The Latest News
Connect with Us

Notable Releases
From the Store
Game of Thrones Baratheon Beanie + Scarf Set
Game of Thrones Baratheon Beanie + Scarf Set
HBO US
Featured Sites
License Holders

Jump to content


Photo

Drogo didn't rape Dany


  • Please log in to reply
339 replies to this topic

#121 Queen Cersei I

Queen Cersei I

    The First and Last of Her Name

  • Banned
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,895 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 07:33 PM

Seems to me the book was recommended, and I learnt a bit about it before I bought it. Seems like that's normal, is it not? It's been on my to-read pile for a while.

Meaning it's a book about a man who is in love with at least one young girl and thinks that's normal. What else would I mean?


At the risk of getting off topic, Lolita by no means presents attraction to children as "normal." The protagonist is an adult male (Humbert Humbert, and even Nabakov specified he chose that name to make Hum sound as gross as possible) who is only attracted to young girls between the ages of 9 and 12. (Nymphets, he calls them.) Though Humbert spends most of the narrative insisting he is a nice guy and his lust for 9, 10, 11, and 12 year olds is totally normal; and that adult women are, in fact, revolting, the reader is clearly meant to think otherwise.

Lolita teems with countless interacting themes-- the illusionary nature of love; the desire for (and ultimate impossibility of) possessing another human being; the nature of violation and exploitation; the cultural clash between old world Europe and modern America; the universal fear of aging, the passage of time, and the desire for all of us (In our own way) to recapture our youth and innocence. However, one theme that I'd most definitely say that Lolita is not aimed at is "young girls are sexy, and it's cool to seduce them." The way Humbert Humbert abuses, exploits, and violates Dolores Haze (an occasionally typically pre teen obnoxious, but ultimately sweet, strong, and horrifically exploited little girl) is utterly inexcusable, leeches her of her life and innocence, steals her childhood, and ultimately leads to her horrible destructive end.

Nabokov never makes any bones about the fact that Humbert is a pervert and his feelings for Lolita are unambiguously wrong and gross. He does make Humbert a believable, living character who fascinates and, at times, earns the readers sympathy (generally when he drops the b.s. about being sexually attracted to kids is some sort of supperior lifestyle, and admits he's a wanking pervert), however, he by no means excuses his perversions or the way he destroys an innocent girl by acting on them.

Nabakov also repeatedly stated in interviews that he considered Humbert a sicko and that he hoped sympathy would be with poor Lolita. He also clearly didn't intend for the book to be sexy, but to be beautifully written and affecting. Which it is.

In the end, Lolita by no means advocates pedophilia, nor illustrates the writers hidden preferences. The fact that a few lone weirdos have written essays about how the book is, in fact, about "an academic man seduced by a wicked girl" or something like that is not really Nabakov's responsibility.

#122 Dracarya

Dracarya

    And though she be but little, she is fierce

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,980 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 07:46 PM

At the risk of getting off topic, Lolita by no means presents attraction to children as "normal." The protagonist is an adult male (Humbert Humbert, and even Nabakov specified he chose that name to make Hum sound as gross as possible) who is only attracted to young girls between the ages of 9 and 12. (Nymphets, he calls them.) Though Humbert spends most of the narrative insisting he is a nice guy and his lust for 9, 10, 11, and 12 year olds is totally normal; and that adult women are, in fact, revolting, the reader is clearly meant to think otherwise.

Lolita teems with countless interacting themes-- the illusionary nature of love; the desire for (and ultimate impossibility of) possessing another human being; the nature of violation and exploitation; the cultural clash between old world Europe and modern America; the universal fear of aging, the passage of time, and the desire for all of us (In our own way) to recapture our youth and innocence. However, one theme that I'd most definitely say that Lolita is not aimed at is "young girls are sexy, and it's cool to seduce them." The way Humbert Humbert abuses, exploits, and violates Dolores Haze (an occasionally typically pre teen obnoxious, but ultimately sweet, strong, and horrifically exploited little girl) is utterly inexcusable, leeches her of her life and innocence, steals her childhood, and ultimately leads to her horrible destructive end.

