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Bakker XXXIV: Waiting for Grimdark (update: it’s here!)

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This is the perpetual thread devoted to the works of R. Scott Bakker, primarily the books in the Second Apocalypse series, the first of which is The Darkness that Comes Before.

The current publication status is 5 volumes of novels, including The White-Luck Warrior, as well as 2 short stories, The False Sun, and The Four Revelations of Cinial'jin, with part 1 of a 3rd, The Knife of Many Hands, available for purchase. This thread contains spoilers for these publications.

Since Bakker's writing uses layers of revelation, newcomers are strongly advised to finish the books before coming here; otherwise the spoilers will rot your soul. Eternally.

Most denizens of this thread have also read Bakker's non-fantasy novels Neuropath and Disciple of the Dog, but the spoiler policy is unclear. You are advised to hide crucial plot points in those novels

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ominous title, as G stuff never arrives when awaited.

i'd've gone with something more upbeat, such as 'sranc is the fruit of the trackless steppe. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. Theres sranc-kabobs, sranc creole, sranc gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. Theres pineapple sranc, lemon sranc, coconut sranc, pepper sranc, sranc soup, sranc stew, sranc salad, sranc and potatoes, sranc burger, sranc sandwich. That, thats about it.'

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Going off the thread title, from the man himself:

People like to bag things, particularly when they don't like those things. The person who walks their dog without a baggie is the person who leaves his or her dog's shit on the lawn.

People like to bag things because bags have handles, and handles make complicated things easy to handle. Bags are handy-dandy tools.

Grimdark is a bag. All genres are bags.

The question of what can be put into this bag is simply a question of interpretative juice. Anything can be called 'grimdark,' even dear old Gramma, given enough interpretation. If we don't put Gramma in the bag, it's because we don't want to get dog shit on her, not because dog shit has to be in there, but because it takes less interpretative juice to put dog shit in there, and so there's a chance we'll be packing Gramma with said feces.

Anyone who argues the 'essence' of grimdark has confused a handy-dandy tool for divine revelation, and should seek counselling immediately.

Anyone who argues that the term 'grimdark' can't be a bag because the term was originally used for X, should, on the pain of inconsistency, cease using all terms which do not possess their original meaning. Silence, as they say, is golden.

Anyone who argues that the contents most easily placed in the grimdark bag are the wrong contents because they are 'stale' should be congratulated for so scrupulously checking the best-before dates. Where might these be found again?

Anyone who argues that the contents most easily placed in the grimdark bag are the wrong contents because they are 'immoral' should be congratulated for standing closer to God. Where does she stand again?

Anyone who argues that the contents most easily placed in the grimdark bag are the wrong contents because they 'distort history' should be congratulated for growing up comfy, safe, and warm, surrounded by many soulful encouragements and benevolent sentiments, then sent to a Syrian refugee camp.

Grimdark is a bag, one most easily filled by frightening and troubling things. It gives us a way to handle them.

I appreciate that some people don't like frightening and troubling things, but please... Don't blame the bag.

From Mark Lawrence's blog a few days ago (thanks homie!)

http://mark---lawrence.blogspot.com/2015/02/after-grimdark-grim-gathering-responds_5.html?m=1

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the RSB needs to be careful lest we read everything he says as indicative of the direction of TUC.

e.g., 'bag' might be in ancient greek marsipos:

marsupial (adj.) with -al (1) + Modern Latin marsupialis "having a pouch," coined from Late Latin marsupium "pouch, purse" (Classical Latin marsuppium), from Greek marsipion, diminutive of marsipos "bag, pouch"

which ties back to the khora as womb.

i.e., the marsipos of genre as the birthplace of what precisely? things that cause fear and trembling? why do you hate babies so much mr. wombplague?

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Probably ties back into the Ark - a giant womb you can carry with you from damned planet to damned planet.



And the horns are clearly giant kangaroo ears.


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living ships are gross. like that one in farscape that's always popping out babies. no one issued you a vagina, soldier.

