TDTCB, PRLG

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What Came Before

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« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2013, 02:18:37 am »
Quote from: Twooars
Quote from: Oreb
Quote from: lockesnow
Sranc, as you can see, are not mentioned.

What's the reason for this discrepancy?

You are right. There is no mention of Sranc in that sentence in my Kindle version too. The first mention of Sranc, however, is on the same page, about the wind moaning like Sranc horns.

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« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2013, 02:19:00 am »
Quote from: Imparrhas
About the Dunyain removing sorcery from Ishual: I think this is, thematically, related to their principle of before and after. They want a mechanistic universe which they hope one day a soul can fully grasp. If there is an Outside, a place affected by and affecting this supposedly natural universe, their whole reason for being is gone so they try to forcibly disenchant Ishual. Of course when Kellhus leaves their retreat later he still faces sorcery. They can approximate the universe they want in their little corner of the world but it doesn't change how it really is. EADunyainD.
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Within in the setting it doesn't make a lot of sense though. Why would they consider sorcery as anything but another part of the world? We have people who can work miracles by pushing buttons and we don't call that supernatural.

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« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2013, 02:19:17 am »
Quote from: generic
Quote from: Imparrhas
About the Dunyain removing sorcery from Ishual: I think this is, thematically, related to their principle of before and after. They want a mechanistic universe which they hope one day a soul can fully grasp. If there is an Outside, a place affected by and affecting this supposedly natural universe, their whole reason for being is gone so they try to forcibly disenchant Ishual.

There is something very strange going on with the Dunyain. On the one hand they're perspective seems almost modern. Causalty is the basis of their world view and they scoff at the superstitious believes of the world born. On the other hand they renounce history, burn the books, hide in the remotest part of the world and strive to preserve their ignorance even if it means mass suicide. One cannot raise walls against what has been forgotten. Yet they try to raise walls by forgetting.

I wouldn't be surprised if the whole Dunyain breeding program turned out to be self destructive. And thinking back to the "wolf people" possibly a trap.

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« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2013, 02:19:36 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
Quote from: Oreb
Quote from: lockesnow
§P.1 The first thing I noted was the second paragraph.  I wonder if Bakker had read Orson Scott Card’s ‘How to write Science Fiction and Fantasy’, because this paragraph is a textbook example of how Card describes a Speculative world should be introduced to the reader.  It really is impressively masterful, reminiscent of the master herself, Octavia Butler (Card references her opening to Wild Seed in his text). 
Quote
The citadel of Ishuäl succumbed during the height of the Apocalypse.  But no army of inhuman Sranc had scaled its ramparts.

That's very strange, because that's not quite how it reads in my copy (the UK paperback edition). These are the first two sentences of the second paragraph in my copy:

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The citadel of Ishuäl succumbed during the height of the Apocalypse. But no army, human or inhuman, had scaled its ramparts.

Sranc, as you can see, are not mentioned.

What's the reason for this discrepancy?
Maybe an UK editor decided it was too many made up words in the second paragraph?

My copy is a first edition Overlook HC, American.  perhaps we should ask RSB about that, maybe it's an authorial change? I think it's a mistake to change it, as the paragraph is more enticing with the descriptor, "inhuman Sranc," although I can imagine that the rationalization is that the paragraph is also less genre-intimidating to a virgin reader without that phrase.

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« Reply #19 on: April 19, 2013, 02:19:54 am »
Quote from: sologdin
nice, a bona fide problem for textual criticism/editorial theory.  which variant is to be authoritative?

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« Reply #20 on: April 19, 2013, 02:21:06 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
I once wrote a lengthy essay in college about comparing and contrasting the use of "o" versus the use of "ou" in the American and British versions of the Harry Potter volumes, respectively, and what this problem revealed about the psyche and nature of the author, but it didn't go over well.  Clearly the lack of 'u' is packed with significance just waiting to be 'discovered' by an intrepid undergrad.

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« Reply #21 on: April 19, 2013, 02:21:25 am »
Quote from: Callan S.
Possibly the runes were removed, because that would be evidence enough for latter generations to figure out the damnation mechanic.

And it was determined they must not be potentially swayed from their mission
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« Reply #22 on: April 19, 2013, 02:21:41 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
the runes were removed but they kept writing, since Kellhus can read the stele.  you'd think writing with all its implications of sign and signifier and how it intersects meaning would be a variable the dunyain would eliminate.