Nabokov never makes any bones about the fact that Humbert is a pervert and his feelings for Lolita are unambiguously wrong and gross. He does make Humbert a believable, living character who fascinates and, at times, earns the readers sympathy (generally when he drops the b.s. about being sexually attracted to kids is some sort of supperior lifestyle, and admits he's a wanking pervert), however, he by no means excuses his perversions or the way he destroys an innocent girl by acting on them.

Nabakov also repeatedly stated in interviews that he considered Humbert a sicko and that he hoped sympathy would be with poor Lolita. He also clearly didn't intend for the book to be sexy, but to be beautifully written and affecting. Which it is.

In the end, Lolita by no means advocates pedophilia, nor illustrates the writers hidden preferences. The fact that a few lone weirdos have written essays about how the book is, in fact, about "an academic man seduced by a wicked girl" or something like that is not really Nabakov's responsibility.


Am I being misinterpreted on purpose? One becomes paranoid.. I meant that researching a book before buying it is normal, not a mans' obsession with little girls. Christ alive, I've had some things said about me, but this takes the biscuit.

#123 Queen Cersei I

Queen Cersei I

    The First and Last of Her Name

  • Banned
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,895 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 07:55 PM

Am I being misinterpreted on purpose? One becomes paranoid.. I meant that researching a book before buying it is normal, not a mans' obsession with little girls. Christ alive, I've had some things said about me, but this takes the biscuit.


No, no, I never thought that you were implying that "a man's obsession with little girls" was normal in any way. I merely thought that you were associating Nabakov's subject matter (him writing a book about a pedophile) with his own real life preferences. I've seen and heard many cases of this, including people who have read the book insisting that Nabokov wrote about a pedophile so vividly that he must have secretly nurtured the same preferences himself. /stillsick.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':stillsick:' />

However, clearly I misinterpreted you, and you merely meant that Humbert Humbert was "all about little girls" rather than Nabakov himself. Which is perfectly true, since Humbert Humbert spends a good portion of the narrative fantasizing about kids between the ages of 9 and 12. /ack.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':ack:' />

#124 butterbumps!

butterbumps!

    i will make them love me

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8,687 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 07:59 PM

"Christ alive, I've had some things said about me, but this takes the biscuit. "


For some reason this made me laugh uproariously just now.

#125 Dracarya

Dracarya

    And though she be but little, she is fierce

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,980 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:00 PM

No, no, I never thought that you were implying that "a man's obsession with little girls" was normal in any way. I merely thought that you were associating Nabakov's subject matter (him writing a book about a pedophile) with his own real life preferences. I've seen and heard many cases of this, including people who have read the book insisting that Nabokov wrote about a pedophile so vividly that he must have secretly nurtured the same preferences himself. /stillsick.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':stillsick:' />

However, clearly I misinterpreted you, and you merely meant that Humbert Humbert was "all about little girls" rather than Nabakov himself. Which is perfectly true, since Humbert Humbert spends a good portion of the narrative fantasizing about kids between the ages of 9 and 12. /ack.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':ack:' />


Yeah, the first comment was a play on words, as the other poster said it was for adults only. A tasteless joke, perhaps, but an attempt to diffuse the situation. The second.. yeah, I 110%, definitely, simply meant that finding out more about a book before spending money on it is normal. I even downloaded it on Audible first for free, but I prefer reading to listening, so after listening to a few chapters I bought the book. I've yet to get round to it.

Gods. I'm still in shock that people would think things like that /stillsick.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':stillsick:' />

#126 Dracarya

Dracarya

    And though she be but little, she is fierce

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,980 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:00 PM

"Christ alive, I've had some things said about me, but this takes the biscuit. "


For some reason this made me laugh uproariously just now.


I live to please /wink.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=';)' />

Edited by Dracarya, 04 May 2012 - 08:00 PM.


#127 the trees have eyes

the trees have eyes

    Council Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 858 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:07 PM

I don't think it is particularly fruitful to apply our modern western values and legal concepts to this scenario. But even if we do and find that Drogo falls short of our expected norm of a proper emotionally and sexually sensitive husband I think that is as far as you can take it.

I think the wedding night is well rendered by GRRM: Drogo is tender, gentle, above all, patient and his consideration - not to mention skill - overcome Dany's fears and make her receptive. It is a seduction and Dany unmistakably welcomes it and let's Drogo know that. The text is unambiguous here so there's no problem here.

