Escape Artists

News:

News

ATTENTION: NEW FORUM THEME Please see here for details: http://forum.escapeartists.net/index.php?topic=13188.0

Author Topic: PC322: Saving Bacon  (Read 8488 times)

SpareInch

  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 1388
  • Will there be sugar after the rebellion?
Reply #25 on: September 12, 2014, 06:06:18 PM
The whole role reversal thing was poorly handled though. The author may aswell have gone the whole hog and given her male characters child bearing hips and vaginas. And she may aswell have given the women folk the penises they so clearly long for. The males didn't seem male in any way apart from their role in reproduction. Maybe that was the point?

I get that the author was putting man in woman's position, but  if that was the case wouldn't he have been excited to start working? Most female leads in these kind of stories always pine for a life of excitement and adventure and are often envious of their male counter-parts, but here the men were happy to be...er... women. So thought that was a bit lame.

Otherwise great narration and interesting world building.

There seems to be some confusion here re your opinion of the proper role of women in society. On the one hand you seem to be saying that women who take a lead in affairs, pursue a career or rise to positions of authority are rejecting their gender and, as you so nicely put it, want to have penises, and on the other you applaud female leads for wanting those things.

Make your mind up!

The men seem to me to be in the inferior position in this story BECAUSE most of them can't be bothered with making a living. In which case it might seem quite reasonable that the female leads you so applaud become the dominant gender. As I pointed out earlier, at no point did I feel that any of the male characters were female or vice versa.

Fresh slush - Shot this morning in the Vale of COW


gutguzzler

  • Extern
  • *
  • Posts: 10
Reply #26 on: September 12, 2014, 06:35:20 PM
Yeah the men in this story don't seem to have a single redeemable trait, it's actually a pretty sexist story when you think about it. But I guess that's why they run it. A kind of a 'how do you like it' story. More politics and what have you.

I don't quite understand what you mean about the penises. I don't think I had any opinion about the 'proper' role of women in society.



Varda

  • Rebound
  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 2710
  • Definitely not an android.
Reply #27 on: September 12, 2014, 06:46:56 PM
Yeah the men in this story don't seem to have a single redeemable trait, it's actually a pretty sexist story when you think about it. But I guess that's why they run it. A kind of a 'how do you like it' story. More politics and what have you.

I don't quite understand what you mean about the penises. I don't think I had any opinion about the 'proper' role of women in society.

Only if you think it's insulting or demeaning to be associated with things traditionally coded as feminine. Which I don't. I also don't think women taking active, practical roles in society means "they long for" penises, or that men with nurturing traits are somehow lesser because of it.

Medical Microfiction: Stories About Science
http://rckjones.wordpress.com


gutguzzler

  • Extern
  • *
  • Posts: 10
Reply #28 on: September 12, 2014, 07:03:02 PM
The men had nurturing traits? The MC cringed at the idea of looking after the little ones. I thought they were portrayed as being apathetic airheads myself, at least the MC was. But I guess sexism only works one way around here. And if the authors opinion of a woman's (now a man's in backwards land) role is to look after the children and work in garden and sing and be pretty, then that's a pretty sexist view too. It would have worked better if the author kept the role reversal, but focused equally on the positives aspects a women's role as well as the negatives. Same goes for the men's (now womens) role. But here it was pretty black and white, the men (who were women) had lots of obvious failings. And the women (who had the male role) had no obvious failings.

But I think it was done like that on purpose. Like I said, a kind of a how do you like it scenario.

Fair enough about the penises. It was just my crass way of saying the females appeared to be male in all but genitalia.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2014, 07:15:37 PM by gutguzzler »



InfiniteMonkey

  • Lochage
  • *****
  • Posts: 483
  • Clearly, I need more typewriters....
Reply #29 on: September 13, 2014, 01:53:19 AM

The men seem to me to be in the inferior position in this story BECAUSE most of them can't be bothered with making a living.

Let's recall that the men in this story are modeled after the feckless upper-class twits that populate the Jeeves and Wooster stories, and they couldn't be bothered (and didn't need ) to make a living either.

And one of the features of Bertie Wooster is he's always dodging women who might ask him to marry him because he thinks it's very bad manners to say no in such a circumstance.



SpareInch

  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 1388
  • Will there be sugar after the rebellion?
Reply #30 on: September 13, 2014, 05:40:42 AM
Fair enough about the penises. It was just my crass way of saying the females appeared to be male in all but genitalia.

Well OK... It was just one of those comments I couldn't let past.

I think you might have missed the point that InfiniteMonkey just made though. (Not when he made it, but in the story.) The characters all came pretty much straight from PG Woodhouse Central Casting, but then The Author has applied a little thought to how the world would work if all the men were Berties and all the women were Bertie's female relatives.

