icon_uk: (Default)
icon_uk ([personal profile] icon_uk) wrote in [community profile] scans_daily2012-02-19 09:31 pm

Paul Cornell is looking for gender parity at Con panels...

From Paul Cornell's website



"Okay, so this was something I came up with yesterday, and it's mad, and is, frankly, a rod for my own back, but what the hell, it's going to make this coming year a lot more interesting.

I think there should be gender parity on every panel at every convention. I'm after 50/50, all the time. I want that in place as an expectation, as a rule. Now, to make that happen, what really should be done is a ground-up examination of society, huge changes at the heart of things which would automatically lead to women being equally represented everywhere, not just on convention panels. Well, we've all wanted that and worked for that for decades, especially those of us in fandom, and it just hasn't happened. So, this year, I've decided that I'm going to approach this problem via the only moral unit I'm in charge of: me. I'm going to approach this problem from the other end. And this approach is going to be very much that of a blunt instrument.

If I'm on, at any convention this year, a panel that doesn't have a 50/50 gender split (I'll settle for two out of five), I'll hop off that panel, and find a woman to take my place.
"

There's more text at the website, but I'm impressed by his initiative.

So, thoughts people? :)


For legality, the cover to Demon Knights 7 by Mike Choi, which includes a rather impressive outfit for the Questing Queen, a little action-figure-y perhaps, but given my Saint Seiya tastes, that's not really a problem for me! :)


[personal profile] donnblake 2012-02-20 12:08 am (UTC)(link)
I get where he's coming from, but this really seems an odd way to go about it if it's meant to be anything but a pure attention grabbing stunt. It's about the different ideas of equality of opportunity and equality of results.

That is to say, the difference between saying, "It should be just as easy for a woman to get a job in the comic book industry as it is for an equally qualified man," (the qualifications here being, let's say, the ability to reliably produce quality work on a regular schedule), and saying, "Comic book companies should hire people based on their gender so as to maintain an equal ratio of men-to-women."

No, that's not quite right. Cornell isn't suggesting that anyone lose their job or not get one based on their gender. It's just the idea that gender should be the overriding concern when selecting someone for just about anything besides sex-partner or genetic donor or somesuch that strikes me as just as problematic as the issue it's trying to address.

On the other hand, I get that maybe something like this is intended to be a step towards a more equality of opportunity model for the industry. It's hard to just go and change the male-centric setup of the industry over night, and this is a rule that COULD be implemented, or even if not, something that Cornell himself could continue doing.
valtyr: (Emma fight the void)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 12:43 am (UTC)(link)
It's just the idea that gender should be the overriding concern when selecting someone for just about anything besides sex-partner or genetic donor or somesuch that strikes me as just as problematic as the issue it's trying to address.

No, it's not. That's nonsense. Trying to get more women into comics, discussing comics, and onto panels is absolutely not the same as the industry's regular exclusion of them. Any more than scholarships targeting minorities is as problematic as the lack of access to education for those minorities. When addressing systemic gender imbalances, you have to be concerned with gender. How else can you address it?

Some countries have done a similar thing with corporate boards. It's amazing how, when they had to, they could find qualified women.

[personal profile] donnblake 2012-02-20 01:18 am (UTC)(link)
You're right, and that was poorly worded on my part. But I still think that the overriding concern should be who is most qualified to speak on any given panel.

Yes, right now the comic-book industry is male dominated which means that many panels will probably have more qualified men than women (put 25 of Group A into a room with one of Group B and there's a decent chance than one of the Group Aers will have as much or more experience than the Group Ber in any given field), and yes it's a problem that the industry is male dominated, but I don't see how establishing quotas at conventions is supposed to fix that.
valtyr: (Chicken)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 01:34 am (UTC)(link)
It depends on how you decide 'most qualified', doesn't it? Numerous factors come into play when choosing panellists - in-depth knowledge of the topic, direct experience of the topic, current relation to the topic (ie are you currently working on it), availability, whether the con can afford to get you there, does the panellist bring a new or original perspective to the topic, are they a skilled debater, are they funny, do they ask penetrating questions, can they chair a panel effectively. You seem to be assuming first that it's easy to rank people in order of their qualification, and second that the makeup of panels purely reflects the makeup of the industry.

