Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Anti-Twilighters: A Bestiary

As I’ve been a part of the online Twilight community, I’ve become aware of the series’ rather vocal detractors, who have been generally termed anti-Twilighters or simply antis. While I have in the past made articles in attempts to respond to such folks, I now realize I was faulted by attempting to lump every anti together into one category. This is a mistake as with any group it may be split into several categories. Here are the categories of anti-Twilighter I have defined: the feminists, the misogynists, the casual dislikers, the rabid haters, and the rare and valuable sensible dislikers. Note that there may be some crossover within these categories.

Feminist anti-Twilighters are people opposed to the story on moral grounds. They often describe Edward as an abusive stalker, and Twilight as promoting female subjugation. They may oppose it for other reasons, both elements perceived as sexist and elements perceived as having other harmful characteristics. These anti-Twilighters may include males as well as females.
I decided to put this immediately after the feminists so we can all savor the irony. Misogynistic anti-Twilighters are a bunch of guys who hate women, have decided that Twilight is equal to femininity, and vehemently oppose it on the grounds that girls suck. While they may have some legitimate reason for not liking Twilight, you’d never know it from their explanations, which go like “Twilight is stupid girl stuff! If you like it, you’re a girl! And we all know that means you suck!”
And if you’re a guy who likes Twilight? Well, clearly you’re a disgrace to masculinity. You need a sex change right away. Because you’re a girl. And you suck.
Casual Dislikers
Whew, these folks are actually reasonable. Casual dislikers maybe read it once to see what all the fuss is about, and find they don’t like it. They may post a blog about it, but for the most part they don’t complain and are civil. Unfortunately, because they’re the least vocal about it, they get drowned out by the uncivil haters.
Rabid Haters
Rabid haters read the book, decide they hate it, and proceed to tell everybody how much it sucks. These are mostly trolls, and unlike the misogynists may be male or female. They rarely have a viewpoint besides not liking the writing, but that’s enough excuse to ram it down every fan’s throat that they’re idiots to like something that clearly sucks.
Sensible Dislikers
Sensible dislikers are those rare and wonderful people who don’t like the book, and then proceed to discuss it intelligently. They’re fine to agree to disagree, dismissing the conflict as a matter of personal taste. There may be some crossover with the feminists and casual dislikers. We need more of these on the web.
And so concludes the bestiary of antis. I may make a similar list for the fans at some point. :) I recognized the need to distinguish between certain types of antis after making my Sparkle Motion post, in which I blurred the lines of exactly who I was responding to. Hopefully this can help bring some order to things.

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