“Tell your friends that the Vikings are gay”
July 6, 2020 3:16 AM   Subscribe

Vikings Are Gay is a podcast about Norse culture and history from a queer perspective by Old Norse scholar Amy Jeffords Franks. Besides an introductory episode, so far she’s touched on the subjects of bottom shaming and female magic, Odin’s gender, Thor having to act the role of the bride, and an episode in response to Black Lives Matter about the links between Viking studies and white supremacy.
posted by Kattullus (19 comments total) 46 users marked this as a favorite
 
Oh, this sounds right up my alley - queuing up for listening later, thank you!
posted by Stacey at 5:24 AM on July 6, 2020 [2 favorites]


I don't suppose there are transcripts anywhere? I'm sad that so much stuff has moved from written (and easily searchable + skimmable) content to podcasts and vlogs these days. I don't have time or patience to watch videos and listen to podcasts.
posted by jzb at 6:22 AM on July 6, 2020 [67 favorites]


The reason why vlogs and podcasts are becoming so pre-eminent is because you can't block ads in a vlog or podcast; you are captive to the stream. They are one of the few remaining ways for content-makers to be reliably paid for their work.

I don't have time for them and won't listen/watch either, but that's why they're the current thing.
posted by seanmpuckett at 7:09 AM on July 6, 2020 [5 favorites]


seanmpuckett: Some podcasts have chapters around the ad reads, so skipping them is a button away. For those who don't, I find a couple taps of the 30-second skip button is usually enough.
posted by SansPoint at 7:27 AM on July 6, 2020 [3 favorites]


This particular podcast has no ads anyhow -- and almost no filler, unlike many podcasts I have listened to.

I still think transcripts are a good thing, and they might be particularly helpful (or might not, depending) where there's a lot of Old Norse and other Scandanavian text as there is here.
posted by Foosnark at 8:07 AM on July 6, 2020 [2 favorites]


The reason why vlogs and podcasts are becoming so pre-eminent is because you can't block ads in a vlog or podcast; you are captive to the stream.

You can still fast-forward over them, which has become enough of an ingrained habit that I do it without thinking as long as I have at least one hand free. Spotify and other companies are trying to force people into their walled gardens, but until then, ads can mostly be skipped past.
posted by BungaDunga at 8:34 AM on July 6, 2020


looks around, blinks.

thanks for posting kattulus.
posted by clavdivs at 8:38 AM on July 6, 2020 [3 favorites]


Can we not talk about podcasts yay/nay and instead talk about queer Vikings?
posted by medusa at 8:46 AM on July 6, 2020 [26 favorites]


Mod note: What medusa said; let's aim for the rad actual topic and not the generic side-conversation rehash.
posted by cortex (staff) at 9:04 AM on July 6, 2020 [6 favorites]


This is an awesome podcast!
posted by riverlife at 9:16 AM on July 6, 2020 [1 favorite]


I cannot wait to fling this at the future incels upset by what (hopefully) appears in AC: Valhalla.
posted by fast ein Maedchen at 9:28 AM on July 6, 2020 [1 favorite]


Certainly does seem to be a trend where alt-right gobshites on Twitter have made-up Norse-sounding names.
posted by GallonOfAlan at 9:37 AM on July 6, 2020


So Vikings: also sailors?
posted by pwnguin at 9:38 AM on July 6, 2020 [3 favorites]


I get why they might use the title "Vikings Are Gay", but I wish they hadn't because it's probably misleading for modern listeners. I say "probably" because I haven't had a chance to listen to any episodes yet, but from the descriptions it sounds like modern conceptions of gay/homosexual or straight/heterosexual don't really apply to Viking culture. I know a lot more about ancient Roman sexuality, and "Romans Are Gay" would be a bad title because for them sexuality wasn't about what you did (had sex with someone of the same sex/gender) but what you were in terms of society (dominant vs passive, male vs female, citizen vs slave, high social class vs low social class, etc). Latin doesn't even have words for the modern concepts of "heterosexual" or homosexual".
posted by star gentle uterus at 10:04 AM on July 6, 2020 [3 favorites]


I get why they might use the title "Vikings Are Gay", but I wish they hadn't because it's probably misleading for modern listeners. I say "probably" because I haven't had a chance to listen to any episodes yet, but from the descriptions it sounds like modern conceptions of gay/homosexual or straight/heterosexual don't really apply to Viking culture.

Just because we can literally talk about the invention of homosexuality doesn't mean you get to deprive queer people of their history on the grounds of terminology being ahistorical or whatever.

Latin doesn't even have words for the modern concepts of "heterosexual" or homosexual".

Nor did German until the 1870s and English a bit later.
posted by hoyland at 10:34 AM on July 6, 2020 [15 favorites]


I get why they might use the title "Vikings Are Gay", but I wish they hadn't because it's probably misleading for modern listeners. I say "probably" because I haven't had a chance to listen to any episodes yet, but from the descriptions it sounds like modern conceptions of gay/homosexual or straight/heterosexual don't really apply to Viking culture.

Do you make the same point any time someone mentions a Roman emperor's wife or mistress? And if you don't, why is that?
posted by great_radio at 10:57 AM on July 6, 2020 [18 favorites]


it sounds like modern conceptions of gay/homosexual or straight/heterosexual don't really apply to Viking culture.

Modern Western culture has decided that almost anything that isn't heterosexual is gay, so if they didn't exactly fall into modern ideas of heterosexuality they were, ipso facto, gay or queer.
posted by BungaDunga at 12:22 PM on July 6, 2020 [7 favorites]


That is: it's perfectly reasonable to title a podcast "The Vikings are gay"- you don't have to shrug and decide their conceptions of sex are just incomparable to our own.
posted by BungaDunga at 12:25 PM on July 6, 2020 [2 favorites]


I get why they might use the title "Vikings Are Gay", but I wish they hadn

Well, our culture thinks nearly everything around sex is "gay," so it s an accurate term for our culture, and funnier than the (perhaps) more precise title of "Vikings Are Queer", because it 's directly making fun of what we can probably agree are misconceptions of Viking sexuality.

Don't worry, we know Vikings are only gay if the Skeggøx touch.
posted by eustatic at 1:20 PM on July 6, 2020 [4 favorites]


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