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Why did Sansa dislike being Northern?

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Elegant Woes said:

Hardly the words of a girl who despises her Northern roots. The reason why she's eager to leave is because a) she's a girl and will eventually be married of to a southern Lord anyway. b) her hobbies and interests are more compatible with South than the North. c) youthful restlessness. She's young and doesn't want to be cooped up in one place forever. She wants to travel and have an adventure.

For me it's similar to a kid that grew up in the country or on a farm and has only seen big cities from watching movies. All the colors, spectacle, the people, the clothes...it's so different and probably exiting. Because just like in Sansa's stories, a lot of kids movies only show the good but not the bad. But that doesn't mean that when the kid gets to see an actual city (or even live there), that they resent where they come from or abhor the life and the country/farm.

Edited by Mystical

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I'm not sure if Sansa didn't dislike the North. But I am sure that Sansa didn't appreciate what she had until it was gone. Then again...how could she?

It's The Little Mermaid syndrome.

What Sansa experienced and is experiencing is common among all kids (and even adults) who grew up one way while admiring, loving or being inspired by another way of living. Then they finally get what they wanted and they're like "How do I get rid of this..."

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17 hours ago, Elegant Woes said:

Sansa never hated being a Northener and Stark. In fact she takes great pride in it. That's apparent in her third AGOT chapter:

Hardly the words of a girl who despises her Northern roots. The reason why she's eager to leave is because a) she's a girl and will eventually be married of to a southern Lord anyway. b) her hobbies and interests are more compatible with South than the North. c) youthful restlessness. She's young and doesn't want to be cooped up in one place forever. She wants to travel and have an adventure.

Just because Sansa's idea of an adventure may not conventional to the average fantasy reader doesn't make it any less meaningful. All in all these are valid points that shouldn't diminish Sansa's connection to the North and her family. 

Good Answer!

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I sometimes think that the Sansa character is intended as a bit of comic relief.  I've occasionally read stories, or seen movies, that start out in the  real-life present-day world.  The main character is someone who reads a lot of fantasies, and wishes he could live in a world full of lords and ladies and wizards and dragons.  Then one day, he discovers a magic crystal or a dimensional portal that transports him to such a world, and gets to live the fantasy.  But the magical world turns out to have a downside that wasn't in the books, and he has to fight or struggle to survive and have a happy ending to the story.

Sansa is like one of those characters ... except that she already *does* live in a world of lords and ladies and wizards and dragons.  But she wants to live in a place that's even more magical and chivalrous than the place where she already is.  Seems like GRRM is poking a little fun at the genre, and maybe giving us a lesson about appreciating the world we live in now, instead of having simplistic daydreams about something better.

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@Aebram You are right. Sansa is many ways a reflection of the typical fantasy reader. She has a preconceived notion how things are supposed to go and takes people at face value. This is something the readers do too when they first read AGOT. We expected the story and characters to follow a certain path and when AGOT deviated from that we were flabbergasted. Sansa is no different. George is using her as a vehicle to deconstruct the fantasy genre. 

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On 3/11/2020 at 6:35 AM, The hairy bear said:

It should be stressed that arguably Sansa's two main role models (her mother and septa Mordane) were Southrons. And of course, Sansa herself was half Southron too.

And it should also be taken into account that Sansa's likely future would involve marrying some Southern lord. So grooming her to crave for the life of a Southern court would be part of her education.

That was Catelyn's plans for her.  And a girl who dreams of handsome knights in shining armor is not going to be happy in the north.  She's raised by an Andal. 

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On 3/10/2020 at 5:47 PM, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Yeah, what @Ser LeftwichLeftwich said. Fwiw I don't think she disliked being northern she just wanted to hear the singers, attend the parties etc. If those things were offered to her while in the North she would be fine with being northern. My point being that I don't think she had anything against the place, itself or the culture but rather the entertainment it lacked, if that makes sense? 

