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  1. #61
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    Just a thought, but what about Drizzt?

    Now, I know (of course) that a drow character and a black human are not the same thing. But, even so:

    - he's the best-known (certainly best-selling) hero in all of D&D fiction
    - he is a dark skinned hero, and
    - he frequently has to deal with prejudice based on the colour of his skin.

    And Salvatore has very occasionally made use of Drizzt as a vehicle to make comments on race. Surely there's got to be some sort of consideration in there?

    So, how does Drizzt fit into the debate? Does Drizzt fit into the debate, or is he excluded purely on the grounds that he's a member of a fictional race?

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    My $0.02.

    I'm personally not swayed to believe REH was truly racist- to me, he comes across as more...parochial/paternalistic. I also draw a distinction between the views of authors and the views of their characters.

    Then again, I cannot claim to have read his correspondence, just his stories.

  3. #63
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    Just a thought, but what about Drizzt?
    Personally, I was playing a good-aligned Drow PC years before he hit the shelves, in part because I wanted to play a dark-skinned hero who was a clear counterpoint to the "all _______ are evil" mentality- which were a fantasy anolog, IMHO, of RW racist attitudes.

    And I continue to play a number of mold-breaking PCs (for similar reasons) to this day.

  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by delericho View Post
    So, how does Drizzt fit into the debate? Does Drizzt fit into the debate...?
    Nope.

    IMHO this was one of the silliest posts I've read.

  5. #65
    Quote Originally Posted by Dannyalcatraz View Post
    My $0.02.

    I'm personally not swayed to believe REH was truly racist- to me, he comes across as more...parochial/paternalistic. I also draw a distinction between the views of authors and the views of their characters.

    Then again, I cannot claim to have read his correspondence, just his stories.
    Have you read Black Canaan? It's very ugly.

    REH was kind of a screwed up individual though, I think some of his racism was just a way of expressing his self-loathing (which eventually resulted in his suicide) by trying to project how superior he was to others (like how he played up his own Celtic heritage, which he deemed superior).

    And some of it was just due to the era - the 20s & 30s were the height of the eugenics movement - racism was literally considered to be scientific. It's hard to grasp just how big it was back then unless you read magazines and such from that era (Life is a good one)

    REH and HPL didn't consider themselves ignorant bigots, they considered themselves quite scientific and cultured, and according to the times, they were.

  6. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by S'mon View Post
    Nope.
    I was just considering that, in the same way that early "Star Trek" used Spock (a member of a fictional species) to make some points about real-world racism, Salvatore has used Drizzt (a member of a fictional species) for the same person. And in a discussion of race in D&D, which discussed the iconics in passing, it seemed relevant that this was true of our most iconic character.

    As I said, it was just a thought. However...

    IMHO this was one of the silliest posts I've read.
    Having consider this some more, you're right. My apologies.

  7. #67
    Quote Originally Posted by delericho View Post
    So, how does Drizzt fit into the debate? Does Drizzt fit into the debate, or is he excluded purely on the grounds that he's a member of a fictional race?
    I don't agree with @S'mon. I think this is an interesting question, although personally I find the idea of trying to address questions of race via fictional races can get a bit twee unless deftly handled. I've not read Salvatore, and so can't comment on the deftness or otherwise of his handling.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dannyalcatraz View Post
    Personally, I was playing a good-aligned Drow PC years before he hit the shelves, in part because I wanted to play a dark-skinned hero who was a clear counterpoint to the "all _______ are evil" mentality- which were a fantasy anolog, IMHO, of RW racist attitudes.
    I don't think I've seen you post this before. A very interesting personal perspective.

    I've generally not been a fan of "all _______ are evil" outlook because I think it is an expression, in the fantasy medium, of a type of xenophobic/racist outlook that is also found in White Australia cartoons from the turn of the last century, in anti-Hun posters from World War One, in a certain sort of movie involving colonial warfare, etc.

  8. #68
    I don't see any particular reason to inject real world racial mixes into a fantasy RPG. I've no particular objection to doing so either.

    In my longest running campaign I thought it would be fun to make up my own human races, so I ended up with 1) a roughly European race to align with the fantasy literature we most read, 2) a cross between the Aztecs and Eddings' Nyissans, 3) a cross between Vikings and Andre Norton's Sul (the Mishihari), 4) a race with onyx-black skin, arabic features, and vaguely Egyptian culture, 5) a mix of Filipinos (who I was familiar with since I lived there a few years) and sub-Saharan Africans, 6) a grey-green skinned race roughly based on the Mongols ( who never actually appeared in play ), and hints of other races in unknown far off lands.

    This approach let me have fun playing with cultures and races and I didn't have to worry about any real world Mishihari or Mnempens getting offended because I was doing it wrong.

  9. #69
    Quote Originally Posted by RobertSullivan View Post
    This does not actually help a great deal - Conan was written by Robert Howard, who as a product of his times was a racist.
    We can agree to disagree on that.



    This is not about a specific setting's composition, but about the art in the 5E books.
    This is the cover of a supplement for the Conan RPG.




    I think it looks pretty cool, especially the chick (and don't call me a sexist or a misogynist because I use the word "chick").

  10. #70
    Quote Originally Posted by S'mon View Post
    People on rpgnet do! I've seen demands that 'race' be excised from 5e D&D. Because 'there are no races' apparently extends to fantasy races, too.
    That's ridiculous.

    Not you, S'mon--what you cite. Some people--I just sit back and wonder.

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