I fail to see how the female characters in the story were masculinised, except that they were in the breadwinning and Paterfamilias role. Don't fall into the trap of thinking that Woodhouse was Victorian. The neurotic, perpetually fainting stereotype of the Victorian Lady does not belong to his era. Woodhouse wrote of Post Suffragette Britain, and I think the overbearing nature of Bertie's Aunts etc, and Bertie's apparent fear of women (Aint read much Woodhouse, but it's the impression I always got.) perhaps reflect that.

Just to place Woodhouse in time, remember that he was interned by The Nazis during WW2.

If you are going to use Woodhouse style characters, don't expect weak. simpering women. Expect women like the ones in Saving Bacon.

Fresh slush - Shot this morning in the Vale of COW


SpareInch

  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 1388
  • Will there be sugar after the rebellion?
Reply #31 on: September 13, 2014, 05:51:42 AM
Just thought.

Yes, of course the older female characters would have been born in Victorian times, or the analogue thereof, but perhaps not everyone is familiar with the stock British female character of The Memsahib, (Not sure if that's the right spelling actually.) or 'Boss Lady.'

These women were the formidable matrons who presided over society and propriety in British Ex-Pat communities with fists of iron in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

The aunt in Saving Bacon is, without a shadow of a doubt, a prime example of The Memsahib.

Fresh slush - Shot this morning in the Vale of COW


Varda

  • Rebound
  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 2710
  • Definitely not an android.
Reply #32 on: September 13, 2014, 01:32:25 PM
But I guess sexism only works one way around here.

I know, right? It really aggravates me when anyone has the temerity to publish fiction that doesn't automatically assume men are the default setting of Human. Women definitely don't deserve to have a little bit of a laugh at historical sexism in literature from time to time, and gender-flipping definitely doesn't expose just how insulting it's always been to women to be treated like this by male authors. Thanks for pointing this out.

Medical Microfiction: Stories About Science
http://rckjones.wordpress.com


Alasdair5000

  • Editor
  • *****
  • Posts: 1022
    • My blog
Reply #33 on: September 13, 2014, 03:26:05 PM
But I guess that's why they run it. A kind of a 'how do you like it' story. More politics and what have you.

I genuinely don't have the words for exactly how wrong this is, but what the Hell, let's give it a shot eh?

Stories run on every single EA cast for one reason; they've made it through the slush process and at every single level people have been entertained by them. As a result, it's a pretty safe bet that at least some listeners will be.

In each case, this takes at least 3, sometimes 4 people. All of those people are from different places in the US, sometimes over seas, different backgrounds and different politics. They all sign off on the stories. Not because they have Political Agenda bingo cards to fill, but because the story entertained them. All of them. Regardless of political affiliation.

I'm in every editorial meeting and there are two words that have never once been spoken in any of those meetings.

Those two words are 'political' and 'agenda'.

The story ran because it was fun. Because it made lots of us smile. ANY agenda beyond that? You're bringing to the piece, not us.



gutguzzler

  • Extern
  • *
  • Posts: 10
Reply #34 on: September 13, 2014, 04:27:38 PM
But I guess sexism only works one way around here.

I know, right? It really aggravates me when anyone has the temerity to publish fiction that doesn't automatically assume men are the default setting of Human. Women definitely don't deserve to have a little bit of a laugh at historical sexism in literature from time to time, and gender-flipping definitely doesn't expose just how insulting it's always been to women to be treated like this by male authors. Thanks for pointing this out.


Yeah sure it's insulting for any sex to be treated like that, and yes gender reversal does highlight that, but it's 2014 why is anyone insulting anyone anymore?


[/quote]

In each case, this takes at least 3, sometimes 4 people. All of those people are from different places in the US, sometimes over seas, different backgrounds and different politics. They all sign off on the stories. Not because they have Political Agenda bingo cards to fill, but because the story entertained them. All of them. Regardless of political affiliation.

[/quote]

I'm sure your slushers had nothing to do with this story. This is an Ann Leckie story, Ann Leckie of all the awards fame. I'd imagine this would have been published regardless of content.  And I'm surprised nobody found it in the least bit political. I mean Really? Well whatever, it must just be my flighty man imagination.



Varda

  • Rebound
  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 2710
  • Definitely not an android.
Reply #35 on: September 13, 2014, 04:31:10 PM
And I'm surprised nobody found it in the least bit political. I mean Really? Well whatever, it must just be my flighty man imagination.

All stories are political.

Medical Microfiction: Stories About Science
http://rckjones.wordpress.com


DKT

  • Friendly Neighborhood
  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 4980
  • PodCastle is my Co-Pilot
    • Psalms & Hymns & Spiritual Noir
Reply #36 on: September 13, 2014, 07:18:53 PM
Gutguzzler, I find your suggestion about this story being published regardless of content a bit, well, rude. Both to the author and the editors (of which I'm one). If you have any questions about why this, please PM me, and we can discuss it there.

