heartbreak, old friend, goodbye it's me again [userpic]
You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Underage Harry Potter fanfiction and fanart and those who write and draw it are not pedophilic.

Wait. I'm not arguing right now whether or not underage fic or art are legal or whether or not they have literary or artistic merit or whether or not it's right or wrong for such works to exist. I seriously don't have the energy to get into that particular discussion at the moment. But. I'm saying that underage Harry Potter fanfiction and fanart and those who write and draw it are not pedophilic.

Why do I feel I need to say this? I've received more than one very well-meaning comment in more than one place over the past few days from people who are obviously not trolls who make the erroneous statement that Harry Potter fiction is filled with pedophilia, that any student/teacher pairing should be banned and that the journals of those pedophiles who write or draw those pairings should be suspended.

These are comments from people who seem to be truly very nice, very kind people. Who are honestly concerned. Whom I'd probably quite like. Who are entirely misinformed about a) pedophilia and b) Harry Potter fanwork, fanwriters and fanartists.

It's just...please don't call me a pedophile, directly or through implication. Please don't reference my work as being pedophilic.

You see, for me, personally, that is the biggest slap in the face you could ever give me. I'm a sexual abuse survivor. )

And I, for one, have found a community here of supportive women (and a few men) who, regardless of whether or not they're survivors themselves, have given me the freedom and safety to express myself. And for that I thank them. The general, calm openness and acceptance of virtually all topics in this fandom, regardless of their acceptance by the mainstream, has been so very, very healing for me whether or not I participate in those forms of art. And just because these wonderful, supportive people read or write or draw fiction that is outside the mainstream, does not in any way, shape or form make them pedophilic.

I am not going to say that pedophilia doesn't exist at all in the Harry Potter fandom. Perhaps it might in some dark corner, just as it might in the Supernatural fandom or the Smallville fandom or, hell, the Jane Austen fandom for all I know. That sort of thing can exist anywhere, I'm all to aware; one of my abusers was a deacon in my childhood church. But the vast, vast, vast majority of those of us out here, those of us writing and drawing what Livejournal has now deemed underage? We're women (who, frankly, are far less likely to be pedophiles than men, studies show), we're at times abuse survivors, and, regardless of whether or not you find underage fic or art moral, ethical or legal, the fact of the matter remains that we're most certainly, most definitely not pedophiles.

If you want to know what an actual profile of a pedophile is, I'd suggest you read A Profile of Pedophilia: Definition, Characteristics of Offenders, Recidivism,Treatment Outcomes, and Forensic Issues by Ryan C.W. Hall, M.D. and Richard C.W. Hall, M.D., PA, published in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. In addition, you may want to look at the American Psychological Association's DSM-IV definition of pedophilia.

Like I said above, I'm not arguing here whether or not underage fic or art is legal, moral, ethical, or right. I'm not really even arguing here whether or not it should or shouldn't be written or drawn. I'm just saying that for people to blithely call all Harry Potter underage fanfiction pedophilic is wrong both in definition and in intent and is highly offensive to both sexual abuse survivors and to women who were not sexually abused who would never consider the abuse of a child.

It's just something to think about before you decide to term it such.

May 2010
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