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Violence! Rape! Agency! The rapiness that comes before

Violence rape & agency part 2

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#21 Relic

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 11:59 AM

Where I think I failed pretty badly is that Terez is really not a good character. She’s one-noted, shrill, icy, bitchy, and just doesn’t come across as a particularly convincing or well-rounded real person. It stretches credibility that she wouldn’t behave more cannily and carefully in this situation. That’s shoddy writing by any standard, but worse yet it plays into a really ugly stereotype of shrill man-hating (possibly quite thick) lesbian, and that badly undermines any attempt to do something interesting with this situation. If Terez is a much more convincing, multi-faceted, less stereotyped character with an authentic voice and a more believable motivation I’m sure many people would still have their problems with this scene but from my point of view at least it would be much improved. The Wire I think is a very good example because the reason it (for me at least) succeeds so well in its depiction of black criminals is that it makes each individual a powerful portrayal with their own voices and motivations. It doesn’t help at all that the female characters in the First Law ain’t that great across the board, really. Ferro is the only female point of view and for various reasons probably outside the scope of this particular thread I think I could have done a whole lot better with her too. I actually think the other (almost) rape in the series, in the second book, is worse, because it’s handled more or less completely disposably and the female character in that case, Cathil, is still more absent of personality than Terez and pretty much exists to elicit certain responses in the men. Which is kind of sexist writing 101, sadly. There’s also a rather ugly pattern, so obvious to me now that I can hardly believe I failed to notice it at the time, of pretty much all the central female characters having been the victims of abuse of one kind or another. I suppose you could say a fair few of the central male characters have been as well but that’s pretty weak sauce as a defence.

Still, it’s my belief that as a writer you really have to let it all hang out, write from the gut and so on and accept you’ll make mistakes and piss people off. Far better to write something bitter and flawed that some love (or at least like) and others hate (or at least viscerally despise) than to turn out some bland crud that no one cares about. Or indeed buys. Then when you get pasted you take your lumps, let the criticisms sink in, laugh off the silliness of some and wince at the perceptiveness of others and hope that you absorb some good sense and sensitivity so that next time you let it all hang out you do it somewhat better than before.



I love that youj ust wrote and shared all of that. Good show mate. (that's what you English people say, right?)

#22 Larry.

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 12:03 PM

Pleasure to be here, always fascinating (if occasionally hideously painful) to see people's opinions on your work. In many ways the writer's opinion is the least important one, but it's the only one I got...

Larry,
I find your expression of reasoned mild dislike for my books vile and wrongheaded but I will defend to the death your right to do so...

Reading and writing certainly are hugely different disciplines. I'm not by any means saying that you have to write to criticise, but it's not until you do write (at least in my case) that you begin to conceive of the horrifying multiplicity of different ways you can fuck up. In ways you never dreamed you would. In ways you never even considered. In so many ways that if you thought too much about them when writing you'd be utterly paralysed. Which is why I say you have to just let it flow and accept you'll make mistakes. Big mistakes. Offensive mistakes. That doesn't mean you don't think and consider and hope to avoid mistakes, but there are pitfalls you'll just never see coming.


I agree, except for the vile and wrongheaded part! Some things just aren't to my taste and I think it was good to explore that in a civil fashion (just as you likely would find some of what I prefer to be unlikeable; humani sumus). Ever since my two translations were published in October and November, I have near-daily trepidation that there's something key that I didn't capture and that someone will call me out on it, so I do understand to a small degree what you are saying here. And not that anyone should claim there are "winners" in these discussions, but I would imagine that you do get a sort of feedback that might be helpful in avoiding one particular mistake...even if it might propel you headlong into another, even more disastrous one! C'est la vie.

And yes, I quote too many damn languages.

#23 Joe Abercrombie

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 12:04 PM

Yeah, that was a very conciliatory post (for both sides of the discussion) by the author. Didn't expect the self-lacerations apropos content which I personally didn't think was bad, but I suppose that's perfectionism and why the author improves with each book.

