Damsel in Distress: Part 1 - Tropes vs Women in Video Games (by feministfrequency)
Here’s the video if you want to give it a look.
Note if you’re watching: I’ve found that a lot of times people will get defensive if you try to talk about gender, feminism, equal rights, etc. It confused me at first, but I’ve come to understand a lot of the defensive attitude comes from thinking that people are being made the “bad guys” or implicated for all blame. That’s not the case.
In the video, Anita Sarkeesian talks a lot about Shigeru Miyamoto and his role in establishing/continuing the damsel-in-distress trope in videogames. However, it’s important to understand that she’s not painting him as the “evil villain” here. She’s not saying that he did it all on purpose, that he’s a sexist pig, that he’s willfully oppressing women everyone. Sexism (and also racism) does not always happen intentionally. In fact, I’d argue that unintentional sexism is just as (or even moreso) dangerous than intentional sexism.
People just aren’t always aware of what they’re doing. They might be vaguely aware of their thoughts, their actions, and some of the implications that follow, but it’s silly to expect that everyone can be aware of all of those things all of the time.
Sometimes, people just make quick decisions based on gut instinct (or social conditioning), and they mean no harm by it. It doesn’t make you a bad guy, it doesn’t make you a villain, it doesn’t make you an enemy. It just happens, and it’s important to recognize that it does.