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« Reply #23 on: April 19, 2013, 02:22:12 am »
Quote from: generic
Quote from: Callan S.

Maybe spoiler the last bit? Though I disagree. Dunyain control everything they come into contact with and lock out everything they can't control. Self-preservation doesn't seem to enter into it. Exhibit one: Masssuicide of the elder monks.
Maybe they judged that sorcery would make it impossible to limit exposure to the world not under their control?

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« Reply #24 on: April 19, 2013, 02:22:26 am »
Quote from: Callan S.
Quote
Self-preservation doesn't seem to enter into it. Exhibit one: Masssuicide of the elder monks.
It's not self preservation I'm refering to - it's preserving the mission. Mission is everything to a Dunyain.
Quote
Maybe they judged that sorcery would make it impossible to limit exposure to the world not under their control?
Contaminating the experiment/the control. Yeah, that's even more likely. Though it says something in their prediction of how dedicated latter generations of Dunyain would be to the missions exact specifications.

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« Reply #25 on: April 19, 2013, 02:22:45 am »
Quote from: sologdin
mr. lockesnow has raised a salient objection to my prior reading.  i therefore respectfully submit this amending & supplemental addendum to post # 8, which is incorporated herein by reference as though pled hereunder in extenso.

i’d previously conjectured that RSB’s prologue presents a precession of prefacing:

0 - the “soul”
1 - the [chapter] epigraph
2 - the first part
3 - the entirety of the prologue.

this summation is manifestly erroneous, as it has omitted several moving parts.

not counting the publisher preliminaries (frontispieces, proper title page, copyright page, dedication, acknowledgements), the first item of "the work of art” as opposed to “the commercial product,” if those items can be meaningfully distinguished, is the nietzsche epigraph:

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I shall never tire of underlining [emphasis added] a concise little fact which these superstitious people are loath to admit--namely, that a thought comes when “it” wants, not when “I” want…

we are presented with a schism of desire:  the will of one’s thoughts is distinct from the will of one’s mind.  the thought arises of a volition separate and apart from the thinker of the thought.  nietzsche here personifies thought, which is normal for him:

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What is truth? A moving army of metaphors, metonymies and anthropomorphisms, in short a summa of human relationships that are being poetically and rhetorically sublimated, transposed, and beautified until, after long and repeated use, a people considers them as solid, canonical, and unavoidable. Truths are illusions whose illusionary nature has been forgotten, metaphors that have been used up and have lost their imprint and that now operate as mere metal, no longer as coins.

(“on truth and lies in a nonmoral sense” (1873)).  at the very least, it indicates that thought itself (the “soul" in-setting) is itself prefaced by something further preceding it.  that this “concise little fact” is something subject to underlining places us plainly within the domain of writing, with the writing itself preceding the underlining of it--though, we observe with some humor, that this nietzsche epigraph self-cancels: the "concise little fact" is not in fact underscored.  it forgets its own premise even as it presents the object of the premise.

the table of contents intervenes, designating what comes after, in summary form, listing out apparent geographies.  we then enter the prologue itself.  the first part is prefaced, as before, with the ajencis gnomic.  the second part is doubly epigraphed, first by a nursery rhyme that lays out a taxonomy (which we note as an incidental that may become active later), a taxonomy that invokes “forget“ as well as “regret” (I.pro at 4), the latter another incidental merely noted for now.  the second epigraph for the second part is much more pregnant immediately:

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This is a history of a great and tragic holy war, of the mighty factions that sought to possess and pervert it, and of a son searching for his father.  And as with all histories, it is we, the survivors, who will write its conclusion

(I.pro at 4).  the author of the second epigraph to the second part is mr. drusus achamian (hereinafter “DA”), in what appears to be the opening line--the prefacing remark--to his corollary Compendium of the First Holy War, a title indicating that the holy war is merely the first, or preface, to some later belligerence.  it also indicates that RSB’s writing is preceded by a more primary work--the novel that follows is to be a secondary work, a synthesis of DA’s firsthand account, presumably with other source materials--which means that the novel must of necessity disagree with the firsthand account in some particulars, either through overt contradiction or covert curing of omissions.

the revised precession of prefacing must therefore be:

-4   the will of thoughts in reality, as per nietzsche
-3   the “soul” in reality, thinking real thoughts
-2.5   the “concise little fact”
-2   nietzsche’s underling of a “concise little fact”
-1   the cartographic summation
-0.5   the will of thoughts in-setting, as per nietzsche
 0    the “soul” in-setting, thinking thoughts in-setting
 1    the ajencis epigraph
 1.1   the first part of the prologue
 2   the taxonomic nursery rhyme
 2.1   the preface to the compendium
 2.2   the second part of the prologue
 3    the prologue in its entirety

in looking at the precession of prefacing, this analysis turns away momentarily from the text itself to extrinsic genre history.

the relevant tolkien passage (and i defy anyone to suggest that tolkien does not substantially, as opposed merely to chronologically, precede RSB)--

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Of the long years of peace that followed after the coming of Denethor there is a tale.  In those days, it is said, Daeron the Minstrel, chief lore master of the kingdom of Thingol, devised his Runes; and the Naugrim that came to Thingol learned them, and were well-pleased with the device, esteeming Daeron’s skill higher than did the Sindar, his own people.  By the Naugrim the Cirth were taken east over the mountains and passed into the knowledge of many peoples; but they were little used by the Sindar for the keeping of records, until the days of the War, and much that was held in memory perished in the ruins of Doriath.  But of bliss and glad life there is little to be said, before it ends; as works fair and wonderful, while they still endure for the eyes to see, are their own record, and only when they are in peril or broken for ever do they pass into song.

(silmarillion (1977) at 94-95).  tolkien conjoins very explicitly in his mythology the production of writing and the failure of memory--forgetting what has preceded the War.

we also see a different reaction to memory in moorcock, whose elric is in general at war against memory, as i  have noted elsewhere, and here rehearse briefly:

elric volume I--
Quote
One numinous object, the Mirror of Memory, "contains many memories, some of which have been imprisoned for thousands of years" (85), and is used as a weapon by the antagonist. When that mirror is later broken and the stolen memories are released, they "warred for a place in Elric's skull" (129) and compelled others to rip out their own eyes and bash their own brains out (130). Memory is definitely a Bad Thing in this setting--apparently the burden of past crimes is too great, and maybe that's the reason that, while Elric's "knowledge of the world beyond the shores of Melnibone is profound" (5), it is also drawn from books, and therefore reviled. During the underworld scenes (which are reminiscent of Leguin's underworld scenes in Earthsea), we meet also Elric's sidekick, an archer-priest, genuinely cool, "the inheritor of all [his sect's] knowledge," who refused it and went to exile (141). Another character in the underworld is a guy "Who Knew All" and who is tasked to forget everything before he is liberated from the underworld (151).

elric volume II--
Quote
Carries with it the same retreat from memory that the first volume forefronts. Elric generally fails to recall certain items (23), and, after the first episode is completed, he "could not clear his head entirely of the impression left by that dream" (63), "recalling little of his voyage on the Dark ship," as "in later years he would recall most of these experiences as dreams" (76).

He adopts the cause of a damsel in distress in part two, seemingly because the antagonist promises her that "in time, you will remember" (98)--so it makes perfect sense that Elric takes up for her against memory. When that antagonist is destroyed, the antagonist welcomes it, for though he had "escaped my doom for many years, I could not escape the knowledge of my crime" (105). Elric fears that "my peace will more resemble" the antagonist's (107), an escape from knowledge of crime into death.

The promise of part two is made manifest by part three, which features, essentially, a mission to end the suffering of the Wandering Jew, who carries "the frightful knowledge" of the arche (119). Elric specifically fears that the legends of the arche are true (123), admits that "in danger you find forgetfulness" (122), decries "the agony of knowledge" (126). The point of the "quest" is to erase the known.

the other four principle elric volumes are not so unambiguous, but the thematic is present throughout to the extent that elric seeks to forget.  memory itself is what besieges him, rather than what has been forgotten.  tolkien is also different than RSB, wherein memory is the necessary preface to the building of walls, apparently against the inhabitants of ishual, who have been forgotten.  in tolkien, they did remember, without writing, and did build walls--and it worked out in a very bad way nonetheless.  we are presented, then, with an original conception in genre--though we might make sense of the equivalence of memory and writing that shows up in tolkien by reference again to RSB’s favorite, mr. derrida.

i here again draw deeply from dissemination, particularly the famous essay on mr. plato’s pharmacy:

