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Here is the substance of my proposed question (maybe I can ask it in Meta?):

WARNING - This contains spoilers for the Wheel of Time series.

In Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan, there are constant references to to the ethnic diversity of his world. Sometimes these are material to the plot. For example Rand Al'Thor himself (perhaps the main protagonist) is often mistaken for an Aielman. This is because of his height, the colour of his hair and of his eyes (and, we later discover, his heritage). In his own village he was unique in these respects where the rest of the village had in common the old blood of Manetheren. When he came to fulfil his destiny with his 'people', his racial similarity and heritage were important factors.

There are plenty of other examples, for instance the Sea Folk all have dark complexions.

Review question

The casting of the forthcoming Wheel of Time series ignores this fictional diversity in favour of diversity of real life actors. Is this a contradiction of Jordan's descriptions(*) or simply a fact of modern life?

My question

Does this question belong anywhere in this SE (or anywhere at all)?


(*) Edited to substitute "descriptions" for "intentions" Also edited to add "contradiction"

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    Seems pretty opinion-based. Since Jordan is dead, he's not around to comment on whether casting choices betray his intentions or not.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Jul 8 '20 at 15:02
  • @ Rand al'Thor - True - I could perhaps couch this in more general terms regarding to acting and ethnicity and with regard to an author's descriptions rather than intentions. That would take me out of the scope of this site. I'll edit the question here for now though. Jul 8 '20 at 15:13
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    Using language such as "betrayal" is more likely to lead to controversy and heated responses. Actually I'm not sure exactly what you're asking: something like "do these casting choices accurately reflect Jordan's descriptions" would be relatively easy to answer based on book quotes, but you seem to already know the answer is no; if you mean something like "are these deviations from Jordan's descriptions unacceptable or simply a fact of modern life", then again you're in opinion-based territory.
    – Rand al'Thor Mod
    Jul 8 '20 at 15:22
  • @Rand al'Thor - I think you have cornered me with this argument. Perhaps I should merely shelve this and see whether I enjoy the series (Nynaeve looks like good casting!). I do have a similar question which doesn't involve anything outside the books. I think I will risk it on the main site. Jul 8 '20 at 15:59
  • Maybe "Did Jordan have a view about colour-blind casting"?
    – Valorum
    Jul 8 '20 at 16:10
  • @Valorum - Fascinating. Pity the names of the actors aren't given (?). I recognise some of course. Jul 8 '20 at 20:21
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    @chaslyfromUK - The names (and who they're supposed to portray) are mentioned here; wot-tidbits.tumblr.com/post/101100543492/…
    – Valorum
    Jul 9 '20 at 8:00
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Elements of this question are definitely answerable but you need to be really careful when throwing around emotive words like "betrayal", especially in relation to hot-button topics like race and diversity. You'll see your question rapidly downvoted as well as engendering endless comments from users who want to lecture you on the subject.

If you're interested in what Jordan's views were, you might start out with something like;
"Did Robert Jordan ever express any views about diverse casting?"

If you're more interested in why the makers of the show chose a more diverse cast than the books would suggest, you might ask something like;
"Have the makers of Wheel of Time spoken about why they chose a more diverse cast than the books would suggest?"

Both of these are directly answerable and less likely to cause controversy.

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  • Thanks. I'll take note to keep the wording neutral. Actually the show-makers weren't more diverse than the books. They just didn't keep to Jordan's in-world pattern of diversity. That was my main point really. If I cast a play about the history of the Japanese people, I probably don't want to appoint, say, arabic people as the entire cast. I suppose I'm talking about authenticity of casting. Jul 8 '20 at 20:31

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