and strength in womanhood. It prepared me for the fight that would explode forth in all its fury when I finally decided to come out. The article was meant to convey some of the reasons that a video game can be more than “just a game” and to illustrate the importance of pride in a world where shame remains all too common. There were more issues that I should have explored, in retrospect, and might be fruitful areas of consideration for future articles. While I looked up to several women characters in video games, and some on television like Star Trek’s Captain Janeway, what was inescapable was the whiteness of all of these women. It was something that has complexed me to this day; it’s still a struggle for me to see myself as beautiful when compared to white women. Video games by themselves are hardly to blame for this, indeed I would cast more of the weight with our wider media culture, but they still played their role.
Conversely, Night Elves offered a curious escape from that trap. I could at least be proud to be purple. These are matters I’ll have to think on more deeply to be sure. My analyses of cybersociology often miss issues of race in any great measure and this is something that has been bothering me more and more. I have things to say on this, things I’ve felt, things I’ve experienced through that ultimate form of participant observation research known as life, but it will take time for me to order them in my head.
On that note, enjoy the blog carnival and I will be back soon with another Transgender Studies update!