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Re: [EK] Operation Renaissance Persona

Poster: "Terry L. Neill" <longshipco@hotmail.com>

>>>Just out of curiousity, if you did not feel that one of the goals of 
the SCA was to recreate some of the culture of the Middle Ages, then why 
did you join the SCA?<<<

I do believe one of the goals of the SCA is to recreate some of the 
culture of the Middle Ages.

What I wrote was that *was not* the original goal.  Certainly not to the 
level of an Historical Re-enactment Society.

Is it Duke Frederick of Holland who says the SCA was formed by a bunch 
of idealistic persons looking at the romance of the Aurthurian age as 
filtered through the Victorian age as filtered through the 60s?  If it 
isn't him, it's one of the original folks at that party.

>>>I never meant to imply that we have to have an elaborate persona 
history, just that we should perhaps start behaving a little more like 
some faction, some culture from the middle ages.<<<

I agree that mundanities are jarring.  There are many I would like to 
see go away.  But I'd rather they went away by example than by fiat.  
And I really hate acting.  I'm me, no matter which clothes I'm wearing.  
I would not have fun if pressured to be 'in persona' all the time.  I 
have no interest in learning Old Norse nor even in pretending I'm really 
living in the year 850.

I've been to Plimoth Plantation, where everyone is 'in persona' all the 
time. I hated it. I hated the 'actors' there speaking as if they had no 
idea what I was talking about.  I'd ask a question about life in that 
time, and if it contained words they wouldn't have known back then, they 
pretended they didn't understand.  That's stupid and insulting and 
doesn't teach any history, which is theoretically the point of the whole 

While I don't suppose for a moment you mean anything like the level of 
persona they do at Plimoth, perhaps you can understand why I am so wary 
of movements for us all to be 'in persona' at events.

(And just imagine the chaos of trying to stay in persona when speaking 
to someone 500 years your junior!  :-)

>>>However, after talking with many SCA old-timers such as yourself, I 
have come to the conclusion that ... many agree that the SCA is not what 
it used to be, and that it has become more of a place to get 
filthy-stinking drunk than to re-create the Middle Ages.<<<<

Of course the SCA is not what it used to be.  It used to be carpet armor 
and duct tape.  It used to be elves and science fiction conventions.  It 
used to be mostly fighting and not much else.

It also used to be smaller, more intimate and more polite.

Now, at least in my experience, it's more A&S than fighting.  It's 
spiffy, researched armor.  It's demonstrations at schools and community 
fairs.  It's learning that Vikings in Jorvik hand sewed their clothes 
with compatible fiber (wool thread on wool, linen on linen) at ~3 
stitches per centimetre.

It's also larger, more anonymous and less polite.

Such are growing pains.  Personally, I think an emphasis on courtesy 
would help that problem more than one on persona.  Again, leading by 
example rather than fiat.


    - Anarra

P.S.  Don't take that as a hint to NOT do a persona event.  I think 
there are alot of folks in the SCA that would have a great time at such 
a thing!

Terry L. Neill                          Anarra Karlsdottir
The Longship Company, Ltd.              Bright Hills, Atlantia

            It Takes a Viking to Raze a Village


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