Here’s a thing I’ve had around in my head for a while!
Okay, so I’m pretty sure that by now everyone at least is aware of Steampunk, with it’s completely awesome Victorian sci-fi aesthetic. But what I want to see is Solarpunk – a plausible near-future sci-fi genre, which I like to imagine as based on updated Art Nouveau, Victorian, and Edwardian aesthetics, combined with a green and renewable energy movement to create a world in which children grow up being taught about building electronic tech as well as food gardening and other skills, and people have come back around to appreciating artisans and craftspeople, from stonemasons and smithies, to dress makers and jewelers, and everyone in between. A balance of sustainable energy-powered tech, environmental cities, and wicked cool aesthetics.
A lot of people seem to share a vision of futuristic tech and architecture that looks a lot like an ipod – smooth and geometrical and white. Which imo is a little boring and sterile, which is why I picked out an Art Nouveau aesthetic for this.
With energy costs at a low, I like to imagine people being more inclined to focus their expendable income on the arts!
Aesthetically my vision of solarpunk is very similar to steampunk, but with electronic technology, and an Art Nouveau veneer.
So here are some buzz words~
Tailors and dressmakers!
Stained glass window solar panels!!!
Education in tech and food growing!
Less corporate capitalism, and more small businesses!
Solar rooftops and roadways!
Communal greenhouses on top of apartments!
Electric cars with old-fashioned looks!
No-cars-allowed walkways lined with independent shops!
Renewable energy-powered Art Nouveau-styled tech life!
Can you imagine how pretty it would be to have stained glass windows everywhere that are actually solar panels? The tech is already headed in that direction! Or how about wide-brim hats, or parasols that are topped with discreet solar panel tech incorporated into the design, with ports you can stick your phone charger in to?
(((Character art by me; click the cityscape pieces to see artist names)))
High heels are like bikini battle armor. In the realm of fashion, they are helpful because of the way they draw the eye and shape the visual impression of the leg. High heels lengthen the leg, draw the eye up, and highlight the shape of the butt (and more). However, with long term use, they are very hard on the joints (ankles, knees, and hips) and can lead to long term damage.
I know there are people out there who will argue that catsuits, spandex, bikinis, and high heels are practical combat gear for women. Some of them are very well-meaning, some of them are women who buy into it. You’ve probably seen some of them on this site. They’re the ones who take the stock photographs of female martial artists doing (slightly awkward looking) high kicks in high heels as “YES GIRLY GIRLS CAN FIGHT TOO!”. Well, they certainly can but not in high heels. (I applaud the women who can do full extension sidekicks in high heels though! What flexibility! Much balance! Incredible skill! A woman who can do a high kick in high heels is a badass. It’s a testament to their mastery of their body though, not high heel combat viability.)
High heels tip the body forward, putting all the weight on the balls of the feet. If you’ve ever walked around in high heels, then you know finding your balance can be tricky (especially on slick surfaces) and running is mostly out. (You can, it’s just awkward.) The original design for high heels was 14th/15th riding boots when they were a men’s fashion choice. They were never designed for walking on land.
My personal problem with the emphasis on high heels and women’s fashion for female combat oriented characters is the emphasis on visual beauty over practicality and professionalism or any respect for the problems created by reality whatsoever
When it comes to clothing, how you dress your character does actually matter. If a creator or artist approaches their female character with the belief that women don’t fight anyway, so further sexualization of them through their clothing doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things then they are actively contributing to the dehumanization of that character and upholding that ideal that women fighting at all (much less on an even plane with men) is a fantasy. (The reality is women all over the world do fight, do take on dangerous jobs in various shapes, sizes, and personalities.)
Why? Because it prioritizes emphasis on their appearance to the outside observer over the concerns of the reality they are facing. Whoever put together their outfit was thinking primarily about how they’d be perceived not on practical choices of what they’d choose to wear for traipsing through a sewer. When I think about sewers, peep toe shoes, skinny jeans, and spaghetti straps don’t exactly come to mind first as preferred spelunking wear. Galoshes, raincoats, and pants that repel moisture, yeah. Clothes from the $5 bin I don’t mind throwing out after, sure. My Coach bag and (if I owned any) $400 Jimmy Choos? Hell, no.
A character doesn’t become more badass by ignoring the physical constraints and dangers of the world around them. They just look more stupid. The required level of suspension of disbelief is higher for these characters than their male counterparts.
Now, male artists do this for male characters too. The problem is, of course, that you can actually make a case for fighting in biker boots, a loose leather jacket, and jeans. That’s actually practical street combat wear. Leather jackets work as makeshift armor, they can absorb a fair amount of impact. Biker boots are thick, made of leather, protect the shins, and they’re designed to take impact. They armor the foot. Loose men’s jeans are practical, provide freedom of movement, and they’re durable against friction burns. They survive longer and they’re thicker than other kinds of pants. So, when Steven Stallone turns to the camera in a goofy 80s action movie and says “You don’t need to get fancy, lady.” He’s actually right. You don’t.
However, if you have Black Widow do the same in a catsuit, high heels, or even just skinny jeans, a tight fitting leather jacket, a very nice red satin shirt that exposes her breasts, and heavy makeup, it’s not exactly comparable in impact. (One of the nice things about The Winter Soldier was how practically they had her dressed when wearing civvies.) 1) Because she already is dressed fancy and 2) her clothing isn’t any more practical to the situation than the person she’s bitching out.