Your initial response to criticisms is always to think, 'how the fuck dare you?' In response to this type of criticism it's to think, 'how the fuck dare you I'm liberal and progressive and my mum loves me and one and a half of my best friends are lesbian!' or some such but that really isn't very helpful. You have to scrape the froth off and consider the coffee and see if there's anything to be learned in there. Often the criticisms that really hurt are the ones that are at least partly true. I think I could have and should have done a lot better with the women in The First Law, but once the books are out there that's it, there's no changing them, you just have to accept you should have done better and hope to do better next time.

But, incidentally, I think those books are fucking superb and I'm fiercely proud of them. Hundreds of thousand of people have read them and several have even enjoyed them. We're counting family members, right? I actually still think this scene is effective and powerful but I can see why someone wouldn't like it, would find it vile, even, and I can think of ways it could have been made a great deal better. Of course there'll always be many who think you're rubbish but that's the truth of existence. Can't spend too much time chewing your nails down over it.

#24 Arthmail

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 12:31 PM

Although, to be honest, some people are shallow and not well thought out in real life. There is no reason that Terez, because she is a woman and a lesbian, needs to be anything more than that.

#25 Sci-2

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 12:39 PM

Although, to be honest, some people are shallow and not well thought out in real life.


How can someone not be well thought out IRL?

One thing I was thinking about was the book Push.
Spoiler


When I first read this book I was engrossed and horrified. Then I learned it was fictional, though the author said the character's suffering was a sum total of suffering girls in her classroom had endured.

I never finished the book, as I couldn't help but feel the book was trying too hard to elicit emotion, *despite* the fact that the actual experiences were real.

I find this an interesting example, because I think when I am being emotionally manipulated in a way where the author's hand is glimpsed behind the curtain, it turns me off. I would have liked to have had the book actually have the events cleave closer to the reality of being experienced by different girls...

However, I can also see that perhaps I am at fault for excusing myself away from the text and the ultimately nonfictional reality it conveys.

Just a weird little example, part of me feels like there is a responsibility to confront the reality but at the same time the book felt manipulative. But that might be me hitting the wall of my privilege.

ETA: grammar, clarity.

Edited by sciborg2, 20 December 2011 - 12:40 PM.


#26 TerraPrime

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 01:02 PM

As a general note, thanks to Abercrombie for a thoughtful and meaningful note from his perspective. It's a relief to me, at least, that the criticism is taken not as an attack on the author himself. It's also re-assuring to me to see a deep level of self-reflection. It gives me confidence that the missteps that might crop up in his work are just that, missteps.

Far as the scene goes, I do get that it's a smashing of the prince-marries-princess-and-they-are-happy mold. So in that, the message came across quite clearly. I just wish that the hammer you used to smash that expectation didn't quite involve some of the elements that it did, that's all.



Re: Arthmail

Although, to be honest, some people are shallow and not well thought out in real life. There is no reason that Terez, because she is a woman and a lesbian, needs to be anything more than that.


No doubt. But surely, there are reasons why some characters are showcased and some are not? With the limited screen time in a novel or a movie, the author's decision to focus the spotlight on one, versus another, character implies that the author wants us to pay attention to this character for a reason, no? Unless the point of the story is that life is banal and people are boring, I don't really see how offering your readers one-noted characters is a plus, even if there are plenty of one-noted individuals in real life.


Re: Shryke from last thread:


1) sex and violence tend to be more plot relevant and generally much more obvious. It's much more well known and much more first-thing-that-comes-to-mind that a medieval sacking of a town is gonna involve alot of death and rape. That's the kind of stuff people are gonna notice if it's missing. It's much less known and generally seen as less relevant (perhaps not accurately) that these same people would have really shitty teach.



I think sex and violence are more plot-relevant only because the authors plotted to be so, and that's part of my questioning: why do many authors seem to plot a large amount of violence and sex in their novels? Is it because that's what they think grant realism to their work? Or is it for other reasons?



2) to go with the above, alot of it is built on previous works. How many writing or wanting to write, say, fantasy really know a ton about actual medieval life? The obvious and well known gets grabbed first (ie - shit was violent, lots of rape).