The problem is that every night after this Drogo comes to Dany's tent and has sex with her, no foreplay, no endearments and certainly he doesn't ask her! So the problem is that Dothraki sexual relations are different to our own?

Apart from this part offending our sensibilities I don't find a single instance of Drogo mistreating or disrepecting Dany. Certainly Dany doesn't regard him as a having violated her and I think she would be as bemused as he would if this was regarded as rape. Sure she is miserable as she leaves the life she knows in Pentos and finds herself completely out of her element in the physically tiring world of a dothraki Khalasar with a sexually active husband.

I'm stepping into a minefield here but Dany never tries to reject him, to say "no" or to ward him off. By Dothraki standards Drogo is simply sleeping with his wife full stop. I think we would have to see Dany do something, anything, to plant the idea in Drogo's mind that she isn't willing - or accepting if a more passive view better reflects her state of mind - before we can bandy about what is a very strong word.

I actually think Dany and Drogo's story is a love story - she is "Daen Arys, moon of my life" and he is her "sun and stars". This is an arranged marriage as so many are in ASOIAF (and in many cultures in our world too) and it takes time for them to come to know each other. Before that Drogo treats her like he would any Dothraki woman who would have been taught to expect the nightly visit to the tent. Dany is an inexpereinced girl for whom sexual relations are at first an ordeal but as she gains her strength and confidence that changes. Indeed once Doreah teaches her a thing or two she teaches him a thing or two. And once she learns Dothraki she certainly doesn't ever rebuke him or consider putting him off (both things Cersei does with Robert).

I don't think she would see herself a victim and I find the serial rapist line too hard a judgment of Drogo. He may be a cross between Ghengis Khan and Conan the Barbarian but surely the wedding night shows he isn't a rapist. It's just his behaviour afterwards shows his Dothraki expectation of a husband and wife's relations doesn't meet our own.

#128 Queen Cersei I

Queen Cersei I

    The First and Last of Her Name

  • Banned
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,895 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:24 PM

I know you posted this as a "devil's advocate," but I think this is really reasonable.

Disclaimer: I really, really hope this doesn't come across as offensive, as it's being said with complete sincerity. Rape is a truly terrible thing that I don't support even culturally relativistically, but to call the Dany-Drogo thing rape (as it's written), is I think tossing the term a little more loosely than I'm comfortable with.

Well, let's put aside the age issue for the moment, since it's never really even been a big part of my arguments. And let's start with the Dany/ Drogo wedding night:

After a while he began to touch her. Lightly at first, then harder. She could sense the fierce strength in his hands, but he never hurt her. He held her hand in his own and brushed her fingers, one by one. He ran a hand gently down her leg. He stroked her face, tracing the curve of her ears, running a finger gently around her mouth. He put both hands in her hair and combed it with his fingers. He turned her around, massaged her shoulders, slid a knuckle down the path of her spine.

It seemed as if hours passed before his hands finally went to her breasts. He stroked the soft skin underneath until it tingled. He circled her nipples with his thumbs, pinched them between thumb and forefinger, then began to pull at her, very lightly at first, then more insistently, until her nipples stiffened and began to ache.

He stopped then, and drew her down onto his lap. Dany was flushed and breathless, her heart fluttering in her chest. He cupped her face in his huge hands and looked into his eyes. “No?” he said, and she knew it was a question.

She took his hand and moved it down to the wetness between her thighs. “Yes,” she whispered as she put his finger inside her.


Now, if you said that calling this would be "using the term rape too loosely", I'd understand your reasoning. However, using the wedding night as the standard of Dany/ Drogo sex is inaccurate. Not all sex they had went like the scene above. And I think when people use the term "rape," they are often thinking of the following:

Yet every night, some time before the dawn, Drogo would come to her tent and wake her in the dark, to ride her as relentlessly as he rode his stallion. He always took her from begind, Dothraki fashion, for which Dany was grateful; that way her lord husband could not see the tears that wet her face, and she could use her pillow to muffle her cries of pain. When he was done, he would close his eyes and begin to snore softly and Dany would lie beside him, her body bruised and sore, hurting too much for sleep.


