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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by NC_Yankee View Post
    I need to be honest where I stand. I admit as a Christian I would not like Peter as an atheist ( the Devil aka Mephisto) winning was an underlining problem I had with OMD ( one of many).
    Sure, can relate, although I'll be honest that OMD's mere existence bothers me more then the mechanics, if that makes any sense; crap stories happen all the time, just a question of whether it affects the rest of the series or not. (Still think that if it had to happen like that, it needed to be MJ herself, not Aunt May, dead/dying for it to "work").

    Quote Originally Posted by NC_Yankee View Post
    That said, Ditko and Lee elected NOT to make him him atheist and thus more acceptable to the masses, and Marvel should respect the wishes of the creators ( neither of whom were exactly religious) instead of giving in to a vocal minority who want to erase religion because they are uncomfortable with it.
    I frankly don't know the exacts of the more atheist-centric Spidey stories (or miniseries?), although at least one apparently ended with him reconsidering his position and talking to a minister character who'd appeared before. Only heard about because of a fan online who was complaining about them as they came out (although, since the guy in question is quite the entitled jerk, I didn't exactly put a whole lot of stock in what was being said about it).

    (Kinda have to admit that I'd be curious to see religion explored more; when pagan gods are a fact of life and heaven, hell, and other supernatural places can be visited under the right circumstances, how does that affect real-life religions that exist in that world?)
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  2. #62
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    Peters "Jewishness" from a Watsonian POV is because he lives in area full of jews and has absorbed their culture in the melting pot that is America.

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by jetengine View Post
    Peters "Jewishness" from a Watsonian POV is because he lives in area full of jews and has absorbed their culture in the melting pot that is America.
    It is not that Pete his from a Jewish area andchas absorbed Jewish Culture ( although the word traditions is better when it comes to Jews), It is about being from New York. For example: Ask someone from Alabama what a knish or Yom Kippur are and most have no idea, but I am from areas that are not Jewish in NY and I know what they are. By comparison, I had no idea what Carne Asada is until I moved to Arizona. Why? Not many Mexicans in NY.
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  4. #64

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    Jewish descent is matrilineal. So for Peter to be Jewish, his mother has to be Jewish. That's the only requirement. Peter's mother has the name Mary Fitzpatrick, which is very Irish-American as names go. It's of course not impossible for there to be a Jewish woman with a gentile surname of course (because again Jewish descent is matrilineal) just that it would be hard for that to be a representative example. Like in the MCU movies, May Parker is now Italian American but presumably her pre-marriage name is May Reilly, which could be justified if she was mixed Italian-Irish which is quite common (see Goodfellas with Henry Hill, who's mom is Sicilian but he's Irish on his dad's side).

    But there are story problems there too because clearly Peter takes after his father's side in the family. He's raised by his father's elder brother and his wife, and presumably doesn't have relations on his mother's side. Philosophically, a lot of Jewish writers have said that Peter seems Jewish because he has a lot of guilt and issues, and is overly introspective and so on, which to them feel like Jewish traits. But I think those are universal traits and in any case, guilt for Peter comes from a specific moment when he was 15 rather than something that comes from growing up in a minority household with a lot of trauma and baggage affecting family relations and social roles.

    Stan Lee was an assimilated secular Jewish writer who hardly ever touched on topics dealing with that part of his life. And we can't forget that the evidence points to Steve Ditko being Spider-Man's primary creator to the extent that Peter Parker is a dead-ringer for Ditko's own high school yearbook page. And Ditko wasn't Jewish.

  5. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    Jewish descent is matrilineal. So for Peter to be Jewish, his mother has to be Jewish. That's the only requirement. Peter's mother has the name Mary Fitzpatrick, which is very Irish-American as names go. It's of course not impossible for there to be a Jewish woman with a gentile surname of course (because again Jewish descent is matrilineal) just that it would be hard for that to be a representative example. Like in the MCU movies, May Parker is now Italian American but presumably her pre-marriage name is May Reilly, which could be justified if she was mixed Italian-Irish which is quite common (see Goodfellas with Henry Hill, who's mom is Sicilian but he's Irish on his dad's side).

    But there are story problems there too because clearly Peter takes after his father's side in the family. He's raised by his father's elder brother and his wife, and presumably doesn't have relations on his mother's side. Philosophically, a lot of Jewish writers have said that Peter seems Jewish because he has a lot of guilt and issues, and is overly introspective and so on, which to them feel like Jewish traits. But I think those are universal traits and in any case, guilt for Peter comes from a specific moment when he was 15 rather than something that comes from growing up in a minority household with a lot of trauma and baggage affecting family relations and social roles.

