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Alyn Oakenfist

Dany and Irri was pretty disturbing

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9 minutes ago, Curled Finger said:

In her eyes their sex would have been on par with an autograph. 

"Sir Jaime! Will you sign my maidenhead, please?" :huh:

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4 minutes ago, Travis said:

"Sir Jaime! Will you sign my maidenhead, please?" :huh:

Given Pia's profession I think the maidenhead is out of the question.

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Just now, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Given Pia's profession I think the maidenhead is out of the question.

I know it. I was mainly referring to any young lady in Westeros, not just Pia. My bad. I should have been more clear. I imagined a mob of teenage ladies-in-waiting flocking around shouting for "autographs", lol.

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1 minute ago, Travis said:

I know it. I was mainly referring to any young lady in Westeros, not just Pia. My bad. I should have been more clear. I imagined a mob of teenage ladies-in-waiting flocking around shouting for "autographs", lol.

I mean while questionable in the reasoning behind it, I can't really see anything particularly immoral in it. Heck, look at half the words rock stars back in the 70s and 80s to see a more modern day example of that. It is consensual afterwards, it's just that it's consensual for all the wrong reasons.

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2 minutes ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

I mean while questionable in the reasoning behind it, I can't really see anything particularly immoral in it. Heck, look at half the words rock stars back in the 70s and 80s to see a more modern day example of that. It is consensual afterwards, it's just that it's consensual for all the wrong reasons.

I don't disagree with you.

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1 hour ago, Curled Finger said:

I'm glad you made a list.  I've been recalling Pia meeting Jamie.  In her eyes their sex would have been on par with an autograph.  That's very sad.

Yeah... I find Pia very disquieting overall. Its the typical warzone gore brutalisation of women, and a story not normally told. Scary as hell, because you know if war would happen, as a woman you might have to choose between becoming a Pia or die.

Being put in Pia’s shoes might be a worse fate than anything else in this series. If you get flayed its inbearable pain for a few days and then you die, but if you’re a Pia you’ll never be worth as much to others as you were before, and I can’t even begin to imagine how you repair you self-respect, autonomy and agency after living through that. And gross guys will keep thinking its ok to rape you because they’ve already ”had her a hunnerd times” :frown5:

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48 minutes ago, Sigella said:

Being put in Pia’s shoes might be a worse fate than anything else in this series. If you get flayed its inbearable pain for a few days and then you die, but if you’re a Pia you’ll never be worth as much to others as you were before

Kinda sounds like D&D if I'm honest

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14 hours ago, Lollygag said:

And as for equating an employee/employer relationship to that of slave/owner...don't do that.

If Irri *truly* had free choice, she could decline all sexual duties based just on her own say-so with no explanations, justifications, reasons or consequences. But while she clearly didn't have the option to choose with whom she slept with and how, she clearly wasn't tortured by it either, at least in any obvious way***.

It is not clear how unfree she was, at least after Drogo died and Daenerys "freed" Irri.

And Irri does happen to have sexual desires for her own pleasure - and dares express them in front of Daenerys:

Quote

It is known that you are almost a cow. Rakharo does not bed with cows.

Daenerys does object, but her objection is ambiguous as to what she is objecting to:

Quote

Rakharo is blood of my blood. His life belongs to me, not you.

What´s unclear here is whether Daenerys is objecting to Irri and Jhiqui trying to guard Rakharo without as much as his own agreement, or to anyone bedding Rakharo, period. Daenerys no longer has slaves, but she does have bloodriders, who she does not regard as free to leave her after they initially joined her as bloodriders. At one point, Daenerys considered bedding a bloodrider but decided against.

If Rakharo wanted to bed Irri, would either Rakharo or Irri be in trouble with Daenerys for that?

Irri wishes that Rakharo bedded her, but he does not seem to have done so. Irri is under no obligation to Rakharo to not bed someone else. Bedding Daenerys is not a pleasure for Irri, like bedding Rakharo might be - it is more a domestic chore - but one she has not yet had strong objections to doing.

And Irri clearly is not free to choose to sleep with Rakharo if Rakharo specifically wants to not sleep with Irri.

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47 minutes ago, Jaak said:

It is not clear how unfree she was, at least after Drogo died and Daenerys "freed" Irri.

