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Mailing List Logs for ShadowRN

Message no. 1
From: "Paolo Falco (FoxMaster)" <Falco@****.IT>
Subject: (my) LAST message on stereotypes.
Date: Sat, 12 Oct 1996 20:05:26 +0200
On 11 Oct 96, Erik_Jameson@*****.COM wrote the FoxMaster about
Stereotyping thread will st:

> Stereotyping thread will stop NOW

It will stop after this message. I still have a couple of things to
say. And, incidentally, sorry about it. I just wanted to make a thing
clear, and you know, I'm such an anti-archist mind...

> Part of the reason we, and FASA, has always tried to get
> native authors for their sourcebooks is to avoid
> stereotypes, of any kind. Damaging or not. Real or not.

Really? FASA has tried to avoid stereotypes? What about the whole
archetype thing? What about quotes from every PC archetype like all
Street Sammys talked the same? Now, don't get me wrong. I am not
saying that FASA does a WRONG thing in archetyping PC sets. I am
saying it is doing a GOOD thing!!! It makes the game more fun to
play, easier to learn, and the background less difficult to grasp.
And, of course, it provides the occasion to do some really STRANGE
PCs, by completely inverting the archetype.

Now, the more "Learned" (who used that word referring to himself?
Calvin? Was it you?) will doubtlessly know that an archetype is a
completely different thing froma stereotype, since the stereotype is
inferred from lack of knowledge rather than being the idea father of all
of the Demiurg's creations (cfr. Plato). But since I really cannot
agree that "lack of knowledge" about a thing that does not exist
altogether (like a Street Sammy) can infer anything, I am more
inclined to say that archetyping is the word for EVERYTHING you are
doing in the SR game world.

> Stereotypes have to come from somewhere, but they are always
> gross exagerations of real tendencies or occurences, and are
> not fair to either the people being stereotyped or those
> believing those stereotypes.

What I basically wanted to say is that anybody *really* believing
that all germans (as an example) go round with short trousers and
green hats is basically a cretin. But there are sneakier stereotypes,
like the same "cretin" word I used.
About being a grss exageration, what is, after all, a gaming world
like Shadowrun's, but a gross exageration of our own? With out
phobias, our myths, our depest,most intimate secrets lurking around
the corner? Does the word "melodrama" ring a bell on any of you?

> And no, this is NOT about political correctness. I hate
> that bullshit as much as anyone else. Rather, this is about
> being considerate to fellow listmembers. There is no need
> to go out of our way to upset people (and don't think I'm
> pointing any fingers here, I'm not).

Consideration and kindness only come into play when you believe in
your stereotypes. If you don't, then you have nothing to excuse
yourself for. You simply cannot say "oh I'm sorry about having
pointed out that all italians are mafiosos" if you _haevn't_ pointed
that out!

Incidentally, if you were speaking about being considerate in the
form of not harassing people with my own, deviant ideas, well, what
can I say? You are right. But I already said "I'm sorry!" :)

> Let's stop this crap before it goes any farther, and focus
> on the work on hand. Okay? No more talk of misconceptions
> or stereotypes from EITHER side of the fence.

Even though I would not dare to call "crap" something about which
eminent philosophers have discussed for centuries, I basically
agree with you. That was exactly my point at the start of the topic.
I was saying simply "please don't start again".

Anyways, pointing out that mutant Kangaroos are really "Kitsch", as
someone said, really puts an end to the topic. He's right! :o)

Paolo Falco | "Boom of communications: everybody communi-
Ironbound Section | cates that he's communicating" (Altan)
Skater's Site And Generally Paradoxal Poetry Page With Lemmings at


These messages were posted a long time ago on a mailing list far, far away. The copyright to their contents probably lies with the original authors of the individual messages, but since they were published in an electronic forum that anyone could subscribe to, and the logs were available to subscribers and most likely non-subscribers as well, it's felt that re-publishing them here is a kind of public service.