I’ve been in the Society for Creative Anachronism since the 1990s. And the world is a different place now. It’s no longer the “hippies” era like 1966 when the Society began. It’s a multi-cultural stew. And the SCA must adapt with it just like Dylan Thomas’ song The Times They Are a-Changin.
Faced with recent serious issues people at the top are truly taking action. The Board of Directors is modernizing the way the Society operates. For its long-term viability this is a must.
I am personally very pleased. I’d felt this wonderful organization’s shriveling losses, discussed it with long-time friends. Thankfully the SCA is adapting.
In August 2018 the SCA mission statement changed. The “Western Europe” reference was removed leaving only the specified pre-17th century time frame.
The Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) is an international non-profit volunteer educational organization. The SCA is devoted to the research and re-creation of pre-seventeenth century skills, arts, combat, culture, and employing knowledge of history to enrich the lives of participants through events, demonstrations, and other educational presentations and activities.Society for Creative Anachronism
But will this change affect us now?
Personally as an SCA scribe I won’t have to finagle my Arts and Sciences documentation as often. I can now recreate a page from the earliest extant complete illuminated Christian manuscript and just state it comes from Ethiopia‘s Abba Garima Monastery The ancient Garima Gospels are from there and probably never left it. So until now in the SCA they were considered out of reach.
That may seem like a small thing. But it’s a huge change to how long-time SCAdians think.
This could also directly effect SCA heralds who may be called upon to research Ethiopian, Aztec or Native American names. Where do you even begin with that?
Becoming A Welcoming Place
With the Society’s broader focus during recruiting demonstrations you no longer need excuses for why we limited our fun to feudal cultures and their contacts. Without pretext it opens persona interest to all pre-17th century civilizations. Mongolian and Egyptian cultures were beautiful, creative and fighting people too. As were many others.
I suspect the mission statement’s change may have limited effect to long-time participants. But it opens the door wide for future members. Hopefully we will see interest building and new members joining.
I’ve loved the SCA ever since I joined. My life would have been totally different without it. It’s enriched my life artistically and surrounded me with friends. Opportunities I couldn’t find anywhere else.
I want that possibility for everyone. The more we understand history’s broader picture the more we learn how it fits people of every community. The Dream that is the SCA will only be bolstered by their experiences, cultures, and strengths.
How do you feel about the SCA’s Mission Statement change? Will it effect your SCA life? I’d love to read your thoughts. Thanks for reading mine.
Related Prior Post:
- Equity, Inclusion, and Chivalric Virtues originally posted by La Bella Donna
- My First SCA Meeting
Will much really change, though? Already we have Japanese or Ottoman registered names. Are there really no Ethiopian names currently registered? I would be surprised if there were not. I have seen Mongolian and Persian art used in scribal activities, I’ve personally used images from Ethiopian gospels. I have never understood any of these to be ‘out of reach’ in the SCA.
Perhaps my experience has been a-typical?
My experiece is if you wanted to create and enter something not known as Western European and its easily connected areas in documentation you should establish the link. Often Silk Road or Crusades were used for “excuses”. That step won’t need to be shown.
The Heralds will approach things as usual, but some names will be difficult to establish.
These aren’t big changes. They open up the SCA to the young not just the young at heart.
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