If anyone's curious where this question came from:
I am very torn on this issue because explaining terms of art upfront risks over explaining and being patronizing, however not introducing terms of art risks alienating people and puts a burden on your audience to have to speak up which might be hard to do.
I've been having some feels around terms of art use. I'm curious which approach people of the Fediverse use when conversing about a technical topic.
• Terms of art that the average observer outside a particular field wouldn't understand are explained when they are used. Example
I used a Fourier Transform which is a signal processing technique that takes a time domain representation of a signal into the frequency domain...
• Terms of art are not explained until someone asks for clarification. Example:
I used a Fourier Transform...
Oh, a signal processing technique that takes a time domain representation of a signal into the frequency domain...
re: extended discussion about gender-y character in fiction
However, apparently in the Japanese language manga Hange is not referred to using gendered pronouns, which was intriguing. A little digging revealed this quote from the publisher of Attack on Titan (from 2011):
Isayama (creator of the Manga) has confirmed that… we’re not allowed to confirm Hange’s gender. He (Isayama) has instructed us to avoid gendered pronouns when referring to Hange, or at least to use he AND she with equal frequency.
Parenthetical text my own.
That is Hange—a main character in a completely mainstream work of fiction—can easily be read as non-binary.
However, when I went to read more about this character there was the predictable “people try to force a reading of this character as binary” thing that tends to happen. Some examples:
I’m used to seeing enby characters in media in veiled terms. While this seem to be changing in recent years--a contemporary example might be Bloodhound from Apex Legends--it still seems to be the de facto standard. It’s wonderful and exciting to see an enby character exist in and be pretty openly presented as such. I’m quietly optimistic this means that there will be more openly and unabashedly enby that show up in the wider world of fiction.
extended discussion about gender-y character in fiction
I’ve been knee-deep in the “guess I’m gonna do the overtly non-binary thing” for a while. As a result, I’ve had to think a lot more about how I want to present to the world at large. I often use works of fiction as a way to reflect on stuff and I went looking for non-binary characters to get ideas about how I want to present.
Not sure if I’ve been over the “how Alex consumes media” thing yet. I tend to read plot descriptions/analysis of media before I consume it, and usually go in with stuff fully spoiled. Indeed, I don't really watch shows/play games before I've read about them in detail.
In this way, I eventually ran into the manga/anime Attack On Titan and the character Hange Zoë. I realize this anime/manga is insanely popular, but I’ve never read/watched it.
At first I was like "wow this character sure does look non-binary, but I guess that’s a coincidence”. Hange is referred to using she/her pronouns in the English-language anime, which is what most folx seem to be familiar with. I was still pretty pleased to do the “well, I read this character as non-binary and that’s important to me… something something the author is dead, audience interpretation matters”.
type System = Sasha of Fox | Alex of Wolf
A median plural system composed of one fox named Sasha and one wolf named Alex.
The Vulpine Club is a friendly and welcoming community of foxes and their associates, friends, and fans! =^^=