Multicultural Laketown

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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Thu Mar 27, 2014 8:21 am

ToshoftheWuffingas wrote:http://www.africaresource.com/rasta/sesostris-the-great-the-egyptian-hercules/black-romans-1700-years-ago/



Again, here you (or rather the Afro-centric Rasta website you linked to) casually treat "African" and "black" as synonyms- but if you just read the text off the article itself, cribbed from the wire report, it's clear that the historical reference, and this chap buried in Britain, are North Africans. As in, not black.
http://decodedpast.com/evidence-african-diaspora-roman-britain/6254


"Europe’s Black Saint Maurice.....The mercenary Theban soldiers came from a North African area now in Egypt.".... followed by the sort of bogus etymology so beloved of junk scholarship, "Maurice means Moor i.e. black." Um, no. Mauritius meant "from Mauretania," and so in that sense can be translated "Moor", but with a meaning quite different from mod. Othello, "blackamoor." Oh, and Thebes is not "now in Egypt;" it has always been in Egypt, as in "capital of."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahmad_ibn_Fadlan


I'm not even sure what your point is here. Ibn-Fadlan was (rather obviously) an Arab.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby RoseMorninStar » Thu Mar 27, 2014 8:55 am

Again, here you (or rather the Afro-centric Rasta website you linked to) casually treat "African" and "black" as synonyms-...


The term 'race' as applied to skin tone is a wobbly way to classify people scientifically/biologically it doesn't work well. It is more of a social construct.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Thu Mar 27, 2014 9:51 am

RoseMorninStar wrote:
Again, here you (or rather the Afro-centric Rasta website you linked to) casually treat "African" and "black" as synonyms-...


The term 'race' as applied to skin tone is a wobbly way to classify people scientifically/biologically it doesn't work well. It is more of a social construct.


Quite so. Many anthropologists disregard the concept as obsolete, and with some reason- cetrainly any lines we try to draw are fuzzy, vague and (arguably) unhelpful: arbitrary pigeonholes. What ethnicity are the "Turks?" Answer: anybody who natively speaks Turkish, whether their ancestry is any of or a mix of any of Greek, Slavic, Celtic, Persian, Arab, Afghan, Central Asian, Hunnic/Mongolian....

But those anthropologist who do still think a taxonomy of modern humans useful today generally break Homo sapiens into seven geographic genotypes*- four of which are indigenous to sub-Saharan Africa. The group traditionally called "white" or caucasian" includes very dark-skinned people like the Dravidians of south India, and all the peoples of North Africa (barring historical-era migrants from the south). The old mistake was treating the Mediterranean as a barrier rather than a conduit; all the peoples of the Mediterranean basin are of one "race" to the extent that term is meaningful any more. The real barrier was the Sahara.

--------------------------

*A. Eurasians, including Europe, west Asia, the Mideast, North Africa and the Indian subcontinent
B. Australasians- Australia, New Guinea and Melanesia
C. East Asians, including "native" Americans and Polynesians
D. What used to be called "pickle jars" [edit: K-u-s-h-i-t-e-s; I can't believe the forum software censored that], Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa
E. Pygmies
F. South African San (i.e. Bushmen and 'Hottentots')
G. "Black" Africans

It's hardly a surprise that Africa, the cradle of humanity, would display greater genetic diversity than anywhere else.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby ToshoftheWuffingas » Thu Mar 27, 2014 1:48 pm

Yeah sure there are racial distinctions between the dark skinned Berbers and other North Africans common in Europe during the Roman Empire and the other ethnic groups south of the Sahara and I know that Ahmad Ibn Fadlan was probably an Arab. I quoted his mission from Baghdad and the other links to demonstrate that Dark Age and earlier Europe were familiar non white faces which is the whole point of this discussion.
The only PC in all of this that I see is the KKK PC that every face has to be white or someone will have a fainting fit
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby BerenVonRictoffen » Thu Mar 27, 2014 4:06 pm

Actually most of the "lesser men" in Middle-Earth are described by Tolkien as "short and swarthy," i.e. those except for descendants of Three Houses. Others from far-off lands are the Easterlings, or Asiatics, Southrons, or Semites, and Haradrim or Africans. As far as PJ is concerned, however, it seems that "men are men..." just like "Elves are Elves," placing no distinction between Wood-Elves and the High Elves regarding their appearance, manner or abilities. Even Elrond's last name is dropped, as he's no longer "Half-Elven" but just another Elf.