To digress slightly, many orchestras now do blind auditions - those auditioning do not speak, they enter, play and leave concealed from the panel judging them. Orchestras that do this rapidly start selecting on a more gender-equal basis, when previously they disproportionately selected men. Was this deliberate? Well, probably not, or they wouldn't have gone to the effort of introducing blind auditioning in the first place. More likely, they had subconscious bias that led them to prefer men's playing. And it's entirely possible this kind of bias comes into play when selecting panellists. A gender quota is one way of overcoming this subconscious bias.

How will it help? Well, the visible involvement of women can interest other women and encourage participation, for starters. They can also get men accustomed to seeing women involved. Getting the 'oh God! a girl!' reaction can be very off-putting. Being on panels is also a way to meet and talk to industry professionals, and get your viewpoint out to a wider audience. The industry is sorely lacking in female perspectives.

[personal profile] donnblake 2012-02-20 01:42 am (UTC)(link)
You're raising a lot of points I hadn't considered, and I'll concede that Cornell's suggested rule is worth trying. Let me ask a question though- if we hypothesize a world where gender inequality doesn't play a role in the comic book industry (note: I am NOT, repeat NOT claiming that that world currently exists) would the rule still be worthwhile?
valtyr: (medusa oils)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 01:46 am (UTC)(link)
No, I don't think the rule would be worthwhile in that case. In a world with true gender equality, panels would sometimes be all or majority male, but they would also sometimes be all or majority female. In a truly gender equality world, there would be significantly less - perhaps nothing - for which a female perspective would be more useful than a male perspective, and vice versa.

[personal profile] gerardotejada 2012-02-20 01:29 am (UTC)(link)
Both of you are right (Im playing the mom here)

It is nonsense if look at It only at the political level, you dont do things only to be PC, is Beyond that. Dont look It as bussiness, thats the focus that somepeople do and It annoys me.

Curiously a woman creator should be pushed far beyond any male creator, you dont hire woman just for gender equality, yo do It because women are different and can deliver a different aproach to comics, in fact many companies expect this plus.

For example it should be easier for a woman to write female characters, that doesnt mean that a man cant write female characters but a woman has advantage.

Having higher expectation for women means you HAVE to search for them and you just cant sit and wait the next Gail Simone go throught the door.

The fact that both genders are completly equals is a mistake from feminist theory (the term is out dated in academy work, I call myself into gender studies not "feminism") Men and Woman are different and that is good thing.

Hell, english is not my first lenguage I have the half of my spanish vocabulary to explain this, well anyway no one here would understand my academyology
valtyr: (Black Bolt)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 01:37 am (UTC)(link)
The fact that both genders are completly equals is a mistake from feminist theory (the term is out dated in academy work, I call myself into gender studies not "feminism") Men and Woman are different and that is good thing.

Prove it. Don't worry about the 'academyology', I'll try and follow along.

[personal profile] gerardotejada 2012-02-20 02:06 am (UTC)(link)
I would try, the vastly updated structuralism Theory, from the Polysistems to the Actor Network displays deep interst in relationships rather than focusing on individual parts. Relationships are determined by difference, everything is related.

The pieces on Gender relationships are both sexes, their interaction determines their genders and the function of that genders. While some theory focused on how in the XIX century men opressed woman the field I work tries to determine how women fought back, both cultural despiction and historic research lead us to think women seek a way to empower herself through the same tactics men used to exclude them. While women were often closed inside the house they adquire an authority over House problems and issues. Etc

This different roles are asigned soccially but the posibilities are determined by the canvas/world that is segmented into signs (this actually camed from Linguistic Formalism). In this case biology, from the way the brain works to sexual biology (hormones. Menstruation, etc.) is a difference that is used to arrange a structure/system.

A woman has a different aproach to things that would only get a meaning in the structure/system (is sometimes called ideology or power relationship) here we can see "femenine" caracterisations can be positive or negative.

Short: the diference on the sexes doesnt mean gender caracterisation, the antropological unit is Bio Psico Social. Biology is an important part, dont trow It away.

Biology can also be used in the power play to make a binary oposotion or a dicotomy that give one of the two powr ober the other, It doesnt have ro be this way. Is not the difference but the way It is played.
valtyr: (Steve rain)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 02:36 am (UTC)(link)
Yes, you've just stated your theory in more detail. You haven't supported it. Specific citations, please, with emphasis on how exactly you distinguish between nature/nurture, and accounting for confirmation bias.

Please cite the "pieces on Gender relationships" you're referencing.

While some theory focused on how in the XIX century men opressed woman the field I work tries to determine how women fought back, both cultural despiction and historic research lead us to think women seek a way to empower herself through the same tactics men used to exclude them. While women were often closed inside the house they adquire an authority over House problems and issues. Etc

This has nothing to do with the biology of gender or sex.