    Stan Lee was an assimilated secular Jewish writer who hardly ever touched on topics dealing with that part of his life. And we can't forget that the evidence points to Steve Ditko being Spider-Man's primary creator to the extent that Peter Parker is a dead-ringer for Ditko's own high school yearbook page. And Ditko wasn't Jewish.
    There you go.
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  6. #66

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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    Jewish descent is matrilineal. So for Peter to be Jewish, his mother has to be Jewish. That's the only requirement. Peter's mother has the name Mary Fitzpatrick, which is very Irish-American as names go. It's of course not impossible for there to be a Jewish woman with a gentile surname of course (because again Jewish descent is matrilineal) just that it would be hard for that to be a representative example. Like in the MCU movies, May Parker is now Italian American but presumably her pre-marriage name is May Reilly, which could be justified if she was mixed Italian-Irish which is quite common (see Goodfellas with Henry Hill, who's mom is Sicilian but he's Irish on his dad's side).

    But there are story problems there too because clearly Peter takes after his father's side in the family. He's raised by his father's elder brother and his wife, and presumably doesn't have relations on his mother's side. Philosophically, a lot of Jewish writers have said that Peter seems Jewish because he has a lot of guilt and issues, and is overly introspective and so on, which to them feel like Jewish traits. But I think those are universal traits and in any case, guilt for Peter comes from a specific moment when he was 15 rather than something that comes from growing up in a minority household with a lot of trauma and baggage affecting family relations and social roles.

    Stan Lee was an assimilated secular Jewish writer who hardly ever touched on topics dealing with that part of his life. And we can't forget that the evidence points to Steve Ditko being Spider-Man's primary creator to the extent that Peter Parker is a dead-ringer for Ditko's own high school yearbook page. And Ditko wasn't Jewish.
    This gets a little complex as Jewishness is both a faith and a heritage. Someone with a Jewish father can still consider themselves part of the heritage, even if some of the denominations see things differently (although the rulings of a denomination have nothing to do with an individual's personal faith.)

  7. #67

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    This gets a little complex as Jewishness is both a faith and a heritage.
    Well your mother being Jewish is one of the few things that both secular and religious Jewish people agree on in general.

    Jewishness is a faith, an ethnic identity, and a social identity and it doesn't flow neatly one way into the other. And there are of course issues within the Jewish community about that. It's also an issue more common with diaspora Jewish communities than in say, Israel. So for instance, a Jewish guy marrying outside his community was in danger of becoming a goyim. And of course, among Jewish men of a certain age, marrying a shiksa (a non-Jewish girl, although usually colloquially referring to blonde girls) was considered breaking the taboo and so on.

    Jewish Americans of a certain age and era at least in mid-20th century had those issues. In the case of Peter Parker and Stan Lee, it's possible to see the Peter/Gwen romance as Lee's attempt to get at some of those issues. Stan Lee married his wife Joan and as per Gerry Conway, Joan was a dead ringer for Gwen and Susan Storm. Now I don't entirely agree with Conway claiming that Lee was trying to write his wife into Gwen and so on, because again Lee's writing of women isn't really good across the board and I can't imagine Lee would write a character poorly if he deliberately modeled them on his wife, who everyone says he was very close to. But yeah, I guess the Peter/Gwen romance has this sense of Lee writing about his feelings of insecurity and doubt in dating a "shiksa goddess" which Gwen perfectly resembles in that respect.

    One of the themes in the Lee-Romita era of Spider-Man is a sense of insecurity that Peter has, what we now call "impostor syndrome". And that shows up in ASM #87 strongly, and in terms of psychology there. Lee, as per Mark Evanier, was famously insecure and definitely had that in real life, and I think that sense of anxiety and yearning for acceptance that the real Lee had, and which Peter showed in this later part of the run where he had more of a say, maybe reflects some of Lee's issues with his identity and roots. That's also a fairly common motif among Jewish-American writers whether it's Philip Roth or Woody Allen. So that might be something people want to look at. But remember Lee was the ultimate architect of Peter/MJ's wedding and he chose to make it entirely secular and civic with no mention of "god" anywhere. So that might exemplify his personal views more than anything.

  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by boots View Post
    i'd say yes to this, but with context.