There is an enormous difference between the above encounter and the one on Dany and Drogo's wedding night. That at least should be recognized.

Rape is a truly terrible thing that I don't support even culturally relativistically, but to call the Dany-Drogo thing rape (as it's written), is I think tossing the term a little more loosely than I'm comfortable with. Rape isn't just about a power imbalance between parties or just cajoling someone into sex-- it incorporates feelings of self-loathing, being used, feeling dirty, violation during and after the act, none of which Dany ever expresses.


I'd argue that she expresses all of these things. Let's quote that scene again, shall we?

Yet every night, some time before the dawn, Drogo would come to her tent and wake her in the dark, to ride her as relentlessly as he rode his stallion. He always took her from begind, Dothraki fashion, for which Dany was grateful; that way her lord husband could not see the tears that wet her face, and she could use her pillow to muffle her cries of pain. When he was done, he would close his eyes and begin to snore softly and Dany would lie beside him, her body bruised and sore, hurting too much for sleep.

Day followed day, and night followed night, until Dany knew she could not endure a moment longer. She would kill herself rather than go on, she decided one night.


Here Dany does not explicitely state, "I feel dirty, violated, and used. I must be a rape victim." But to argue that the following passage does not display (as you put it) "feelings of self-loathing, being used, feeling dirty, violation during and after the act" strikes me as ridiculous.

--Dany cries hysterically during the act

-- Dany is in such physical pain during the act itself that she cannot suppress her cries of pain

--Dany, in the well known trajectory of rape victims, is ashamed and blames herself. She takes care to hide her screams, and is grateful that Drogo does not see her tears. In a way, she seems to view it as her fault, something utterly typical and par for the course in rape victims.

--Dany is in such excruciating physical pain that she can't sleep at night, and is forced to stay up all night after Drogo takes her. Arguments do not really add up considering the following: This makes it clear that it is Drogo's sexually using Dany that is an undeniable cause of Dany's intense pain. Riding with the Dorthraki and having blisters and sores and raw skin all over her body may contribute greatly to the pain. But Danerys specifically notes that it is Khal Drogo (her "lord husband") coming in to her bed in the middle of the night and roughly fucking her that leads to the intense pain that makes her unable to sleep at night.

--Danerys is so miserable that she considers suicide. (The difficulty of Dorthraki life definitely contributes to it. But what Drogo is doing to her (which causes her far more misery and pain than the riding, not to mention psychological damage, if the thing were dealt with honestly) is crucial and paramount.) Looking at the placement of Danerys consideration of suicide in the text, it is clear these thoughts/ wishes are closely connected to the treatment she's receiving at Drogo's hands.

Edited by Queen Cersei I, 04 May 2012 - 08:29 PM.


#129 Lord Damian

Lord Damian

    Fist of the First Men

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 4,647 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:48 PM

From Dany's point of view, if she did not please Drogo, Drogo might hurt her but Viserys certainly WOULD hurt her. She did not want to marry him and was scared of him. Dany is naturally smart and was able to make Drogo's intimate times with her more than just sex. This was done by her just to survive her life. She wanted to kill herself before because it was torture and she was miserable. Die or adapt, that is the only choices she had. Viserys, even though he was not doing the raping, was an accessory. Tragic

#130 Qhorin Halfhand and Yoren

Qhorin Halfhand and Yoren

    Council Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,398 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:56 PM

Danny might had been raped the first night though I think Viserys threat and Viserys would be the one responsible in that case and not Drogo. And she was raped the next days by Drogo.

Edited by Qhorin Halfhand and Yoren, 04 May 2012 - 08:58 PM.


#131 butterbumps!

butterbumps!

    i will make them love me

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8,687 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 09:13 PM

Queen Cersei

If you read that passage (which I did, yet again, this morning when it was brought up), and think that her suicide is largely due to feelings of worthlessness and not to her overall physical pain, to which sex with Drogo contributes, then I will agree to disagree with you. We're not going to resolve this issue, because Dany is very vocal about her emotions, and I argue that if she felt this way, she would, yes directly state, that she felt this way. She expresses feelings of shame somewhere else in the book (of an asexual nature, if I'm not mistaken), so I think I'm entitled to view this for what it states it is.

