That Moment….

…when you discover one of your favourite authors said some shit-tastic things in one of her books.

WTF, Paxson? WTF?

The sad thing is that I’m betting I probably wouldn’t have caught on to any of that had I read the book. I find it difficult to catch “-ism” instances sometimes, but especially racism (probably because I, as a white person, don’t experience racism, but I do experience sexism and homophobia).

Now, does this justify taking her books off my recommended reading list, or should I judge them on their own merits? On the other hand, I suspect there are probably a couple more authors on there who have likely said some crappy things, so perhaps they should stay. (Snorri doesn’t count, though.)

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8 thoughts on “That Moment….

  1. You can either take her off the reading list, or avoid the offending book(s). (If it’s all of her books, then I guess she’s off the list either way, lol.)

    On the one hand, we should try not to support writing like this. On the other hand, if there’s some really good freaking information in the book otherwise, it’s hard to dismiss it completely.

  2. There are examples of racial privilege-blindness in a lot of the Northern Tradition stuff I’ve read, even stuff written by people who are friends of mine. But this is beyond the pale.

    Many Heathen authors I’ve read take the opposite (and equally shitty) position: that the closed status of many Native traditions somehow justifies closing off Heathenry from non-Northern-European-descended people. In either case, comparing the situation of modern American Heathens to that of Native Americans is just plain ignorant. I expect better of an author who has been touted as an example of “liberal,” anti-racist Heathenry.

    1. Oh yes, the opposite view is just as gear-grindingly annoying. I had a couple of professors in university who spent time with many different native groups, and between the two of them, they managed to hammer in the message that people like modern American Heathens are definitely not oppressed in the same way that native peoples have been (and still are) oppressed, except, perhaps, as members of a minority religion.

      I posted this elsewhere, and apparently it’s “taken out of context”. How the Hel can such a big quote be taken out of context?! I’d like to see the explanation for that, frankly.

      I’m trying to decide which is worse: this, or Freya Aswynn’s strange comments about gay people (to the effect of “Odin and Thor are “too masculine” for gay men, Freyr is cool tho”) and strange folkish ideas about genetics and religion (in her book, “Northern Mysteries and Magic” there’s this really odd quote about how a Chinese man will somehow automatically know more about his culture than, say, an American who has lived in China for years. Lady, my parents are Romanian, I still haven’t learned Romanian by osmosis.

      1. Freya Aswynn sounds as if she’s a fan of metagenetics, an idea which makes me giggle. I’m of mixed ethnicity, but the place of people like me in the world of “genes determine culture” is always carefully avoided in those discussions. I rather imagine they’d prefer that people like me don’t exist.

        1. People like you, Elizabeth (and you too, Gefnsdottir!) keep me from losing all hope in the human race – your blogs are awesome reads and whilst I may not necessarily agree with absolutely everything you say, I still think you’re both great 🙂

          1. Aw, thank you 🙂 It’s good to know that my efforts are useful to others.

            I would be worried if there was someone out there who agreed with absolutely everything I said, since the first thing that’d pop into my head would be “STALKER!” 😀

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