But what do you want, PJ thinks that Middle Earth is supposed to be New Zealand... seriously, despite Tolkien saying quite often that it's Europe, with the Shire being near modern Ireland and Mordor being modern Bulgaria.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby BagginsGirl » Thu Mar 27, 2014 9:02 pm

I just feel I have to say something, mainly because I've been brewing with anger after reading some posts here,but have stopped myself from saying how I feel because I thought it may be rude. But I really don't care about that now. So here it is:

The Earth is full of people who are all different, so is Middle Earth. Get over it.

Every person in the world is equal. And someone who will judge or complain about a person based on a physical feature ( such as skin color) is just shallow and ignorant and probably a racist bigot.

There,I feel a bit better now..... Just had to let that all be known.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Eucatastrophe » Thu Mar 27, 2014 9:36 pm

BerenVonRictoffen wrote: As far as PJ is concerned, however, it seems that "men are men..." just like "Elves are Elves," placing no distinction between Wood-Elves and the High Elves regarding their appearance, manner or abilities.


I may have many complaints regarding the films as adaptations, but this is a totally false judgement.
If Jackson achieved anything in his depiction of races in ME, that is the difference between them.
The difference between Rohirric and Gondorian cultures are significantly distinct. And so is Laketown much different from these two.
The Mirkwood Elves are depicted accurately regarding their difference from Rivendell and Lorien (less wise,fiery,dark Elves and all). even the various factions of orcs and goblins are signifcantly different and spot on Tolkien. Misty mountain-goblins and the Moria-orcs, Gundabad orcs, Isengard's Uruks, the Black Uruks, Morgul orcs, etc.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby JewelSong » Fri Mar 28, 2014 12:30 am

I thought it was cool that the citizens of Laketown were depicted as so diverse. I thought it added to the over-all world of Middle Earth and made the town seem more like a universal trading port. I don't think PJ trying to be "PC" had anything to do with it.

I don't understand why anyone would be troubled by seeing multiple "races" in Laketown.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Gungnir » Fri Mar 28, 2014 5:01 am

BerenVonRictoffen wrote:But what do you want, PJ thinks that Middle Earth is supposed to be New Zealand... seriously, despite Tolkien saying quite often that it's Europe, with the Shire being near modern Ireland and Mordor being modern Bulgaria.


Complete rubbish. PJ knows exactly where Tolkien placed Middle Earth. What he means is that the varied landscapes of New Zealand are ideal for the depiction of Middle Earth as described in the book.

Oh, and BTW, The Shire is not 'near modern Ireland' and Mordor is probably not modern Bulgaria.

J.R.R.Tolkien wrote:The action of the story takes place in the North-West of ‘Middle-earth’, equivalent in latitude to the coastlands of Europe and the north shores of the Mediterranean […] If Hobbiton and Rivendell are taken (as intended) to be about the latitude of Oxford, then Minas Tirith, 600 miles south, is at about the latitude of Florence. The Mouths of Anduin and the ancient city of Pelargir are at about the latitude of ancient Troy.


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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Fri Mar 28, 2014 6:43 pm

I don't have any particular problem with PJ's multi-ethnic Laketown since it doesn't contradict anything Tolkien wrote and as pointed out above, a variety of ethnic typologies conveys, at a glance in a visual medium, that this is a trading-port. I wouldn't have had a problem with it had it been all lily-white, either. Surely this is, like Legolas' hair-color, even as nothing compared to PJ's real enormities.

