I had a good laugh with a Muslim girl on my f-list about this. It is SO much in the vein of het Sheik Romance novel. The half Caucasian Arabian prince is just one thing but the fact that Uke dresses in a women's Galabia (second picture from bottom) just killed us... the author just HAD to find a narrative excuse to add this in XD. (at least this didn't have the lost passport, the hawking session and I can't remember if the Uke ended up in chains or not...).
No chains, unfortunately. The uke was pretty willing for the most part (which was a nice change from the typical kidnapping storyline).
And they both run away into the sunset and live happily ever after? LOL This one sounds nice. :D
I've read some of Arabian desert BL novels. Chances we'll have a real spectacular scenery of the Arabian desert are close to none. I always wonder why the heck there have to be the Arabian desert while the entire story usually takes place in the palace's bed chamber. LOL
Well, they both run away and hide from the scary organization the uke belonged to happily ever after. ^^;
We need the contrast of the open desert to the confinement in the palace. And night time desert scenery is always portrayed as romantic, isn't it?
First of all, there are no blue-eyed and blond-haired Arabian men that I know of. Never mind princes when royal families prefer marrying their relatives. And that dress the uke is wearing? It's a woman's robe. No man would be caught dead in such a thing.
I know it's fantasy but I can't help laughing^_^
there are no blue-eyed and blond-haired Arabian men that I know of.
...I call them Larry Arabias. BL seems to have adopted the model from the very first one...Quatre Raberba Winner.
Why "Larry"? ^_^
It's about a hundred times more ironic if one has lived with Arab men for a while and knows their habits and ways of thinking. Let's not even mention the extreme fear they have for anything that remotely touches upon their manhood^_~
Ah,this is an Arab man^_^
It's amazing how many blue-eyed, blond Arabian princes appear in BL novels. I figured it was wishful fantasy, which is why I am always boggled.
Real arabs have dark skin, dark brown eyes, and black hair. Clearly the Lawrence of Arabia film was more of a favourite among Japanese mangaka^^
Although in Israel and Lebanon you DO get blonde Arabs, and the Druze Arabs in Syria (and Israel and Lebanon) tend to often have light coloured eyes ... so I would be cautious making those stereotypes. There are plenty of blond blue eyed guys in the middle east, even if they ARE a minority.
This might be due to mixing with European people in the past but the fact still remain - NOT just a fantasy and probably sits really well with the typical Harlaquin excuse of the Arab prince being half European...
I didn't realise it sounded like I'm making stereotypes, believe me when I say I'm not. I'm in the Middle East so I've seen those minority groups you're talking about. But in the specific case of a desert sheikh, and coupled with the Arab's obsession with pure bloodlines that can be tracked to the Prophet's time, it's extremely unlikely one would find a blond blue-eyed sheikh.
Now if you wanted a Pasha or Shah, that would be another matter.
I am not going to open up the can of worms that is the argument on accuracy. In a genre that practically flourishes on those I just find it a bit amusing when people find it necessary to cling to the ones that are most likely... even if very weakly.
Although I found out a long time ago that just like blond Arabs - I am in the minority who openly admits I rather NOT see yaoi giving up its anachronistic and shameless lack of regard to reality ^^;;(but obviously backing up the majority who loves it the way it is because it doesn't yeald to any call for seriousness...yet).
I'm an accuracy freak. I won’t lie; when it comes to plot over porn, I demand it. Yet I won’t deny that I read the most insanely unrealistic BL because I enjoy it. I also gobble up Superhero comics and let’s face it, they’re about as real as you can get—right? If the primary focus is to titillate me, bring on the suspension of belief, I’m so THAR. ((^_^))
I think BL gets a bad rap from critics but it’s certainly not the inventor of the unreal. It's not like the American gay fiction I've read has ever been realistic: if I were to read gay erotica in the hope of learning about 'gay men', I'd be led to believe that all men are about 9 inches hanging, with abs cut like a Wellington Crystal punch bowls, and ready for anonymous hot sex about five times a day.
^_^ Romantic smut should be unrealistic [it's a pity I just can't bring myself to write it that way.]
Hahah - I come into yaoi from the direction of the Mills and Boons/Harlequin romance novels (at least the Hebrew equivalent of those...I went to a Kibbutz Boarding school there wasn't much else to do at night... I can find an excuse for still keeping shelves them if I try really hard ^^;;). I confess that the Sheikh theme is my second most favorite (the first is by far trashy pirate romance, Regency comes third). So I am VERY aware of how Japan is not the source of all that is recklessly unrealistic... and I AM a history geek too so I can usually spot anachronism from a mile away yet I happen to... not care and even LOVE it the more silly it gets.
Saying that - I DO on occasion ruin my own manifesto by reading something more accurate and coherent in the plot department and manage to *gasp* enjoy it! @_@ It never is clear cut. I just don't hate it when it falls off the reality cliff...
It is not a matter of plots over prawns - I like a plot... it just doesn't need to make very much sense or sit accurately in any single geographical or historical setting.
The whole NO BLOND ARABS things confuses me though because, first, they are a minority but not THAT rare in the middle east. People just don't stop and gape at a blond Arab as if it was a spectacle where I come from. I spent the morning talking to a university friend from Kuwait asking if there really aren't any blonds in the gulf and she assured me there exist. I know for a fact that green and hazel eyes are VERY common amongst Arabs, Blue eyes amongst druze, blond hair along the entire Levant... And the Khalifs are gone now but everyone confuses them with Sheiks who are SUPPOSED to be pure blood but often AREN'T because before the invention of genetic tests... who was going to say otherwise.
I was even going to start about the prevalence of albinism in Afro-Asian population which in mild form gives the appearance of blondness...
And then I had to slap myself really hard because, GODDESS, I was RATIONALIZING and I promised I never EVER get into this kind of mindset about the trash I read. I promised it to myself in boarding school!!!
It is like orientalism - the sands seen through romantic glasses wrapped tight in fantasy with a few fetishes sprinkled on top! The Sheik is blond because the writer wanted him to be and because the readers cream their panties about the concept BECAUSE it isn't at all like reality.
The problem with communicating via text on the internet is that it lacks the body language and facial expressions used as cues in real life^_^ I admit too that I like yaoi as it is, over the top and completely shameless in its stereotypes and harlequin plots. But much like my Chinese friend who groans over every Zen-like/mysterious portrayal of Chinese people on US tv, I often feel exasperated by the idea of "Arab men as passionate/faithful lovers." My friends and I laugh at the cliche, while wishing (in a somewhat mean way) that we should let these people try it.