Here Dany does not explicitely state, "I feel dirty, violated, and used. I must be a rape victim." But to argue that the following passage does not display (as you put it) "feelings of self-loathing, being used, feeling dirty, violation during and after the act" strikes me as ridiculous.


Since you bring it up, not only did she not state this explicitly, but never once in her memories of her time with Drogo does anything but positive thoughts enter her mind. And mind you, we are in her POV. Aside from a modern interpretation that projects our own image of what should be considered rape onto the circumstance in question, there is no reason, to my mind, to believe that this is a girl who believes she was violated by having sex with Drogo. In anticipation of the Stockholm Syndrome argument, I will save you the trouble and just state that I do not buy it, or that this is what Martin is intending.

To be honest, I'm not sure why you're trying to stick my nose in the proverbial pile of shit. I don't want to start a flame war, but I feel compelled to point out I was incredibly respectful to everyone's personal perspective on this regarding what I said and how I said it. My position remains that while I appreciate the sensitivity that almost everyone has regarding the issue of rape, and that we have moved blessedly far to where rape is now considered a heinous act, that perhaps, just perhaps we tip the balance a little too far, and that when we do, some of us may believe that this does a disservice to the feelings of supreme self-loathing, filth and violation that come when one believes they have been raped.

Edited by butterbumps!, 04 May 2012 - 09:13 PM.


#132 LordofWinter

LordofWinter

    Hedge Knight

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 268 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 09:39 PM

I'm of the opinion that even if a girl or woman doesn't feel that she has been victimized it doesn't mean that she has not been


My only problem with this statement (because I basically agree) is that it also works the other way. It's very often where a woman does not feel victimized and rightfully so, but other people decide that because THEY don't particularly like the circumstances of the situation that foulplay had to of taken place. Therefore taking upon themselves to discredit the opinions of said 'victim' but their memories as well.

#133 Queen Cersei I

Queen Cersei I

    The First and Last of Her Name

  • Banned
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,895 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 10:05 PM

To be honest, I'm not sure why you're trying to stick my nose in the proverbial pile of shit.


Well, I'm sorry you feel that way. Personally, I've struggled to keep my tone fair and civilized throughout this thread, and think I have done a fairly decent job of it myself.

As for my arguments against your previous post, since I never insulted you personally and argued resepectfully, I can't agree that I was disrespecting your or trying to stick your "Nose in the proverbial pile of shit." I was simply disagreeing with a number of statements you clearly made at an earlier point. Certainly you realized that people may well disagree with the opinions you posted here when you first posted them? And understood that such disagreements were not personal persecution, but simple disagreement with the arguments you put forth?

Queen Cersei If you read that passage (which I did, yet again, this morning when it was brought up), and think that her suicide is largely due to feelings of worthlessness and not to her overall physical pain, to which sex with Drogo contributes, then I will agree to disagree with you. We're not going to resolve this issue, because Dany is very vocal about her emotions, and I argue that if she felt this way, she would, yes directly state, that she felt this way.

Huh. Interesting. To me her stating that she "cannot go on like this any longer" and thinking of suicide directly after Drogo has finished violating her indicates that her depression, feelings of hoplelessness, and losing the will to go on have everything to do with Drogo violating her. Her mentioning of her tears, cries of pain, and inability to sleep each and every night after he is through with her bespeaks of intense pain, both physical and psychological.

As for "directly stating that she felt this way," I see that as some pretty unsubtle writing, generally uncharacteristic of GRRM. For Danerys to say, "Dany knew she could not endure a moment longer. She would kill herself rather than go on, she decided. This was clearly because Drogo has been violating my body and causing me intense physical and psychological suffering," Danerys reflected.*" (Italics mine.)

In my view, Danerys doesn't say this last part, because it is unnecessary to do so. Given the previous treatment just described, it seems that most would connect Danerys being violated by Drogo with her losing her will to live. Explicitely stating that this was why Dany wanted to die would be clunky writing miles away from GRRM's characteristic subtlety.

