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Gender roles in Wheel of Time

Discussion in 'Novels & Stories' started by Zero Angel, Sep 26, 2012.

  1. BWFoster78

    BWFoster78 Myth Weaver

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    I'm at work so I couldn't actually burst out laughing. I wanted to, though.

    This is so you.

    "Kill them! Kill them all!"
     
  2. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    Amend that, sir. It's "Kill all those who don't follow (everyone)."

    But being more serious, the WoT was the first true love affair I had with a book. The scene with Rand not aiding Moraine against Lanfear crushed my heart. I was 13 at the time, so perhaps that had something to do with it.

    I always wondered why Jordan didn't spin the story of Lan Mandragoran into his how series. That dude was awesome. Then he came out with New Spring. I was also glad to see he got more attention in the later books.

    Characters I hate: Egwene, Elaine.

    Characters I love: Rand, Perrin, Mat, Lan, Aviendha, Moiraine, and Elias (remember him?)

    One more point. The prologue to the WoT sent chills down my spine. LOVED IT.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  3. Mindfire

    Mindfire Istar

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    Yes. Heroes nuking uncooperative jerks. Fantasy needs more of that please. I'm making a note to add something like that to my WiP.
     
  4. BWFoster78

    BWFoster78 Myth Weaver

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    As I've stated before, we have wildly different tastes. I'm pretty much ambivalent about Egwene. I wish, perhaps, that her story didn't occupy quite as much of the book. Elaine, however, is my favorite character after Rand.

    Rand is obviously my favorite. Perrin and Faile are both cool. I like Mat, but not as much as most readers seem to. Lan is okay, but not all that. Aviendha annoys the crap out of me. I'm pretty ambivalent toward Moiraine. I do remember Elias, but he didn't make a strong enough impression on me to think of him as anything more than an minor character.

    Meh. Not so much with me.

    EDIT: BTW, I love the thread title. It makes me feel more erudite just reading it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  5. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    Mat and his wife is easy enough to explain. Mat hates Aes Sedai, and by extension, any meddling woman. Any girl that doesn't put their nose in his business, he's fine with. I think we see a few examples where he doesn't have that mistrust to women. Tuon is from Seanchan Royal line that is ruled by women. It doesn't surprise me in the bit that she mistrusts men who do not bend and scrap the ground before her.
     
  6. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    You're rationalizing Ankari. I could sit here and come up with a rationale for each and every bizarre manifestation of this behavior, but when you throw it all together into one series of books and realize that it is consistently, inexplicably following this same pattern, I think you have issues.

    That said, this isn't what made me stop reading Jordan. Rather, it was the pointless, rambling narrative that went on and on for pages with nothing of note happening. I was driving a lot at the time, so I just took to listening to them on audio CD, where they were more bearable.

    I have completed the first 10. I still need to do 11 through 14, and the only thing stopping me from starting book 11 is that Jordan actually wrote part of it. Maybe I can find an audio book.

    I liked New Spring, however.

    Characters I like:

    Perrin, Nynaeve, Aviedha, Lan, Suan
     
  7. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    Yeah, this nearly killed my interest in the book. I took to the habit of skipping what I expected to be a long-winded drone about the grass and tress. It made it more bearable.

    As I said, I hated the male-female tension as much as you. I really wanted Rand to bulldoze through that crap, shake the world from the unjustified arrogance, and get everyone on the same page.

    I am and have been playing devil's advocate simply as an exercise. At the end of the day, we an only swallow so much implausibility.
     
  8. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    So how are Sanderson's contribution to the series?
     
  9. Ankari

    Ankari Hero Breaker Moderator

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    His first book he sapped the spirit from Mat. Whenever he introduced Mat, it felt like a bland, contrived character.

    His second attempt he did a better job. I almost couldn't tell. I'm left wondering if its because the second-to-last book had so much going on that I didn't really care about the smaller details. Whatever it was, I felt as good reading it as I did the first 4 books (they were the best, IMO).
     
  10. BWFoster78

    BWFoster78 Myth Weaver

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    I agree with Ankari. The series had languished a bit. He brought it back to life.

    I'm not a huge Sanderson fan (I've read most of his other stuff, and none of it has blown me away). I'm very happy, however, with how he's continued the series.
     
  11. Zero Angel

    Zero Angel Auror

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    Well, at least THAT (that being the saidin being tainted) has been something they've all accepted as irrefutable fact their entire lives. But don't people start to believe him? Or is it just more of the bloody gender roles, "A man couldn't have done that. Oh no."

    Plus there's always the chance that he didn't cleanse it but just concealed the taint ;) although I don't think that is the case here.

    But seriously, he HAD to cleanse the taint of the dark one or he would be using the dark one to beat the dark one. It seems rather unavoidable and logical that this would have happened. Since the dark one in Jordan's books is a "real" dark lord and not just a trumped up one.

    (The implication being that a trumped up dark lord could have his own works used against him).
     
  12. BWFoster78

    BWFoster78 Myth Weaver

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    Exactly, he HAD to do it.

    Jordan added a lot of, IMO, false tension by relying on a point of contention that was, on the face of it, stupid. It's the same thing as the gender tension; he just keeps that going longer.

    Sometimes an author goes too far in an effort to create tension.
     
  13. Mindfire

    Mindfire Istar

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    Maybe the women resisted Rand in his mission because they liked the status quo and wanted the concentration of power to remain in female hands?
     
  14. Zero Angel

    Zero Angel Auror

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    Yes. Because females are superior to males according to every female in the series...this is what we have been saying...

    I also hate how EVERY character has to delude themselves into allowing someone else to rule over them. Anytime someone else is in charge it is because their character is letting them think they are in charge or they are just letting them be in charge until it is convenient. It's absurd.
     
  15. Mindfire

    Mindfire Istar

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    Well, it's not completely implausible... *glances sidelong at uber-radical feminists*
     
  16. Zero Angel

    Zero Angel Auror

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    It's not implausible, but it doesn't feel natural in Jordan's world to me, plus, the fact that every bloody character is this way.

    It's not just the females though, we also have the misogynists of the story feeling the same way in reverse!

    (interesting that we have a "correct" word to describe thinking females inferior, but we use "radical feminists" to describe the reverse)
     
  17. Ireth

    Ireth Myth Weaver

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    Just by looking at the roots, I believe "misandry" is the opposite word to misogyny. (Learning Greek comes in handy sometimes!) If it is a word, which Firefox tells me it isn't. I don't think misanthropy is quite right; that's prejudice against humans as a whole.
     
  18. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    As an aside, I wouldn't say radical feminists are anti-man; the underpinning to that form of feminism is anti-patriarchy. Rather than attempt to define women's equality by how well they adapt to patriarchy and emulate traditionally higher-valued male roles, the idea is to redefine the value system itself so that patriarchal determination of what is valuable and what isn't doesn't control.
     
  19. Mindfire

    Mindfire Istar

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    Firefox lied to you.
     
  20. Mindfire

    Mindfire Istar

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    I said uber-radical feminists. The kind who believe that "true equality" means "male enslavement and/or castration." They're a minuscule fringe group to be sure, but they do exist. It's quite disturbing.
     

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