This different roles are asigned soccially but the posibilities are determined by the canvas/world that is segmented into signs (this actually camed from Linguistic Formalism). In this case biology, from the way the brain works to sexual biology (hormones. Menstruation, etc.) is a difference that is used to arrange a structure/system.

Why are you talking about literary criticism to prove assertions about biology?

A woman has a different aproach to things that would only get a meaning in the structure/system (is sometimes called ideology or power relationship) here we can see "femenine" caracterisations can be positive or negative.

But why are you maintaining the difference is based in biology rather than culture? Do you have any evidence to support this?

the diference on the sexes

You're asserting this difference. You have yet to prove it, or indeed provide any evidence for it.

Biology is an important part

You're asserting this. You have yet to prove it.

[personal profile] gerardotejada 2012-02-20 03:17 am (UTC)(link)
pieces on gender relationships are the factors that mark the difference, the key on social science is understanding the concept of system/structure. The primary marks are material, the things that make you distinguish between man and woman.

The example was kind of wrong, but is has to do with implications of power relationships based on gender, I wanted to point out that even in a bad situation difference can be a good thing. I need people clear their minds about difference as a way of opressio only.

I was using examples from linguistic and a little of social science to point that our understanding about the field lead us to see how biology extends/proyects into other realms.

Difference is not only based on biology, that would deny the facy that tere are IdentityS and no Identity. I was trying to point that biological difference only adquires his value (femenin-bad masculine-good) on the structure system.

The difference on the sexes is proved in the biology difference between men and woman, at this point you should have realised how this is not the same as gender. There are differences in genders as well (otherwise we would talk about a singular gender)

Biology is important, if you are hungry if you are not, if you miss a leg etc. It afects you. Neglecting biology is something gender studies want to end.

Psycology anf Phsyquiatry have united their efforts while at the same time remaining independent.

Multidisiplinary studies has showed us that many things we adress about women are cultural yet there is an obvious way the both sexes uses the brain that differs and that have an impact on gender.

Short: Different Brain ---> Different Mind
Inteligence dont have gender as my teacher says. If you can kill a dragon with a Sword you can Kill It with an Axe, as long as you are good enough
valtyr: (Mine)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 03:25 am (UTC)(link)
You're making all sorts of claims about how differing biology affects many different areas. This is not at issue. You have yet to prove that the biology does differ.

The difference on the sexes is proved in the biology difference between men and woman, at this point you should have realised how this is not the same as gender.

I'm entirely aware of that. I'm not sure why you would think I'm not.

yet there is an obvious way the both sexes uses the brain that differs and that have an impact on gender.

First of all, please cite studies proving this. Second of all, explain how it is proven that this is due to innate difference rather than cultural differences.

Male and female babies are treated differently from birth - there are multiple studies proving that adults treat babies differently based on their perceived sex. How, then, can you prove that behavioural differences are a result of nature rather than nurture?

[personal profile] gerardotejada 2012-02-20 03:59 am (UTC)(link)
Im not going to search papers for you, It would took me too long to search in my room, there is google but you can do that yourself.

I think you are looking sexual difference too much superficially/genitallia-oriented instead of the genetic aproach.

I guess some one could do a study to search if cultural differences have biological implications.

I dont want to be rude but I think your arguments are politically driven instead of honest intelectual inquiry, you lead me to think that because you put words in my mouth.

I NEVER SAID BIOLOGY WAS THE ONLY THING, please read My posts well because your lack of understanding is really pissing me off.

Also I am wondering if you are reading me at all.
valtyr: (Nightcrawler)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 04:08 am (UTC)(link)
Im not going to search papers for you, It would took me too long to search in my room, there is google but you can do that yourself.

I could, but why would I search to prove your point? Back up your own point.

I think you are looking sexual difference too much superficially/genitallia-oriented instead of the genetic aproach.

I haven't mentioned genitalia at all, so I have no idea why you'd think that.

I dont want to be rude but I think your arguments are politically driven instead of honest intelectual inquiry, you lead me to think that because you put words in my mouth.

In case you hadn't realised, broad statements about gender differences have significant political implications.

I NEVER SAID BIOLOGY WAS THE ONLY THING, please read My posts well because your lack of understanding is really pissing me off.