Quote
Writing comes from afar, it is external or alien: to the living, which is the right-here of the inside, to logos as the zoon it claims to assist or relieve.  The imprints (tupoi of writing do not inscribe themselves this time, as they do in the hypothesis of [Plato’s] Thaetetus, in the wax of the soul in intaglio, thus corresponding to the spontaneous, autochthonous motions of psychic life.  Knowing that he can always leave his thoughts outside or check them with an external agency, with the physical, spatial, superficial marks that one lays flat on a tablet, he who has the tekhne of writing at his disposal will come to rely on it.  He will know that he himself can leave without the tupoi’s going away, that he can forget all about them without their leaving his service.  They will represent him even if he forgets them; they will transmit his word even if he is not there to animate them.

(dissemination at 104).  the tekhne of writing is debilitating even as it allows an external archive of the mind, existing even when forgotten--the writing is RSB’s wall against the forgotten, even though walls may not be built against the forgotten.

Quote
It is this life of the memory that the pharmakon of writing would come to hypnotize: fascinating it, taking it out of itself by putting it to sleep in a monument.  Confident of the permanence and independence of its tupoi, memory will fall asleep, will not keep itself up, will no longer keep to keeping itself alert, present, as close as possible  to the truth of what is.  Letting itself get stoned (medusee) by its own signs, its own guardians, by the types committed to the keeping and surveillance of knowledge, it will sink down into lethe overcome by non-knowledge and forgetfulness.  Memory and truth cannot be separated.  The movement of aletheia is a deployment of mneme through and through.  A deployment of living memory, of memory as psychic life in its self-presentation to itself.  The powers of lethe simultaneously increase the domains of death, of nontruth, of nonknowledge.  This is why writing, at least insofar as it sows “forgetfulness in the soul,” turns us toward the inanimate and toward nonknowledge.   But it cannot be said that its essence simply and presently confounds it with death or nontruth.  For writing has no essence or value of its own, whether positive of negative.  It plays within the simulacrum.  It is in its type the mime of memory, of knowledge, of truth, &c.  That is why men of writing appear before the eye of God not as wise men but in truth as fake or self-proclaimed wise men.

(dissemination at 105).  we note certain passages of mr. derrida only incidentally, perhaps reserving comment for later in the reread project.

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For it is above all against sophistic that this diatribe against writing is directed: it can be inscribed within the interminable trial instituted by Plato, under the name of philosophy, against the sophists.  The man who relies on writing, who brags about the knowledge and powers it assures him, this simulator unmasked by Thamus has all the features of a sophist: “the imitator of him who knows.”  He whom we would call the graphocrat […] boasts about knowing and doing all.  And mainly […] about having a better understanding than anyone else of mnemonics and mnemotechnics.

(dissemination at 106).  memory and memory-tekhne:  memory structured like a writing.

Quote
The sophist thus sells the signs and insignia of science: not memory itself ([i[mneme[/i]), only monuments (hypomnemata), inventories, archives, citations, copies, accounts, tales, lists, notes, duplicates, chronicles, genealogies, references.  Not memory but memorials.

(dissemination at 107).  does this include a compendium? a cartographic summation?  a preface?

Quote
In truth the sophist only pretends to know everything; his “polymathy” is never anything but pretense.  Insofar as writing lends a hand to hypomnesia and not to live memory, it, too, is foreign to true science, to anamnesia in its properly psychic motion, to truth in the process of (its) presentation, to dialectics.  Writing can only mime them.  (It could be shown, but we will spare ourselves the development here, that the problematic that today, in this very spot, links writing with the (putting in) question of truth--and of thought, without remaining at that, the conceptual monuments, the vestiges of the battlefield, the signposts marking out the battle lines between sophistic and philosophy.

(id.) 

Quote
Contrary to what we have indicated earlier, there are also good reasons for thinking that the diatribe against writing is not aimed first and foremost at the sophists.  On the contrary: sometimes it seems to proceed from them.  Isn’t the stricture that one should exercise one’s memory rather than entrust traces to an outside agency the imperious and classical recommendation of the sophists?

(dissemination at 108).

Quote
Thus, in both cases, on both sides, writing is considered suspicious and the alert exercise of memory prescribed.  What Plato is attacking in sophistic, therefore, is not simply recourse to memory but, within such recourse, the substitution of the mnemonic device for live memory, of the prosthesis for the organ; the perversion that consists of replacing a limb by a thing.

