Sidebar: On Misandry

I’ve done sidebars covering topics that I thought interesting and thought provoking–but usually there’s a concern in my mind that serves as the catalyst to the post.  These sidebars aren’t necessary to read, and if you prefer to have my “meta-commentary” muted, then I’d certainly understand.  Sometimes, it is best to just read the story yourself and form your own opinions without the author trying to get in the way.

I have never been challenged or harangued because of something I’ve written. The worst criticism I received was that my site was “nearly impossible” to navigate, and that was two years ago when I was still struggling with Blogger. So far, ya’ll have been pretty cool with things. But just for the sake of it I’d like to cover this next topic as much as I can.

Men and Eikasia.

First, let’s look at the word “misandry”:

misandry |misˈandrē|
noun
the hatred of men by women : her brand of feminism is just poorly disguised misandry.
ORIGIN 1940s: from Greek miso- ‘hating’ + anēr, andr- ‘man,’ on the pattern of misogyny.

The last sidebar covered one of the “touchy subjects”–that being sexism.  But that was with regards to character views voiced in-story.  What of the story’s view on the matter?  (One could mistake this for being my view, but there’s still a separation between myself and my art, though this line looks a bit thin, I confess.)

Eikasia’s shakers and rollers seem to largely be women, with mostly men being the villains/rivals.

…That is the simple and not-quite-true summary of the cast.

It’s true that Eikasia’s primary players are women (Elmiryn, Nyx, Lethia, Quincy…) but there’s others too.  Hakeem, and more recently, Farrel.  They have played vital roles, and in some cases, with very positive results.  Recent updates have shown the positive presence Thaddeus and Marquis played in Nyx’s past; of the strong and natural friendship that Elmiryn had with Saelin.  But that still leaves us with some of our heroines and their relationships with men.

Elmiryn’s father was cold and ruthless, as seen by the update “The Performers”.  He pushed his daughter to be what he wanted her to be.  Nyx’s father Alvis was notably absent from her life, having left for some unfathomable journey around the world from which he never returned from.  His fate is unknown.  Quincy loathes Tobias for some wrong he apparently committed against her in the distant past.  She also mentions a man named Jack, but at this point we don’t have an idea of who he is.  The tone this sets is accidental.  These women don’t hate men–they just had trouble with some in their past.  Who hasn’t in one way or another?

Then there’s Belcliff’s marshal, Karolek, and Baldwin.  Sedwick is the more complicated of this group as he was a man trying to do what he thought was right, and when he went AWOL, it wasn’t his fault–still his prejudices and his magic-induced rage must’ve painted an unfavorable picture in the eyes of you readers.

Many background male characters are shown as prejudicial and boorish, I admit.

Part of the problem is the setting.  As a fantasy setting with most societies being in one way or other patriarchal in nature, women aren’t really given the chance they deserve to make a change or be in control.  Many women and girls stay out of sight as it isn’t “their place” to speak out, typically.  This is why we lack many examples of female background characters.  As such, this places men in an antagonistic light.  The truth of it is, it isn’t the men I show that are the real antagonists, they are simply the agents of a greater evil, and alone they can be easily overcome.

The other issue, and the most obvious, is that the primary romance is lesbian–leaving little to show the softer side of some of the male characters.

In the coming story arcs, this’ll change as Elmiryn and Nyx’s world expands to include new characters.  So far it’s been a lot of running and gunning with little leisure left in between the action.

Essentially what I’m trying to say is:  the general feeling of neglect and hostility towards men in Eikasia is really just an accident–a byproduct of the largely female cast, and the various settings we’ve seen so far.  I want it established that I don’t hate men, and I don’t like women who unfairly discriminate against them.  …But I still like strong female roles more than the muscular male hero, so forgive me if the ladies have more fun than the guys.  😛

Till next time!

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