I do have a problem, though, with smears like "KKK" and "racist" being used here.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Wildwood » Sat Mar 29, 2014 4:20 pm

Ya know what? I didn't even notice the various multicultural makeup of the people in Laketown! What in the world difference does it make???!!! That's just ridiculous!! It's acting, for crying out loud! :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

I have seen plays where a woman was playing a part of a male character, and I totally believed it, because she sold it!! (And movies too: Killing Fields, anyone???!!) In the end, its the acting that matters! And in today's world, now that we are finally - FINALLY - trying to get the globe integrated and thinking of ourselves as the human race, and not a collection of little stereotyped groupings, based on artificial barriers such as race or religion or nationality or orientation, I think it's a very fine thing, indeed, that Laketown would have so many different types of people in it! An even finer thing that I didn't even notice or make a mental remark about it to myself. People. Are. People.
:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

(I will, however, raise a real ruckus over the color of elf hair! But that is serious stuff!
:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D )

The world has moved on. Or at least it is trying hard to!!! Laketown is supposed to be full of people. It is full of people.
Well Done, PJ!! (And no, I did not say that.) :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

Oh - and believe you me, with all the other stuff I feel they messed up with Laketown, I am sure the multicultural diversity of the populace was the last thing in the world I was gonna notice!! All that seeming poverty and misery? The despot-like tyrannical control of the Master? Dwarves staying behind who were meant to go on to the mountain? ELVES doing stuff they were NOT meant to be doing? And Tauriel healing Kili with some sort of Elven hocus pocus???!!! The ethnicities of the actors playing the town populace didn't even register for me!!!
:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

As my Mom is fond of saying, swallow a horse and choke on a gnat! :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby BagginsGirl » Sat Mar 29, 2014 9:37 pm

I totally agree with Wildwood.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby IrisBrandybuck » Mon Mar 31, 2014 7:00 am

:)
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Tsalagi_Phoenix » Tue Apr 01, 2014 1:16 am

I'm not an expert on Middle Earth, but I don't think it is impossible that there were people with other skin colors. I've only read the Fellowship and the Two Towers, but I remember people with other skin color in those. Isn't Sam described as having brown skin?

I don't think it should really matter. What Tolkien made was an amazing fictional world. One that is loved and enjoyed by not only people with white skin, but people that have other skin colors as well. So, I don't think there is anything wrong with having people of other races in Laketown. It didn't bother me at all and I don't think it ruined the movie or story in any way.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Aravar » Tue Apr 01, 2014 8:13 am

I tinhk the reference to Sam having brown skin is more likely to be a reference to him having tanned skin from working out of doors as a gardener.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Frelga » Tue Apr 01, 2014 9:19 am

Aravar wrote:I tinhk the reference to Sam having brown skin is more likely to be a reference to him having tanned skin from working out of doors as a gardener.



He is a Harfoot, which are described as browner of skin than other hobbits. Tellingly, Fallowhides are so named for their pale skin, implying that white skin is an unusual trait among the hobbits.

Besides, Tolkien describes his "brown hobbit hand" not "gardener's brown hand".
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Eucatastrophe » Tue Apr 01, 2014 9:37 am

Frelga wrote:
Aravar wrote:I tinhk the reference to Sam having brown skin is more likely to be a reference to him having tanned skin from working out of doors as a gardener.



He is a Harfoot, which are described as browner of skin than other hobbits. Tellingly, Fallowhides are so named for their pale skin, implying that white skin is an unusual trait among the hobbits.

Besides, Tolkien describes his "brown hobbit hand" not "gardener's brown hand".


Yes.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Tue Apr 01, 2014 11:25 am

Based on all of the non-Caucasian Warwickshire villagers circa 1897, right?
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby ToshoftheWuffingas » Tue Apr 01, 2014 2:19 pm

Did Warwickshire villagers cross a mountain chain the size of the Alps in three separate tribes a few hundred years before and fall into different, described ethnic groups?
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Tue Apr 01, 2014 4:06 pm

ToshoftheWuffingas wrote:Did Warwickshire villagers cross a mountain chain the size of the Alps in three separate tribes a few hundred years before and fall into different, described ethnic groups?