You said: The difference on the sexes is proved in the biology difference between men and woman. You have not proved this, and when challenged you refuse to prove it. It doesn't matter whether you said it was the only thing. You said it; prove it. If you can't back it up, maybe you shouldn't say it.

I understand you are making statements you cannot support, and getting angry when this is pointed out.
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[personal profile] donnblake 2012-02-20 01:46 am (UTC)(link)
People are different, and while it may be some of those differences are broadly traceable along gender lines I'm skeptical that A) there aren't large bodies of exceptions to even those, and B) that there aren't an enormous number of differences that have nothing to do with gender.

[personal profile] gerardotejada 2012-02-20 02:42 am (UTC)(link)
Difference is key to understand identity, If you want to claim women have any kind of Identity you need to focus on Women differences.

Your view adress a post modern question about individuality, identity can betraced as someting fragmentary, but that represent Itself on the circumstances. The large exeptions are nothing but an extension of the difference into another set of differences (polysistems theory).

Gender and Sex is NOT The same thing, your sex modifies your aproximation of gender. A woman's brain and social reponse differs from a man, there is studies.

In my case the expresion of women writers differs even in the same stream of literature, Isabel Allende has been criticied for beign a rip off of García Marques, but after a close reading many little differences appear at how she writtes are related to many femenine and feminst writers not just from the Boom but from the post-Boom as well.

The cliché thing to do is tk watch the lingüistic aproximations to the body (biological) that makes the writers, etc,

Biological differences extend or find a way into psychology and society. They arent the only ones but trust me, sex matters.

What doesnt exist is one way to represent them, so women identityS. Gender studies must determine what sex "pieces" go to form what gender "piece". The other way also applyes, much gender "pieces" comes from diferent societies.

Anyways, we must not play to be blind. I have a theory much if this comes from the MLuther King vs Malcom X, society accepted the "kinder" views in order to avoid conflict and in times distorted It to eliminate difference, Malcom X was harsh but wise, an Identity must be pursuited by searching our differences, his mistake was to argue about some ideal one identity and not identityS

For a comic book representation of the last see the original Kirby run of the X Men
greenmask: (Default)

MOD NOTE

[personal profile] greenmask 2012-02-20 12:38 pm (UTC)(link)
This thread is under discussion by the mod team

But for now, please avoid stating your opinion as individual-by-individual fact.

You're free to believe whatever you like about gender similarities or differences, but this is not the place to proclaim about it. If you need to use these opinions in an argument, be specific and go on a case-by-case basis.

Thank you.
salinea: Deadpool has a fucking horned hat on and is ready to kick gum and chew ass. Errr, moderate s_d. (mod hat)

Mod note: First Warning

[personal profile] salinea 2012-02-20 05:39 pm (UTC)(link)
Hello [personal profile] gerardotejada, we would like you to remember that [community profile] scans_daily is a feminist community, and would like to sincerely urge you to read our rules with attention. Your behaviour in these threads has been problematic in several ways:

- In this comment, when you say how people should proceed when they call out sexism. It is not up to you to tell people how they should react to sexism, especially when it touches them deeply. Women are entitled to call out the oppression they are victim of, and to frame their feeling about how it touches them how they wish.

- In this comment when you criticise [personal profile] valtyr's tone and tell her "please rest and answer my post when you are more calmed". Tone policing and telling women to calm down when discussing sexism are behaviours associated with derailing and dismissing that themselves play into sexism (women as overemotional). It's also very condescending and disrespectful. Valtyr is not a child and she can assess her emotional state and whether or not she can take part in the discussion without your say. For those reasons, those sort of comments are not tolerated in this community.

- In this comment you said "I trow that article as an easter egg, obviosly you couldnt handle the serious ones or you dont have a student acount to acces some one."
Justifying your behaviour by "you couldn't handle the serious ones" is frankly unacceptable. It is extremely patronizing and very presumptuous. I don't believe you know for a fact what valtyr's academic background is nor what she can handle. Besides, using your academic background in a discussion in order to give more prop your point as more authoritative isn't encouraged: this is a community for people with different backgrounds, but bigotry is something that affects everyone, so we encourage people to explain things in laymen's terms as much as possible. You are welcome to refer to academic studies and link to them, but don't use it to shut down or dismiss other people's point too easily. Also throwing anything as an Easter egg in a discussion is fairly disingenuous.

For all these reasons combined we are delivering you your FIRST OFFICIAL WARNING. Please note that if you receive two further warnings you will lose the ability to post on this community.

