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Author Topic: Feminist Game Design [split from Religion in Role-Playing]  (Read 16974 times)
Christopher Weeks
Member

Posts: 683


« Reply #45 on: February 17, 2004, 05:42:26 AM »

Quote from: james_west
I can say that women think like aliens with confidence because one of the valuable services my (female) techs provide is to tell me how to interact with my wife. I do what they tell me, although it never makes any sense to me, and they're always right.


This women as aliens thing has been making me think about people who play characters of opposite sex.  I've had several women with whom I've played RPGs over the years complain about guys playing women unrealistically.  Sometimes they were such obvious characatures that I was annoyed by their play, but often not.  I wonder what the prevalence of men being unable to really get inside the head of women well enough to play them "realistically" is.  And vice versa.

I have a very close friend who is transgendered.  She is almost certainly genetically male (having fathered two children), but in the time that I've known her, she has gone from acting as a male at work and a female out of work, to "coming out" at work through all the legal and HR hoops, on through hormone therapy and then gender reassignment surgery, and is now married to a man.  I've had lots of interesting conversations with her about how the whole process seemed from the inside and what the role of hormones is.

There is a somewhat commonly admitted to phenomenon in which men (even modern, reasonable, feminist men) meet a woman and their first thoughts -- regardless of all aspects of appearance and context, are about how sexually compatible or pleasant that woman would be.  I've had men realize instantly that this was correct about them, staunchly deny this about themselve only to come back four months later and admit that they really do think like that, and a few others who simply denied it and stuck to it (for years, so far).  My TG friend, admits to having thought like that even long after she believed she was a woman and didn't want to be attracted to women.  Untill she had hormone therapy.  And like a light switch turning off, it stopped.  She was still male in the gross physiological sense, her intent/belief was still female.  Nothing changed but her hormones.

I wonder how much our hormones prevent us from playing across the chasm of sex appropriately.  I wonder if women are more or less able to play convining men.  And what is it that males "get wrong" when playing females that is implausible to women?  Why don't I observe females playing male characters "unrealistically?"  And why am I less sensitive to males depicting female behavior incorrectly?

On a somewhat related note, there are doctors who advocate steering clear of soy products for pregnant women and young boys because soy contains phyto-estrogens (if I'm getting this right) that could have a feminizing effect on males.  It is interesting to me, to note that Japanese culture is much more cooperative than western/European and especially North American, and that cooperation is often considered a feminine characteristic.

Chris
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Thuringwaethiel
Member

Posts: 17


« Reply #46 on: February 17, 2004, 10:17:21 AM »

Hey Doc, don't bother. We're talking RPG's here. Besides, I'm bored of debating with believers.

Quote from: Christopher Weeks

I wonder how much our hormones prevent us from playing across the chasm of sex appropriately.  I wonder if women are more or less able to play convining men.  And what is it that males "get wrong" when playing females that is implausible to women?  Why don't I observe females playing male characters "unrealistically?"  And why am I less sensitive to males depicting female behavior incorrectly?


Crossgender playing is just one of the challenges in RPG (admittedly one of the toughest). It's not easy to play a "realistic" elf, undead, alien or magician, either. And if your character has a profession you are clueless about, the "real" feeling is tough cracker.

Thus, the most accurate male characters are played by males, and vice versa. But a good player can do a decent cross-role, and even less good are allowed to have a shot. However, this doesn't seem to be balanced. Yes, I've seen female characters played very well by males, but still most of the efforts have been more or less lousy charicatyres, or sometimes macho men with boobs, if you got what I mean. On the other hand, male characters played by girls/women are on average much better represented. That is, my observations are in line with Chris W's.

