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butterbumps!

Sansa + Ned: What’s the Difference?

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Another point id like to address is that Sansa is being Reconstructed to mirror Ned almost implicitly. Over the course of the series, shes torn down low and now, she's being rebuilt as a character and this is being written as a huge positive. Its almost mirroring how Ned was initially introduced. Ned, introduced as the Hero, only to be deconstructed and his sense of honor being ultimately seen as stupid. Sansa, the insipid Princess Classic, now being reconstructed to become a heroine. The increasing focus on Sansa's Northern identity in the later books highlights this. Right now, she looks like shes just sitting on her laurels waiting for Littlefinger or someone to rescue her. Thats actually not whats really happening. I actually believe that GRRM is going to make her look more like Ned was initially, but much less foolish and naive. Not letting her honor get in the way of a decision she makes. Im not saying Sansa will become our Main Hero, hardly, but i do think she will become A Main Hero. The true beginning of this process, in my opinion, is her snow castle scene. This illustrates just how close she is to her Northern/Stark identity and truly her father's daughter. Shes just seen so much in such a short time, her mind is going to work a bit differently than Ned's.


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It matters for me because I don't see it as a "love vs duty" situation. I think a important distinction between their actions is that Ned acted out of mercy and kindness in that situation. IMO we are reducing his MO to only duty and honor while he warning Cersei has more to do with mercy than honor and duty. Duty and mercy are often in conflict and that was a situation like that. He had a duty to his king and in a way he was going behind his king back because he didn't want the kids and even Cersei to get hurt. He is already making very difficult decisions, questioning what is right and wrong in that situation, trying to repress his own feelings of revenge against the Lannisters, facing more moral responsibility than any other character in the present moment but I admit he makes a huge blunder when he doesn't send his daughters to a safe place. Ned is so naïve about his daughters' safety that Varys has to remind him that she is in danger while in the dungeons. It would be callous and careless if Ned in the next scene hadn't put everything (his honor, his lorship, his life, his family name, his king, his duty, etc.) below Sansa's life. In AGOT Sansa doesn't make a sacrifice like that.

Actually, mercy plays role at only one situation, when Ned realizes that lives of three children are at stake. But, his quest is completely "honor vs. love". Ned puts everything aside, and blindly goes investigating. When Trident incident happened, and when he realized what he is doing to his daughter, he could have said "Screw this, Sansa, go home." But no, he choose the more painful road. He knew that he has to find out who killed Jon Arryn, and he put it as his priority, alongside protecting Robert's life. His daughters came last, especially Sansa. As a parent, Ned should have noticed the troubling signs of Sansa's love for Joffrey. He should have sat and talked to her, he should have made her see Joffrey in his real suit. The saddest thing, and greatest failure of Ned is that he broke the engagements off not because Joffrey was wrong for his daughter, but because Robert was callous about Ned's troubles. Ned was an honorable man, but he should have known his priorities. He should have understood what comes first. And in that, he made the same mistake Sansa made. Because, in the great equation of love vs honor, love kicks honor's ass every time. Ned forgot that and unfortunately, he paid for it.

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The saddest thing, and greatest failure of Ned is that he broke the engagements off not because Joffrey was wrong for his daughter, but because Robert was callous about Ned's troubles. .

Actually Joff's nature more than likely did play into Ned wanting to cancel it

"When you're old enough, I will make you a match with a high lord who's worthy of you, someone brave and gentle and strong. This match with Joffrey was a terrible mistake. That boy is no Prince Aemon, you must believe me."

I cannot find anything else about the betrothal by Ned after this, but to me, it seems as though he realized that his daughter marrying Joff was a bad idea because of his nature. Not because of any political dissent(though that likely did play a part in his motivation as well)

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Sansa's denial would be her negative role in all this.

She would not deny the duty part as it could excuse some of her actions.

IMO, what Sansa's in denial about in AGOT is NOT her duty to marry Joffrey. What she IS in denial about is that Joffrey and Cersei are horrible people. She's "refusing to perceive the more unpleasant aspects of external reality," - refusing to perceive that they are both vicious people. Why is she in denial of this? Well, she's a child who has to marry that vicious person; it would be much more pleasant to believe that there's been a misunderstanding and he's really actually a good guy, or at least redeemable; even many an adult woman would rather not believe she's doomed to an endless hell of a marriage and convinces herself her man is just misunderstood.

And until Ned is arrested she has no reason to believe that anything she's doing is so horrible that it needs to be 'excused.' Ned killed Lady at Cersei's order, and never told Sansa that what he was doing was wrong, nor told Sansa that he'd had to do it even though he disagreed with it because Cersei was dangerous and Sansa had to be extremely careful in her dealings with her. He saw that Sansa had decided to be in denial about Joffrey's character, and he did not make the least attempt to confront her about her denial and teach her a more realistic view of him and the situation. Maybe he shrank from doing it because he'd also have to explain that she'd have to marry Joffrey anyway because honor.

