How well (or poorly) has racism been addressed in fantasy?

Fantasy question for the weekend – how has racism been addressed in fantasy? This one really fascinates me because fantasy would seem like the perfect place to explore it, yet in most fantasies the races/species (elves/dwarves/humans) appear to get along, unless they’re at war. Even then, however, I haven’t gotten the sense of racial animus, but more that they’re evil and we’re good.  Sure, we’ve all seen the initial distrust between elf and dwarf, but it’s often more culturally motivated than out and out racism.

Has fantasy stayed too insular in creating worlds where elves, dwarves, and humans form questing groups and happily go adventuring? Not that fantasy hasn’t gotten darker, but it appears that in getting darker elves and dwarves were removed in order to explore the more troubling issues. I’m betting it can be done with all the fantasy elements firmly in place.

Sorry you can’t leave a comment here at the moment, but we’re talking about it over on FaceBook Racism in Fantasy



Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)