This is probably true for some. I'll also say that events like rape are also alluring as story elements because it's a pre-packaged deal that offers instant pathos. Hence my comparison to the sudden-loud-noise trick in horror movies. That loud noise gets the adrenaline in your audience going, without you having to spend any effort developing anything on screen. Similarly, inserting a rape scene instantly generates a pre-determined set of emotions for the characters (pity and/or empathy for the victim, loathing for the rapist) (and as a tangent, I'd give Abercrombie props for the Terez scene where our loathing was not directed at Jezal per se, but at Glotka, so I see that as success in terms of breaking the expectation). And when I feel that rape, or violence, or sex, is used in this manner, it's not handled correctly.


3) the move towards more realism of this sort in speculative fiction is still young, which I think ties into the above as well. We are only starting to get into what's entailed in showing "realism" rather then a more fairy-tale-esque/escapism atmosphere.



I agree with this in general, but I'd like to point out something else. Realism is rather difficult to nail down, since we each have different experience. For instance, Lord of the Ring features many large-scale battles between the forces of good and evil. To us, they may not seem very real, but for Tolkien, who was a veteran of WWI and witnessed many battles, the scenes he wrote were probably more than real to him.


4) To further the above, sex and violence are also seen just generally as "mature". These are the things we tend to give limited exposure to in works for younger people and don't generally see in "less serious" works and such.



Agreed that there's a clear attempt to remove some of the sexual and violent content from material aimed at the YA audience. So do authors add these elements to their work as an attempt to separate their work from YA work? Is that your take for some of the cases?



5) sex and violence are popular topics in fiction in general across all mediums. They are generally fascinating human activities, so they get alot of focus once you break down the wall and start getting into territory where you fell you CAN explore those kind of things.



If this is true, that part of the reason for the apparent prevalence now is that it's a new toy that authors get to play with, then will we, in 10 or 20 years' time, see less of it in the genre?



#27 Arthmail

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 01:35 PM

Re: Arthmail
No doubt. But surely, there are reasons why some characters are showcased and some are not? With the limited screen time in a novel or a movie, the author's decision to focus the spotlight on one, versus another, character implies that the author wants us to pay attention to this character for a reason, no? Unless the point of the story is that life is banal and people are boring, I don't really see how offering your readers one-noted characters is a plus, even if there are plenty of one-noted individuals in real life.


But as has been said, the spotlight is not on Terez. In this instance it is on Glokta and Jezal. I think of it like this. I'm working on my own book, and its in its third draft. I have a quote in the book that mentions that the only thing worse than a lawyer is a banker. My most dedicated proof reader is a lawyer, and he groaned at the quote. Now you could say, well, you're being lazy with the character by making him a one note character (though in this case its only a quote, i'll pretend for an instant its a very minor character that is a lawyer for the sake of my agrument). But truthfully, its because i cannot make every person unique. I do not have the time, page space, or inclination. Sometimes authors rely on stereotypes because it helps keep the narrative moving quickly without getting bogged down in excessive and unneeded non-pertinent non-character development. See what i am trying to say here?

Now Abercrombie might feel that his writing of Terez was ham fisted. But she could have been a spoiled brat raised amidst the trappings of royalty, and a shallow person as well. That she is a lesbian is besides the point. That she has no agency is a little bit more to the point, but in truth its all about smashing the old school fairytale narrative.

Sci: You have never met people that seem like charicatures, or that seem hallow and shallow and badly drawn. Its more of an expression, really, but every shopkeeper and tavern owner needs not be unique in a book. Terez is a tertiary character, and is treated as such. She might act clumsily, and over agressively considering her situation, but there is no indication that she was raised to be clever. I know many people that react to different situations like they were written by a bad author. Not everyone thinks with clarity and precession.

#28 mormont

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 02:46 PM

I think sex and violence are more plot-relevant only because the authors plotted to be so, and that's part of my questioning: why do many authors seem to plot a large amount of violence and sex in their novels? Is it because that's what they think grant realism to their work? Or is it for other reasons?


Well, plots require conflict, for one thing. And readers like sex and violence, no matter the genre.

But more than that, I think that epic fantasy in particular is very much concerned with power as a theme. Military power, political power, magical power, physical power, charismatic power, economic power, even. This manifests in different ways: at its worst, simple wish-fulfilment stories, at its best, thoughtful examinations of power dynamics. As a result, particularly with 'gritty' fantasy, it's inevitable that this will mean that sex and violence will crop up - and in particular, they'll meet. Because while you can certainly write about power without mentioning rape, you can't write about rape without inherently writing about power. Of course, it can be done for good reasons or bad, and done well or poorly: I'm not offering a specific critique here. I'm just observing that there seem to me to be reasons why epic fantasy as a genre, and the 'gritty' subset of that in particular, might feature such instances.