    "whoever they so choose"; for a long, long time the vast majority of choice was white. that was the default.

    so, yes, non-white minorities could and did empathise with white characters but that was born partly out of a lack of choice, rather than access to choice.

    as a child of mixed ethnicity, that's how i grew up. empathising with and looking up to white males, as a default. i remember the first time i saw a character in a hollywood film that represented my non white side... a character that was heroic and not the joke, the sleaze or the villain. i hadn't even realised until that day that it was something i'd never really had. i'd normalised and taken the default for granted.

    as a tangent, i also think it's important to be able to sympathise with another group or individual's story, even if you can never actually empathise with it. it teaches people to look beyond their own limited experiences.



    which is great, but thankfully we're moving past the need for proxies in stories about racism.



    i'd agree that it's churlish in the way mets (most likely) intended: that one group claims the character to the exclusion of all others.



    along with guns and flags, this is something i think aussies will never understand. if anyone here went around exclaiming darwin pride or brisbane pride, they'd get laughed at.
    We're still kind of at a point where a lot of people see straight white male as the "default setting". I remember when I was a kid my friend was describing a character in a movie and I asked if they were black and he said "Nah, he's a regular guy" meaning white. We're probably a little better in that regard but not totally... Aziz Ansari had a scene in "Master of None" where he couldn't get a part in an ensemble sitcom because they already had an Indian guy and they didn't want to make the show "an Indian show", even though having shows set in Manhattan somehow be 95% white didn't make them "white shows".

    I think we're just subdividing and hyper-defining ourselves more than ever. My single friend was telling me about dating apps and how many filters you can put on your profile. Besides the long standard height/weight/income filters things like no terfs/swerfs only/etc are common. Even threads like this make me think of Chappelle's Show and its "Race Draft" with everyone looking to claim Peter because he checks more of their boxes than someone else's. I think we're getting to a point where the blank canvas, one size fits all, largely undefined kind of character will become obsolete.

    Patriotism... I'll never understand it either. Why would I take pride in something I had no choice over? Should I be ashamed if I happened to be born in a lousy country? It's like being proud of having black hair or being born on a Tuesday.

  9. #69

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    Quote Originally Posted by Revolutionary_Jack View Post
    Well your mother being Jewish is one of the few things that both secular and religious Jewish people agree on in general.

    Jewishness is a faith, an ethnic identity, and a social identity and it doesn't flow neatly one way into the other. And there are of course issues within the Jewish community about that. It's also an issue more common with diaspora Jewish communities than in say, Israel. So for instance, a Jewish guy marrying outside his community was in danger of becoming a goyim. And of course, among Jewish men of a certain age, marrying a shiksa (a non-Jewish girl, although usually colloquially referring to blonde girls) was considered breaking the taboo and so on.

    Jewish Americans of a certain age and era at least in mid-20th century had those issues. In the case of Peter Parker and Stan Lee, it's possible to see the Peter/Gwen romance as Lee's attempt to get at some of those issues. Stan Lee married his wife Joan and as per Gerry Conway, Joan was a dead ringer for Gwen and Susan Storm. Now I don't entirely agree with Conway claiming that Lee was trying to write his wife into Gwen and so on, because again Lee's writing of women isn't really good across the board and I can't imagine Lee would write a character poorly if he deliberately modeled them on his wife, who everyone says he was very close to. But yeah, I guess the Peter/Gwen romance has this sense of Lee writing about his feelings of insecurity and doubt in dating a "shiksa goddess" which Gwen perfectly resembles in that respect.

    One of the themes in the Lee-Romita era of Spider-Man is a sense of insecurity that Peter has, what we now call "impostor syndrome". And that shows up in ASM #87 strongly, and in terms of psychology there. Lee, as per Mark Evanier, was famously insecure and definitely had that in real life, and I think that sense of anxiety and yearning for acceptance that the real Lee had, and which Peter showed in this later part of the run where he had more of a say, maybe reflects some of Lee's issues with his identity and roots. That's also a fairly common motif among Jewish-American writers whether it's Philip Roth or Woody Allen. So that might be something people want to look at. But remember Lee was the ultimate architect of Peter/MJ's wedding and he chose to make it entirely secular and civic with no mention of "god" anywhere. So that might exemplify his personal views more than anything.
    This gets kinda messy.

    People who are part-Jewish by blood have been victims of antisemitism, whether their mother was Jewish or not.

    Some denominations don't accept anyone whose mother wasn't Jewish, although there are some exceptions. Ivanka Trump converted to Orthodox Judaism to marry her husband, and is raising her children in the faith.

    The cultural context is different now than in the 1940s when the Peter Parker of the silver age comics would have been born, so that also complicates the question.

  10. #70
    Astonishing Member boots's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel22 View Post
    I remember when I was a kid my friend was describing a character in a movie and I asked if they were black and he said "Nah, he's a regular guy" meaning white.
    yeah that's going deeper into the problem, where the default isn't just subconscious but consciously seen as "normal". and you're right, it's still evident.