I’ve always wondered if GRRM has it in for musicians/singers. Most that show up receive some nasty fate; Marillion is tortured into saying he killed Lysa then killed, there’s one who lost his tongue after singing a song Joffrey didn’t like, Symon Silvertongue is cannibalized, Dareon is killed by Arya, and the Blue Bard is given over to Qyburn.

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13 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

I’ve always wondered if GRRM has it in for musicians/singers. Most that show up receive some nasty fate; Marillion is tortured into saying he killed Lysa then killed, there’s one who lost his tongue after singing a song Joffrey didn’t like, Symon Silvertongue is cannibalized, Dareon is killed by Arya, and the Blue Bard is given over to Qyburn.

It sure seems like it. Iirc @Seams made some connection between the singers also? 

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As others have pointed out, there's nothing to really suggest that Sansa disliked being northern. It's more that she found the North boring, and wanted to live in a court filled with feasts, jousts, and balls. She actually probably would have enjoyed living in White Harbor.

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3 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

As others have pointed out, there's nothing to really suggest that Sansa disliked being northern. It's more that she found the North boring, and wanted to live in a court filled with feasts, jousts, and balls. She actually probably would have enjoyed living in White Harbor.

Imagine if Wylis Manderly had a son. Then Sansa would be less likely to be on the table when Joffrey shows up. Always thought Robert was stupid with that one; he knew  what Joffrey was like and he betrothed Joffrey and Sansa anyways.

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

It sure seems like it. Iirc @Seams made some connection between the singers also? 

I think Sansa's affinity for singers and Tyrion's search for the Crofter's Daughter, Tysha, are both searches for The Truth, if there is such a thing. It may be apocryphal.

This is a past post about silencing singers.

Of course, a full examination would have to consider the Children of the Forest / singers - who tried to silence them by cutting down the Heart Trees?

I think we'd also have to look at Catelyn's transformation to Lady Stoneheart, when she lost her voice. Sansa has a lot of parallels with Catelyn / Lady Stoneheart.

On 3/10/2020 at 5:47 PM, Lyanna<3Rhaegar said:

Fwiw I don't think she disliked being northern she just wanted to hear the singers, attend the parties etc. If those things were offered to her while in the North she would be fine with being northern. My point being that I don't think she had anything against the place, itself or the culture but rather the entertainment it lacked, if that makes sense? 

Agreed. Bran wanted to be a knight, which was an Andal thing. I don't think that means that he wanted to leave the North or that he didn't like Winterfell.

If there was any doubt, Sansa's connection to the Heart Tree at King's Landing and her snow castle scene at the Eyrie confirm that she loves snow, Winterfell and the Old Gods. She liked the idea of being a queen, but got over that when she saw what a jerk Joffrey was.

Another set of clues is fruit: in the Winterfell crypt, Robert tells Ned that peaches represent the Reach and southron life. Sansa never shows an interest in peaches, as I recall. She is horrified by the blood orange thrown by Arya that stains her dress. She rejects fruits offered by Littlefinger. She does eat a pear, with juice running down her face, in the scene with Littlefinger, and she is grateful when Ser Dontos hits her over the head with a melon morningstar. We would have to figure out the meaning of the pear and the melon/lemon symbolism, but I don't think they have to do with the south, as peaches do (if I am correctly interpreting Robert's conversation with Ned).

Fwiw, I think Harry the Heir might represent the glass house at Winterfell. Sansa's attraction to him might represent her desire to rebuilt the glass house at Winterfell, where fruits could grow in the winter. But that's a story for another day.

 

Edited by Seams

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When people speak about Sansa and North, I always remember this wonderful quote made by Tyrion

Quote

You might have knelt, damn you. Would it have been so bloody hard to bend those stiff Stark knees of yours and let me keep a little dignity?

Tyrion VIII, ASOS

Simply, it just shows what Sansa is made of. Even if she has her mother;s looks, even if she knows all the Andal hymns and songs, the core itself is, to use Harry Potter's reply to Minister for Magic, Stark through and through. 