Having made that observation, though, I'd also point out that it is the direct opposite of an excuse: it's a good reason for fantasy writers in particular to think carefully about how they portray such scenes. Any writer who's going to include a rape scene for any reason has a duty to handle it responsibly and sensitively. If you pick the theme, you're agreeing to be judged on how you handle it.

#29 Joe Abercrombie

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 03:08 PM

You're going to have some minor characters who have no choice but to be pretty one-dimensional, sure, but that one dimensionality doesn't necessarily have to match the same one-dimensionality that other lazy writing has used for those same types of character. Simple characters needn't necessarily be stereotypes, in other words. Worse yet, every character of a different (and potentially a vulnerable) minority needn't match the same stereotypes. So you could make a grasping, swindling banker a plump, oily little man with ferrety black eyes, a hook nose and crinkly hair, but why would you when it clearly matches a shitty, offensive jewish stereotype? Worse yet, do a similar treatment for two grasping swindling bankers in the same story, who happen to be the only men with hook noses and crinkly hair.

Leave Terez exactly as she is in the text, if you will, and look at Shalere, who's a much more minor character, she's very like Terez, as I recall - icy, haughty, contemptuous and scornful towards Jezal. Now imagine if she were pleasant, polite, gracious, warm towards Jezal. 'Your Majesty I can only apologise, the Queen is not herself today. Has not been well. The whole thing is so difficult. For you both. I don't know how you manage. The strain must be terrible. I will speak to her.' Jezal reflects that if only all Styrian women were so charming. Shalere's husband will be a lucky man....

Already it's a different, more varied and more interesting dynamic. The character is more real, the approach by the women towards their desperate position is more subtle and believable, the relationship between them is more believable, Terez' defence of Shalere is more believable, Glokta's use of their relationship is still more unpleasant. And you've at least got a lesbian in the text who doesn't come over as a frosty man hater. I'm not saying it's fixed by any means, but it's surprisingly much better for a minor change. Obviously you could go a lot further. Thus, for me, can small details of character ripple out to have profound effects. Which is why I think for me this is at heart more a problem of shitty characterisation than it is necessarily a problem with plot and event. Others will no doubt differ.

#30 Grack21

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 03:21 PM

I'm going to try and bow out of this one again. I was a total fuckhead last night, and I apologize to all. It's been stressful at home and the Buffy stuff hit a nerve(in case you couldn't tell). Not that that is an excuse.

Any way, sorry folks.

#31 Sci-2

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 04:48 PM

So...anyone have thoughts on the Tyrion/Tysha scene?

#32 Verboten

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 04:56 PM

Arthmail, Abercrombie has already admitted that his writing was flawed, and Terez was in retrospect, a badly written character. The issue is dead and gone please stop beating that horse.

Anyway I think the problem with introducing rape and violence into your books is difficult and contentious is because the background of the story is in essence only there to provide a framework for the characters and service the plot, and while the best books do more than this, it still falls to the author to explain why they felt it was proper to include something in the book. To use and example from GoT we have Tyrions idle thoughts about how one day, he will burn the Vale to the ground, and his focus on his own suffering instead of Tyshas, as an indicator that he is not in any way as good, or moral a person he would like to believe and his thoughts about Shae, the way he equates sex with love, are a glaring sign about how deeply the Tysha incident fucked him up. We have Theon laughing and kicking a severed head as an early show of his careless, carefree, brutal personality annd in the next book his treatment of the sailors daughter is a general reflection of how he uses people on the whole. These are in my opinion, effective uses of violence and sex in fantasy books because they establish something more than 'my character is so badass and yearns for VENGEANCE' or 'have I mentioned that all the ladies want him and he's really really good at sexing them up yet?' which are two things I keep on seeing over and over again in all media.

