Ericxihn, on 13 April 2012 - 02:13 PM, said:
Overall your post gave me a lot to think about, but this line seemed off. I mean Cnaiur, Conphas, Xerius? I mean Bakker's characters are interesting because of how deeply flawed they are.
The male flaws are of a slightly different nature though. Brutality, ambition, megalomania etc, all on a "larger scale", if you wish. And all these three men are described as extremely sharp individuals and they often draw clever conclusions to complicated problems. They may be corrupt morally and be too ambitious, but the female flaws are pettier, more shameful, more personal. They indicate weak characters, low inhibitions, no discipline and no understanding.
Sure, you could argue that these things are not the fault of the women, because society's oppression make women petty, shameful, weak individuals of no understanding and no discipline. But I think that's like trying to tie a shoe lace with a mallet (not to mention an unfair characterisation of women, even oppressed ones).
Another thing that Bakker suffers from is that he chose to use only three female characters, all extremely sexualised, all extremely despicable, while he is using far more and varied male characters, so we don't only get to see the morally corrupt overly ambitious ones. But we only get to see the whores, the child sellers and the incest rapists on the female side. We are sometimes told Esme is clever, but the difference is, we aren't shown that she is. She acts like an weak willed and wallowing individual throughout (complete with random threesomes for no reason).
Regarding the interview:
One of the questions I'm interested in is, What happens to truths when they become instruments of manipulation? Kellhus enslaves Esmenet by emancipating her, by showing the 'truth' of the misogynistic culture she lives and breathes. In effect, he makes her modern. I have no idea how to answer this question, but it seems to me to be an important one.
Amusing, since the issue a lot of people are taking with this is not Kellhus' manipulation, but that he's just some guy telling yet another woman what she should or should not think. Much like Bakker himself, really.
Besides, the whole scene is about as heavy handed as you can get and a proper facepalm moment, on par with the random threesome. Subtler writing would properly have served the purpose better of actually making people consider the manipulation vs truth, but that is not what you take away from it, unfortunately.
Edited by Lyanna Stark, 13 April 2012 - 04:57 PM.