heidi: (prey)
[personal profile] heidi
When JKR said in a Radio City Music Hall reading/event that Dumbledore was gay.

On twitter today, a friend of mine asked about how society had changed since then, and I started thinking about how fandom had changed since then - or actually, since 2000/2001.

I found an essay by Tinderblast (different pseud now, but I won't link to it unless she says it's ok) written in 2000 or 2001 about slash and the HP fandom - you can read it here. It says, in response to the flames many slash writers were receiving:

All right, then, let's take a look at the most oft-cited justifications of the flames, and see what they say.
...
2. Slash pairings are out of character.

When you think about it, no fanfic is completely in character, simply because the fic writers aren't writing the characters as the author originally planned - so what J.K. Rowling was thinking when she wrote the books isn't really an issue until she tells us straight out about the leanings of the characters. And how many POVs are the books told from? One. Harry's point of view. Not having seen the inside of most of the characters' thoughts, we can't say for sure which ones are homosexual, which ones are het, and which ones are bi. Okay, sure, having seen the Yule Ball, we can say that the majority of the characters, if not all, are heterosexual. But that doesn't eliminate the possibility of their being bisexual. In fact, Harry might be bisexual, too - people don't always realize they have homosexual leanings the moment their hormones start working.

While we're at it, how is Remus and/or Sirius having a long lost girlfriend/wife any more plausible then their having been lovers in the past? We have no evidence pointing either way - they could have sworn themselves to celibacy, for all we know.

Putting the last two paragraphs into two words, prove it.


Well, that's certainly an argument that hasn't been made in the last four years. From 2000 through 2007, though, it wasn't uncommon for people to say that if JKR had intended for there to be gay wizards, she would have said so and since she hadn't, there weren't any.

There were threads like this one on FictionAlley, and two vendors at Nimbus who were shocked SHOCKED at the drawing in the Program of Harry and Draco embracing, so much so that they were harassing our attendees, and were asked to leave the vendor room (yes, we refunded their fees).

So today, there was a story on the news that 53% of all Americans believes that there is nothing morally wrong with being gay, and that's a number that's significantly higher than any from 2000 or 2004 or even 2007. Did Dumbledore make that much of a difference? No, probably not in the wider world - but perhaps in fandom? Is it possible that some Harry Potter fans who thought that there couldn't possibly homosexuality in the wizarding world, who thought that to see that some characters in the books were, or might be, gay or bisexual or transgender was to inherently misread and defile JKR's stories... is it possible that some of them have, since October 19, 2007, changed their minds?

(no subject)

Date: 2011-10-19 09:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lunalovegoddess.livejournal.com
definitely food for thought

Also, just wanted to say that I miss FictionAlley. Haven't had much time or computer access these days to check it out- the other day I was reminiscing about favorite fanfics. Most of the people I met through FA ended up on Livejournal, though, so I continued to be involved in fandom, but I miss visiting the site.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-10-19 09:15 pm (UTC)
trinity_clare: (unscrews)
From: [personal profile] trinity_clare
I think my primary reaction to "Dumbledore is gay" was, and continues to be, "how dare JKR get her authorial intent all up in my fannish business!" Also I consider it grey canon, which leads to me getting frustrated during discussions of homosexuality in HP canon. It's not that I think Dumbledore *isn't* gay, just that JKR supporters can't point at Dumbledore and say "look! GLBT representation in the HP books!"

On the other hand, I welcomed with open arms the news that Alfonso Cuaron directed David Thewlis to play Remus as gay, because a.) it was an interpretive decision rather than an authorial statement, and b.) I agreed with it.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-10-21 07:05 pm (UTC)
lokifan: black Converse against a black background (Default)
From: [personal profile] lokifan
Yes, I second all of this.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-10-21 12:31 pm (UTC)
ext_17167: (Default)
From: [identity profile] stormwynd.livejournal.com
I wonder if HP fandom's overall view of homosexuality is mirroring an increasing acceptance (or at least tolerance) in society in general -- see DADT and same-sex marriage, for example.

As for the vendor incident at Nimbus, I remember hearing about it and thinking, "Hmm, what part of 'don't piss off potential customers' did they not understand?" But yeah, I would be incredibly surprised to find a vendor saying stuff like that at Ascendio -- things have definitely changed.

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