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Going off the thread title, from the man himself:

From Mark Lawrence's blog a few days ago (thanks homie!)

http://mark---lawrence.blogspot.com/2015/02/after-grimdark-grim-gathering-responds_5.html?m=1

Bakker deserves an award for either evading criticism or missing the point.

Hard to tell sometimes which it is.

eta:

I think Kellhus is letting Fanayal wreck everything so the great ordeal has nothing to go back to.

So they will go and do some really horrible thing he's got in mind, rather than balk at it and go home.

Hmmm. I don't know. I think it's pretty clear the Ordeal is already going toward their deaths? How many can even think they'll return from Golgotterath?

I think Kellhus is more interested in having Zeum take over the Empire lest the Ordeal fail. In fact I think the Ordeal is more to buy time for humankind than assure victory. The No-God will walk....but Kellhus will affect it somehow, possible from the Inside if it's his body they stick into the Carapace.

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affect it somehow, possible from the Inside if it's his body they stick into the Carapace

i usually bullshit these discussions, but my non-ironic prediction is that end of VI will parallel end of III where nasty battle occurs as quasi-background to AK's discussion with his kindly interlocutor, which here will be NG. he's been wanting to testify to it since the circumfixion, after all. instead of pissed off CuS, pissed off DA shows up. DA probably survives, as his text is compendium of the first holy war, so reasonable to assume he survives to see the second one.

AK answers the TELL ME stuff and NG, thoroughly satisfied, either returns to its dogmatic slumber or puts on a gimp suit to be join threesome with kelly & esmi.

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i usually bullshit these discussions,

Fuck me, I just ordered a shit ton of Derrida books...

...AK's discussion with his kindly interlocutor, which here will be NG. he's been wanting to testify to it since the circumfixion, after all. instead of pissed off CuS, pissed off DA shows up. DA probably survives, as his text is compendium of the first holy war, so reasonable to assume he survives to see the second one.

I like all this but I don't think DA survives. He's already old for one, but I also see his arc ending with the realization that his whole life has amounted to nothing save perhaps damnation.

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oh, the derrida stuff is genuine! too much work just for a joke.

DA goes full on qirri-chanv addict and survives through series three?

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Qirri/Chanv provides a pretty good plot explanation for keeping Akka healthy and hale far into the future.




By the way...since we know that Qirri is salted Nonman Quya, is that not a pretty clear indication that Chanv is salted sorcerers? So the boy at Shimeh who was collecting "salt" that would be his fortune cause it's basically the most expensive narcotic out there?


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Qirri/Chanv provides a pretty good plot explanation for keeping Akka healthy and hale far into the future.

By the way...since we know that Qirri is salted Nonman Quya, is that not a pretty clear indication that Chanv is salted sorcerers? So the boy at Shimeh who was collecting "salt" that would be his fortune cause it's basically the most expensive narcotic out there?

I think quirri is just ashes, not salt.

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I think quirri is just ashes, not salt.

I'm inclined to agree. A brief consideration of chemistry will tell you that the production of a salt (usually through exposing metals to acid) is very from the production of ashes (one reaction releases gas, one absorbs gas from the air - the salt loses mass compared to the acid and the metal, the ash gains weight through oxidisation).

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Qirri/Chanv provides a pretty good plot explanation for keeping Akka healthy and hale far into the future.

By the way...since we know that Qirri is salted Nonman Quya, is that not a pretty clear indication that Chanv is salted sorcerers? So the boy at Shimeh who was collecting "salt" that would be his fortune cause it's basically the most expensive narcotic out there?

That exactly what I've stated before, Chanv is the remains of a salted sorcerer. Not many if any, agreed with me. I'm with ya Trisk. That's was my exact thought during the same scene.

Although, I've been thinking a little on this. We know that Chanv side effects include, translucent skin, longevity and increased intellect. Everytime we get a description of Aurang, the first thing described, is the translucent skin. Inchoroi clearly have immortal life spans, and the increase in intellect, well, Inchoroi seem to be above average intellect. I'm not saying its remains of Inchoroi, but another possibility, is its something that being pushed by the Consult to their advantage. Don't know what that is though.

But, my gut instinct says that its the remains of salted sorcerer's.

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