(id.)

Quote
The boundary (between inside and outside, living and nonliving) separates not only speech from writing but also memory as an unveiling (re-)producing a presence from re-memoration as the mere repetition of a monument; truth as distinct from its sign, being as distinct from types.  The “outside” does not begin at the point where what we now call the psychic and the physical meet, but at the point where the mneme, instead of being present to itself in its life as a movement of truth, is supplanted by the archive, evicted by a sign of re-memoration or of com-memoration.  The space of writing, space as writing, is opened up in the violent movement of this surrogation, in the difference between mneme and hypomnesis.  The outside is already within the work of memory.  The evil slips in within the relation of memory to itself, in the general organization of mnesic activity.  Memory is finite by nature.  Plato recognizes this in attributing life to it.  As in the case of all living organisms, he assigns it, as we have seen, certain limits.  A limitless memory would in any event be not memory but infinite self-presence.  Memory always therefore already needs signs in order to recall the non-present, with which it is necessarily in relation.  The movement of dialectics bears witness to this.  Memory is thus contaminated  by its first substitute: hypomnesis.  But what Plato dreams of is a memory with no sign.  That is, with no supplement.  A mneme with no hypomnesis, no pharmakon.  And this at the very moment and for the very reason that he calls dream the confusion between the hypothetical and the ahypothetical in the realm of mathematical intelligibility.

(dissemination at 108-09). memory is finite by definition, including within its ambit the necessity of forgetting, implying that the mind is always at least partially self-absent, relying on supplements such as a compendium, a cartographic summation, and so on.

that the new inhabitants of ishual at the close of the first part deface sorcerous runes and burn sorcerous books, in the service of tending “awareness most holy,” despite having repudiated the gods, “against the end of the world” (I.pro at 4) indicates either a general iconoclasm or a specific arcanoclasm, condition precedent to being forgotten by the “the world.”   

the second part’s first epigraph instructs that nonmen forget--we are therefore immediately in dialogue with the first part of the prologue:  nonmen specifically forget, whereas the first part indicates that the world forgot.  that men regret appears to rule out forgetting, however:  regret by definition is rooted in memory.  it is the key emotion in the elric stories. 

in coming to the second epigraph of the second part, we note that the preface to the compendium intones that the survivors write the conclusion.  is this the preface to a conclusion?  it is not obvious.  But:  we know that kellhus (hereinafter “AK”) is a survivor:

Quote
There they would die, as had been decided.  All those his father had polluted.  I’m alone.  My mission is all that remains.

(I.pro at 5).  it should be noted, that in meeting a nonman, AK is promised, contrary to the second epigraph:

Quote
RUN, ANASURIMBOR!” it boomed.  “I WILL REMEMBER!”

(I.pro at 30).  we are given a rule, and the first example of an item coming within the rule produces a contradiction.  there are several possibilities:  the second epigraph is wrong; the nonman is wrong; the prologue is wrong. 

the nonman attempts to explain: 

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”As the ages waxed, some of us needed more than your childish squabbles to remember.  Some of us needed a more exquisite brutality than any of your feuds could render.  The great curse of our kind--do you know it?  Of course you know it!  What slave fails to exult in his master’s degradation, hmm?”  […] “But I make excuses like a Man.  Loss is written into the very earth.  We are only its most dramatic reminder.”

(I.pro at 28).  what is forgotten is itself written, and what is written is a wall against what is forgotten.  the failure of memory of the nonman is itself a spur to memory otherwise.  we are very far away from both elric and tolkien at this point.


none of this is pulled together.  perhaps it can be pulled together as the reread project proceeds.  but what we know is this: the point of the preface is to self-cancel, to be forgotten.  we as readers might not raise walls, except through writing, against what has been forgotten.

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« Reply #26 on: April 19, 2013, 02:23:12 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
Quote from: sologdin
(I.pro at 28).  what is forgotten is itself written, and what is written is a wall against what is forgotten.  the failure of memory of the nonman is itself a spur to memory otherwise.  we are very far away from both elric and tolkien at this point.


none of this is pulled together.  perhaps it can be pulled together as the reread project proceeds.  but what we know is this: the point of the preface is to self-cancel, to be forgotten.  we as readers might not raise walls, except through writing, against what has been forgotten.
An excellent revision and expansion.