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Sansa has no issues with 'the North'. She has issues with the fact that here family, while prestigious and technically powerful, sucks in every meaningful part of proper aristocratic life. Lord Eddard cannot even keep a singer in his castle, much less stage some tourneys or feasts or masquerades.

Life in Winterfell is just boring.

Note that not only Sansa finds life there boring but Bran, too. He looks forward to go to court and to become a knight of the Kingsguard.

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On 3/20/2020 at 9:51 PM, Risto said:

When people speak about Sansa and North, I always remember this wonderful quote made by Tyrion

Simply, it just shows what Sansa is made of. Even if she has her mother;s looks, even if she knows all the Andal hymns and songs, the core itself is, to use Harry Potter's reply to Minister for Magic, Stark through and through. 

Except that Torrhen Stark bent his knee to Aegon the Conqueror. Granted, he did so to keep dragons from destroying the North (and, possibly, to keep Aegon from crossing the river and entering the North) but bending the knee was ever-after associated with the Starks.

So not bending her knee may be unique to Sansa. Or maybe she has become a Free Folk member at the point when she fails to bend her knee. That might really show her love of the north - the part that is beyond the Wall.

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Sansa does not dislike being Northern, she is just also interested in things beyond the North. And as others have pointed out, her future is most likely to marry a noble, or even a king's son, in the South and thus she's getting prepered for the life that her parents have planned for her. Being interested in other cultures does not necessitate that you dislike your own.

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3 hours ago, Lion of the West said:

Sansa does not dislike being Northern, she is just also interested in things beyond the North. And as others have pointed out, her future is most likely to marry a noble, or even a king's son, in the South and thus she's getting prepered for the life that her parents have planned for her. Being interested in other cultures does not necessitate that you dislike your own.

Why would Ned want Sansa to marry south?

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On 3/12/2020 at 12:40 PM, Aebram said:

I sometimes think that the Sansa character is intended as a bit of comic relief.  I've occasionally read stories, or seen movies, that start out in the  real-life present-day world.  The main character is someone who reads a lot of fantasies, and wishes he could live in a world full of lords and ladies and wizards and dragons.  Then one day, he discovers a magic crystal or a dimensional portal that transports him to such a world, and gets to live the fantasy.  But the magical world turns out to have a downside that wasn't in the books, and he has to fight or struggle to survive and have a happy ending to the story.

Sansa is like one of those characters ... except that she already *does* live in a world of lords and ladies and wizards and dragons.  But she wants to live in a place that's even more magical and chivalrous than the place where she already is.  Seems like GRRM is poking a little fun at the genre, and maybe giving us a lesson about appreciating the world we live in now, instead of having simplistic daydreams about something better.

She's one of the most superficial fantasy tropes I've ever read

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On 3/12/2020 at 1:14 PM, Elegant Woes said:

@Aebram You are right. Sansa is many ways a reflection of the typical fantasy reader. She has a preconceived notion how things are supposed to go and takes people at face value. This is something the readers do too when they first read AGOT. We expected the story and characters to follow a certain path and when AGOT deviated from that we were flabbergasted. Sansa is no different. George is using her as a vehicle to deconstruct the fantasy genre. 

:agree:

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2 hours ago, Angel Eyes said:

Why would Ned want Sansa to marry south?

For his family's future connections, to ensure that Sansa has a good life with a family he has reason to think will provide her with a good life or that Sansa herself seems interested to marry a southen lord/heir. And if Ned isn't smart enough to see or think of these things, Catelyn is and can, and can presumably get it done. 

Or at least that's how I see it. The fact that there seems to be no serious marriage plan or idea in Eddard's or Catelyn's heads regarding Sansa tells me that they probably haven't any set ideas on whom she shall marry and by consequence in what new home her life would be formed after her marriage. Hence I would think that they were still looking for a potential husband for her and that make me think that the Northern lords, whom they would have much contact, perhaps were not what they were looking for when looking for a husband for Sansa.

I could be wrong of course but this is the impression that I have.

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