Plenty of Urban Fantasy protagonists, super heroines, and movie characters do this. I’m not picking on Black Widow, but she’s getting passed around a lot. Buffy did this all the time and it’s part of why I couldn’t take her seriously (especially in the early seasons). Going down into the sewers in a satin pink spaghetti strap, a mini skirt, and matching sandals. Why? Because she likes sacrificing $100 to $200 in clothing every day. Single parent home, pushing minimal income, constantly complaining about her allowance, while burning a metric shit ton on clothing every single week. How is she affording that? The answer is she’s not. The clothing just pops out of the snow, like daisies. The same can be said of the female protagonists on The Vampire Diaries.
On the other hand, I give Charmed a pass because they constantly acknowledge how hard demon fighting is on their clothing. They try to fix their clothes with magic, they have to come up with money to repair the manor, they have to buy new clothes, they think about trading in their old styles for more practical ones and decide against it. The daily rigor, the stress on their wallets, the general mundane realities of every day life are expressed in the choices and habits the characters make and maintain. If they have time before facing a given crisis, you’ll even see them go run to change. Their clothing isn’t practical, but the show at least acknowledges that and uses it to humanize their struggles with being women and demon hunting witches.
The big problem with style and fashion is they help contribute to the idea that women primarily exist in fiction (and in real life) to be looked at. They’re decorative first, even when they’re dangerous. If you remove that aspect, men and women will in fact complain.
Yes, both of them.
Women are presented with a cultural idealization of beauty day in and day out, the stereotypes we’re presented with become a part of what we expect to see and may even idealize in ourselves. Recognition of beauty, being admired, is presented as a goal all women (whether or not they can even achieve the standard) should aspire to. Not appearing beautiful is presented as bad by media, unworthy, unable to be loved. Conform to be worthy. For many people, they want both. To fit the cultural ideal of female sexualization while simultaneously rejecting it. It’s wish fulfillment and there’s no shame in it, media has told you you’re entire life that this is what you should want to be.
It doesn’t exist, but you’ll see plenty of people try to make it so anyway like the girls I knew in gym who’d cake on makeup before going out to play basketball or run the mile.
To challenge the stereotypes, you have to recognize them and that may require changing how you see women in media. It’s insidious and, more importantly, not necessarily evil. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be wanted, to be beautiful, to be recognized. But how a character looks and what they wear should always, always come second to what they need to get their job done.
I try to beat this by thinking about the situation first, instead of character. I construct a character to deal with a situation. With this set up, practicality usually prevails.
I challenge you followers. When you think of a powerful woman, or a dangerous female, what do you think of first?
I think of Kara Thrace, who is fortunately not in the high-heels fighting woman mode. But she’s definitely an exception to the general rule… Which is probably why I think of her first.
Emma Watson represents the UN, in her role as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, in Uruguay where she was campaigning for a higher representation of women in politics.
its so incredible seeing a star i grew up watching turn into this perfect person
She’s like a real-life Amidala.
*ahem- 50 year old…
But also that awkward moment when the Forest of Cheem’s sacrifice is relegated to unimportance in Moffat’s world. Her bravery and kindness don’t matter, and she’s turned into yet another cheap joke about women being infatuated with the Doctor.
That she fancied the Doctor did not feature at all in the season 1 episode. She was curious about his origins, she had sympathy for him, and she gave her life so he could save the rest of the people aboard the base. I personally don’t see her fawning over him (like so many of Moffat’s women do). Thus, with no real evidence to draw this from, Moffat seems to be interpreting her sacrifice as “fancying” the Doctor, which is immensely problematic: It suggests that she did this only for him rather than to save everyone on the ship, and it shows yet another example of Moffat thinking that any woman who interacts with the Doctor must be infatuated with him.
Even if she did fancy him, the fact that Moffat considers her actions negligible in comparison to her “crush” is pretty gross, especially when the payoff from this line is so small. All it does in the context of the episode is set up the Doctor as an object of desire. But in the context of the show, it undermines the agency and power of women to act with bravery and integrity without it being all for the Doctor.
lmao i remember complaining about this exact same thing on this exact same gifset back in 2011
additionally THAT’S NOT EVEN HER NAME
her name was Jabe??? this is like saying ‘i met the human race once. they fancied me’
I think the tags should have been #that awkward moment when Moffat tries to reference his predecessor’s run and that’s what he comes up with
Moffat is personally responsible for my transformation from a massive sobbing mess of a Who fan to a person who has not watched a full episode in literally years
^^^ All of this.
The <title> of this page is “Do Consumers Want More Women In Video Games?” The results of this survey will be presented at GDC15, so let’s tell ‘em a resounding “FUCK YEAH!”
why is it
"no boy will want you if you keep on with that feminist rubbish"
"no girl will want you if you keep on being a misogynistic piece of shit"
When we write stories, and when we publish them, we are legitimizing the experiences of the people within the texts. We are telling the stories of cultures, and of humanity – but when there is no difference, the text becomes problematic instead of an illustration of human difference. Over and over and over again, “human” becomes very narrowly defined – “humans” become those who are white, who are straight, who are upper-middle class, who are able-bodied, who are cis. How are children supposed to learn to appreciate difference if they hardly recognize that it exists?
Furthermore, when we ask children of color and children of other diverse groups to always be sympathetic to the plights and existences of children of this very narrow population, we are denying them a certain level of personhood. What does it mean if their story is never told? Is it not worth telling? Is it less important? Are they less important?"