No, they just crossed an ocean in three separate tribes- they were called Angles, Saxons and Jutes. (The rather obvious Marcho and Blanco allusion, btw). And in both cases, they didn't "fall into" separate ethnic groups; rather they had begun originally as three related but distinguishable ethnic groups who over the centuries in their new home had intermarried and merged.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby AlatarVinyamar » Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:14 am

Is anyone here seriously suggesting that Tolkien intended Samwise Gamgee to be dark skinned? As in, brown skinned, rather than tanned?
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby IrisBrandybuck » Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:06 am

I guess I just always thought of him as being darker skin toned...looking around the room I'm sitting in, we have fair skinned and darker skinned people, but not "brown" per se.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Eucatastrophe » Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:10 am

AlatarVinyamar wrote:Is anyone here seriously suggesting that Tolkien intended Samwise Gamgee to be dark skinned? As in, brown skinned, rather than tanned?


As has been said above, the Harfoots have been described as darker than Fallohides or the Stoors. So it is not impossible for Samwise to be darker in skin ethnically. He might be, he might not be. But I find it quite a serious question, imo.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:28 pm

Is it really necessary to put together a list of a dozen or more cites of Tolkien declaring that his Hobbits were rural Englishmen?
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby heliona » Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:36 pm

My father (who is British and is of British heritage) has a darker skin tone than the typical lily-white of a lot of Scots people. He just has to look at the sun and goes really rather te brown. I too have a slightly darker skin-tone than a lot of my Scottish friends (for instance - because they in particular seem to be very pale in skin-tone) (and again, I tan very easily, unlike my friends, who stubbornly remain white (or red!) no matter how much sun they catch). It is entirely possible that white/Caucasian people can be described as brown without being the brown colour of say an Indian person. It is all relative.

(Also, it seems that genetic research has found that most British people descend from Iberian (possibly from the last ice age) and in particular the Irish and Welsh share a lot of genetic traits with the Basque people, so there doesn't seem to be any reason why there couldn't be some people "popping up" who are very British but have darker skin that what assumed is typical.)
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Eucatastrophe » Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:10 pm

Thank you heliona, for the British input. :)

solicitr wrote:Is it really necessary
to put together a list of a dozen or more cites of Tolkien declaring
that his Hobbits were rural Englishmen?


Which proves what, exactly?
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:35 pm

heliona wrote:My father (who is British and is of British heritage) has a darker skin tone than the typical lily-white of a lot of Scots people. He just has to look at the sun and goes really rather te brown. I too have a slightly darker skin-tone than a lot of my Scottish friends (for instance - because they in particular seem to be very pale in skin-tone) (and again, I tan very easily, unlike my friends, who stubbornly remain white (or red!) no matter how much sun they catch). It is entirely possible that white/Caucasian people can be described as brown without being the brown colour of say an Indian person. It is all relative.


Bingo. Of my two children, one rotates seasonally between milk-white and nut-brown, and the other between milk-white and day-glo pink (followed quickly by "leprous"). My grandfather (50/50 English and German), who spent his life in Arizona, most of it outdoors, had a complexion one might call "old boot."
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby solicitr » Wed Apr 02, 2014 8:36 pm

Eucatastrophe wrote:Thank you heliona, for the British input. :)

solicitr wrote:Is it really necessary
to put together a list of a dozen or more cites of Tolkien declaring
that his Hobbits were rural Englishmen?


Which proves what, exactly?


That attempts to argue that Hobbits were something else are misguided.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Eucatastrophe » Wed Apr 02, 2014 10:00 pm

What I have gathered are that the hobbits have personalities, interests and cultures akin to rural Englush but they are, in whole, not rural Brits. Just based on them. One cannot expect to have the hobbits and the Brits to have identical appearances, can they?

ETA: Kudos Frelga. :lmbo:
Last edited by Eucatastrophe on Thu Apr 03, 2014 2:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Multicultural Laketown

Postby Frelga » Wed Apr 02, 2014 11:33 pm

solicitr wrote:Is it really necessary to put together a list of a dozen or more cites of Tolkien declaring that his Hobbits were rural Englishmen?


Are rural Englishmen typically between two and four feet tall? :? Do they have hairy feet and need no shoes? Are most of the males incapable of growing beards?

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