And Irri does happen to have sexual desires for her own pleasure - and dares express them in front of Daenerys:

Daenerys does object, but her objection is ambiguous as to what she is objecting to:

What´s unclear here is whether Daenerys is objecting to Irri and Jhiqui trying to guard Rakharo without as much as his own agreement, or to anyone bedding Rakharo, period. Daenerys no longer has slaves, but she does have bloodriders, who she does not regard as free to leave her after they initially joined her as bloodriders. At one point, Daenerys considered bedding a bloodrider but decided against.

If Rakharo wanted to bed Irri, would either Rakharo or Irri be in trouble with Daenerys for that?

Irri wishes that Rakharo bedded her, but he does not seem to have done so. Irri is under no obligation to Rakharo to not bed someone else. Bedding Daenerys is not a pleasure for Irri, like bedding Rakharo might be - it is more a domestic chore - but one she has not yet had strong objections to doing.

And Irri clearly is not free to choose to sleep with Rakharo if Rakharo specifically wants to not sleep with Irri.

A slave would get a whipping, if she failed to do her duty to her master or mistress.  Like the one Tyrion raped in Selhorys.  There's no evidence that I can see that Irri would face reprisals if she said no to Daenerys.

As an aside, one of the silliest scenes in Spartacus (the film) is the "oysters and snails" scene, where Crassus is trying to seduce his slave. A Roman master would simply order him to get upstairs and take his clothes off. 

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5 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Irri is not hired for her sexual services, and she doesn't get paid anything for them

I'm not sure how you define doing something you don't like for somebody, and not getting paid in any way for it, but to me it smells an awful lot like slavery.

Irri does not have well defined work duties, remuneration or security of tenure. That Irri is now "free" means Daenerys will not refuse Irri if Irri wishes to leave - but it does not give Irri a recourse against unfair dismissal, or demotion.

Unpaid work in hope of eventually getting rewarded for it - a hope not backed by express prior contracts - has actually been quite common. Compare a maid hired as a scullery maid and paid as such who volunteers to prove she can cook, too. She is under no obligation to do so, and is not specifically paid extra - but as a scullery maid not known to have any other skills, she is the first candidate for redundancy.

A nonsexual employee to boss´ girlfriend is regarded as a promotion by many. And many employees have taken initiative to seek such a "promotion". Of course, many, quite possibly even rather more employees do not like such a "promotion", and besides not taking any initiative, dislike boss taking such initiative!

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13 minutes ago, Jaak said:

Irri does not have well defined work duties, remuneration or security of tenure. That Irri is now "free" means Daenerys will not refuse Irri if Irri wishes to leave - but it does not give Irri a recourse against unfair dismissal, or demotion.

Unpaid work in hope of eventually getting rewarded for it - a hope not backed by express prior contracts - has actually been quite common. Compare a maid hired as a scullery maid and paid as such who volunteers to prove she can cook, too. She is under no obligation to do so, and is not specifically paid extra - but as a scullery maid not known to have any other skills, she is the first candidate for redundancy.

A nonsexual employee to boss´ girlfriend is regarded as a promotion by many. And many employees have taken initiative to seek such a "promotion". Of course, many, quite possibly even rather more employees do not like such a "promotion", and besides not taking any initiative, dislike boss taking such initiative!

Are modern, Western European. employment laws even a thing in the world of these books?

Edited by SeanF

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5 hours ago, Travis said:

"Sir Jaime! Will you sign my maidenhead, please?" :huh:

It really was a disturbing scene.  Though Jamie knows no desire for any woman but Cersei we see him treat Pia with great kindness later during his return tour of the Riverlands.  He stuns himself with some stirring for Bracken's camp follower, Hildy.  Pia told Jamie what every young fan would say, you are my hero and I think that added to Jamie's conscience--had a part to play in his wanting to be better.    I thought he was very gallant on their second encounter.  

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3 hours ago, Sigella said:

Yeah... I find Pia very disquieting overall. Its the typical warzone gore brutalisation of women, and a story not normally told. Scary as hell, because you know if war would happen, as a woman you might have to choose between becoming a Pia or die.

