leviswaxedass said: i think a lot of the fanon levi bullshit comes from the like... yaoi culture that a lot of the preteen and teenage fans of snk grew up in. where the shorter one MUST by default be the moe, girlish, uke one. they literally codify him by the outdated, pretty much homophobic (and misogynistic) standards of yaoi manga rather than what he actually is. i've seen both sides of the coin (eren reduced to a moeblob who exists just to go "uguu~ heichou~") but the levi one is just so egregious.
YES I AGREE. The sad truth about teens first venturing into yaoi territory is the fact that they end up thinking that they need to make characters conform to every damn stereotype they see in it regardless what canon shows.
I have some historical context for you! Not that it excuses any of that. But back when pederasty was the norm among samurai (and homosexual relations were seen as good, pure, normal, and expressions of power), the younger of the two men would ALWAYS assume the bottom role as a matter of social class. The older man provided protection and military status to the younger in exchange for the younger’s love, beauty, and sex.
So the uke stereotype literally emerged from ukiyoe art depicting younger men as beautiful and elegant, wearing fanciful women’s kimono, with their taller, older, more battle-hardened and masculine lovers and mentors. Yaoi culture is really just the survival of Japanese homosexuality culture after Christianity arrived and asserted its morals.
I definitely have issues with how yaoi handles gay relationships as well as shonen ai, which is why I don’t read or watch it. It is insulting, often and it is foreign to any functioning gay relationship I’ve ever been in or seen personally. But this is vitally important piece of information that may explain it less within a ‘preteen gaijin fandom’ context and put it into a more solid historical and cultural context.
My issue is not at all with people who write switchy Erwin or top!Levi. By all means! My issue is people who claim that a femme Levi is meant to occupy a ‘woman’s place’ and that it is insulting due to that. Actually, there are femme men with masculine partners who are not trying to occupy any predetermined space but their own. The treatment of women in yaoi manga is absolutely detestable, (again, why I don’t read it), but this isn’t about the yaoi stereotypes in my opinion.
It’s about writing a piece of fiction about Erwin and Levi in which Erwin tops and Levi bottoms, just because they like it that way. In which Levi is more femme, likes to bottom but still strong as hell and handles his shit. It’s about writing about that relationship as headcanoned that way without the accusations of ‘yaoi/heteronormative stereotypes’ if a femme man appears. Femme men do exist outside of yaoi and their lives are valid.
And it’s about the criticism people get for headcanoning Levi as a bottom or a sub or a femme, all yaoi history aside. Those ‘codifying’ behaviors can absolutely be real behaviors that men within the gay community exhibit. They are not just concepts, they are traits that people have in the real world. You can be femme and not ‘moe’. There are different ways to be femme, as a man, woman or queer person.
The criticism for the yaoi manga sterotypes has grown beyond that and I’m now seeing artists and writers getting flack for portraying Levi as a femme man or a bottom or a sub, which isn’t right. It is not ‘inaccurate’ to portray him this way, it is not ‘degrading’ or the reduction to a stereotype/character assassination. Those things exist, those identities are legitimate.
There should absolutely be a variety of headcanons, but criticizing Levi’s portrayal as a femme man says more about the western portion of the fandom’s expectations and misconceptions regarding both yaoi stereotypes and ‘legitimate and truthful’ queer relationships and people represented.
See those little blurry words on the left side of Hange’s spider web of abilities?
It says “Intelligence”, and it goes to eleven.
I’m happy to announce that our beloved Hange Zoe has the highest intelligent score of any character in the Shingeki world. Erwin and Armin only scored 10’s.
(Once again, thank you, Julystorms, for destroying your book in order to provide scans of all the Guidebook pages!)