*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
July 24, 2014, 12:03:07 PM

Login with username, password and session length
Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Search:     Advanced search
275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 74 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: [1]
Print
Author Topic: Zie/Hir  (Read 4205 times)
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« on: May 13, 2008, 03:46:56 PM »

I know you can't change this in the current edition, but if there's ever a "Shock: 1.2" then this might be useful to note.

I'd like to point out that you really didn't have to resort to "zie/hir", which are both jarring to read (the cardinal sin of writing) and come with an enormous amount of political baggage (one of my friends exploded and refused to play the game after hearing that the rulebook used "zie/hir", until I calmed him down). "Zie" is just "sie", the German word for "they/them".

"Zie/hir" is redundant because English already has a pronoun used to indicate a single person of indeterminate gender, "they/them/their". Just like "sie" in German.

Dictionary.com, 3rd entry for "They":
3.   (used with an indefinite singular antecedent in place of the definite masculine he or the definite feminine she): Whoever is of voting age, whether they are interested in politics or not, should vote.

As long as a singular subject is stated beforehand, "they/them/their" can be used the exact way you used "zie/hir", but without having to throw off the reader by fundamentally altering the English language.

Examples from the book:

'This player, the Antagonist, works to keep the Protagonist from getting what zie wants ...'
 =
'This player, the Antagonist, works to keep the Protagonist from getting what they want ...'

'For instance, if the Link is "God is my strength" then, if you choose to risk that Link and you lose, your Protagonist's faith in God will be changed forever. Maybe that means that zie will have lost hir faith altogether ...'
 =
'For instance, if the Link is "God is my strength" then, if you choose to risk that Link and you lose, your Protagonist's faith in God will be changed forever. Maybe that means that they will have lost their faith altogether ...'

I could do this for every use in the book, and it works every single time.

Also, lets be honest here, the whole "gender neutral" use vs "feminine" use is really just an attempt to pretend that men care. Men don't have a history of sexism against them or oppression, like women, and have no equivalent to the feminist movement. Guys don't care if you use "she" instead of "he". If Whitewolf has illustrated anything, it's that you can use the feminine singular without alienating your male audience at all. And if that's to much you could just alternate sex every chapter, or say "he or she" or "she or he", which even though cumbersome at least doesn't jar the reader or come with pre-attached political baggage.

Don't think I'm attacking you or anything. I just thought that maybe when you were thinking about being gender neutral you forgot about "they/them/their". I really love the system, and I honestly think it's one of the best I've ever seen. (Seeing things like "shock:" and "Polaris" have really opened my eyes to how archaic and byzantine the d20 system really is. There's so much innovation going on in indie RPGs that's getting totally passed up in most mainstream gaming. Even Whitewolf - though after Mark Rein*Hagen left - has taken regressive steps in remaking its system.)
Logged
rafial
Member

Posts: 594


WWW
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2008, 04:08:26 PM »

Quote
...which are both jarring to read...

A bit of shock in fact, wouldn't you say? Wink
Logged
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2008, 04:11:21 PM »

Quote
...which are both jarring to read...

A bit of shock in fact, wouldn't you say? Wink

Har har, very funny... Tongue
Logged
rafial
Member

Posts: 594


WWW
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2008, 04:27:36 PM »

And yet quite serious.  I'm wondering if you've read the sidebar on page 12?
Logged
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2008, 04:50:01 PM »

I did read that. Realistically though, if the full and only intention of it was to jar you, and not to present gender neutrality, then he might as well have made something up and used it. "Farblegast/Zinderflunk" seems appropriate to me, if we're talking about shocking the reader.
Logged
Eero Tuovinen
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 2591


WWW
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2008, 05:40:44 PM »

The shock is not in using strange words, but in positing a world where a book that uses those words would be published. Those particular words have some traction in being overly politically correct in the US, so using them points towards a world where gender is not just a non-issue, but an issue of militant focus - a science fiction world of a kind, as it were.

Using "they" would not be similarly fantastic, using made-up words would not have the socio-political implications.
Logged

Blogging at Game Design is about Structure.
Publishing Zombie Cinema and Solar System at Arkenstone Publishing.
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2008, 06:30:15 PM »

That's okay, but in the book he didn't make it sound like that. It seemed more like he was trying to be gender neutral and the whole "it's shocking" was just a little jest to make it less, well, shocking. Anyway, my point still stands about a) alienating people who find it distasteful and b) jarring the reader (and I'd like to point out that people's first reaction to jarring things is naturally anger/irritation; it took me thirty minutes before I could sit down and read it against and ignore the strange word). That being said, it's not like I'm preaching or anything. I'm just saying...
Logged
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2008, 06:36:13 PM »

Besides, how come this is the only thing people are responding too? I posted other stuff yah know :-((
Logged
Joshua A.C. Newman
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 1144

the glyphpress


WWW
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2008, 07:13:48 PM »

i]is comfortable. It's personal and personable.

Eero is, of course, perceptive and correct. (Except that it's not a "politically correct" thing. It's a radical, fringe gender theorist thing.)

[
Besides, how come this is the only thing people are responding too? I posted other stuff yah know :-((

I think you answer the whole thread for yourself there.

Restructuring language around a reconfiguration of gender is a Shock in the sense of the word discussed in the game (and by Toffler). That is, it's a difference between the world we know and the world of the art. I've gotten a lot of discussion of the words because of the choices I made about them. That means that they do what they're supposed to do, which coincides nicely with what the game is supposed to do.

Dig?

(I haven't responded yet to the other threads because I'm just catching up on emails. I'm traveling right now, having extended my Camp Nerdly stay in Virginia.is[/i] comfortable. It's personal and personable.

Eero is, of course, perceptive and correct. (Except that it's not a "politically correct" thing. It's a radical, fringe gender theorist thing.)

[
Besides, how come this is the only thing people are responding too? I posted other stuff yah know :-((

I think you answer the whole thread for yourself there.

Restructuring language around a reconfiguration of gender is a Shock in the sense of the word discussed in the game (and by Toffler). That is, it's a difference between the world we know and the world of the art. I've gotten a lot of discussion of the words because of the choices I made about them. That means that they do what they're supposed to do, which coincides nicely with what the game is supposed to do.

Dig?

(I haven't responded yet to the other threads because I'm just catching up on emails. I'm traveling right now, having extended my Camp Nerdly stay in Virginia.)
Logged

the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2008, 08:05:58 PM »

Actually, that's totally fine. My friend will be more comfortable than that. The reason he was angry we because he thought you were making a political statement or something. Everything comes down to perception. Now that I see it like that when I look at the book it makes a lot more sense, and lightens it up actually.
Logged
Joshua A.C. Newman
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 1144

the glyphpress


WWW
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2008, 08:32:11 PM »

man what

Dude, that is a political statement.
Logged

the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2008, 08:41:11 PM »

*sigh* Let's just forget this. Just let me go tell my friend you don't actually want to have the words "zie" and "hir" forced into the English language, so he'll play your game with me.
Logged
Joshua A.C. Newman
Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 1144

the glyphpress


WWW
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2008, 08:46:51 PM »

Oh, totally. I just like the way they force a change of thought about something really central.
Logged

the glyphpress's games are Shock: Social Science Fiction and Under the Bed.

I design books like Dogs in the Vineyard and The Mountain Witch.
TempvsMortis
Member

Posts: 84


« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2008, 09:08:12 PM »

I know, I find it funny. Actually before your book I'd never actually seen it before, I'd only heard about it, so I was pretty surprised and my first thought was "Oh no! Militant!".
Logged
Pages: [1]
Print
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
Oxygen design by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!