But whatever the reason, Ned's silent obedience to Cersei in killing Lady, his refusal to enlighten Sansa about the dangers they're in, his silent acquiescence to Sansa's continued betrothal, contributes to Sansa's impression that what Cersei and Joffrey have done is no big deal - so Ned has unintentionally helped foster Sansa's denial about how going to Cersei is also not a big deal (he didn't notice that he'd done it because he'd been too busy with his own denial of the fact that he could not get out of the KL situation safely AND with honor).

Also: what Mladen and butterbumps! said.

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Butterbumps! congratulations for the thread! This is all so fun and insightful to read even if all do no agree :)


On my first read of AGoT I was mad at noble Ned for not turning back to WF at the Trident and not taking his family before Honor to a lazy King.


And I sure will look better in how I read POV, thanks to all of you for that instruction.


Keep it going please


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Sansa is not a villain, but it can be frustrating to continuously root for her only to see her go from one bad situation to another, knowing that she did have better choices.

Well im glad we agree she is obviously not a villain. Thats a start.

Anyway, what do you mean choices? Sansa has had no say at all in any of the situations she has been placed in. she is an 11 year old girl and other people have made decisions for her all throughout her life. the only time she ever made anything close to a "choice" that put her in a bad situation was when she innocently told cersei her dad was taking he away. Ned was going to get himself killed anyway, so its hardly Sansas fault.

I am struggling to think up what other decisions she has made that have been bad or put her in a bad position. As far as im aware, she has been PUT in bad situations, and had to react to them.

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This gets repeated often. But its not necessarily true.

Can you elaborate? why isnt it necessarily true?

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Can you elaborate? why isnt it necessarily true?

If you are under the assumption Sansa can escape, then she isn't held hostage, then Ned(possibly) doesn't confess(he might break under the black cells but that's a giant if as well, or there could be additional torture, another hypothetical), then Joff maybe doesn't execute him(Cersei admits the public nature of the execution was problematic).

Its all conjecture.

We've never seen what happens if Sansa never told Cersei.

Not enough info to act like anything is a fact.

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If you are under the assumption Sansa can escape, then she isn't held hostage, then Ned(possibly) doesn't confess, then Joff maybe doesn't execute him(Cersei admits the public nature of the execution was problematic).

Its all conjecture.

We've never seen what happens if Sansa never told Cersei.

Not enough info to act like anything is a fact.

Alright, fine. If I derail this thread into a "did sansa get ned killed" discussion, the lemoncake will kill me. So lets leave it at this.

My prior point still stands though, that the vast majority of the time sansa has not had ANY say at all in anything. And so there are no poor decisions on her part, it isnt her fault people try to use her. the only "choice" thats even debatable is the ned one, and as I said above, lets just drop it.

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Well im glad we agree she is obviously not a villain. Thats a start.

Anyway, what do you mean choices? Sansa has had no say at all in any of the situations she has been placed in. she is an 11 year old girl and other people have made decisions for her all throughout her life. the only time she ever made anything close to a "choice" that put her in a bad situation was when she innocently told cersei her dad was taking he away. Ned was going to get himself killed anyway, so its hardly Sansas fault.

I am struggling to think up what other decisions she has made that have been bad or put her in a bad position. As far as im aware, she has been PUT in bad situations, and had to react to them.

First it was not an innocent decision to tell Cercei of her dads plan. She wanted the Robert or Cersei to command Ned to allow her to stay. It was childish and naive sure, but innocent... no.

Besides what has been discussed...

The indecision in killing Joff (Granted it would have cost her her life).

The decision to trust Dontos with the Tyrell marriage.

The decision to Trust the Tyrells.

The decision to not trust Tyrion.

The decision to not go with Sandor.

The decision to remain quiet about Littlefinger killing Lysa.

Her inability to learn about the people around her on more than a superficial level.

Her inability to be proactive.

Her inability to think outside the box.

Her inability to self reflect.

Her inability to have her own goal.

Yes she is a young girl and a series of bad to worse things have happened to her. Her actions are explainable as such, but frustrating at the same time, especially when you have Arya doing everything in her power, for good or bad, to achieve her goals.

She has been a victim for 5 books... it is frustrating lol

Just as frustrating as watching Ned's path, but we only had that for 3/4 of one book lol

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First it was not an innocent decision to tell Cercei of her dads plan. She wanted the Robert or Cersei to command Ned to allow her to stay. It was childish and naive sure, but innocent... no.

Besides what has been discussed...

The indecision in killing Joff (Granted it would have cost her her life).

The decision to trust Dontos with the Tyrell marriage.

