"Cautiously I turned my head. On the table beside the bed was an enormous bunch of flowers, jammed helter-skelter into a vase—roses, zinnias, marigolds, hollyhocks, bougainvillea, sticking out in all directions in a horrible confusion of color. Tears came to my eyes.
'Oh, Emerson! Did you pick them for me?'
The hand that brushed my cheek was covered with scratches.”
—The Serpent on the Crown, Elizabeth Peters
» Idris Elba // Lucy Liu // Hrithik Roshan // Angel Coulby
While I do love that whoever made this did a good job matching actors to characters, the one issue I have is that Hogwarts is in England and what founded several centuries ago. I’m not saying that there wouldn’t have been blacks or asians in England at the time, but it’s still a historical inaccuracy to depict them as anything other than white Englishmen, since the culture of England at the time wouldn’t have had room for blacks and asians as anything other than slaves or traders.
Please don’t take this as me being racist, this is just me with a debilitating and incurable need for historical accuracy.
So let’s see. The Sorting claims it’s origins about a thousand or so years ago in it’s song, which implies the 1000s. JK Rowling described them as “medieval," which is about 500 to 1500, again agreeing with our 1000 date. So let’s work with that. We’ve got a pretty decent timeline to work with here.
There have been black people in Scotland since “classical times,” and black moors present in James IV’s royal court in the 1500s, plus there’s St. Deiniol in Wales in the 500s, implying black people were also in the religious court instead of all just slaves and servants. Therefore, could a strong and fearless future-Gryffindor have ancestry native to the Isles? Hmmm.
Hannibal of Carthage was definitely not white (at least not in the modern sense). As a matter of fact, many Mediterranean descended people are mixed with Central Asians, South Asians, and North Africans so… But anyway, in 1555, black men were learning to be interpreters in London to help with trading in the Ghanian region. Here’s a coat of arms with black people on it dated 1616. Also, literally how do you not know about Dido Elizabeth Belle, an aristocratic lady of Scotland from the 1700s???
The Romani migrated out what is now modern day India and Pakistan in about the 1000s, so add in that they’re wizards who can fly and all that jazz, they could’ve easily gotten there within a year or two and settled in Scotland once they learned white people weren’t treating them very kindly. There you go, that’s how a South Asian Slytherin made it to Scotland just in time to found Hogwarts.
Here’s desi people of color from the Indian subcontinent, called Lascars, who had been sailing in Europe from as early as the 1400s, possibly earlier, still fitting that there could’ve been wizards in the British Isles about a hundred or so years earlier. Art from the 1600s showing brown men in turbans. Here’s an Indian man who in the 1700s ran a successful restaurant in England and taught white people to shampoo their hair lol.
Japanese emissaries came to Europe as early as 1584 and observed there were already Chinese and Japanese slaves among the overwhelmingly black slaves, something blamed on Christianity, which was part of the reason why Japan vehemently became isolated from that point.
Also about East Asia, Mongolian Genghis Khan made it to about Poland-ish in the 1200s, so it’s not a far bet to say the Chinese (who were also conquered by Khan on his way to Europe) could’ve found their way to Scotland around that time or a few hundred years earlier. Along with a smart cookie who would go on to be the founder of Ravenclaw.
Native Americans, of course, have been present in Europe for a while. In the 1500s, Manteo and Wanchese arrived in London. There’s evidence the Vikings and Indigenous Americans were friendly long before when Columbus blah blah, and there’s even evidence of Native Americans in Holland that’s like 2000 years old. Could a kind and loyal future Hufflepuff be one of those mixed race indigenous American-Africans?
ALSO considering the fact that Binns (the history professor at Hogwarts) specifically stated that witches and wizards were being persecuted and Hogwarts was built out of sight of Muggle eyes, it’s completely possible that POC came to Scotland and built the castle happily for other magical humans to have a safe place. Since HP universe is a fantasy anyway, read these article while you’re at it.
So yeah, I understand your implication that you don’t want to be racist or anything like that (bc being called racist is ofc so much worse than actually being ignorant), but POC were not just traders and slaves in the British Isles, they were a fuckton of other things your history books aren’t telling you (or trying to intentionally steer you away from). So me having an all-brown cast for a location in a dominantly-white place I’m sure is irking the fuck out of you, and that makes me so glad to see you confronted with that “incurable” need for historical accuracy you have.
And check out this rad blog: Racebending Harry Potter.
how come the only time people mention the enslavement of black people in Europe is when they want to deny our presence in fantasy fiction?
And that’s what it really boils down to pretty much every time.
Because someone couldn’t deal with a single photoset with characters of color in a FANTASY setting. None of the “fact checking” is really necessary, because that isn’t really the issue. Fantasy fiction isn’t something that should be subject to “proof”, but when it comes to racial diversity, it invariably is every time.
It’s my hope that with Medievalpoc, this endless quibbling about what is and is not “historically accurate” can be done away with, and Toni Morrison’s quote here can become creative people of color’s realities:
I love how the OP is “not racist, just suffering from a need for historical accuracy” and yet feels the need to piss on somebody’s fantasy fancasting, not about the plausibility of wizards who almost certainly didn’t exist but about the plausibility of people of color who not only did exist but demonstrably did exist there.
Telling people that they can’t have fiction about people like them because you need “historical accuracy” in their fantasy is, at best, selfish as fuck; treating people of color like anything they produce is yours first and foremost, not theirs, is well into racism territory, both in what it does to them and that you feel you can and should do it.
