One thing that this blog helps break down is the idea that women geeks are uncommon. Many (thankfully not all) of us have had the feeling at one time or another that there wasn’t much community for women in the gaming world. One way to keep smashing these false images is to make connections: finding other women who love games, and men and women tackling similar issues. There are whole communities we have yet to meet yet!
In that spirit, the links page here at Gaming as Women is being developed as an all around resource for us to have easy access to colleagues, allies and potential friends. Also to help us keep current and abreast of research, thought and projects that deal with role playing, gender, social equity and great gaming. Post your suggestions here for blogs, forums, sites, events and other items of interest that we can link to and share. There will be occasional columns like this one to highlight sites and people of interest to check out. We’ll start with an update on a project:
Feminist Frequency: Conversations with Pop Culture, a video blog by Anita Sarkeesian
Anita Sarkeesian is a feminist pop culture media critic who produces an ongoing web series of video commentaries from a feminist/fangirl perspective. She has earned her bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies and her Master’s degree in Social and Political Thought. Anita’s research interests are on privilege and systems of oppression specifically focusing on representations of race, gender, sexuality, class and ability in popular culture. Her master’s thesis is entitled “I’ll Make a Man Out of You”: Strong Women in Science Fiction and Fantasy Television”
Sarkeesian has gained visibility and notariety from her recent Kickstarter campaign, Tropes vs. Women in Video Games. Gaming as Women’s Filamena’s interviewed her here earlier this month while the campaign was still going on. It has now closed with nearly 7,000 backers and raised a whopping $158,922. In Filamena’s interview, Sarkeesian describes her approach to feminist analysis of popular culture as a reaction to dry texts. Beginning last year with her video series Women vs. Tropes she is bringing a feminist critique to popular media texts that people care about and enjoy. Feminism is not just for the ivory tower, or burning bras in the public square. She takes the discussion to a personal place–the art that our beloved mass media provides.
This approach seems to be coming from many sides, from Batgirl at Comicon to the recent fraught conversations about rape in narratives. There’s a feminist conversation afoot on the interwebs and Anita Sarkeesian is right at the forefront.