The reason? Hormones could be part of it, but I think brain structure is also a major factor. And of course upbringing and societial structures are present. To put it short, I guess females are on average better "immersionists" (if I got it right), especially if the character is very different from the player. Also male behaviour is generally more "open" (that is almost everything you guys think or feel, is more or less visible), whereas women hide a lot behind appearances and are more prone to taking different roles. Thus, men have less "material" to work with, forcing them to resort more on stereotypes. Also, this "real-life roleplaying" of women works as an "immersionist training".

A word about stereotypes. In my experience, male stereotypes are more plentiful and (because of that?) also more accurate, (although still stereotypes). These ST's often follow the profession, citizenship, ethnicity and class, whereas female ST's have traditionally been the Whore and the Madonna, and nowadays only a few more. Thus, when a woman plays a male character, she has a wide variety to choose if she runs out of ideas, but a male player doesn't have much to draw from, and if he uses some old and worn-out stereotype, it sticks out like a sore thumb. Using male stereotypes is on average more "insvisible" because they are more close to the reality, and the player (whether male or female) only has to add a bit of personality and that's it.

Once again, with a listing:

- Women have better "empathy (immersionist) brain"
- Testosterone makes a person more extrovert in their behaviour, estrogen more introvert, the latter again improving immersionism
- By nature and nurture, men are in real life more "open" and women more "roleplaying"
- Male behaviour is easier to simulate than female one
- Male stereotypes are more plentiful and more accurate than female ones
- I'm speaking about averages, not individuals, and I'm stating these as my observations, not fundamentalist truth

Something like that. I guess.
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When Light gets there, Darkness is already waiting
Doctor Xero
Member

Posts: 433


« Reply #47 on: February 17, 2004, 12:44:39 PM »

Quote from: contracycle
And if our dad here is going to short his own flesh and blood and excuse it by railing about how all oppressed he is, then "deadbeat" is the right title for him to carry.


You mistake tragedy for intentionality.

A significant number of men, when denied forever any access to their own children for no other reason than the fact that they lack breasts and a vagina (which is the only reason some judges have given when awarding full custody to mothers only), respond to the traumatic tragedy by forgetting altogether about it -- or by committing suicide.  The courts have already told him that these are NOT his flesh and blood, they are hers and hers alone, and the more common reasoning given for demanding money from him is not that they are also his children but the argument that he owes his ex-wife money as part of a social contract.  This is why judges have historically forced a man to give money to his ex-wife for her childen even when the divorce has occurred because she committed adultery and the child is the result of that adultery with zero biological relation to him -- it's not that he is recognized as the father but that he is recognized as having once been married to the mother and the right of a mother to support by the man socially contracted to her trumps his rights as ex-husband.  Yet no one objects to "deadbeat moms" -- and you might be surprised by how high a number of them there are.  This is one of the more misandric manifestations of the old Cult of the Motherhood from the Victorian Doctrine of the Separate Spheres (women restricted to domesticity, men restricted to politics and business).

The Cult of Motherhood oppresses women by suggesting that female adults have no greater function than procreation and then childcare.  The Cult of Motherhood oppresses men by suggesting that male adults have no value nor function in childcare beyond providing a paycheck.  Sexism is not justified just because the victim is male; it is always wrong.  We must end sexism against women, and this will not occur until we end sexism against ~everyone~ male and female.

Doctor Xero
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"The human brain is the most public organ on the face of the earth....virtually all the business is the direct result of thinking that has already occurred in other minds.  We pass thoughts around, from mind to mind..." --Lewis Thomas
Librisia
Member

Posts: 35


« Reply #48 on: February 17, 2004, 06:57:02 PM »

I've posted my revised hypothesis on Male Dominance in RPGs

Cheers,
Krista
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"Let me listen to me and not to them."
            - Gertrude Stein
contracycle
Member

Posts: 2807


« Reply #49 on: February 18, 2004, 01:31:26 AM »

Quote from: Doctor Xero

You mistake tragedy for intentionality.


No, I just consider it irrelevant.

