the real questions
Bioshock Infinite and Racism - Part I
I wanna play this so bad
I don’t think I ever want to play this game. Especially with the first pic of what looks like a witch hunt and 2 black people about to be burned at the stake…
This left a bad taste in my mouth…I don’t want to play this shit.
Reblogging for BigBlackWolfe to see the racist fuckery in Bioshock Infinite.
Also, I’m seeing a whole lot of people calling individuals like myself who don’t want to buy this game for the blatant racism ‘stupid’
I have EVERY FUCKING RIGHT not to want to buy a goddamn video game because of this shit. EVERY RIGHT.
These same mothafuckers be on that ‘freedom of speech’ bullshit, but when POC use it to say “Nope, not here for this shit. It’s racist,” they want to shout us down.
I’ll spend my 70 dollars on something that is WORTH MY FUCKING TIME.
I GIVE NARY A FUCK ABOUT THE PRESHUZ STORYLINE
The racist imagery in this game was completely unnecessary and I bet they did it to be controversial on fucking purpose without any regard to how that would make people feel. Or with regard, but not for any concern more so than their own shits and giggles.
Like this game could have been just as good without the overblown racist imagery of Black people.
It was mindblowingly obvious that they had a totally white audience in mind. As a white woman, I felt uncomfortable to the point where I just stopped playing for a while, so I really cannot imagine how POC must feel.
I would like to add that Bioshock doesn’t “deal with racism” like some people argue. There is a difference between simply presenting racism and “dealing” with it. Bioshock presents. Offering the player the option to decide to attack a couple for being different races is not “dealing with racism.” I do not recall a point in the game where we are told that racism is bad. Booker really, really, really doesn’t care. The Vox, and indeed Daisy, are presented as equally as bad as the force they are fighting against. Bioshock does not “deal with racism,” it uses racism as a prop. It uses the degrading of black people, the abuse of black people, as a prop. It uses the bodies of POC as a prop. I do not believe that the amount of imagery used was necessary - but I perhaps would have felt differently if the protagonist (who is after all, the player) had any sort of opposition to it rather than the “I’m not taking sides” apathy. If our protagonist was vocally anti-racist and if the Vox were not presented the way they were, it would’ve been different.
Before I go, I’m a huge Bioshock fan. It’s my favourite franchise. But the first half of this game was a 5/10 for me purely because of this issue. Irrational should’ve handled this a lot better. I felt pretty sick during a lot of the first half, and I do not believe they thought for a minute about the feelings of POC - and if you are going to make a game with strong themes of racism, POC should be your biggest priority. It is their history and experiences you are using to make your game.
Oh cool look.
People not getting art.
This game is historical fiction.
The racist things it’s showing are based on things that really happened in America and formed the foundation of our racist society.
I haven’t even played Bioshock Infinite or any of the Bioshock games but I can tell from the trailer that Columbia is meant to be a scathing caricature of the “idealized America” that only exists in the minds of the older social conservatives who miss the “good ol days” when they didn’t have to deal with people who aren’t like them. The people who are currently leading our country.
It’s reasonable to assume that some people would get offended by this and it’s also reasonable to assume a bunch of people are going to make angry rants on tumblr about it.
But it’s not reasonable to assume that developers “didn’t care if they were offending anyone because their target audience is mostly white” … that’s an insane thing to assume.
The developers risked offending people in a tripple A game to make an artistic statement about the racist underpinnings of American culture. They further risked offending people by not having the protagonist be a moral compass, spouting anachronistically politically correct disgust to unsubtly reassure the player of the creator’s intent.
The disgust you’re feeling was the creator’s intent, but you were meant to understand that your disgust should be with American history and not with the video game demonstrating American history in front of you.
By getting offended at the game and not the real life American history it’s representing you’re … you’re just a person who interacts with art incorrectly. And that’s not the artist’s fault.
Fucking THANK you.
I don’t understand why people are so incredibly up in arms about this???? If you’re angry about this, you should be angry about every history book, every movie, and every novel that deals with or even addresses racism.
This is set in 1912. BioShock Infinite IS SUPPOSED TO MAKE YOU UNCOMFORTABLE. IT IS SUPPOSED TO PUT YOU IN A POSITION THAT DISGUSTS YOU. IT IS SUPPOSED TO EMULATE THE STRUGGLE AND HORROR OF THE ACTUAL 1912. IT’S A FUCKING STATEMENT.
THE POINT OF THE RACIST IMAGERY WAS TO SPARK CONTROVERSY AND DRAW ATTENTION TO HOW FUCKING HORRIBLE IT IS.
You have every right to be offended, and you have every right to not play, but for the love of all that is good, please learn to look at context before you scream “RACISM” into all corners of the internet. Whether or not they went too far is definitely debatable, but that’s because it’s ART. It is SUPPOSED to be controversial.
Video games are art.
I don’t give a shit what game you are playing. Games are entertainment, which is a form of art.
Entertainment is a form of communication, and as defined in the Oxford dictionary, the word Entertainment has Latin (obviously) and French origins. Words from those languages such as inter (among) and tenir (to hold) are what entertainment is derived from, which is translated into various different versions of “to engage, keep occupied, the attention, thoughts, or time of a person.”
Entertainment is meant to entice you, and keep you paying attention.
When you go see a play or a movie, you can take it as it is, through literally interpreting what you are seeing. You can do the same thing with video games, as they are a form of entertainment, just like plays, movies, and books.
Anyone can look at Bioshock Infinite and think to themselves, “Wow, racist propaganda in a mindless shooter. This is disgusting and I hate it with every fiber of my being.”
But there’s always something so much more beneath what you’re looking at.
You know how when you were in any of your English classes at school, your teacher or professor had you rip apart every last word down to the punctuation, just to see something? Many students and even friends of mine never cared for it much. Most just saw it as trivial nonsense and uninteresting, until we actually managed to find something beneath all those words.
In fact, most of the students I know wouldn’t think twice about what they were reading. They wouldn’t imagine what kinds of thoughts the author had behind what was being written, aside from merely telling a story.
We tear apart literature to get us thinking. To make us see a point that someone has to make, about SOMETHING, no matter how minuscule or trivial it may actually be.
And most people would normally look at it, and completely disregard that message.
That’s very upsetting to me.
If you actually look at what’s here without taking any of into consideration, that’s both ignorant and frankly, a bit unintelligent. All of these things were put there to make a point, NOT to offend anyone.
I’m not saying it’s wrong or stupid to be offended by it; of course people are going to be offended by what’s being displayed.
But it’s not meant to offend you.
It’s supposed to make you think about all of this and take this message into much deeper consideration.
I’m not surprised that many people are doing that.
But I am upset that people are flat out not thinking about this.
oh my god