Let's stop with the Poor Men are so Abused by Reverse Sexism thought-line. This is the second time you've brought that train of thought in a PodCastle thread, and it's not appreciated. If you want to PM me about that too - feel free. But do not bring it up again in this thread. In fact, I'd strongly caution you to not bring it up in any other thread.

Any questions? Let me know via PM?


eytanz

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 6109
Reply #37 on: September 14, 2014, 02:18:34 AM
As a further moderator note - if you are told not to continue a discussion in a particular thread, please don't post just to let everyone know you are not continuing the discussion.



gutguzzler

  • Extern
  • *
  • Posts: 10
Reply #38 on: September 14, 2014, 12:07:22 PM
Okay



jkjones21

  • Hipparch
  • ******
  • Posts: 821
  • Fiend of borderline obssessives.
    • Catchy Title Goes Here
Reply #39 on: September 14, 2014, 01:31:20 PM
I thought this story was delightful, and I have absolutely no familiarity with Wodehouse.  The role reversal was entertaining because it seemed to me like a very thoughtful rearrangement of social roles that typically are still applied to men and women, but with different attitudes applied to them.  The fact that the men are a bunch of feckless losers who can't be bothered to do real work sounds like the attitude that many men hold in regard to the manual labor that's socially necessary but unglorious; in parallel, the fact that the women run their households and manage all the important affairs mirrors how we have a societal inclination to make women do all the nitty gritty logistics of day to day living.  The fact that in this world the women get appropriate status for doing really important work while men get treated like vacuous bonbon eaters for avoiding doing work (which points towards the problematic dichotomy of putting women on pedestals for being useless while actually requiring them to do much of the most useful societal work) seemed like a very well considered bit of world-building, even before the Wodehouse allusions are applied.

I really enjoyed Al's reading on this one (his cries of "Bacon!" did remind me of Terry Jones's female Python characters), but I admit I did have some difficulty following along at points, simply because I was listening in my car and the audio quality's just not the same there.  I thought the niece was delightfully terrible, and felt no remorse over the pig eating it at the end, simply because it was clear from the start that Bacon could have no other fate with such an unctuous owner.

Jason Jones
http://jkjones21blog.wordpress.com

I'm a Cage, he's a Cage, she's a Cage, 'cause we're all Cage!


Fenrix

  • Curmudgeonly Co-Editor of PseudoPod
  • Editor
  • *****
  • Posts: 3916
  • I always lock the door when I creep by daylight.
Reply #40 on: September 18, 2014, 04:00:01 PM

One of the best gifts my college roommate gave me was introducing me to Wodehouse.  Love this story.  A worthy homage.

Also, Alasdair's reading gave me a great idea for a story EA needs to run--a comedy of manners set at Pesudopod towers.


Great stuff. Loved the oleaginous ending to the pig. Once I got my bearings, I knew I was in for a delightful White Street Society styled reading from Alasdair, and I was not disappointed. I think it's worth noting that not only was there mention in the opening, but the pig's name points quite strongly to its ultimate fate. It's akin to crying "spoiler" if you have a character named Hiro Protagonist.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2014, 06:07:00 PM by Fenrix »

All cat stories start with this statement: “My mother, who was the first cat, told me this...”


Myrealana

  • Peltast
  • ***
  • Posts: 107
    • Bad Foodie
Reply #41 on: September 22, 2014, 05:33:51 PM
While growing up in a rural agricultural area, one of my mother's friends lived on a farm and kept a series of appropriately-named pigs: Bacon, Breakfast, Sir Loin of Pork, etc. I loved watching the pigs grow almost as much as I loved eating them later, so I was immediately turned on to this story by the pig named Bacon, and was quite satisfied with the idea that the "Bacon" saved as in the title was not the one implied in the beginning.

"You don't fix faith. Faith fixes you." - Shepherd Book


EveryZig

  • Extern
  • *
  • Posts: 1
Reply #42 on: September 30, 2014, 02:06:16 AM
Part of what I found interesting about the setting was how they didn't do a simple "male things are female and female things are male" reversal but rather pits existing stereotypes against each other.
To explain, stereotypical masculinity in western society is not a single thing but composed of multiple, sometimes contradictory traits. On one hand men are stereotyped as rambunctious ("boys will be boys") and prone to outbursts of violence ("a real man is a fighter"), but at the same time men are also stereotyped the calm and rational ones (''logical male vs emotive female"). While people in real life tend to just ignore the contradiction, the story's society believes very much in the former stereotype (see the curtain in the bar) then takes it to its logical conclusion of overturning the latter.

As a side note, someone earlier in the comments mentioned a lack of the gender-swapped counterpart to the heroic woman who can do the things a man does while being derided by her more backwards peers as being too man-like. Such a character was present, but as a minor character (the protagonist's fiancee's studious brother), with the protagonist being among those criticizing him as too serious and womanly.