Quote

The courts have already told him that these are NOT his flesh and blood, they are hers and hers alone, and the more common reasoning given for demanding money from him is not that they are also his children but the argument that he owes his ex-wife money as part of a social contract.  


Quote

Yet no one objects to "deadbeat moms" -- and you might be surprised by how high a number of them there are.


Erm, I would say quite the opposite: allegations that women deliberately and cynically get pregnant so they can live off social security is a prevalent charge against "benefits culture"; by some accounts the evil "single mom" is the most pressing concern in our society, examplary as it is in the "decline of moral standards".  I'd say there is a whole politicla industry whose reason for existance is to attack "deadbeat moms".

Quote
Sexism is not justified just because the victim is male; it is always wrong.  We must end sexism against women, and this will not occur until we end sexism against ~everyone~ male and female.


I disagree; more precisely, we will only be able to tackle sexism against men after we have eliminated the aftereffects of thousands of years of institutional misogyny.  This takes me back to my previous point about the object being to limit behaviour, not impose thought control.  I don't think it can be realistically claimed that discrimination against men on these grounds is remotely comparable with discrimination against women by several order of magnitude; in terms of what might constitute "social engineering" it is simply not a significant problem in my eyes.  sure, redheads get ragged as well, and that hurts as much as any other form of discrimination, but they are not going to be relegated to second class citizen status permanently on that basis as a rule.  This strikes as too moralistic, amd insufficiently pragmatic, approach to the problem.
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"He who loves practice without theory is like the sailor who boards ship without a rudder and compass and never knows where he may cast."
- Leonardo da Vinci
AnyaTheBlue
Member

Posts: 187


« Reply #50 on: February 18, 2004, 09:18:18 PM »

Quote from: Christopher Weeks
Quote from: james_west
I can say that women think like aliens with confidence because one of the valuable services my (female) techs provide is to tell me how to interact with my wife. I do what they tell me, although it never makes any sense to me, and they're always right.


[snip]

I have a very close friend who is transgendered.  She is almost certainly genetically male (having fathered two children), but in the time that I've known her, she has gone from acting as a male at work and a female out of work, to "coming out" at work through all the legal and HR hoops, on through hormone therapy and then gender reassignment surgery, and is now married to a man.  I've had lots of interesting conversations with her about how the whole process seemed from the inside and what the role of hormones is.

[snip]

I wonder how much our hormones prevent us from playing across the chasm of sex appropriately.  I wonder if women are more or less able to play convining men.  And what is it that males "get wrong" when playing females that is implausible to women?  Why don't I observe females playing male characters "unrealistically?"  And why am I less sensitive to males depicting female behavior incorrectly?


Hurm, hurm.

I debated bringing this up, but what the hey -- you've broached the subject for me!

I am myself transgendered (having been born physically male and raised as a boy) who is in the process of undertaking exactly what your friend went through.  I'll be transitioning at work sometime in the next three months or so, but outside of work I'm currently living as a woman as much as possible considering that I haven't legally changed my name yet and I have to have stubble for electrolysis.

I don't think it's the hormones.  Or, at least, it's not only the hormones.  Everybody seems to react to them a little differently, so what follows is mostly based on my own personal experiences, but I think I have a fairly broad experience 'in the community' and I try to pay attention.

We conveniently talked about something that touched on this in my therapy group just this week, as it happens.  The hormones have made a few changes in my thinking, but not in the manner you describe.  They seem to have added a more continuous awareness of my emotional state, and they quieted down the 'ravening beast'.

The 'ravening beast' had nothing to do with being attracted to men versus being attracted to women.  It had a lot to do with the need to think and the obsession with thinking about that attraction, and dealing with the physical manifestations thereof.  I would put your friend's looking into the category of dealing with the physical manifestations of that need.

In my case, I still look at other women.  But I'm looking for fashion tips evaluating what they are doing with their makeup.  Plus, I think the female form is just generally more aesthetic than the male.  Guys are kinda proportioned funny, as a group.  But I'm not sexually attracted to women, and I never have been.  The 'ravening beast' that is now quiet in me is not the same as a sex drive, although as near as I can tell most men think it is.

