Bakker and Women

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ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #15 on: August 04, 2017, 11:42:36 pm »
Not that the thread's gone there yet but I really hope this community can conduct itself without gender identifications making a difference...

That's why I added that little bit at the end of my last reply. But like you said, nothing of the sort has been said in this thread and hopefully the discussion will keep going well. :)
"But you’ve simply made the discovery that Thelli made—only without the benefit of her unerring sense of fashion."
-Kayûtas (TGO)

The Sharmat

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« Reply #16 on: August 04, 2017, 11:46:27 pm »
So I hope this comment made some sense. I might not be looking at these characters from a feminist perspective, but that was not the point anyway - this is how I feel about them, and at the end of the day these are just the opinions of one person. :)
Sorry if it's not too detailed either, I often have a hard time articulating even to myself why precisely do I like or dislike character X, most of the time it's sort of instinctive.
That was very helpful, thank you.

I'd kind of suspected that stuff about Serwa myself but I can't say why. Might have just been blind faith that Bakker wouldn't make a boring "Dunyain-lite" character. Still, didn't like her all that much initially until re-reading Aspect Emperor and the first time reading TGO. Now she's one of my favorites of this cycle. Unholy Consult Spoilers:
(click to show/hide)

I'd never considered what you said about Thelli. Speculation sure, but I rather like the idea.

Edit: Slightly off topic, but is it just me or is it much easier to articulate why one dislikes something than why one would like it?

MSJ

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« Reply #17 on: August 04, 2017, 11:53:02 pm »
Great post, ThoughtsofThelli! I feel alot of the same ways you do about the same characters.

ETA- had to correct where credit was due! Sorry, ToT. :)
« Last Edit: August 05, 2017, 12:57:36 am by MSJ »
“No. I am your end. Before your eyes I will put your seed to the knife. I will quarter your carcass and feed it to the dogs. Your bones I will grind to dust and cast to the winds. I will strike down those who speak your name or the name of your fathers, until ‘Yursalka’ becomes as meaningless as infant babble. I will blot you out, hunt down your every trace! The track of your life has come to me,

TLEILAXU

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« Reply #18 on: August 05, 2017, 01:57:33 am »
Theliopa is actually a pretty cool character. I kind of identified with many of her quirks...

themerchant

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« Reply #19 on: August 05, 2017, 03:20:49 am »
I promise this isn't gonna be a discussion of feminism and misogyny and all that stuff. Just a simple question: Has anyone here actually known a woman that read this series and liked it?

Yes, some are on this site.

This seems a weird question to me, the sort of question born out an echo chamber, or an outlier experience of some such. What sort of input was given where you might think not a single female has read and liked the book?




The Sharmat

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« Reply #20 on: August 05, 2017, 03:23:22 am »
Is it really that hard to imagine what could give an impression like that or what kind of feedback I might have received? I thought that whole online spat a few years ago was pretty big on this forum.

themerchant

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« Reply #21 on: August 05, 2017, 03:34:42 am »
Is it really that hard to imagine what could give an impression like that or what kind of feedback I might have received? I thought that whole online spat a few years ago was pretty big on this forum.

The online spat was created by a troll pretending to be someone they weren't. Who had read 5 pages of the book.

I hadn't realised it still carried weight.

Chrysaora

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« Reply #22 on: August 05, 2017, 07:14:01 am »
First time poster, long time lurker:
I'm a woman and I love the books, it was me (I? I'm not a native speaker, logically it should be "I" but that sounds so wrong?)   who got my husband into the series not the other way around.
I can see where the question is coming from, a lot of stuff going on in the books would put off most of my female friends from reading it plus the sometimes "dry" philosophical parts... yes, probably not as many female readers as male ones.

But I honestly don't think the books are really that misogynistic, it's a medieval, patriarchal world with it's inhabitants behaving accordingly.

The women themselves are written quite well, they feel real and are quite different from each other, not like in WoT where I wished death and disease on every single female character by book 4 because they were mostly just annoying clones.

ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #23 on: August 05, 2017, 03:16:57 pm »
That was very helpful, thank you.

I'd kind of suspected that stuff about Serwa myself but I can't say why. Might have just been blind faith that Bakker wouldn't make a boring "Dunyain-lite" character. Still, didn't like her all that much initially until re-reading Aspect Emperor and the first time reading TGO. Now she's one of my favorites of this cycle. Unholy Consult Spoilers:
(click to show/hide)

I'd never considered what you said about Thelli. Speculation sure, but I rather like the idea.

Edit: Slightly off topic, but is it just me or is it much easier to articulate why one dislikes something than why one would like it?

I'm glad I could get my point across clearly enough. :)
Well, the "Dûnyain-lite" characters might have their fans too. I think Bakker wanted to show how Kellhus and Esmenet's children were affected by the combination of their parents' traits, and it makes sense one or more would fall in the more stable side of the half-Dûnyain spectrum. With their variety of personalities, opinions will vary as well.
On Serwa:
(click to show/hide)

We may never know for sure, but after rereading and seeing how upset Thelli was with the mention of her trauma at the hands of Inrilatas, it seems likely she could have planned for him to die. It's plausible she would figure that Maithanet confronting Inrilatas (with Kelmomas being there too) had a high enough chance to result in Inrilatas' death. Thus, revenge by proxy - there were even more tracks in the snow than Kelmomas considered...

It does seem easier to detail the reasons for disliking characters than for liking them. No idea why, though. There might be some scientific explanation for this, but I'm not aware of it.


Great post, ThoughtsofThelli! I feel alot of the same ways you do about the same characters.

ETA- had to correct where credit was due! Sorry, ToT. :)

Thanks. :)


Theliopa is actually a pretty cool character. I kind of identified with many of her quirks...

She is great, her quirks just make her a more rounded character (unlike that first impression I got when reading). I really wish she could have stuck around for more books, but such are the dangers of liking characters. :(


First time poster, long time lurker:
I'm a woman and I love the books, it was me (I? I'm not a native speaker, logically it should be "I" but that sounds so wrong?)   who got my husband into the series not the other way around.
I can see where the question is coming from, a lot of stuff going on in the books would put off most of my female friends from reading it plus the sometimes "dry" philosophical parts... yes, probably not as many female readers as male ones.

But I honestly don't think the books are really that misogynistic, it's a medieval, patriarchal world with it's inhabitants behaving accordingly.

The women themselves are written quite well, they feel real and are quite different from each other, not like in WoT where I wished death and disease on every single female character by book 4 because they were mostly just annoying clones.

First of all, welcome! :)

I feel much the same, you can have series with a more misogynistic setting such as this and still have compelling female characters that manage to have their own arcs and a fair amount of agency (well, as much as their particular circumstances allow).

I only managed to read through 3 books of WoT before I had to stop, those were definitely characters I could not care about either (it probably got worse later on, but that series wasn't working for me anyway).
"But you’ve simply made the discovery that Thelli made—only without the benefit of her unerring sense of fashion."
-Kayûtas (TGO)

Wilshire

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« Reply #24 on: August 05, 2017, 03:58:22 pm »
She wants to know whats so good about these books that consume so much of my time and my fascination with them.
If you figure out how to answer that question effectively, please let me know. My loved ones ask this all the time ;).
I tell them that my brain is hard wired with circuits to detect meaning (scripture) and that like game of thrones or lord of the rings, the inherently meaningful nature of the Mileau activates those brain circuits.

You're not one bit different from an evangelical Christian actually, just different. Scripture sets about meaningful worlds activating identical brain modules in both yourself and the evangelical.

Science has rendered our real world mileau to no longer possess meaning (scriptural) and my brain rebels against that reality by seeking out mileaus that satisfy my brains profound desire for meaning.
If nothing else they won't ask any follow up questions.
After I look up several of those words I might use this
One of the other conditions of possibility.

