The Cultural Struggle of Elves: How Dragon Age’s elves represent political and social minorities
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In this analysis I will, by employing a postcolonial and feminist perspective, focus on how the elven community of Dragon Age reflects political debates about marginalised communities in games, by focussing on the role of the avatar, the non-player characters, and the environment. Dragon Age is a pseudo-mimetic text, that has to be understood in through the events of our own world. It reflects the conflicts as metaphorical representations of a world similar to our own. All elven characters (both the avatar and the non-player characters) are othered, placed in the position of the subaltern, and silenced in the retelling of history. The human population, with emphasis on Tevinter, Orlais, and the Chantry, are framed as the colonisers that have taken the elven land out of imperialistic views. Especially the assimilation of the elven into human society is framed by the Chantry as a civilising and ameliorating force, that actually forces the elves to become submissive to the hegemony of the ruling class. Any attempts to restore or regain heritage is difficult, as the colonisers have actively tried to erase it. This imbalance is echoed by the environment, in which the coloniser-colonised relationship is highlighted.