#33 Sci-2

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 05:07 PM

To use and example from GoT we have Tyrions idle thoughts about how one day, he will burn the Vale to the ground, and his focus on his own suffering instead of Tyshas, as an indicator that he is not in any way as good, or moral a person he would like to believe and his thoughts about Shae, the way he equates sex with love, are a glaring sign about how deeply the Tysha incident fucked him up.


Verboten, do you think the Tyrion self-pitying man pain was intentional? Or a flaw in Martin's writing? I believe that it is the former, that Martin is very much in control of Tyrion's thoughts and choices. I even think the lack of Tysha's POV is meant to illuminate Tyrion's issues.

I also hope to draw (dare I say bear-bait?) Kalbear into stating why he finds the scene worse than the Terez scene.

p.s. For the purposes of hopeful edification, Sady Doyle has collected examples of the "putting her in her place" trope save these are from RL.

#34 Arthmail

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 05:23 PM

Arthmail, Abercrombie has already admitted that his writing was flawed, and Terez was in retrospect, a badly written character. The issue is dead and gone please stop beating that horse.


Yea, but others did not find it flawed, and had no problem with it, and i still had things i wished to say. You really need to remove yourself from the issue if you can't handle the discussion.



I'm done with this issue. It's reached its conclusion much like the agency topic did, with people endlessly going around in circles. I'll say in conclusion, as i've mentioned in other books, that whatever theme you have to have in a book is not necessarily what the author has to have, and expecting them to cater to your cause is pointless. Find books that speak to you and enjoy them, and leave the ones that don't wherever it is you wish to put them.

#35 Sci-2

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 05:29 PM

Actually, given that discussion brought about a change in Moorcock's actual, printed book, its clear asking someone to "cater" to respectful depictions of sexual assault can bring about change.

Unless, of course, the person is really, really, really invested in the need for thoughtless rape scenes.

ETA: Heh, I'm reminded of Fox News's Sean Hannity FINALLY arguing with a conservative...on how the dude was wrong to feel guilty about the gambling problem that wrecked his family.

Edited by sciborg2, 20 December 2011 - 05:30 PM.


#36 Ser Scot A Ellison

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 06:14 PM

Sciborg,

So, unless Mr. Abercrombie changes his printed work and convinces the publisher to print a recacted or expigated version he's guilty of all he's accused of in these two threads?

#37 Sci-2

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 06:16 PM

So, unless Mr. Abercrombie changes his printed work and convinces the publisher to print a recacted or expigated version he's guilty of all he's accused of in these two threads?


Whoah, not saying that at all.

Only thing I was saying is that these discussions are not pointless. My use of the Moorcock example is because it resulted in the largest change.

Also, what has he - as a person - been accused of? Barring a comment here or there, I believe just about everyone has been talking about the texts.

ETA IV: In case it ever seemed I attacked your character Joe, I personally apologize.

ETA (I & III): quote added, grammar

ETA II: Heck there has probably never been a time in human history where discussion and critique between readers, and between readers and authors, has more efficacy.

Edited by sciborg2, 20 December 2011 - 06:31 PM.


#38 Verboten

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 06:25 PM

Verboten, do you think the Tyrion self-pitying man pain was intentional? Or a flaw in Martin's writing? I believe that it is the former, that Martin is very much in control of Tyrion's thoughts and choices. I even think the lack of Tysha's POV is meant to illuminate Tyrion's issues.

I also hope to draw (dare I say bear-bait?) Kalbear into stating why he finds the scene worse than the Terez scene.

p.s. For the purposes of hopeful edification, Sady Doyle has collected examples of the "putting her in her place" trope save these are from RL.


I think it's intentional. The series is very much about tragedy in the sense that a lot of what some characters suffer is brought about by their own hand. If Theon had not been proud, if Tyrion had not been self-pitying and if the Starks were not so honourable the books would have lost their best stories.

#39 Contrarius

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 07:22 PM

First -- I love the posts from Joe. I had been hoping that he was reading along, and as usual he has been very generous in his responses. Great stuff. /smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />

not really; it's not just speaking roles I'd prefer. And there's no specific quota either.


But Kalbear -- we don't even *know* the sexual orientation of the characters in the non-speaking roles. And isn't that what you want in the first place? For sexual orientations to be incidental?


The fact is that more than 20% of the women for whom we know orientation are lesbian. That should satisfy anyone who has a yen to promote the depiction of diversity in fictional societies.