    We're probably a little better in that regard but not totally... Aziz Ansari had a scene in "Master of None" where he couldn't get a part in an ensemble sitcom because they already had an Indian guy and they didn't want to make the show "an Indian show", even though having shows set in Manhattan somehow be 95% white didn't make them "white shows".
    that aziz scene is a common joke on sets i've been on.

    i've seen first hand how much of a difference policy changes make in film and tv. there are peeps that misunderstand the recent push and think it means "diverse" artists are being handed jobs or jumping queues but in reality, it just means that their opportunities have now increased. and yes, that meant making the choice to push things down this road because leaving it to grow "organically" would always default to what we've always known.

    it just looks forced to some because because...well, they're not used to seeing this amount of equity.

    I think we're just subdividing and hyper-defining ourselves more than ever. My single friend was telling me about dating apps and how many filters you can put on your profile. Besides the long standard height/weight/income filters things like no terfs/swerfs only/etc are common. Even threads like this make me think of Chappelle's Show and its "Race Draft" with everyone looking to claim Peter because he checks more of their boxes than someone else's. I think we're getting to a point where the blank canvas, one size fits all, largely undefined kind of character will become obsolete.
    what even is an "every-man"? it's good to challenge that notion.

    i'm not convinced that identity politics is the best solution (or at least that the amount of focus on it), but i do think it adds an important viewpoint to consider as we all move forward.

    Patriotism... I'll never understand it either. Why would I take pride in something I had no choice over? Should I be ashamed if I happened to be born in a lousy country? It's like being proud of having black hair or being born on a Tuesday.
    i hear you. a lot of people still like the idea of birthright, since it means you don't have to have contributed a damn thing to your own "superiority".

    around my parts, i see people disown the bad parts of our history (i wasn't alive back then! i'm not responsible for what they did. lets move on) but then try and claim all the "positive" stuff (my ancestors built x. this is a day to celebrate how we fought for y). it's funny. and stupid.
    Last edited by boots; 06-18-2019 at 09:35 AM.
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  11. #71
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    Apparently the Greek gods are making a come back (the internet is a friggin' disaster). Let's try that out for Peter!

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tuck View Post
    Apparently the Greek gods are making a come back (the internet is a friggin' disaster). Let's try that out for Peter!
    i wonder how that would work in the mcu? would peter just pop over to avengers hq and prostrate himself in front of hercules every time hercs wandered into the lunch room?
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  13. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by boots View Post
    i wonder how that would work in the mcu? would peter just pop over to avengers hq and prostrate himself in front of hercules every time hercs wandered into the lunch room?
    Well, now they have to do it.

  14. #74

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Mets View Post
    This gets kinda messy.

    People who are part-Jewish by blood have been victims of antisemitism, whether their mother was Jewish or not.
    That's true, but again that wouldn't apply here. Peter Parker, even if he is Jewish, hasn't experienced anti-semitism growing up, nor was he persecuted or denied employment because of that fact. He was bullied as a kid for being a nerd and that's not something specific to any ethnicity. Some people do say that experiencing anti-semitism is one of the facts which define and determine a social identity of Jewishness but that wouldn't apply to Peter.

    That raises the interesting question of what would Peter's story be if he was actually a member of a minority? I mean how would that add to the story we already have? Does that mean that Peter was bullied as a kid because he was Jewish? Does that mean Flash Thompson was some kind of anti-semite who reformed? And again, it also makes Peter more like Miles Morales which is an issue because he's already stealing plenty from him in adaptations. Miles' story is all about being a minority and becoming a representative superhero for an entire society which also borrows from X-Men, "protecting a society that hates and fears them".

    In actual Marvel history, Jack Kirby was the self-identifying and religiously observant Jewish man and the one character he wrote as consistently and intentionally Jewish was Ben Grimm. And Marvel only explicitly identified Ben as Jewish around 2007. And even then the first openly Jewish superhero in American comics is Kitty Pryde created by another Jewish writer, Chris Claremont. So making Spider-Man Jewish retroactively would also be taking the thunder away from Kitty and Ben Grimm. And you know it adds to the message that we can't have a female superhero also be the first of her kind.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tuck View Post
    Apparently the Greek gods are making a come back (the internet is a friggin' disaster). Let's try that out for Peter!
    Since Peter has Irish-American ancestry, wouldn't it be fitting for him to fall into Celtic pagan worship? And in any case, the discussion is mainly about Peter being ethnically Jewish, and not religiously Jewish.

  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by boots View Post
    i still don’t “get” identifying with a city.
    Mate, just think of the rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne
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