I think I can say with some authority that there are definitely significant differences between how men and women think and relate.  And I know that I understand the way women relate and think better than I understand the way men do.  But at the same time, I have learned to fake  thinking and relating as men do fairly successfully.

But really, to bring this back on topic, I think this is all fascinating but secondary or tertiary.

The key is that gender has both a biological and a cultural component.  Exactly how much of each, however, is an unanswered question.  But I think it's entirely possible, and just as interesting, to construct games based on our awareness of the differences between men and women in our society without worrying about whether those differences are biologically or sociologically determined.  Even if we assign them incorrect causes, there's still value in thinking about the implications and exploring what contravening or conforming to them says about us as individuals and as a people.

Where these differences ultimately come from is not as important as what we do with them and how we deal with them, I think.

And just because these differences are there doesn't mean that we can't actually learn about or even, to a degree, understand and express what "the other side" is like.  It's all about communicating, listening, and understanding one's own preconceptions.

I think Ron is definitely on the right path with Sex & Sorcery -- use the in game constructions to illuminate and challenge the out of game preconceptions and opinions.  And do it in a mixed-gender group, because otherwise the shared preconceptions tend to swamp out the real world communicating, listening, and comprehension that this kind of play can really facilitate.

To quickly address another topic from this thread -- I think the reason that women play male characters "more successfully" than men play female characters largely has to do with the kind of gender role shifting that has happened in the past, oh, 50 years.  Women's roles have expanded from, largely, homemakers, to include homemaking, careers, sports, and many other historically 'male' activities and roles.  And for better or worse, there is far more androcentrism around in western civilization than there is gynocentrism -- certainly more women than men have experienced institutionalized discrimination.  Heck, the men frequently don't seem to be able to see that it even exists a lot of the time.

Anyway, the upshot here is that men's gender roles have expanded ever so slightly and most men have never experienced gynocentrism.  Or, perhaps more importantly, have never experienced gynocentrism in a way that they cared about.  At the same time, women's gender roles have really gained a lot of territory (largely because we had so little to begin with)and most women have experienced some, if not a lot, of androcentrism, and specifically androcentrism that they cared about and felt was unfair.

I think it's easier to be aware of and act as if you've got something you wish you really had than it is to be aware of and act as if you have something you really have little or no interest in.

Sorry for the length, and I hope this doesn't count as thread necromancy.  I'm really gratified to see all this gender discussion burbling up from the collective unconcious, and I regret not having been more involved.
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Dana Johnson
Note that I'm heavily medicated and something of a flake.  Please take anything I say with a grain of salt.
Doctor Xero
Member

Posts: 433


« Reply #51 on: February 19, 2004, 01:32:18 PM »

Quote from: AnyaTheBlue
But I think it's entirely possible, and just as interesting, to construct games based on our awareness of the differences between men and women in our society without worrying about whether those differences are biologically or sociologically determined.

Agreed.

Quote from: AnyaTheBlue
Even if we assign them incorrect causes

The one problem I have with this, and thus why I become frustrated with the ingrained filters so many people have about men and women, is that assumed causes controls assumed responsibilities in this country : the common assumption is that if gender differences are biological they are immutable but if gender differences are cultural they can be altered.  (The same biological=immutable cultural=alterable dichotomy lies at the root of one of the religious controversies over homosexuality -- the reasoning goes that, if homosexuality is biological, it is immutable and therefore The Church must learn to accept it, but if homosexuality is cultural, it can be altered and therefore The Church must do whatever is necessary to change it to their desired goal of universal heterosexuality.)  That's why I try to point out the oceans of evidence for the ultimate commonality of all humans regardless of gender, even though I know that many people will never see beyond their filters which ignore evidence on the basis of anecdotal experience and attitude.