She expresses feelings of shame somewhere else in the book (of an asexual nature, if I'm not mistaken), so I think I'm entitled to view this for what it states it is. Since you bring it up, not only did she not state this explicitly, but never once in her memories of her time with Drogo does anything but positive thoughts enter her mind.


For most of her life, Danerys has lived with a sporadically abusive, mentally unhinged, dominating brother who physically beats her and eventually sold her like an object to attain his ends. (And, as we learned in ADWD, actually had planned-- and attempted to-- rape her.) The fact that Danerys has nothing "but positive thoughts" when she recalls Drogo does not, to me, indicate that Drogo never violated and mistreated her. It simply indicates that compared to the more blatant abuse of Viserys, Drogo comes off well in comparison. Dany's positive memories of Drogo do not indicate the goodness of the Khal, but merely the extremely lousy (and abusive) treatment Danerys has been subjected to her whole life.

there is no reason, to my mind, to believe that this is a girl who believes she was violated by having sex with Drogo.


And in my mind, Danerys does not have to view what Drogo did to her as a violation in order for it to be one. To me, the reader, it seems clear that Danerys is being violated.

My position remains that while I appreciate the sensitivity that almost everyone has regarding the issue of rape, and that we have moved blessedly far to where rape is now considered a heinous act, that perhaps, just perhaps we tip the balance a little too far, and that when we do, some of us may believe that this does a disservice to the feelings of supreme self-loathing, filth and violation that come when one believes they have been raped.


Interesting, but I don't think categorizing the following as a violation:

"Even the nights brought no relief. Khal Drogo ignored her when they rode, even as he had ignored her during their wedding, and spent his evenings drinking with his warriors and bloodriders, racing his prize horses, watching women dance and men die. Dany had no place in these parts of his life. She was left to sup alone, or with Ser Jorah and her brother, and afterward to cry herself to sleep. Yet every night, some time before the dawn, Drogo would come to her tent and wake her in the dark, to ride her as relentlessly as he rode his stallion. He always took her from behind, Dothraki fashion, for which Dany was grateful; that way her lord husband could not see the tears that wet her face, and she could use her pillow to muffle her cries of pain. When he was done, he would close his eyes and begin to snore softly and Dany would lie beside him, her body bruised and sore, hurting too much for sleep."

Implies "tipping the balance a little too far". Or doing "a disservice" to real rape victims.

Edited by Queen Cersei I, 04 May 2012 - 10:08 PM.


#134 another bastard

another bastard

    Squire

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 185 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 10:17 PM

Christ on a crutch. Consent for one time does not mean consent forever. Jesus.

The word "rape" has a real meaning in the real world, which is where we live and where the books were written.

I suppose one can debate whether she had the power to freely consent the first night. But after that, she was raped, repeatedly, OK? She did not consent all of those times. That's what the word "rape" means. Non-consensual sex.

Trying to figure out the meaning of "rape" by the fictional criteria of the Dothraki or Westeros is immaterial. Whatever they might be, according to the criteria of "rape" in the real world, she was raped.

Trying to figure out her own subjective understanding of what happened is also immaterial. Whatever it was, she was objectively raped.

Repeatedly.

Jesus.

#135 butterbumps!

butterbumps!

    i will make them love me

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8,687 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 10:34 PM

Well, I'm sorry you feel that way. Personally, I've struggled to keep my tone fair and civilized throughout this thread, and think I have done a fairly decent job of it myself.
As for my arguments against your previous post, since I never insulted you personally and argued resepectfully, I can't agree that I was disrespecting your or trying to stick your "Nose in the proverbial pile of shit." I was simply disagreeing with a number of statements you clearly made at an earlier point. Certainly you realized that people may well disagree with the opinions you posted here when you first posted them? And understood that such disagreements were not personal persecution, but simple disagreement with the arguments you put forth?


Here Dany does not explicitely state, "I feel dirty, violated, and used. I must be a rape victim." But to argue that the following passage does not display (as you put it) "feelings of self-loathing, being used, feeling dirty, violation during and after the act" strikes me as ridiculous.



You've made your case, and no matter how many times I'm confronted by the quote, I do not happen to read that passage the way do. Where you see self-evident proof of rape, I personally, do not. Do I think Drogo is a complete asshole for not being sensitive to Dany's saddlesores? Undoubtedly yes. Is Dany in physical pain? Undoubtedly yes. Does that passage make me believe that she feels personally violated? In my opinion, no.