Being put in Pia’s shoes might be a worse fate than anything else in this series. If you get flayed its inbearable pain for a few days and then you die, but if you’re a Pia you’ll never be worth as much to others as you were before, and I can’t even begin to imagine how you repair you self-respect, autonomy and agency after living through that. And gross guys will keep thinking its ok to rape you because they’ve already ”had her a hunnerd times” :frown5:

Pia really is tragic and I applaud you seeing this great sadness in our brief moments with her.  So many fascinating major, major secondary, major tertiary and not to mention all the minor characters--one silly little camp follower either blips on your radar or doesn't.   There is much to be concerned with in this story.  Pia's tale is just sad and soul breaking--as you so nicely said "typical warzone brutalization of women".   Compared to Oxcross it may not be exciting enough, but it is so moving when you've got the whole story.  Casualties of war.  Collateral damage.  I'm glad Jamie was able to be the hero for her that she thought he was.  Even the Kingslayer understands Pia's tragedy.  That small second encounter forever puts this Lannnister in much better light for me at least.  

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On 1/28/2021 at 7:59 PM, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Yeah, I'm not saying there was coercion, but you can't really say it was fully consensual either.

 

5 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

True, but as she points out she sees it as her service/duty. It's a testimony of the various ways slavery still scars the freed men and women, and it's a bit messed up that Dany goes along with it despite knowing full well what that is.

 

4 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Irri is not hired for her sexual services, and she doesn't get paid anything for them

I'm not sure how you define doing something you don't like for somebody, and not getting paid in any way for it, but to me it smells an awful lot like slavery.

Dany is doing her thing when Irri wakes up and then takes a hand on her own initiative.  At the most you could read Dany's pause in her actions as an unspoken invitation to / expectation for Irri to take over but why would she not voice or indicate this?  There is no pattern of behaviour or previously created expectation to guide Irri here, she reacts to Dany's obvious sexual frustration as she thinks best.

The relationship between Dany and her handmaids is more complex and much closer than the mistress / servant or employer / employee analogies being used: they are part servants, yes, but also part companions and friends and there is a bond of affection and loyalty that transcends transactional assessments.

What I think you're objecting to is the power/status imbalance and the assumption that Irri's background renders her unable to assess the situation and undertake actions in a way that we can be comfortable with.  It's certainly true that we would not approve of this power imbalance today and there are no comparable situations (Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky, President and White House Intern? - which obviously fails as a comparison on a number of levels) but real life as well as fiction doesn't always put people together on the same social footing.  Dany does after all tell her the next morning that she is free and does not have to do "that".

It's also worth remembering Doreah was the bed slave while Irri's brief was to teach Dany riding:

A Game of Thrones - Daenerys II

Her brother Viserys gifted her with three handmaids. Dany knew they had cost him nothing; Illyrio no doubt had provided the girls. Irri and Jhiqui were copper-skinned Dothraki with black hair and almond-shaped eyes, Doreah a fair-haired, blue-eyed Lysene girl. "These are no common servants, sweet sister," her brother told her as they were brought forward one by one. "Illyrio and I selected them personally for you. Irri will teach you riding, Jhiqui the Dothraki tongue, and Doreah will instruct you in the womanly arts of love." He smiled thinly. "She's very good, Illyrio and I can both swear to that."
 
On 1/29/2021 at 9:47 PM, Sigella said:

Is there actually any sex in this series that isn't morally grey?

Can you say why you think Ned and Catelyn's lovemaking is morally grey?  I read it that a couple married for fifteen years with five children have sex and the wife hopes she may become pregnant again while she is still able.  The sex may have been more high tempo and urgent than a slow comfortable screw (due to the stress of Robert's visit, the fear of separation with Robert expecting Ned to leave WF for KL - and what the king wants is a command not an invitation - and the hidden anxieties' preying on both their minds, particularly Ned's about Jon)  but there is nothing in the scene to suggest violence or abuse.  You would have to read Catelyn as a timid mouse or a battered wife and Ned as a serial abuser to assume she could not or did not tell him he was being too rough.  After those fifteen years and five children there's a presumption they know how to act around each other in bed.

A Game of Thrones - Catelyn II

So when they had finished, Ned rolled off and climbed from her bed, as he had a thousand times before. He crossed the room, pulled back the heavy tapestries, and threw open the high narrow windows one by one, letting the night air into the chamber.
The wind swirled around him as he stood facing the dark, naked and empty-handed. Catelyn pulled the furs to her chin and watched him. He looked somehow smaller and more vulnerable, like the youth she had wed in the sept at Riverrun, fifteen long years gone. Her loins still ached from the urgency of his lovemaking. It was a good ache. She could feel his seed within her. She prayed that it might quicken there. It had been three years since Rickon. She was not too old. She could give him another son.
 
