The racist legacy of Star Trek

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Afrika Bambaata, Jun 4, 2014.

  1. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    It's been a while sice I watched INS but weren't some of the Son'a children of the Ba'Ku in the settlement we saw.
     
  2. Captain Clark Terrell

    Captain Clark Terrell Commodore Commodore

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    Close. The Son'a second-in-command's mother was part of the settlement and appears at the film's end, as she's re-introduced to her son by Crusher.

    --Sran
     
  3. Captain Kathryn

    Captain Kathryn Commodore Commodore

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    Geordi being blind is sooooo unrelated to his ethnicity!

    Also Worf isn't "black" in Star Trek, he's Klingon. Same for Tuvok (Vulcan). Tons of Klingons and other Trek races are non-white actors.
     
  4. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't know what you're talking abut since I recall saying anything about you making a 'those people' reference. And, which 'people' are you referring to?

    Now the 'magazines' I assume you are talking about are the ones I brought out earlier: Jet, Ebony, and Essence. Since TNG premiered before MySpace, Youtube, or Facebook....the editors and publishers would go off of what controversy was being generated possibly by news channels and other mainstream media...as well as word of mouth from black communities.

    Now, in regards to your hypothetical poll, I think the Abramsverse has done something good in trying to get those numbers balanced. They are bringing in casual fans of all colors who might have not tuned in when Star Trek was just a niche franchise during the Berman-era.

    What is this 'club' you speak of? So we can look deeply in these alleged knee-jerk, ankle-jerk, arm-jerk accusations?

    You're saying 'nobody' as if you're speaking for everyone. IMO, there have been some pretty good contributions and people listening to alternate viewpoints (especially since there are different demographics on this board with different experiences - particularly racial experience). You seem to be the only one whose feathers are ruffled....and seeing 'knee-ankle-arm' jerk reactions and 'racism accusations' and 'negation by association attacks.'

    And I keep saying 'What is wrong with a Eurasian woman opposite a black male?' (Um, no I do not. You might want to go back on previous posts and read again).



    ;)
     
  5. LMFAOschwarz

    LMFAOschwarz Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I was thinking about this today at work. I haven't seen the episode in a number of years, but wasn't Lutan impressed with Yar's fighting abilities on the holodeck? I seem to remember that's when the wheels in his head started turning.

    Unfortunately, back then a lot of secondary characters on television often contributed little. I recently watched an episode of Gomer Pyle, USMC. Gomer's platoon were on a training exercise or some such, and throughout the entire episode, not one of the other guys had even one line of dialogue. It was bizarre, as if their right of speech had been revoked! :wtf:

    The Travis situation was also bizarre. He seemed to be about the nicest guy you ever could hope to meet, yet he never really got to do much of anything. :shrug:

    Agreed. You know, it's funny: all those condescending talking heads on news discussion shows always say "We need to have a dialogue" about this kind of stuff, yet it never happens. Waiting for them is like waiting for the Great Pumpkin. Here, as far as I'm concerned, we are having that kind of dialogue. Just normal folks with normal, everyday views and experiences. Call me a foolish optimist, but I too think it's a good thing! :)
     
  6. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ^^
    LMAOschwarz, actually the quotes you attributed to me are actually Yanks...from post #160.

    :p

    ;)

    (But you bring out some good points as always...!)
     
  7. AustNerevar

    AustNerevar Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Maybe we would have seen more of him as the show went on. He sort of had that child-like wonder of the green ensign. Almost a callback to Wesley. They could have done a lot of interesting things with his character and his home ship and family. They work on his character a bit in one of the novels.

    Though, I think everyone was drawn to the Trip/T'Pol dynamic. Trip was my favorite character from episode one, before I knew how heavily they'd focus on him. It seems like not many characters beyond the Archer/Trip/T'Pol/Malcom/Phlox characters got to shine much.

    I wish the show hadn't been killed so early. Despite what others say, I thought the cast had great rapport, worked well together, and were placed in an interesting setting. But Braga steered his ship into the giant iceberg called The Temporal Cold War and sunk the whole damned franchise.
     
  8. LMFAOschwarz

    LMFAOschwarz Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Oops! :eek: No idea how that happened! That's what I get for reading and posting while I'm still in post-work decompression! Sorry about that, guys! :o
     
  9. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    No biggie...:lol:
     
  10. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    There was no indication that Lutan wanted to marry Yar, she was a tool, nothing more.

    Hard to say what would have happen to Yar afterward, likely she just would have been sent back to the ship with the medicine. She no longer served any purpose.