Having just finished an exhausting paper on Foucault's sexual power dynamics, I'm a bit burnt out on this topic, and only entered the discussion because I saw a post that made sense to me, and wanted to articulate an alternative to other other responses.

#136 Marjie Eilie Myatt

Marjie Eilie Myatt

    Sellsword

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 141 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 10:40 PM

I wanted to quote, but I can't find the original.

I didn't have a problem with Dany idealizing her relationship with Drogo after his death, even long after his death. I have seen this happen with other widows/widowers. You want to shake them and say, "Really? Do you not remember the bickering? Do you not remember the drinking? Do you not remember the night he shoved you and said 'I want a divorce'?!"

That being said, Drogo was surely a rapist before his marriage; the Dothraki men raped as they conquered. I don't know why people want to make excuses for him by exonerating him in the marriage bed. He's exercising his cultural and political "rights" in that particular marriage, sure. And eventually she decides to improve the sexual relationship, instead of being a scared, ignorant, injured girl---to figure out how to enjoy and maybe even take charge of it, or take charge of her own pleasure, realizing that there are loving couples out there who apparently enjoy sex, so why can't she figure out how to?

It doesn't change the fact that the Dothraki are rapists. Like a whole bunch of soldiers and reavers and robbers and mercenaries in Westeros.

#137 Ygrain

Ygrain

    One who prefers walking around unlabelled

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7,667 posts

Posted 04 May 2012 - 11:46 PM

Correct me if I am wrong, because I have lent the book: isn't it said that the sex improved even before Dany's talk with Doreah? It went something like "her thighs grew strong and if she still crired at nights, it wasn't always with pain", and that she started to enjoy the life with the khalassar.

I'd also like to point out that physical and emotional exhaustion go hand in hand and her level of endurance and self-control would have been considerably lowered, before she became more fit. In connection with the above, I read the development of the relationship that Drogo must have applied "some" skill, or she would hardly ever have come to enjoy the sex later, but that her poor physical condition was virtually preventing her to become aroused the way she did on the wedding night. - Not excusing Drogo for not noticing or caring that his performance was less than satisfactory, but this is why I do not perceive her falling in love as implausible. There is development, and her taking over the charge does not happen out of blue.

@Queen Cersei I: would she be able to hide her tears and muffle her crying if she was hysterical? I don't think so. This is actually one more example of the inner strength she has: even feeling so bad, she still maintains some control.

#138 Megara

Megara

    Freerider

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 25 posts

Posted 05 May 2012 - 12:49 AM

I think we need to put a little bit of context into some of the quotes around here, it's not the same to copy-paste just one phrase without reading what came before, so here it comes:

" At first it had not come easy. The khalasar had broken camp the morning after her wedding, moving east toward Vaes Dothrak, and by the third day Dany thought she was going to die. Saddle sores opened on her bottom, hideous and bloody. Her thighs were chafed raw, her hands blistered from the reins, the muscles of her legs and back so wracked with pain that she could scarcely sit. By the time dusk fell, her handmaids would need to help her down from her mount.
Even the nights brought no relief. Khal Drogo ignored her when they rode, even as he had ignored her during their wedding, and spent his evenings drinking with his warriors and bloodriders, racing his prize horses, watching women dance and men die. Dany had no place in these parts of his life. She was left to sup alone, or with Ser Jorah and her brother, and afterward to cry herself to sleep. Yet every night, some time before the dawn, Drogo would come to her tent and wake her in the dark, to ride her as relentlessly as he rode his stallion. He always took her from behind, Dothraki fashion, for which Dany was grateful; that way her lord husband could not see the tears that wet her face, and she could use her pillow to muffle her cries of pain. When he was done, he would close his eyes and begin to snore softly and Dany would lie beside him, her body bruised and sore, hurting too much for sleep.
Day followed day, and night followed night, until Dany knew she could not endure a moment longer. She would kill herself rather than go on, she decided one night... "

I think it's a bit unfair to say that Dany was suffering only because Drogo was taking her every night: she was suffering because she had to ride all day long and was really tired and hurt, since she wasn't used to that kind of lifestyle. And also, her husband didn't seem to care for her at all, he would only come to her at night to have sex, adding more pain to her tired body. I think that's more than enough to put any girl into such stress that even death was an option.

