I only ship what is canon, stuff like Legolas x Aragorn I feel is just greatly insulting to Tolkien’s work, considering so many of the actual pairings were heavily influenced by him and his wife’s love for one another. I just find it disrespectful to his legacy.
Well, I find his overwhelmingly stifling hetero-cis-normativity and the fandom’s rigid adherence to it to be disrespectful LGBTQIAP+ fans who are forced to queer the characters within fanon spaces in order to find representation because not a drop can be found in the canon and are harassed and belittled by others for their efforts.
Okay normally I ride with you, fandomsandfeminism, but this is — I’m not saying I agree with the secret because Death of the Author and all that stuff — are you seriously saying that you expected QUILTBAP+ out of Tolkien who was writing in pre-pre-Stonewall-era?
I’m not sure “expected” is the right word. But it would have been nice for it to be there. LGBTQIAP+ people have existed throughout history. It’s not like Tolkien didn’t know we existed. Being complacent in the socially accepted bigotry of “the times” only excuses people so damn much in my book.
But you know what? My BIG problem isn’t even with Tolkien, honestly. Like, whatever. My problem is with Tolkien fans who feel the need to rip into those of us in the fandom who are queer and write queerness into fanfiction. Like, we can’t even have our own fan created spaces because it is “insulting” and “disrespectful” to Tolkien or some bs.
I see what you’re saying, okay. Yeah, that’s fair. I feel like I can kind of get where the OP confession was coming from, but it’s true, I know I’ve been carving out a queer and disabled space in fannish activities for a long time because it wasn’t in the canon explicitly or at all. (I even had a long conversation with a friend about how some of the juggernaut ships in LOTR were among our first, pre-fannish culture ships, because they were so obvious omg.) Canon purists who don’t want the gay because it’s not in the books need to shut the fuck up though tbh.
(It did occur to me after I replied to you that there were definitely books in this era that did well that had more than a little queer subtext, as well. OTOH Tolkien was a linguist primarily, and he created the world around the languages ostensibly to have context in which to play with it. The fiction wasn’t the point at all and he certainly wasn’t concerned about allegory or any sort of representation at all. [Still, can we get too mad at a guy who wrote in Eowyn’s “I am no man” moment because he was so over Macbeth?])