-if someone is victimized by rape, have their viewpoint be explicit and more important than the men around them


Ahhh, but see -- if Joe were to do this in this case, he'd first have to change the whole structure of his book. Instead of 6 clearly defined POVs, he'd have to be including random minor POVs here and there just to satisfy a few folks who might be offended by each issue. How about POVs for each person who gets tortured? How about POVs for the council members who get jerked around by Glokta and Bayaz? It could be never ending.


-if sexual orientation is used, have it be for more than a tool against a person OR have it be not used for anything special at all


Okay, so now appear to be asking Abercrombie to leave out that element altogether, or to change its meaning altogether. How is that not censorship?


-if misogyny is used, have female characters that are clearly awesome and are in a shit situation


But **nobody** is "awesome" in these books. There are no perfectly wonderful characters. So why should Abercrombie single out Terez for sainthood? Wouldn't that be treating lesbians differently from everyone else -- which is exactly what you DON'T want him to do? By making Terez bitchy and obnoxious, he's making her just as imperfect as all his other characters. Isn't that what you want? To have lesbians treated the same as everyone else?

For about 4 pages many people on both sides argued she did not need to be a lesbian at all. You very strongly argued that she did.


I can see that we need to clarify terms here. We keep circling around the issues of "must/only if/has to be" and "more dramatic/works best".

Abercrombie **could** have threatened a male lover. Therefore it doesn't "have to be" a female lover. But it **works best/is more dramatic** if it's a female lover, for reasons already discusses well beyond ad nauseam. Nobody has yet proposed any alternatives that would work better or even as well.

I would say that in the story her primary defining moment is that she is willing to be raped to save her lover


No argument there. I'd add the other defining moment of refusing to sleep with Jezal before the threats, though, since there'd be no need for them if she had been willing to submit in the first place.

and the only reason that that can happen in this book is because she's a lesbian and has a lesbian lover.


No. See above, and many many previous posts. She **could** have had a secret male lover. It simply **works better/is more dramatic** if it's a female lover.

I actually wanted to get back to that; you said it can't be rape without penetration, right? Well, Jezal finger fucks Terez quite clearly in the text.


Nope. You're working way too hard to imagine details that aren't actually there. I think there is pretty clear *fondling*, but we have absolutely NO details of penetration of any kind. Maybe he does, maybe he doesn't -- but it is certainly not required by the text as written.


And since you mentioned the quote -- you can clearly see that we DO get Terez's reaction to the fondling, despite your many complaints about missing her POV.


"He felt her shudder, felt her flinch, and bite her lip in shock, it seemed, or even in disgust."

That's a pretty clear indication of how Terez feels about it.

We get a description of Jezal's rising cock


Wow, you really do seem to have quite the imagination here. /wink.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=';)' />

All we actually get is a "pleasant tingling building in his crotch". That's all. Trust me, that is nothing even vaguely approaching the descriptiveness that many authors include in sex scenes. It's actually very very restrained.

how the kissing feels


Right. And it's worth pointing out that their kiss is very explicitly NOT appealing. Their lips press together "clumsily". Their mouths move "mechanically". We hear the "squeak of breath in his nose" and the "squelch of spit moving".

Yuck!

it's also interesting to note that both Jezal was surprised she was not a virgin, so being a virgin bride isn't a big deal


Right. But that doesn't mean anything about taking lovers **after** marriage.

the reason, as you mention so many times, is that we do so because it's more of a visceral scene. Which means we're using rape for the shock value. Which has been another problem many have had.


Right. Abercrombie is using rape for shock value -- in just the same way as he uses torture for shock value. In just the same way as he uses graphic battle scenes for shock value.


Shall we ask Abercrombie to leave all of those out, just so he can avoid offending folks?


Ardee sleeping around is not a big deal. It's a magical world with fictional moralities and is apparently totally fine with premarital sex and has fairly effective means of contraception


There's a big difference between having a lover before marriage and having one after -- refer back to my earlier post about inheritance. And we already know that there is NOT good contraception in this society, because Ardee is pregnant with Jezal's baby by the end of the trilogy.

#40 Verboten

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 07:26 PM

The horse is dead. Stop beating it and move on.