So long as people declare that there are traits or behaviors which are innate to men or to women, there will be prejudicial restrictions against women and men, restrictions righteously justified as "natural" and with any challenges or disobedience dismissed as "perverse" and "unnatural".

For RPGs : the game designer may choose what if anything to make innate and therefore immutable.  If the game designer believes women are biologically more nurturing, he or she may make that an immutable aspect of the creation of a female player-character.  If the game designer believes men are biologically more violent, he or she may give all male characters an automatic bonus to fighting, for example.

For RPGs : through game system, the game designer sets the default for what is considered "perverse" in his or her initial game world.

Quote from: AnyaTheBlue
I think the reason that women play male characters "more successfully" than men play female characters largely has to do with the kind of gender role shifting that has happened in the past, oh, 50 years.  Women's roles have expanded from, largely, homemakers, to include homemaking, careers, sports, and many other historically 'male' activities and roles.  And for better or worse, there is far more androcentrism around in western civilization than there is gynocentrism -- certainly more women than men have experienced institutionalized discrimination.  Heck, the men frequently don't seem to be able to see that it even exists a lot of the time.

Actually, I have personally experienced institutionalized discrimination and oppressive gynocentrism -- I have also studied it.  It occurs primarily in the areas of child care (a woman who picks up a crying child is motherly, but a man who picks up a crying child is a potential pedophile -- automatically); domestic activities (many women who complain about cooking all the time mock men who cook well as effeminate); and emotional freedom (I still recall one supervisor who ostracized me because he spotted me crying once and he could never forgive my transgression of male emotional taboos).  It also occurs when one is the lone male in the Women's Studies Program.

I have known a number of men who have successfully played female player-characters with enough practice.  In fact, in one gaming group in which five of the ten players were female, the female players initiated a discussion over why they found it harder to play believeable male characters than the men did to play believable female characters.  The women concluded that the reason was that all the male players had strong mothers and/or sisters whom we admired and imitated in playing female characters, while all the female players had fathers and/or brothers who were so conventionally gendered that the women ended up playing obnoxious man=bad woman=good parodies of masculinity when they tried to play male characters.

I have noticed something : take a transcription of an on-line RPG and let someone who does not know the genders of the players read it.  Ask her whether any of the male or female characters seem false.  After she tells you they do not, point out that one of the female characters was played by a male player.  Moments later, she will find ways in which the portrayal rang hollow or was sexist.  Dindias and Wood and Ares have all done numerous studies on how people reinterpret their initial impressions to conform to gender role prejudices once they discover a variation off conventional gender roles has occurred.

For RPGs : this means that efforts towards recognition of gender roles or racial bigotry or homophobia or anti-Semitism will still be ignored by those players who are determined to ignore them.  We do what we can, but we must accept that we can not keep a particular gaming group from using a house rule that all Jewish characters take a penalty to wisdom scores, for example, or that all female characters take a penalty to strength scores, or that all male characters have a 10% likelihood to beat their wives, or whatever bias appeals to that particular group.

Doctor Xero
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"The human brain is the most public organ on the face of the earth....virtually all the business is the direct result of thinking that has already occurred in other minds.  We pass thoughts around, from mind to mind..." --Lewis Thomas
AnyaTheBlue
Member

Posts: 187


« Reply #52 on: February 19, 2004, 09:13:06 PM »

Quote from: Doctor Xero

The one problem I have with this, and thus why I become frustrated with the ingrained filters so many people have about men and women, is that assumed causes controls assumed responsibilities in this country : the common assumption is that if gender differences are biological they are immutable but if gender differences are cultural they can be altered.


Believe me when I say that I understand where you are coming from with this completely.

But.

There's always a but, eh?

In my personal experience, there are some gender differences which are immutable, and there are some that are not.  What's changeable varies from person to person (I suspect that what's biologically determined and what's culturally determined varies from person to person, too -- that is, probably not everybody who is gay is gay for the same reasons.  But that's a whole different conversation).

