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Wall Flower

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About Wall Flower

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  1. Wall Flower

    Gods of Jade & Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

    This sounds excellent. I am definitely adding it to my (very long) to-be-read pile. Thanks for the review.
  2. Wall Flower

    Gender relations in Westeros

    If it makes you feel any better, my understanding is that actual statistics on divorce rates suggest that they have gone down since the initial flurry of divorces after the easing of restrictive divorce laws. That's certainly the case in my country, Australia, where the rate has gone down from an initial surge of 4.6% per 1000 people to 2% per 1000 people. A quick google of American rates suggest that they have declined as well, with a current rate of 3.2% per 1000 people. Marriage rates are declining as well but those who do chose to marry are probably better prepared economically, are older and have lived together before taking the plunge. I think where greater gender equality comes into it (in the west at least), is that earlier generations of women had less options other than marriage and few options but to stay in an unhappy marriage. 'Unhealthy' might not be the best word but things that trouble me about Westerosi marriages (as a 21st century woman) are the subtly coercive nature of many marriages - where individuals don't get to chose whether to marry or who to marry - as well as the power imbalance inherent in a patriarchal society, where men have more power and opportunities than the women they marry. Cat and Ned had a reasonably healthy marriage but Cat would probably have had a much different experience if she had been married to a player like Brandon Stark or an abusive drunk like Robert Baratheon.
  3. Wall Flower

    I guess the Starks will just die out?

    Sansa was at least the product of a happy marriage. Whereas Elizabeth's father executed two of his wives (including Elizabeth's own mother) and two of her stepmothers died in childbirth. The marriages of her sister Mary 1 and her cousin the Queen of Scots were pretty disastrous, so maybe Elizabeth was wise not to marry. I don't think the same worries would apply to show Sansa who can always get powerful support from her royal brother if her husband tries to encroach on her power.
  4. Wall Flower

    Dany and child murder

    I don't know why discussions about Dany always seem to lead to someone effectively endorsing slavery and defending slave-traders. It doesn't matter how well slaves are treated. The basic premise of slavery is that it reduces human beings to the status of livestock or goods - to property that can be bought and sold. Slaves don't have human rights because the institution of slavery reduces them to being less than human. Whatever Dany's flaws, it is to her credit that she sees the slaves of Astapor and Mereen as human beings. It's not really clear what the position of the small folk in Westeros is but medieval serfs were unfree in the sense that they were tied to the land. However, they could not be bought or sold and there was a sense of mutual obligation between lord and serfs - protection and land to till in return for service to the lord. Westeros' small folk definitely need better legal rights but that's not an argument for the benefits of slavery. I note that it was a Targaryen king who passed laws to extend rights to the smallfolk and the good old nobility that Dany is seeking to rule, who viewed that as unwonted tyranny. Those who benefit from power don't give it up willingly. The three women weavers must have been making money because their former master wanted a cut of it. It's possible to weave other things besides tapestries or to trade tapestries to other cities. They died because it's not in the interests of the Sons of the Harpy for slaves to be seen to make a success of their freedom or for a free economy to get a foothold in Mereen. The most economically powerful city in Essos is Braavos, the city comprised of runaway slaves, who apparently did value their freedom and knew what to do with it. The idea of slavery being a choice ignores how often in real history a minority has been able to rule a majority. Power, wealth and the tactics of fear and terror can go a long way to cowing a population but I can't help thinking that Dany was only a catalyst for a boil-over that was brewing anyway.
  5. Wall Flower

    Dany and child murder

    Or Tywin Lannister!
  6. Wall Flower

    Dany and child murder

    The very fact that angry former-slaves could come to her with their grievances argues against her being a tyrant - more an imperfect saviour who acted without a fully realised plan and was faced with an intractable situation. Pretty sure those same slaves would never have had the opportunity to bring any complaints to the grand masters or, at least, not if they didn't want to face brutal punishment.
  7. Wall Flower

    Aussie Thread: Democracy Sausage

    Just a little random ASOIAF related thought. There are many reasons I really, really dislike SCOMO's relentless harping on the 'quiet Australians' but I realised the other day that the reason the phrase creeps me out is that it was reminding me of Roose Bolton's 'a quiet land and a quiet people'.
  8. Unless they have dragons. In which case, they are too powerful and have to be constantly restrained by reasonable men - even if those men have inexplicably lost most of their braincells and constantly give crap advice.
  9. Wall Flower

    Libraries in fiction

    Great library! It's just a shame that flesh-eating shadows tend to ruin the library experience.
  10. Wall Flower

    Aussie Thread: Democracy Sausage

    Thanks to you and the Anti-Targ for explaining the point I was trying to make much more eloquently. In the case of two Indigenous men who the Government proposed to deport, both were born overseas (in NZ and PNG) to Australian parents and have lived in Australia from early childhood. Neither had any idea that they were not actually Australian citizens. I imagine that not being aware of citizenship status is not unusual for people who have been in the country since childhood. I absolutely agree that people who have grown up in Australia and become criminals here should be our responsibility.
  11. Wall Flower

    Aussie Thread: Democracy Sausage

    Actually, I think it is New Zealand that is being made to accept our convicts. The NZ government is objecting to the deportation of people who have no or very few links to NZ other than citizenship - for example an Indigenous Australian man who had citizenship due to being born in NZ of Australian parents during their visit to the country.
  12. Wall Flower

    The North is finally independent

    Two rival claimants for the throne marrying and consolidating their claims would seem to be a sensible political solution.
  13. Wall Flower

    Why does Dany keep saying Jorah loves her?

    To be fair to Robb, I think that some of the 'wolves' running rampage in the Riverlands are Karstark men looking for Jaime Lannister. They are deserters from Robb's army and their lord has been executed by Robb for murdering hostages. There is likely some ravaging of the Westerlands by Robb's army though. Jorah committed an act he knew to be illegal, well outside the context of a war campaign, and fled to escape the consequences. The fact that both Ned and Robb are prepared to visit justice on their own bannermen and fellow members of the nobility actually speaks well of them as leaders, whatever their other flaws.
  14. Wall Flower

    The character assassination of Daenerys

    Well I hope that's right, as I would like Arianne to survive.
  15. Wall Flower

    Why are big name actors doing TV?

    Pay might be part of it but I also think that there are probably more varied and interesting parts for women in TV - especially, but not confined to, more mature actors.
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