Q:Alright, I am genuinely curious of your opinion on this. For my recent cosplay we used dark makeup to make my husband's skin darker for the 3rd Kazkage puppet from Naruto. (I was Sasori) In life, the 3rd is light skinned but after death/being preserved and made into a puppet he is a darker colour. Would you consider using darker makeup for that racist? Since he is not an actual POC and just a puppet? If so, how do you consider it different from darkening it for Korra? Thanks for your insight!
Do not darken skin for a brown person. Simple as that. You are asking me this because you want to excuse racism.
What you did is very problematic because it was indeed a person. It’s not like a muppet that has and will always be a puppet, there use to be a guy in there.
Stop trying to excuse shit and just don’t do it. Unless it’s some unnatural color like blue or green that has never been, will never be, and will never even exist, don’t put on the makeup.
Let’s try to be reasonable about this.
I personally don’t give a fuck about what people cosplay, but when I see a blog like this disguising itself as some sort of morally righteous and good example it bothers me. It bothers me a lot. You’re claiming that a fictional character is not tan. Okay, let’s do some research on this character.
Korra is from the Southern Water tribe, making her nationality Southern Water tribe, the southern water tribe is based on the south pole. So it’s safe to say that the people of the Southern Water tribe are based on the people of the south pole. After about 2 minutes of googling’ I have found that there are three main groups of people that inhabited the the south pole before the Europeans got there. Those groups are, The Hukahunga a Polynesian ethnic group, The Tucamba who are thought to be descended from the South American people, and finally The Celliers who were a mixed people.
Now a simple google search of any of these groups will show that they are in fact what could be called tan of skin or brown. But the most important point is yet to be stated.
It doesn’t matter what race you are, you should be able to dress up as your favorite FICTIONAL fucking character without someone calling you racist. There is nothing racist about using makeup to make your skin tan.
Let’s talk about what is racist, saying someone shouldn’t cosplay a character because of their race is racist. If I as a caucasian male were to say that someone of asian descent shouldn’t cosplay Bad Girl from No More Heroes because of her race, and THEN tell her that it would be racist of her to do so, I would be called out immediately. But you seem to think that what you’re doing is in fact the opposite, you like to think of yourself as some kind of hero to the people.
Here’s a little insight into what everyone else is thinking, you’re not. You’re just asshole’s who like to bash on others cosplay because “Their skin isn’t the right color.” Do you ever read what you fucking type? You’re nothing more then self-righteous bullies on the internet, and that’s all you’ll ever be.
I’d be happy to discuss this further with you, if you’d like to contact me feel free to use my ask box.
P.S. inb4 you call me an ignorant racist for pointing out the obvious faults in your flawed logic.
You come to my blog, my submition box, demanding reason and respect when you come here insulting Mary and I. And why, cause you and the little pasty face cosplayers who do racist shit don’t actually wanna be called racist.
First off. Twisted stupid logic as the water tribe are based off of Inuit and other natives, such as the Yupik and Sireneki.
What the watertribe people are based off of only solidifies that they are indeed POC, not white people. Which for some reason people can’t grasp. Their range of skin tone is not what is in question here because Korra herself. Is one skintone. One person and the focus of all your stupid ass logic.
Putting on make up or using the sun to dress up as a darkskinned person is, has always been and will always be racist.
You as a white male (not caucasian that already is a racist term) can not ever decide what is racist because you are at the top of the privileged ladder buddy. Being called racist is about as worst as you can get.
White and light people need to do one thing when dressing up as a brown person for cosplay. Do not ever ever ever alter your skin tone. That’s all I’ve ever said. But you guys don’t wanna be called racist so bad that you are gonna twist in your head that being called racist is the worst thing ever.
How about you and yours stay out of my inbox.
And Conner dear. Noone cares about your opinion.
Must be a brand new concept.
Sometimes I wonder if people know that racism is not static.
Racism in the past was much more open but now, people have to hide it while still hurting the people they intend to hurt.
It’s an evolving, growing monster that gets smarter and smarter as the years grow.
Before it was outright saying that you can’t vote at all.
Then it was now you can vote but you need to pass a test I know you can’t.
Then it was now you can vote and you don’t have to take a test but you can go to this shitty place with not enough voting machines for your area.
Then it was now you can vote but I’ll just lose your votes.
Then it was now you can vote but now there are some new rules that aren’t actually rules, I’m just gonna lie.
It’s calling outright a black person in officer the N-word but now having to use the term “welfare president” in public. You didn’t say n-word so you must not be racist, right?