The decision to Trust the Tyrells.

The decision to not trust Tyrion.

The decision to not go with Sandor.

The decision to remain quiet about Littlefinger killing Lysa.

Her inability to learn about the people around her on more than a superficial level.

Her inability to be proactive.

Her inability to think outside the box.

Her inability to self reflect.

Her inability to have her own goal.

Yes she is a young girl and a series of bad to worse things have happened to her. Her actions are explainable as such, but frustrating at the same time, especially when you have Arya doing everything in her power, for good or bad, to achieve her goals.

She has been a victim for 5 books... it is frustrating lol

Just as frustrating as watching Ned's path, but we only had that for 3/4 of one book lol

ok, hang on.

nearly all of those things you list are not part of the scope of this thread, and I'd prefer if we didn't make any broad generalizations like this, as it will inevitably derail.

I'm trying to just limit this to aGoT, and more precisely, the way our introduction to Sansa and Ned color the way we perceive the subsequent actions that unfold (in aGoT, and more specifically, the actions that are parallel).

So, I'd prefer if we try to restrict making broad generalizations and getting beyond aGoT for here.

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ok, hang on.

nearly all of those things you list are not part of the scope of this thread, and I'd prefer if we didn't make any broad generalizations like this, as it will inevitably derail.

I'm trying to just limit this to aGoT, and more precisely, the way our introduction to Sansa and Ned color the way we perceive the subsequent actions that unfold (in aGoT, and more specifically, the actions that are parallel).

So, I'd prefer if we try to restrict making broad generalizations and getting beyond aGoT for here.

It was only in response to E-Ro... was not trying to derail :(

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The decision to Trust the Tyrells.

The decision to not trust Tyrion.

One has to be amused about how you condemn her for trusting the Tyrells, yet then equally condemn her for not trusting Tyrion. Especially, when she would fully know that Tyrion is fully on board with the Lannister's general goals while in contrast the Tyrells are actually playing their own game that is not fully aligned with the hated Lannisters. Honestly, from this and previous posts I get the nagging feeling you are some Tyrion fanboy that is all bent out shape that Tyrion didn't get the pretty girl to love him reward.

Her inability to learn about the people around her on more than a superficial level.

She is able to pick up that Loras had the potential kingslayer which was one of the chief reasons the Tyrells had to kill Joffrey.

She is able to pick up that Lyn Corbray is likely a LF plant among the Lord Declarants.

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It was only in response to E-Ro... was not trying to derail :(

No, I know, but past experience tells me a list like that will often explode. Because I'm using Ned and Sansa as a case study to illustrate a broader point about character bias in introductions, I just didn't want to get too carried away with a full blown Sansa debate.

as a side note, I'm curious if some of those generalizations you've made might change a bit in light of challenging our pre-existing biases, as well as controlling for introductory crafting of the characters and their interrelations.

One has to be amused about how you condemn her for trusting the Tyrells, yet then equally condemn her for not trusting Tyrion. Especially, when she would fully know that Tyrion is fully on board with the Lannister's general goals while in contrast the Tyrells are actually playing their own game that is not fully aligned with the hated Lannisters. Honestly, from this and previous posts I get the nagging feeling you are some Tyrion fanboy that is all bent out shape that Tyrion didn't get the pretty girl to love him reward.

just to keep this within the scope of the thread, I'd prefer we don't cover events past aGoT, and limit the focus to the Ned-Sansa symmetrical plotline.

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One has to be amused about how you condemn her for trusting the Tyrells, yet then equally condemn her for not trusting Tyrion. Especially, when she would fully know that Tyrion is fully on board with the Lannister's general goals while in contrast the Tyrells are actually playing their own game that is not fully aligned with the hated Lannisters. Honestly, from this and previous posts I get the nagging feeling you are some Tyrion fanboy that is all bent out shape that Tyrion didn't get the pretty girl to love him reward.

]

Is this some kind of thinly veiled personal attack?

If I were him I'd see it that way

<____<

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Is this some kind of thinly veiled personal attack?

If I were him I'd see it that way

<____<

It is not really meant as personal attack, only a statement that it seems that he is particularly frustrated about Sansa not liking Tyrion. Though, I guess it could come off as personal snipping and if so I apologize.

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It is not really meant as personal attack, only a statement that it seems that he is particularly frustrated about Sansa not liking Tyrion. Though, I guess it could come off as personal snipping and if so I apologize.

It is not about a tyrion sansa ship... it is about her knack to trust beautiful people and not trust ugly ones which does not seem to be touched on much.

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It is not about a tyrion sansa ship... it is about her knack to trust beautiful people and not trust ugly ones which does not seem to be touched on much.

She befriends both Sandor and Dontos, neither of which are the most beautiful of people. However, this is beyond the point of this thread.

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