    Maybe mariaismo rather than machismo, given that ultimately the female is in power.

    Where is superstition seen in this episode?

    Domestic matters definitely were a priority over interstellar ones.

    Yareena had multiple husbands, Lutan held the status of "her first," when she figured out his plan she kept him as her husband (one of them) but demoted him. On that planet Yareena held the power.

    :)
     
  11. BigJake

    BigJake Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well, yes. Fair enough. A couple of instances, then. :bolian:
     
  12. Drone

    Drone Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I did not read those publications much at that time. Was it not uncommon for them to scan a variety of broadcast productions and feature commentary about those that in indvidual episodes or more integrally in their composition, portrayed egregious examples of racially based characterizations or judgements?
     
  13. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk The Real Me Premium Member

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    Since prior to Cumberbatch, the actors under consideration included Benicio del Toro, Édgar Ramirez and Jordi Mollà I think Orci, Abrams and Co. did care enough to try and cast someone similar to Montaban at first.

    Khan's been played by a white man before. Yes Ricardo Montalban is "white". His parents are from Spain. Unless, of course, your definition of "white" doesn't include Spain. Heck "white" ( or at least "Caucasian") can be expanded to include India ( as well as Western Asia and North Africa)

    Exactly how did this casting "insult" anyone's "intelligence"? How is it in consistent? (would casting a Hispanic actor really be better?) Childish? In what way?
     
  14. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Isn’t it more like „scream in pain“? As we can witness for ourselves in “A Private Little War” he was a violent person who abused Spock’s obvious disorientation to give him a good beating and seduced Nurse Chapel into doing the same. :rofl: (end of satire)

    Really? To me this is one of the popular myths like this claim that “Forbidden Planet” had been inspired by Shakespeare’s The Tempest. There are superficial similarities between the protagonists but if you actually look at their roles and function in the actual stories these are not really compatible.

    Already Artoo strikes me as a rather smart robot. Not only does the Laurel & Hardy comparison fail to acknowledge that, but the two peasants in “The Hidden Fortress” resemble rather two Ferengi characters that are looking for a profit opportunity every corner they turn in the film.
    I really tried to find these moments of Star Wars inspiration in Kurosawa’s film, but having seen it I felt it rather served as an inspiration for “Raiders of the Lost Ark” (moving the clan’s gold treasure), if any.

    And I don’t even think it’s a really entertaining film, IMHO “Rashomon” is a much more interesting introduction to Kurosawa’s art, telling a story from multiple points of perspective (including the victim!) where it becomes obvious, that everyone involved tries to safe face, so at the end it remains impossible to learn what really happened.

    I also leave it up to interpretation whether George Lucas’ allusions to older Hollywood films were merely some kind of feels-familiar-technique or condoned stereotypes or both.

    Another negative stereotype is that of Native Americans that is somehow reflected by the Sandpeople or Tusken Raiders. Luke Skywalker returning home to find Lars Homestead destroyed is apparently inspired by John Ford’s “The Searchers” (Reminder: The stormtroopers made it look like the Sandpeople had attacked the Homestead and killed Luke’s foster parents) and then we have the whole white woman abduction scenario in the second prequel movie.

    In contrast, this kind of stereotype recycling or alluding is either absent in Star Trek or put into a reverse spin, noticable in the much criticized episode “The Omega Glory”: Here you have a village populated with Asian characters (Native Americans originated from) with the Caucasian Yangs assuming the role of the “vicious” American Native. The name of the Yang’s leader speaks volumes: “Chief Cloud William”… (compare “Red Cloud” and “Touch the Clouds”, a cousin of Crazy Horse).

    Of course, Spock (Gene Roddenberry) correctly states that the Yangs behaviour is illogical (as is the depiction of American Natives in early Westerns). I believe we should consider this, the next time we take "The Omega Glory" apart. ;)

    Bob
     
  15. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Ricardo Montalban was "brown."



    :)
     
  16. Dennis

    Dennis The Man Premium Member

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    What's your point?

    Certainly McCoy displayed racist attitudes toward Spock on more than one occasion.
     
  17. Vandervecken

    Vandervecken Captain Captain

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    My point was that it's not racist to have Vulcans be, for the most part, paragons of logic, it's not racist to have most Ferengi always on the lookout for the main capitalist chance, and it's not racist for Klingons to be aggressive and warlike. It's not racist for most Changelings to think solids are lower forms of life, and it's not racist for Tholians to be extremely xenophobic or at least intolerant of most other aliens. These are characteristics of their species and cultures, and we'd expect aliens to have some defining characteristics from the human point of view. That's why I posted Quark's comments on humans from his (alien) point of view--humans aren't immune to being "stereotyped" either, or, rather, having their defining characteristics noted by alien species. I wasn't commenting at all about "racist" comments by other characters.
     