15 hours ago, Lollygag said:

In the US, it's mostly a huge no-no both in professional decorum and by contract to be in a romantic relationship with another employee. Here, if you want to date, you have to hide it or one or both needs to change jobs.

What, really?  If you mean between employer / direct line manager and employee / direct subordinate I can see why it would be frowned on or kept hidden: the fear of pressure because of unequal positions and the assumption of favouritism but I don't see how a contract could enforce restrictions on personal relations outside the workplace.  If between employees I'm even more surprised and I can't see how these contracts would be legally enforceable at all. [UK here].

1 hour ago, Sigella said:

Yeah... I find Pia very disquieting overall. Its the typical warzone gore brutalisation of women, and a story not normally told. Scary as hell, because you know if war would happen, as a woman you might have to choose between becoming a Pia or die.

Being put in Pia’s shoes might be a worse fate than anything else in this series. If you get flayed its inbearable pain for a few days and then you die, but if you’re a Pia you’ll never be worth as much to others as you were before, and I can’t even begin to imagine how you repair you self-respect, autonomy and agency after living through that. And gross guys will keep thinking its ok to rape you because they’ve already ”had her a hunnerd times” :frown5:

The admittedly thin silver lining to this cloud is that Jaime's squire and Pia seem to quite happily engage in a healthy / normal sexual relationship.  Whether this is particularly realistic given her physical and sexual mistreatment is another matter but in terms of what's on page she seems to be a survivor recovering from her experiences.

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On 1/28/2021 at 3:59 PM, Rose of Red Lake said:

Dany feels guilty about it because she knows deep down Irri is doing what sex slaves do. Dany says her kisses tasted of duty - the implication is, Irri is doing it because she feels she has to.

Irri was enslaved and her purpose from the beginning was "to please her khaleesi." Learn how to see through the courtesies. 

This.

And, for the record, I was very disappointed that Daenerys repeated her mistake (sure, she felt bad about it and has since never gone back to it) in Meereen.

 

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7 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Thanks for putting that image in my head. Couldn't go on with my day without it.

True, but as she points out she sees it as her service/duty. It's a testimony of the various ways slavery still scars the freed men and women, and it's a bit messed up that Dany goes along with it despite knowing full well what that is.

Normal handmaidens aren't called that because they give handies.

All very bad joking and innuendo aside, that bold speaks to a depth of character in you.  Inasmuch as I think there may be too much reading into these scenes, this obviously moves you.  You've been a very good sport here.  How should this scene have gone down for you to be alright with it?  Would it be better if they were only friends or should Dany have refused Irri at first approach?  I get you feeling for Irri.  Tell us not how it bothers you as you've stated your case.  Is Irri's incalculable vulnerability too much for the situation?  

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16 minutes ago, Curled Finger said:

All very bad joking and innuendo aside

Thanks, I try my best!

17 minutes ago, Curled Finger said:

this obviously moves you.  You've been a very good sport here.  How should this scene have gone down for you to be alright with it?  Would it be better if they were only friends or should Dany have refused Irri at first approach?  I get you feeling for Irri.  Tell us not how it bothers you as you've stated your case.  Is Irri's incalculable vulnerability too much for the situation?  

Not really. I mean I get the emotional point GRRM is trying to make, and I love it, like for as bad as the slavers are characterized  (really they're worse than cartoon villains) and for all the pretty stupid mistakes Dany makes, the representation of all the various evils and harms slavery does is incredible. This is just one of the many little facets. The stories Dany gets in early ADWD are another example.

Sure it's no 12 year a slave (because that movie/book has the benefit of being based on a poor fellow's actual suffering), but it is incredibly well done. So kudos on GRRM's part in that regard.

Don't really care about Irri though, if I'm honest. She's a cardboard cut out, and I can't for the love of me think of one character trait she has.

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@the trees have eyes

I gave motivation in first post and it still stands; aching hoping for kids but nothing of pleasure.

Also they live in an arranged marriage neither of them chose, which they were eventually happy with, but still.. Cat might have wanted Brandon and Ned Ashara for any number of years before finding their love. Certainly not black or white to me.

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2 hours ago, Alyn Oakenfist said:

Don't really care about Irri though, if I'm honest. She's a cardboard cut out, and I can't for the love of me think of one character trait she has.

She’s proud, fierce and loyal.

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3 minutes ago, Sigella said:

She’s proud, fierce and loyal.

Those are not her traits, though, those are the traits of Dany's entire khalasar

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