Note also how the author encourages the readerly propensity to forget the prologue.  After introducing a nominal hero, AK, he then moves to a different ...tagonist, DA--who was, in fact introduced before AK by being privileged by the third epigraph of the prologue.  This sets up an interesting binary and tension between these two characters many hundreds of pages before their paths ever cross.  But I am distracted, the point I intend to make is that the novel is structured very oddly--a structure that is not continued in any of the four sequel novels.  That structure has the author abandoning his nominal hero after introduction for over half the book (AK is abandoned at 31, and is recovered in chapter 12 at 337, in a book 577 in length).  AK is taken off stage, and the intention as you suggest, perhaps, is that the prologue is meant to self-cancel, the reader is meant to forget--the author is assisting the reader, deliberately in forgetting.   

The author lays the exposition on thick, not in interleaving chapters, as is the common tactic for such complex stories spanning a continent and multitudinous character & viewpoints, but in distinct 'parts' (as the Table of Contents indicates).  These parts could interleave relatively easily, and if this were done, AK might only be off stage for a hundred pages, a not uncommon span with stories of this type.  if this were done, we might have a chapter order of: Prologue, 1, 5, 2, 6, 3, 12, 7, 4, 13, 8, 9, 14, 10, 15, 11, 16, 17, 18, 19, Appendices.  And this is only one ordinal possibility, the key 12th chapter could certainly come before 3 or even two, it could easily be the third or fourth chapter, had the author wanted to take an order like: 5, 6, 12, 1 etc.

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« Reply #27 on: April 19, 2013, 02:23:31 am »
Quote from: Happy Ent
1. Bakker’s opinion on the Sranc threat in the North has changed since the prologue. Clearly, given the situation described in later books, it seems very difficult for a yearly caravan from Sakarpus to Athritau to make the trip through the Istyüli plains. Or for a trapper to survive many years alone. Also, Sakarpus has moved a fair deal to the West.

2. I repeat my claim (made many times before) that Kellhus goes bonkers and would not be able to retrace his steps from Leweth’s home to Ishüal because his Dunyain conditioning is broken for many, many days. Of course, given the final scene in WLW, this does not seem to be true. I wonder if Moënghus had the same feelings of awe and beauty that Kellhus feels when he sees the first grand vistas of the Demua mountains. Did Moe just stay Dunyain all the way and is Kellhus indeed speshul?

3. Kellhus almost dies and is found due to sheer luck. I call that divine intervention, of course. (A similar situation appears later with Cnaiür.)

4. The whole info-dump (where the reader is introduced to the setting by proxy, by having Leweth tell a blank-slate Kellhus) is well enough thought out, but I can remember that I was extremely confused. It’s simply too much, while simultaneously attempting too many other things. (Characterisation.)

5. There’s a strange section where the POV is confused. It starts “Leweth could only stare at him.” It seems like a Leweth-POV, but the he refers to Kellhus as “monk”. This is strange. Then “Leweth cried, perhaps out of anguish, perhaps hoping to draw them away,” — that’s a strange way to write from Leweth’s POV. Next section is clearly Leweth, and he says “monk” again. We know Kellhus is a monk. But Leweth?

6. The encounter with the Nonman, who we know is  Cet’ingira (Mekertrig) thanks to a  Bakker interview, is delicious. Again, this can only happen through some kind of extreme “correspondence of cause” or divine intervention: an Anasurimbor meeting the Consult boss. Mekki hits Kellhus with a Nonman version of the Odanai Concussion Cant that we see Akka use many books later to good effect.

Another small inconsistency is that Kellhus doesn’t immediately recognise Mekki as inhuman because of his voice. In later books, everybody can hear that Nonmen sound strange (though they speak human languages well enough).

7. Lots of good tree imagery in the prologue. From the twigs in Kellhus’s shoe to the great tree behind the screaming Cet’Ingira at the end.

8. Cet’Ingira uses a Sranc for his elju (his book). Clearly, the mechanics of Nonman memory loss and how they cope with it are already completely fleshed out.

9. Cet: “The Anasûrimbor pities me! And so he should… Ka’cûnoroi souk ki’elju, souk hus’jihla”. We’ve tried to translate this before, let’s have another go.

Cûnoroi is Nonman for Nonman and elju means book. So,

“A Nonman without his book is without his soul.”  “When the Nonmen lose their books, they lose their selves.” Something like that?