It grows. It changes.
Giving me the old examples of black face will not change the fact that there are modern day evolutions of it. Lies and ignorance are thought in the world and the cycle repeats.
If you put on brown makeup to be a brown POC for a day or for a costume, what original black facing was, black skin was a costume and part of their little show. You are a racist. You’ve done something racist and are now tied with the word racist.
You don’t get to decide what is and what is not racism if you are in the oppressive group.
You can’t decide when you are and aren’t racist.
You don’t get to say.
Well I’m not racist:
And think you aren’t racist if you’ve done something racist or have the mentality of a racist.
You can’t hold racism on a scale either.
Well they didn’t do this, which isn’t as bad as that so it must not be racist.
Racism is racism.
Big or smaller.
And the sooner we stop excusing and rationalizing little microagressions the sooner this world will be a better place.
Call me crazy, but I was lead to believe that the entire point of blackface was to mock and ridicule an entire race of people. The same goes for yellowface (East Asians), redface (American Indians) and brownface (anyone with brown skin who isn’t Black). Yet some people still don’t see a problem with it. “It’s a caricature. It’s part of the character’s costume. They’re not racist- you’re just being too sensitive.”
Racefacing- a term I’ll use for this post -is inherently racist. Blackface perpetuated negative stereotypes about Blacks, though apologists would say that it brought African-American culture to mainstream America (re: White America) and that blackface performers gave Whites a sense of nostalgia for the antebellum South (re: the happy slave mentality). In minstrel shows- affectionately referred to as the “old time nigger show” by Mark twain -blackface was common:
“White performers would blacken their faces with burnt cork or greasepaint, dress in outlandish costumes, and then perform songs and skits that mocked African Americans. Some of the most famous songs in American history— Dixie, Camptown Races, Oh Sussanah, My Old Kentucky Home —began as minstrel songs.” [source]
Then there were the blackface stock characters:
“Jim Crow was the stereotypical carefree slave, Mr. Tambo a joyous musician, and Zip Coon a free black attempting to ‘put on air’s or rise above his station. The parody in minstrel shows was often savage.”
More characters included the tragic mulatto, the mixed-race woman who felt as if she did not belong with Whites or Blacks; and the mammy, the asexual, extremely dark and overweight* loyal servant who loved her White babies as if they were her own.
Just the exaggerated look of blackface was offensive. It gave rise to the darky iconography, those classic images of Blacks as dolls and on packages of candy or watermelon. Bright red lips and white eyes pressed into pitch-black skin.
In interesting fact about blackface is that Whites weren’t the only ones who performed in it. In the beginning they were, but Black performers soon embraced the art form- and it doesn’t make it any less racist. Blacks donning blackface doesn’t surprise me because one of the biggest offenders in racefacing is the “Smize” queen herself, Tyra Banks. She obviously sees nothing wrong with it because this happens three different times in three different seasons of “America’s Next Top Model. The most recent cycle was when the models honored the late King of Pop by dressing up as him, which required their skin being painted for some.
I’ll get to that Michael Jackson cosplaying later, so let me move on. In a way (and I could be way wrong) the other racefaces are different because they were not only used to mock Native Americans, East Asians and others, but they were also used to prevent actors of these backgrounds from portraying themselves, even if the roles were “positive.”
Here are some commonly found characters that played a part in shaping people’s view. All are from Racial and Racist Stereotypes in Media:
- Yellow Peril/Yellow terror: Possibly the most famous. “Asians were viewed as alien and a threat to wage-earners, and a movement began that had the goal of making California racially pure.” Today, I think the term is also used in fear of East Asia (specifically China) becoming politically and economically stronger than Western countries.
- Dragon Lady: Also known as “Me Love You Long time”, the Dragon Lady is “aggressive or opportunistic sexual beings or predatory gold diggers. Non-threatening stereotypes include servile Lotus Blossoms, China dolls, and Geisha girls.”
- Chief: Self-explanatory. He was often seen with a war bonnet (though my scant research into Indian headdresses has revealed that the majority of Native Americans who wore them were Plains Indians).
- Princess: “The Princess stereotype was created to legitimize female Native Americans as potential mates for Whites.”
- Noble Savage: “A primitive man living in harmony with the natural world and unspoiled by civilized vices.” I’ll take it a step further and say that this is a character that stays true to both sides: uncivilized (Indian) and civilized (White/Europeans) and was pretty much the peacemaker.
- Squaw: Like the princess, she usually marries a White man, usually a settler and almost always by accident (those whacky Indian marriage customs!)