But then she had the dragon dream, and the next day she woke up relieved, feeling with much more energy, and from that day on things went a lot better for her:

"From that hour onward, each day was easier than the one before it. Her legs grew stronger; her blisters burst and her hands grew callused; her soft thighs toughened, supple as leather. "

and later, after admiring the beauty of the Dothraki land:

"By then her agony was a fading memory. She still ached after a long day’s riding, yet somehow the pain had a sweetness to it now, and each morning she came willingly to her saddle, eager to know what wonders waited for her in the lands ahead. She began to find pleasure even in her nights, and if she still cried out when Drogo took her, it was not always in pain."

I've always thought that Dany's transformation was really wonderful, because she changes from being a scared, weak girl to a strong, happy and independent Khaleesi. And I also don't think she's got the Stockholm Syndrome, because it's not that she falls in love exclusivelly with Khal Drogo, she falls in love with the Dothraki way of life, with nature, the environment, everything; somehow, she felt much more like herself around her new people than with Viserys, and that speaks a lot about her, and brings sense to the events in later books.

#139 the trees have eyes

the trees have eyes

    Council Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 858 posts

Posted 05 May 2012 - 06:18 AM

Christ on a crutch. Consent for one time does not mean consent forever. Jesus.

The word "rape" has a real meaning in the real world, which is where we live and where the books were written.

I suppose one can debate whether she had the power to freely consent the first night. But after that, she was raped, repeatedly, OK? She did not consent all of those times. That's what the word "rape" means. Non-consensual sex.

Trying to figure out the meaning of "rape" by the fictional criteria of the Dothraki or Westeros is immaterial. Whatever they might be, according to the criteria of "rape" in the real world, she was raped.

Trying to figure out her own subjective understanding of what happened is also immaterial. Whatever it was, she was objectively raped.

Repeatedly.

Jesus.


Well I'm glad you cleared that up for us....

Applying our view of sexual relations and views of consent is pretty pointless here. Drogo expects to have sex with his wife each night and Dany knows what is expected of her. She doesn't get any pleasure from it at first - far from it - but she regards it as her duty to bear it, to "lie back and think of England" if you will and she never once says no or tries to deflect him.

If this offends our modern sensibilities then I think you need to put yourself in the context of the time and the place. There is nothing more powerful in human history than the development and acceptance of an idea and your idea of "objective rape" which is tantamount to saying "all men (or at least all Dothraki men) are rapists" has no context here.

I have no problem with the way Martin shows Dany adjusting to her new way of life and coming to love her husband. To say we would expect something different in our own world in our own age and our own society is besides the point.

#140 Lummel

Lummel

    Council Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 10,399 posts

Posted 05 May 2012 - 06:55 AM

...Applying our view of sexual relations and views of consent is pretty pointless here...If this offends our modern sensibilities then I think you need to put yourself in the context of the time and the place...


But then applying Dothraki standards is also pretty pointless. How Dany was treated becomes irrelevant because she doesn't have the right to have an opinion in that context and Drogo was probably at fault for not sharing her with his bloodriders. If we take that line then we are close to thinking that she just had to be broken in to her new life, sexually and physically, like a young horse - and look once she had been broken in she enjoyed it!

That seems to me to be a troubling way of looking at what happened.

We are exposed to a variety of views and moral attitudes in ASOIAF. From the moral compasses like Brienne, Davos, Septon Meribald and a few others to deeply disturbed characters like Ramsey Snow, but the picture of the Dothraki is bleak, rapists, murders, slavers, cash extorting parasites. The only person to have positive associations about the Dothraki is Dany who eventually finds some measure of person-hood amongst them. Given how bad we know her situation with Viserys was and how limited and unusual her upbringing how far can we rely on her judgement?

I certainly find the Dany storyline troubling, but then I'm getting used to the idea that ASOIAF is meant to trouble you and disturb you. It's not the kind of book to offer easy answers.

Edited by Lummel, 05 May 2012 - 06:55 AM.