The Sharmat

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« Reply #25 on: August 05, 2017, 05:00:07 pm »
First time poster, long time lurker:
I'm a woman and I love the books, it was me (I? I'm not a native speaker, logically it should be "I" but that sounds so wrong?)
"I" would be technically proper English but the English language in many places is changing such that it can sound stilted and stuck-up to use it that way. "Me" would sound more natural to most of us.

I can see where the question is coming from, a lot of stuff going on in the books would put off most of my female friends from reading it plus the sometimes "dry" philosophical parts... yes, probably not as many female readers as male ones.

But I honestly don't think the books are really that misogynistic, it's a medieval, patriarchal world with it's inhabitants behaving accordingly.

The women themselves are written quite well, they feel real and are quite different from each other, not like in WoT where I wished death and disease on every single female character by book 4 because they were mostly just annoying clones.
So you don't feel that the emotional core of the characters is kind of missing or anything like that? These are criticisms I've seen and didn't personally understand but then it is a matter of perspective I suppose.

Wheel of Time's female characters...ugh. One horrible petty abusive person in 500 bodies. I feel sorry for James Rigney if that was his experience with people.

I'm glad I could get my point across clearly enough. :)
Well, the "Dûnyain-lite" characters might have their fans too. I think Bakker wanted to show how Kellhus and Esmenet's children were affected by the combination of their parents' traits, and it makes sense one or more would fall in the more stable side of the half-Dûnyain spectrum. With their variety of personalities, opinions will vary as well.
On Serwa:
(click to show/hide)
(click to show/hide)

We may never know for sure, but after rereading and seeing how upset Thelli was with the mention of her trauma at the hands of Inrilatas, it seems likely she could have planned for him to die. It's plausible she would figure that Maithanet confronting Inrilatas (with Kelmomas being there too) had a high enough chance to result in Inrilatas' death. Thus, revenge by proxy - there were even more tracks in the snow than Kelmomas considered...
Sounds very plausible. I quite liked the revelation that she wasn't just a computer as Esmi seemed to think. Her lack of affect was mostly just a matter of appearance. Although it seems to have fooled even her siblings, except for Inrilatas.

Madness

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« Reply #26 on: August 06, 2017, 02:31:19 pm »
Is it really that hard to imagine what could give an impression like that or what kind of feedback I might have received? I thought that whole online spat a few years ago was pretty big on this forum.

Lol, not this forum, friend. That'd be Westeros.

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ThoughtsOfThelli

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« Reply #27 on: August 06, 2017, 08:10:37 pm »
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Sounds very plausible. I quite liked the revelation that she wasn't just a computer as Esmi seemed to think. Her lack of affect was mostly just a matter of appearance. Although it seems to have fooled even her siblings, except for Inrilatas.

It was a good reveal, it gave more depth to her character and to her relationship with several other characters.
While Kelmomas seems to have been definitely fooled (even if he figured it out eventually), I'd think that Kayûtas and Serwa were aware of Thelli's hidden depths (after all, from what both of them say in TGO and TUC, it seems they - and Moënghus - were fairly close when younger).
"But you’ve simply made the discovery that Thelli made—only without the benefit of her unerring sense of fashion."
-Kayûtas (TGO)

Redeagl

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« Reply #28 on: August 12, 2017, 03:45:09 pm »
An ex of mine for the same reasons as SO mentioned above. She read all the way through to WLW and still follows the series, as far as I know. She loved Kelmomas and hated Mimara for *reasons.*

Another very good friend of mine growing up thinks Neuropath is one of the most amazing books ever... but she very well might be the Female Neil so there's that.

Not that the thread's gone there yet but I really hope this community can conduct itself without gender identifications making a difference...
An ex??!!!!  You left a girlfriend who was a Bakker fan!!!  God.... You are truly Mad :P
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The Sharmat

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« Reply #29 on: August 13, 2017, 08:44:35 am »
I refuse to date any woman that would find me an acceptable significant other.