Whether something is immutable or not, biological or not, is not the ultimate point.  Just because you can change something about yourself, or the way you act, doesn't necessarily mean that it's right/fair/reasonable/healthy for you to do so.

An example:  when I came out, not a single person ever suspected I was transgendered.  I spent 20+ years faking everybody out that I was a completely normal heterosexual guy and I had a 100% success rate.  But it wasn't good for me to have done that, mentally speaking.  It nearly drove me to suicide.

In the context of RPGs, yes, you can't stop people from being racist, sexist, morons.  Any given group can come up with any social contract they want to.  But that doesn't mean we can't design games that Explore (in the GNS sense) gender roles, gender assumptions, gender differences, and gender relations.  And what causes those differences between genders is secondary to the Exploration of the gender space, I think.

As an aside, you really come off a bit confrontational and, well, angry about the fact that people don't seem to be seeing the same things you are with respect to gender, behavior, culture, and biology.  I'm curious as to if this is accurate, or just my 'spider-sense' being over-active.  If it is accurate, why the anger?  And I hope the question isn't offensive or impertinent.  I'm curious, and I think it might be a stumbling block in how clearly you make your points to us.

Quote
(The same biological=immutable cultural=alterable dichotomy lies at the root of one of the religious controversies over homosexuality -- the reasoning goes that, if homosexuality is biological, it is immutable and therefore The Church must learn to accept it, but if homosexuality is cultural, it can be altered and therefore The Church must do whatever is necessary to change it to their desired goal of universal heterosexuality.)


I would argue that it's more along the lines of:

Side A:
 1) It is wrong to discriminate against someone for something they have little or no control over, like eye color or ethnic background.
 2) Sexual orientation is something that people have little or no control over.
 3) Therefore, it is wrong to discriminate against someone for their sexual orientation.

Side B:
 1) The Bible is God's word, and God's word is always right.
 2) We have the power to do what God wants us to do.
 3) God says some sexual orientations are wrong.
 4) Therefore having those sexual orientations are wrong.
Corollary: If something is wrong, and we have the power to do what God wants us to do, then we must have the power to have the sexual orientation that God says is right.

That's been my experience, anyway.  Both sides are reasoning perfectly logically, but they don't accept the same things as axioms and they have very different criteria for what constitutes an authoritative fact.  I think this is off topic, though (sorry Ron!).

Quote

So long as people declare that there are traits or behaviors which are innate to men or to women, there will be prejudicial restrictions against women and men, restrictions righteously justified as "natural" and with any challenges or disobedience dismissed as "perverse" and "unnatural".


I'm curious -- do you in fact believe that there are no traits that are innately gendered, or even gender-corollated trends and differences?  I know of at least one 'non-gendered' person who believes that (and also presents an extremely androgynous face to the world).

I do think that men and women have far more innate similarities than they do innate differences, but that there are still important differences -- whether innate or cultural, I can't say.

Quote

For RPGs : through game system, the game designer sets the default for what is considered "perverse" in his or her initial game world.


Sure.  Modified, of course, by the social contract of the gaming group as a whole, which can add, subtract, or otherwise modify such definitions as they see fit.  The game as she is written is frequently not the game as she is played, after all.

Quote
Actually, I have personally experienced institutionalized discrimination and oppressive gynocentrism -- I have also studied it.  It occurs primarily in the areas of child care (a woman who picks up a crying child is motherly, but a man who picks up a crying child is a potential pedophile -- automatically); domestic activities (many women who complain about cooking all the time mock men who cook well as effeminate); and emotional freedom (I still recall one supervisor who ostracized me because he spotted me crying once and he could never forgive my transgression of male emotional taboos).  It also occurs when one is the lone male in the Women's Studies Program.