Brownface is a much larger group, and the website I referenced from only has Latinos as examples. Yet it’s the same as the others: mocking individuals and limiting roles to White actors.
Before anyone jumps on me, racefacing isn’t about people wearing makeup or using skin bleaching to make themselves lighter (that’s a whole ‘nother conversation). It’s also not about white people getting tans just because they want to. This is about portraying races you are not and how the history of it makes it offensive.
But if you don’t agree on how racefacing is offensive, let’s look at it this way: getting a tan so you can portray a dark-skinned character is illogical. Korra is a brown-skinned Asian- she is not a White girl with a tan. It’s the same for those America’s Next Top Model photo shoots. Race isn’t solely based on skin color; it’s also the texture of your hair, the shape of your lips, eyes and nose. Just because there’s face paint to portray different races, doesn’t make it right. I can’t speak for every P.O.C., but if you’re White and you want to cosplay as Korra or another character different from you race, I don’t care. Just leave the paint at home; you don’t need it to “become close to the character.”
And because I see this coming miles away, “What about White Chicks?”
That movie was intended to ridicule White girls, but whiteface’s history is nowhere near as bad as the others are. One of the cool things (I’m assuming) about being White is that it is almost impossible to be racially stereotyped. Stereotyped by class- white trash, redneck, hick -yes, but not by race.
*There’s nothing wrong with these traits in-of-themselves, yet the media always portray them in such a way that it is negative.
more specifically (re: brownface)
Blackface/brownface was and remains a huge joke at the expense of PoC. it was used to poke fun at an entire race, not just one or two persons, or ot create a character. It was invented to dehumanize and belittle entire groups of people based on negative stereotypes centered around their skin color alone. It is racist, particularly for white folks, to paint your face and pretend to be a person of color because of that context. It is not something that can be erased or put aside because it still goes on today.
You can even find white folks here on Tumblr and on youtube who paint their faces and pretend to be Black folks (and worse, they tag it “n**ger* most of the time). More publicly, Ashton Kutcher painted his skin and pretended to be an Indian man for an advertisement, of all things.
Brownface and Blackface are not jokes, people of color are not costumes. It’s a disgusting practice, and should be abolished.
Deedee: Thank you!
I suck at explain stuff I’ve done a million tines, I never know where to start.
other photos from the museum party where Swedes carved up a Sarah Baartman (The Hottentot Venus) cake.
….i’m sick to my stomach.
i should upload that bell hooks article about eating the Other…………
This is disgusting
I don’t even have a gif for this….
I’M SAYING THIS SHIT RIGHT NOW! IF YOU THINK THIS IS OKAY, FUCKING UNFOLLOW ME!
What the fucking hell!
For all those who don’t know who Sarah (Saartjie) Baartman is - please read this:
“In 1810, when Saartjie Baartman was in her early twenties, she was persuaded by an English ship’s doctor, William Dunlop, to travel to England to make her fortune. However, as a Khoikhoi woman she was considered an anthropological freak in England, and she found herself put on exhibition, displayed as a sexual curiosity. Dubbed The Hottentot Venus, her image swept through British popular culture. Abolitionists unsuccessfully fought a court battle to free her from her exhibitors.
Saartjie Baartman was taken to Paris in 1814 and continued to be exhibited as a freak. She became the object of scientific and medical research that formed the bedrock of European ideas about black female sexuality. When she died in 1816, the Musee de l’Homme in Paris took a deathcast of her body, removed her skeleton and pickled her brain and genitals in jars. These were displayed in the museum until as late as 1985.
After five years of negotiating with the French authorities for the return of Saartjie Baartman’s remains, the South African government, together with the Griqua National Council which represents the country’s 200 000 Griqua people, part of the Koi-San group, brought Saartjie Baartman back to South Africa. On Friday 3 May 2002, in a moving ceremony attended by many representatives of the Khoikhoi people, Saartjie Baartman was welcomed back to Cape Town. Her final resting place is in the Eastern Cape, where she was born. (x)
Now, let it sink in that France kept this woman’s genital and brain preserved on display in a museum until 1985 - because her body and her genitals were so very “different” from what was considered “normal.”
Let it sink that she was put on display for her “abnormal” body and genitals - a body that many other black women share.
Let it sink the fuck in that the people at this art show began eating her genitals first at this celebration.
Let it SINK IN THAT EVERYONE WHO TOOK PART IN THIS HORROR THOUGHT THIS WAS OKAY.
I may lose followers for this but I don’t care. This is horrible and I literally cringed and had to go away from my computer when I saw it.