[personal profile] donnblake 2012-02-20 01:35 am (UTC)(link)
Sorry for the double post, but I'm having a hard time articulating myself on this issue. It's also, I recognize, an issue of power. I think we're aiming at a similar point- to continue the example you gave, you're saying that minorities shouldn't lack access to education, and I'm saying that access to education shouldn't be dependent on whether or not one is a minority. Of course, though, right now it does, and specifically in the sense that belonging to a minority can limit one's access. So that's the problem that needs to be addressed. There's probably an element of privilege in the problem I'm having making that connection.

On the other hand, I'm not sure that your example fully applies here. Cornell isn't saying, "Give more women access to the panels," he's saying "Have exactly half of the panels be made up by women," the difference being that, if we accept that there's a maximum practical size for a panel, then that's specifically limiting the number of men, and thus excluding people on the basis of gender.
valtyr: (Kelda)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 01:41 am (UTC)(link)
Cornell isn't saying, "Give more women access to the panels,"

People have been saying that for a while, for very little effect.

the difference being that, if we accept that there's a maximum practical size for a panel, then that's specifically limiting the number of men, and thus excluding people on the basis of gender.

Right now, women are being excluded on the basis of gender, aren't they? If Paul Cornell were in a position to dictate the make-up of all panels, and he dictated a 50/50 split, then... how would that be unfair to men? Your position seems to be that equality is unfair to men.

[personal profile] donnblake 2012-02-20 01:53 am (UTC)(link)
Right now, you and I largely talking to each other, and because of my double post, we're doing it in two separate sub-threads (is that the term I'm looking for?) I hope you don't mind if I answer both this and your other recent post in the same post.

(Your other post, for the ease of anyone else reading along)

[No, I don't think the rule would be worthwhile in that case. In a world with true gender equality, panels would sometimes be all or majority male, but they would also sometimes be all or majority female. In a truly gender equality world, there would be significantly less - perhaps nothing - for which a female perspective would be more useful than a male perspective, and vice versa.]

I think that excluding anyone based on their gender is unfair. But I'm coming to see what I think is the more important issue, which is that if we were to grossly oversimplify matters and give fairness a numerical value, the rule could be argued to be removing two or three fairness units from the category Fairness Towards Men, and adding several dozen to the category Fairness Towards Women, for an overall increase in the Fairness for all involved. Does that make sense?
valtyr: (Jen she-hulk chinhand)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 02:05 am (UTC)(link)
That's fine :)

Mm. Loosely. Okay, look at it like this, with comic artists. I'll list four male artists in declining order of quality, and then four female, ditto. (These listings are subjective, yada yada.)

Comic artists:

Jim Cheung
Bryan Hitch
Greg Land
90s Liefield

and

Amanda Connor
Sana Takeda
(I actually can't think of any regular female comic artists who are bad - which is telling in itself - so I'll make some up.)
Jane Doe
Annabelle Kay

DC wishes to employ six artists. They use SEXISM. It's super effective! They employ Jim Cheung, Bryan Hitch, Greg Land, Amanda Connor, and Sana Takeda.

DC get told they have a QUOTA. 50/50 male/female. They employ Jim Cheung, Bryan Hitch, Greg Land, Amanda Connor, Sana Takeda and Jane Doe.

With the new quota, technically you could argue that Rob Liefield has been excluded due to his gender. But is that really true?

If women had more opportunities to be panellists, and comic book artists, and writers - if they knew those opportunities were there - then we might well see more women aiming for them. It's hard as hell to get into the comic industry. How much harder is it for a woman? If Greg Land were a woman, I wonder if his tracing would be so tolerated?

[personal profile] donnblake 2012-02-20 02:11 am (UTC)(link)
Okay, yeah. I think the issue I'm having is that I'm trying to skip to the theoretical no-sexism industry. I really want it to be as simple as telling DC (or Marvel or any other company), "Hey, stop being sexist," but I feel like if that were the case someone would have told them already.
valtyr: (spider-woman)

[personal profile] valtyr 2012-02-20 02:24 am (UTC)(link)
Yeah, I think you may be underestimating the extent to which sexism is ingrained - even people who don't want to be sexist can act from sexist preconceptions, and subconsciously discriminate. It's a tough problem, no lie.

[personal profile] gerardotejada 2012-02-20 03:22 am (UTC)(link)
No one wants to be sexist, no one does It because they want (exept trolls). Its complicated and no one should never acuse some one of beign sexist but explain how something in a particular context can be seen as sexist by audience/society/wathever.

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