Friday, January 28, 2011


so i've got my review of across the universe by beth revis almost ready to go (up tomorrow - i liked it) but it was so disappointing and anger-making when i read yesterday that they've altered the cover photograph between the reading copy covers and the final released product and now the male (so the character 'elder') looks less black and more caucasian. elder the character is supposed to be a homogenised mix of all earth's races and is described as having dark skin and almond-shaped eyes. make of that what you will.

i think the issue is bigger than these individual covers (see my posts about other 'whitewashed' covers here and here) and raises important questions about our perception of beauty and attractiveness (how angry i got at the comments yesterday that said "oh they just made him better looking" wtf?!?!), about publicity, as well as our global perception on race and ethnicity and how it is represented in popular culture.

if you want to read more about this particular issue, click on the linkys:

best damn creative writing blog

the interrobangs


  1. Such an important issue, or rather, 2 issues - one about race and one about beauty, but in this case they are inter-related. What a shame the publishing industry is perpetuating a subtle form of racism, and how sad that so many people are buying into bigoted and preconceived ideas of beauty. The media (and that includes book publishers) have the power to alter these subversive and damanging perceptions of beauty. It's time they did.

  2. the cover changed?

    i got an ARC and have seen the finished copy in stores and the only difference i can see is the final copy is skinnier.


  3. robyn - i agree, and i can't help thinking it would be such a simple thing to change, it could happen so naturally and organically. i hate that i am surprised when i see what i guess i've been trained to think is an unconventional-looking person (who could look just like someone i know in real life) on a book cover or on tv. it shouldn't be a novelty.

    megan - if you look at the man's profile on the new cover they've photoshopped away his forehead, lips and chin, removing what i suppose could be called his 'african characteristics' (clear in the pic from the advance copies)


hey anonymousauruses - give yourselves a name. a nom de plume, a nom de blog. it's more fun that way.