Also, citing a need for historical accuracy to support a very simplistic, naive, utterly unresearched position that boils down to “my assumptions make sense to me so nothing else could ever be right” plus “it can’t have been different from what I think because nobody ever told me” is self-servicing bullshit. Historical accuracy means you look at what IS rather than just assuming what you want to see. Granted, history is historically shitty at this. OP is nothing new. But OP is also applying more stringent standards to someone else’s fiction than to hir own understanding of history. And that’s no good.
That’s a pretty good summation. And that’s the thing-none of this is really about history at all.
It is possible to have a really complicated and shitty relationship with someone and still want them to be part of your life. To still expect them to be there. To not buy into so much of it but buy into some of the clichés of the roles they’re supposed to play, the things they are supposed to show up for. To still be angry, still be confused, still be exhausted, still be accepting, still be selfish, and to still wait and wait for them to come back.
fetchalgernon replied to your post “my frustrations with this trip are summed up with this situation: …”
You know, families are great…..but they are also the worst.
It is so delightful that other people feel this duplicity. Right after I posted that my mom came and sat with me. We had a Real Conversation and everything pretty much negated what I was feeling before. But you can’t actually negate the 10 hour experience of this morning… you just have other good experiences…. because families are great & also the worst.
I think I just ate a fermented apple. Feeling a bit Snow White right now.
Badgley Mischka S/S 2015
i want pink hair, i wouldn’t look good with pink hair, i want pink hair, i wouldn’t look good with pink hair, i want pink hair, etc.
September 20th marks the 30th birthday of Berlin pianist Nils Frahm, but also the day he has chosen to give his fans a special gift in the form of 9 songs he recorded with 9 fingers, entitled ‘Screws’.
Nils experienced an unfortunate accident which saw him fall from his bunk bed located directly above his studio, which resulted in a broken thumb. But through inspiration from his fans and after a gentle walk and talk through the park with a close friend, he decided to deal with the situation in the only way he knew – playing his piano.
With four screws surgically placed inside his thumb, he started recording with his remaining 9 fingers, what later resulted in 9 intimate piano recordings.
Fans can download ‘Screws’ as mp3s or in full 24-bit 44.100 kHz audio quality here (http://screws.durtonstudio.com), and pre-order a Vinyl/CD edition from the Erased Tapes online store (http://erasedtapes.com/store/index/ERATP046), which will be released later this year.
‘I am sitting in front of a sheet of paper. My right hand is bending over my left thumb. The first day I got out of my cast I could bend it by 15°. Now I am already at 50° and that makes me happy. Things are going uphill…
As you can imagine, it is really bad news for a pianist when he gets diagnosed with a broken thumb. That day I was sitting in the emergency room, feeling rather dizzy while thinking of a zillion shows coming up and all the people involved around it. I realised in that moment how busy things have become. It is hard to turn down interesting projects and opportunities, since I surely love my work. It actually never felt like work. Playing piano and playing it for wonderful people is the greatest joy I can imagine.
For a couple of days I felt like this all could be over. How pathetic. But hey – also feeling sorry for yourself has its place somewhere. All of a sudden I had so much time, an unexpected holiday. I cancelled most of my schedule and found myself being a little bored. Even though my doctor told me not to touch a piano for a while, I just couldn’t resist. I started playing a silent song with 4 fingers on my left and the remaining 5 on my right hand. I set up one microphone and recorded another tune every other night before falling asleep.
The day I got rid of my cast I had recorded 9 little tunes. They have helped me feel less annoyed about my accident and reminded me that any good is something I can only achieve, when I am making the most out of what I’ve got.
Thank you all for listening!
With lots of love,
9FINGERS North American Tour 2012
09/16 New York (US) – West Park Presbyterian Church
09/21 Boulder (US) – Cherryvale Studios
09/22 Colorado Springs (US) – The Mesa
09/23 Santa Fe (US) – O’Shaughnessy Performance Space @ Santa Fe Uni
09/24 San Fransisco (US) – private show (RSVP only)
09/29 Seattle (US) – Decibel Festival @ Broadway Performance Hall
09/30 Portland (US) – Classic Pianos
10/03 Mexico City (MX) – Mutek
ERASED TAPES 5th Anniversary Tour w/ Ólafur Arnalds & A Winged Victory For The Sullen
10/08 HAMBURG (DE) – Fliegende Bauten
10/09 PRAGUE (CZ) – Palac Akropolis
10/10 BUDAPEST (HU) – Trafo
10/11 MANNHEIM (DE) – Alte Feuerwache
10/13-14 BERLIN (DE) – Radialsystem
10/15 AMSTERDAM (NL) – Paradiso
10/16-17 LEUVEN (BE) – Stuk
10/18 LONDON (UK) – Hackney Empire
10/19-20 ISTANBUL (TR) – Salon IKSV
‘No. 42 Best Albums Of 2011’ -The Guardian
‘Felt is a transportative album, a balm for troubled minds.’ BBC Music
‘Frahm’s hyper-intimate recording technique for the album makes Felt a captivating listen’ (9/10) DIS
★ ★ ★ ★ – Popmatters ★ ★ ★ ★ – Uncut ★ ★ ★ ★ – Clash ★ ★ ★ ★ – Mojo
OFFICIAL WEBSITES: screws.durtonstudio.com · facebook.com/nilsfrahm · twitter.com/nilsfrahm · erasedtapes.com