Or just “All Nonmen need books, all men must die.” Or “All books must die. But first we read.”

Or “Ever are Nonmen deceived.”

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« Reply #28 on: April 19, 2013, 02:23:45 am »
Quote from: Happy Ent
10. Cet’Ingira claims to have ridden against the No-God.

I don’t think that is correct. (Not that I think he mis-remembers. I just think that Bakker has changed his mind about the chronology since then.) What he should say is that he has ridden for and against the Inchoroi. As far as I understand, the No-God is invented only after Cet (with the help of Shaeönanra) has reopened the Ark. (Actually, I think I should spell that with a diaeresis on this forum.)

… has reöpened the Ark, freeing the brothers Au— and forming the Consult. Since that time, Cet has been firmly on the side of the Inchoroi, witnessing both the birth and defeat of the No-God as a ranking member of the Consult.

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« Reply #29 on: April 19, 2013, 02:24:08 am »
Quote from: lockesnow
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1. Bakker’s opinion on the Sranc threat in the North has changed since the prologue. Clearly, given the situation described in later books, it seems very difficult for a yearly caravan from Sakarpus to Athritau to make the trip through the Istyüli plains. Or for a trapper to survive many years alone. Also, Sakarpus has moved a fair deal to the West.

5. There’s a strange section where the POV is confused. It starts “Leweth could only stare at him.” It seems like a Leweth-POV, but the he refers to Kellhus as “monk”. This is strange. Then “Leweth cried, perhaps out of anguish, perhaps hoping to draw them away,” — that’s a strange way to write from Leweth’s POV. Next section is clearly Leweth, and he says “monk” again. We know Kellhus is a monk. But Leweth?

agreed on the movement of Sakarpus, but remember that Moenghus was found with a herd of Sranc, that Moenghus was ejected after tracking and destroying the Sranc that found Ishual, that from this, we can presume that after Moenghus was exiled (or left and everyone assumed or was told he was exiled), Moe rejoined the Sranc and had little trouble traveling with them, that his journey to the Utemot was probably nothing like Kellhus'.   For some reason, even we forum-readers want to believe that Moenghus would condition the entire three seas, yet leave the path to the three seas unconditioned (when it was his mistakes on the path to the three seas that have limited his ability to make an impact)--if anything, from Moenghus' perspective, conditioning the path from Ishual to the Three Seas will be one of the most important parts of entire plan to bring Kellhus into the world.  If he left the path to the three seas unconditioned, the probability would be extremely high that Kellhus' Dunyain training would cause him to make the same 'shortest path' mistakes and miscalculations that Moenghus had made.  He needed to ensure Kellhus didn't take the shortest path.

The possibility is staring us in the face that the ground from Atraithau to Ishual was conditioned by Moenghus.  We know he had contact with the Sranc, from this we can deduce it was possible he would be able to divert Sranc away from Kellhus' path.  the most dangerous part of Kellhus' journey is traveling alone through the wilderness, and he should ideally arrive as a blank slate to the world of men, otherwise he may travel a path that Moenghus traveled because his perceptions of the world were stained by first encounters with Sranc.  So who should Kellhus first encounter?  A man, not a woman, he should encounter someone who is alone, he should encounter someone who has some experience of the world, not just your everyday peasant farmer who has an extremely limited conception.  A hermit (perhaps monk?) trapper is ideal because a trapper has trading connections and is naturally isolated as well as savvy.  We must consider the possibility that Leweth is more than he seems and that rather than the beneficence that Leweth as an authorial tool who helpfully gives Kellhus (and the reader) a rather accurate education and assessment of human society in the three seas that Leweth can also be a Moenghus tool, shaped to achieve the same ends.  The trippiness you noted in Leweth's perspective is something I also noted, and was something I was going to get into when I get to my close reading of Leweth. 

I think I've mentioned in chapter one that Bakker is manipulating and utilizing reader biases from the very first thought Akka has (the thought Akka has is about how superior educated fat smart people are to fit, arrogant, athletic jocks, and how such jocks are naturally the inferiors of smart people), and the perceptions that Kellhus (and the reader) have of Leweth also play into these biases, Bakker can make his readers overlook Leweth by simply positioning him in an uneducated category and not giving us insight into a counter-perspective, its an authorial way of having it both ways, imo.

Regarding Mek,
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