  18. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, it wasn't unlike - or 'isn't,' since those publications are still going strong today - any other publication like the New York Times or Time where a timely subject is covered, or if a questionable reprensentation that really became controversial received widespread attention. Only those aforementioned publications involve the black community.

    Essence - Geared towards black women, and mainly covers topics such as health, finance, business, relationships...and black female entertainers...

    Ebony - Geared towards black men and women, and mainy covers health, finance, business, relationships, black entertainment overall.

    Jet - Covers the same as Ebony, but might also cover 'the little people' (i.e. non-celebs that have done something worthy of recognition) and might cover some historical bits. I remember an article I used for a college project years back that involved an old issue of Jet (from the 1940s) that covered relationships between black soldiers and Japanese women.

    Ricardo Montalban's version of Khan can be explained as someone who just took the name - 'Khan' - like Cumberbatch. It's like someone taking a name of a culture they've immersed themselves into (e.g. the villain from "Rush Hour" - Tom Wilkinson - who was a white guy with a Chinese name). Although, I still think Cumberbatch just coming out with his big reveal was a big 'so what!' but I digress.... :lol:

    While Spain is indeed part of Europe and many can be thought of as 'white,' I'm sure you have individuals who are dark-skinned and think of themselves as 'black' or 'Asian' but Spaniards as well. (Africans and Chinese are in various parts of the world).

    As for India being 'white'.....? Hmm, that is debatable.

    I saw a young girl at the supermarket a few months who I sworn was a 'black' girl. She was with her father, Indian, who I assumed was married to a black woman. However, after I came out into the parking lot, I saw that the mother was Caucasian.

    Too, there are a lot of Indians who are obviously more darker than 'white' people as well as some 'black' people, and yet could pass for 'black' individuals. Furthermore, when I was studying in Singapore, I would receive curious looks from Indians who probably were wondering where I came from.

    Mira Nair's "Mississippi Masala" touched upon this subject of skin color and how Asian Indians (at least in America, where Asians are judged in black/white terms) fit in with black America and white America. The story involves a black man - Denzel Washington - in a relationship with an Indian girl who escaped Idi Amin's craziness in Africa with her family, and is now adjusting to life in the American South.

    In regards to North Africa, it's the same thing. Many are Middle Eastern, and many have skin as dark as mine or Afrocentric features. I recall this one kid back in high school who looked Latino and was part of this black club on campus. (I thought he just had an interest in black American culture, but it turned out that he was Egyptian).

    Since Egypt has changed over the hundreds of years due to the Romans and eventually the Arabs (and even people from other parts of Africa and parts of Europe and Asia) you will have many different people who may identify as North African. Not only in regards to Egypt, but Morocco, etc...
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2014
  19. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk The Real Me Premium Member

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    So are a lot of "white" people. As I said, "white" expands and contracts depending on who is using the term. Some might think of the Jews, the Irish or Slavs as "non-white". The whole concept of "race" is pretty ambiguous and artificial.


    Well, the majority of the Spanish population are "white", though as you say there are people there who are "black" or "Asian", the same as many European nations. Especially those with a colonial past.

    India is a multi-ethnic country. Many languages and cultures abound. So they come in many shades. Freddie Mercury( born Farrokh Bulsara), for example is a Parsi, his family originates in India and he was born in Africa. He's light skinned, though not exactly pale. By contrast, Naveen Andrews, who is British and born to Indian parents, is Malayali and has a darker skin tone.

    Hafez al-Assad, the former leader of Syria looks like the love child of John Cleese and Ralph Emery. Two of the "whitest" guys on Earth. ;)

    When folks decided to divide up humanity by "race" many Indians, North Africans and West Asians got placed in the "white/Caucasian" group. Given the proximity of those regions to Europe I'm sure all those peoples came to and from Europe ( and visa verse ) for centuries. Which is another reason the concept of "race" is artificial, arbitrary and ambiguous.
     
  20. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Funny, but what I always got from the original show was that McCoy mostly laid into and ribbed Spock because Spock acted like his human half didn't exist or didn't matter. He enjoyed taking the piss out of Spock's attitude of supposed Vulcan superiority.