Author Message Boards in General

This post pertains to events that occurred on November 24 2009.

4 of my threads on J.R.Ward’s message board have pulled by moderators in less than a couple of hours. The threads were “Race Issues in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series”, “Homoeroticism in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series”, “A Little Respect: The Ladies in BDB”, and “Rap and Rap Culture in BDB”. I rubbed the mods and admins the wrong way with my radical activist and Black feminist views.

Most of all, I rubbed the hardcore, die-hard fans and the lazy escapist readers the wrong way!

100+ views for two of the threads, I think. I don’t know how many they really got because they were pulled so fast! Over 600+ views (720+ for one of them) for two of the those threads. 600+ views! For people who didn’t want to listen to what I had to say, they sure did look…A LOT! And read a lot of it, too, apparently.

Ha.

Message boards for authors are a joke. At least in my experience. Ward’s BDB message board, in particular, a place for hardcore white, middleclass, feminist-wannabes to vent about much they LUV machismo, being oppressed, and reading about other white women who are internally oppressed and like being oppressed just like them. Its sad. Then you have women of color, poor, and/or working class women who read this romantic redressing of old anti-feminist and first and second wave white feminist archetypes and are sucked in by it. It is also a place for escapism and a extension of the marginalization and exotization of minority people including Hispanic/Latinos, Black and African peoples, Muslims, and the queer community.

I had much of a similar problem with moderators on Laurel K. Hamilton’s boards. My previous account was suspended maybe once or twice and I received plenty of warnings from mods who pulled my threads. But it was the snarky white members that were really causing all the problems. That’s why I voluntarily left the boards there.

The mods and admins are angry and they are the gods of BDB Boardom! I hath been judged and warned!

But seriously.

I really am tired of not having a flame-free environment online at the very least to discuss the issues I find in the series that I read with reasonable people who are open to understanding the social implications of the books they read. I am sick to death of lazy ass mods and capitalist white-minded site admins who want to satisfy their white readers at the expense of minorities.

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The Black “Gurrlfriend” Character

You’ve seen her before. You know who she is. Read what I think about this stereotype of Black women in pop media and literature.

Queenly

You know who she is.

You’ve seen her before.

She’s in movies with a mostly white cast or books chocked full of white characters. She is normally married to a white man or is the best friend of a white girl or running in a clique of white and/or wealthy girls (she may even be a snob herself). And even when she’s married to, dating, or in some type of relationship with another Black person or person of color they are the only “colored” people around.

She’s loud. She wears hoop earrings, braids (or heaven forbid unnaturally straight hair or weave usually dyed blond or some shade of blond), some form of typical/atypical ethnic hairstyle, tight pants, short skirts, and low cut, belly-exposing tops. Animal print something is near her (handbag, purse, nails, blankets, sheets, cell phone, earrings, jacket/coat) or there’s an actual live “exotic” animal near her. She dances, sings, cooks, does hair, chauffeurs, is a nanny maid (usually has a close master-slave family relationship with her non-Black employer), and/or makes crass jokes. She is portrayed as wild and exotic, an African mistress, a full-figured fertility goddess abundant in love, maternity, and bosom. She’s a hypersexual animal–rwarrr! She’s a professional dressed in a two-piece suit, middleclass, college educated, frigid bitch with no knowledge of her people’s past–classy not ghetto. Increasingly, she’s Black but she’s mixed with white or something else–the best of both worlds. She’s a prostitute, a mistress, a fast food worker she’s a victim to be used as an example for the author, director, or artist’s white main characters. She’s the only Black woman in the horror movie and she usually dies–very quickly so no one cares or very violently (sometimes like all the other losers in the film or worse than them). She is sometimes promiscuous and/or flirtatious and most likely has children–sometimes several children. If she’s in a comic, manga, cartoon, or anime she’s scantily clad, showing her breasts, legs ass, hips, and thighs and anything else she can put on display; she has big oftentimes glossy lips lots of jewelry and she has music notes inside of speech bubbles. Oftentimes, she is portrayed as violent or plain “gung ho” in the best or worst of situations.

She is the “friend” who says something soulful and inspirational right when her white or “Asian” [term used both cautiously and sarcastically] friend needs it most. But, most of all, she is NEVER the main character. She may only have one or two lines but she always says what her non-Black friend needs to hear most because she is bumbumbum–THE BLACK GIRLFRIEND CHARACTER!!!

Sistas, beware! This stereotype is dangerous. It appears in many different forms and all types of media especially now that America has a “Black president” . White America is now increasingly interested once again in the existence of Black peoples and how the Black folks operate. Books, ads, commercials, movies, daily television, music videos, porn, radio–you name it, she’s probably there. The Black Girlfriend Character or archetype never sleeps.

There was once a time when I would have given anything to see a Black female character in the mainstream but now I’m not so sure I like what I see. Black women are at the bottom of “racial heap” at no fault really of their own but because of a history that continuously and systemically tries to destroy everything that we are through our bodies and the bodies of the women and children around them. We are so much more than stereotypes allow us to be, especially when those stereotypes are being perpetuated outside of ourselves and our communities.

Can we even hope for a better tomorrow?

Though I do try not to be aware of it, but I both hope and expect. More to come on the topic….

*snap* Gurrlfriend!

Ms. Queenly

[Originally posted to Ms. Queenly’s Blog here.]

New Pieces on Ms. Queenly’s Blog

There is a new piece on Ms. Queenly’s Blog entitled “Racialized Censorship”. Check it out. I can at least be honest and for real about my thoughts here.

The second half is for readers by invitation only.

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In some ways, I was very fortunate that I got to spend Thanksgiving at a wealthy white classmate’s house on Mercer Island. My family got to be together back home in Georgia, but when I told them about my evening they said they didn’t have nowhere near what I got to experience. I even got to escape my racist white housemates (who are moving out together, by the way–white flight? Maybe, but thank God!).

I was fortunate in some ways, I think.

In other ways…I was cursed! Check out my Thanksgiving experience on Ms. Queenly’s Blog at msqueenly.wordpress.com!

For real, always,

Ms. Queenly

The Gods of BDB Boardom Have Soken!

The General Manager of J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood Message Board has spoken! I hath been judged! Having received an official warning, I will be banned if I do not shut my trap!

A thread question to the author has been pulled by mods and I’ve been attacked and ganged up on by hardcore board members all in the same day. 😦

It is official. J.R. Ward’s message board is reserved for hero worship only. My account EliasDiamond will be banned if I do not cease in my inquiries primarily about race and culture, class, sexism, and heterosexism in her books.

I will raise no more topics…online at BDB at least!