I'm not saying that there is no gynocentrism and no institutionalized discrimination for men, I'm saying that it's far less common for men to be aware of it, to encounter it, or even to acknowledge and care about it when they do run into it.

Of course it happens.  Whatever else men and women are, neither of them are perfect, or have any innate advantage in terms of goodness, purity, or moral high ground (unless you happen to be religious and believe in original sin and all that, which I don't).

Quote
I have known a number of men who have successfully played female player-characters with enough practice.


Which kind of makes one of my own points for me -- men can learn to play realistic women just as women can learn to play realistic men, no matter what the source of any real or perceived differences between the genders.

And as your further example illustrates, a lot of it has to do with having role models that don't necessarily conform to strict gender stereotypes.  I'd also suggest that a lot of it has to do with the willingness of the players to undertake such a role realistically.

For better or worse, a man playing a female (or a woman playing a male) character is on many occasions making himself a target for teasing and gender-stereotype-centrism from the other players.

A player's fear of harrasment of this sort, or perhaps his own embarassment at being interested in Exploring-in-a-GNS-sense the Gender Space, may cause him to tank his own attempts before the game even starts.

There are those who play cross-gendered characters less from a desire for Gender Space Exploration and more just because they like a particular character type, a pop-culture image, or even because they want to create "a fantasy girlfriend".  This leads to a whole different space of gender difficulties in a mixed playing group.  Bringing what amounts to a sexualized private creation into a public 'thought-space' can be uncomfortable for those who weren't expecting it -- it's a Social Contract issue that most groups I've known would rather not touch with the proverbial ten foot pole, and they do their best to akwardly ignore it when it does crop up.

Handled correctly, I think this could be an interesting kind of game -- "everybody generate a character which encompasses your perfect sexual/life/whatever partner" -- but not every group is going to be able to handle that sort of gaming.  Sounds like a good experiment for Sorcerer, really...

Quote
Dindias and Wood and Ares have all done numerous studies on how people reinterpret their initial impressions to conform to gender role prejudices once they discover a variation off conventional gender roles has occurred.


Sure, I see this all the time in a way.  I live as a woman, and am fairly successful at doing so.  Random strangers I interact with have no reason to assume or think I wasn't born a woman, for the most part, and even if there is some question it's generally more likely for them to think I'm a mannish woman.  At the same time, friends of mine who knew me before I started to transition look at me and see "a guy in a dress".  Same presentation, but two different perceptions based on information external to the presentation.

My friend's additional knowledge causes them to interpret what they see very differently, and they assume that others obviously perceive me as they do, when in fact others don't see the same thing at all.

Quote
For RPGs : this means that efforts towards recognition of gender roles or racial bigotry or homophobia or anti-Semitism will still be ignored by those players who are determined to ignore them.  We do what we can, but we must accept that we can not keep a particular gaming group from using a house rule that all Jewish characters take a penalty to wisdom scores, for example, or that all female characters take a penalty to strength scores, or that all male characters have a 10% likelihood to beat their wives, or whatever bias appeals to that particular group.


I'm sorry, I think I missed something.   I agree completely, but I'm not sure what point you're trying to make.

This is what I get for coming in at the end of the conversation, I suppose.  :/

Edit: Off Topic Tangent -- Dr. Xero, it seems fairly clear, considering I assume you are male and you've taken Women's Studies, that you've got an interest in gender stuff.  You might be interested in http://www.myhusbandbetty.com">this site and the related book, My Husband Betty, written by the journalist wife of a tg/cross-dresser.  They seem to have really successfully made their non-stereotypical-gendered relationship really work, and I've found that the author really has an interesting and clear perspective on a lot of the issues around gendered behavior.  Sorry in advance for the rather non-rpg-centric bent I seem to have injected into the thread...  I'll be quiet now =)
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Dana Johnson
Note that I'm heavily medicated and something of a flake.  Please take anything I say with a grain of salt.
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