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sansatyrell

[SPOILERS] Tyrion and Sansa

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I agree with BurningCandle that the context of the society has to be taken into account. We can't judge Tyrion by a modern standard and give the rest of Westeros a pass. Tyrion actually acts by a higher standard than his culture. Not consummating the marriage makes Tyrion an even bigger figure of ridicule at court.

I guess you also believe Tywin to be a wonderful father to Tyrion, seeing how many times in Westeros dwarf babies are left to die. Yet, Tywin didn't abandon baby Tyrion in a forest and actually provided for him. Despite the shame he felt from having a dwarf for a son.

Truly Tywin is the best father of the series.

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Yeah, the distinction between an "arranged" marriage and a "forced" marriage that I've seen on several boards is so slight as to be meaningless. Regardless of what we call it, all of these marriages come with pressure to accept that is essentially irresistible. The difference between Sansa's situation and the ordinary one, like that her mother faced, is that Sansa is being ordered to marry by people she despises who hold her prisoner while Catelyn was ordered to marry by someone who she loved and trusted. In reality Catelyn could not say no either. Perhaps Lord Tully wouldn't have had her carried to the sept but the practical pressure was enormous.

Exactly what I'm thinking, thanks.

This is not directed at you, but your post is a decent enough entre for a rant:

It bugs the hell out of me when people decide to apply 21st century standards of morality to judge the morality of characters in ASOIAF, and then bring that perspective into general thread discussions. It really amounts to the same argument being repeated endlessly. Yes, we all know Westeros doesn't treat women right, or many men for that matter. That there is horrible oppression by the wealthier classes, etc. etc. etc. We all get that, and virtually every scene and character relationship can be analyzed or discussed on that basis, but it again just amounts to the exact same argument. If folks want a "sexism in Westeros" discussion, or "Class oppression in Westeros" discussion, then those are certainly valid topics on their own. But for some folks to drag that in to every thread as if the rest of us need to be educated, and which inevitably results in virtually every character being deplorable becaused they're all acting in accordance with that morality, is pointless. Worse, it leads to endlessly circular, tangential discussions that derail actual discussions of the series/books as presented.

Newsflash -- Tyrion is not a 21st century feminist, nor is Sansa.

I agree with you, I am very tired of it but at the same time it just seems to become the basis for so much discussion that it seems there is little to be done about it.

First of all, there is no need for your spoiler tags. There's spoiler in the thread title, we're clearly discussing the books, and you've kept lots of things that would be spoilers for show watchers out of spoiler tags (including the fact that they get married at all). That's why I've been removing them; they are annoying to click on.

Tyrion Lannister, Lord Protector of Winterfell. The prospect gave him a queer chill.

I want her, he realized. I want Winterfell, yes, but I want her as well, child or woman or whatever she is. I want to comfort her. I want to hear her laugh. I want her to come to me willingly, to bring me her joys and her sorrows and her lust.

These are just quotes I found with a quick look.

I was keeping Lancel in spoiler tags because I thought there was still a chance it would be a major plot point, and I've had people complain about it at me inside spoiler threads before. But very well I'll leave them out. The fact Sansa & Tyrion get married is pretty well established to be a foregone conclusion, that's why I didn't bother with that.

As for this passage, yes, he considers it. I am not debating that, I am saying he doesn't seem to covet it the way you suggest. He thinks of it, he considers it, and then he acts in blatant contradiction to those desires. In fact this passage suggests that he hopes she will come to love him. This passage shows he hopes at least in part for her happiness.

When you said that you don't think he minimizes the damage to her, I think you are wrong. He openly tells Jofferey were to stuff his bedding ceremony, and then when he is threatened makes a joke at his own expense to divert attention, because he doesn't want her to suffer through this. He climbs on the back of a fool to put his cloak on her instead of demanding she bow to him like a slave.

I am not saying his motives are 100% pure and angelic, I'm saying he's trying to be a decent person to her and spare her grief.

Cat and Ned's marriage was arranged, but they also consented to it. (It's not mutually exclusive.) Presumably all sexual acts within their marriage were also consensual.

We are not going to agree on this because I still see this as conjecture, but my own opinion is also based on conjecture. To me, the fact that she was promised first to Brandon and then married his brother proves that she was sold just like Cersei, whether or not she found the guy likable after the fact is imo besides the point.

Note that she says 'no' to the marriage only to be told that she will be beaten and forced to comply if she doesn't go through with it. Sansa's obeying here not out of some cultural indoctrination but because she is being physically threatened.

He ends up not benefiting at all (though he does attempt... I think twice... to use northern lands as bargaining chips). Now he's got a big target on his back by everyone who wants to use Sansa for her claim. This is why, earlier in the thread, I called marrying Sansa one of Tyrion's greatest blunders.

She said no to Cersei, yes. Cersei told her she'd be dragged kicking and screaming, yes. That doesn't mean that she had to lie there meekly and take whatever he did, she could have fought anyway. My point is she's been taught her entire life to surrender. She's a woman, and in that society she might as well be just a maidenhead because that is all she's good for in their society.

Surely the fact that he felt as though he'd been slapped implies that on some level he had expected (or at the very least hoped) to consumate the marriage at some point.

Yes it does. But hoping that one day she would like him enough to allow him to do so, instead of forcing himself on her, is my whole point. He hopes, he does not take.

No, Tywin and Kevan suggested it first. Tyrion calls everything a farce... he's a very sarcastic guy who likes making fun of just about everything (part of why he's so well liked). Nevertheless, he chose to go through with it.

Tywin and Kevan suggest it to Tyrion. They give Tyrion a choice, not Sansa. All Tyrion had to do was say nothing to Sansa. The fact that he brought it up at all proves that he was trying to give her a little control, spare her a little sorrow.

At any rate, I think I'm getting off topic. My whole original point was that I don't believe, in this instance, that they whitewashed the character for the show. I think this is in line with his personality at this time in the books. Now in Dance of Dragons? Absolutely not. But we aren't there yet.

And I don't agree with them leaving out the bit about what his father made him do to Tysha, that is whitewashing, but in this case I do not think it is.

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I guess you also believe Tywin to be a wonderful father to Tyrion, seeing how many times in Westeros dwarf babies are left to die. Yet, Tywin did abandon baby Tyrion in a forest and actually provided for him. Despite the shame he felt from having a dwarf for a son.

Truly Tywin is the best father of the series.

Which makes Stannis a terrible King, seeing as he actually thinks about his people during war. Makes Tywin an awesome High Lord, I KNEW IT.

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Tywin and Kevan suggest it to Tyrion. They give Tyrion a choice, not Sansa. All Tyrion had to do was say nothing to Sansa. The fact that he brought it at all proves that he was trying to give her a little control, spare her a little sorrow.

A minute before the wedding, because he couldn't find the time to tell her beforehand. Yes. Way to go.

I don't really blame Tyrion that much during his marriage, but he isn't an enlightened visionary or something.

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she was 13

12, almost 13

Truly Tywin is the best father of the series.

Obviously. Was this ever in doubt?

As for this passage, yes, he considers it. I am not debating that, I am saying he doesn't seem to covet it the way you suggest.

He wants Winterfell. It couldn't be stated more plainly. I don't know what more you think I'm suggesting.

He thinks of it, he considers it, and then he acts in blatant contradiction to those desires.

He deluded himself into thinking everything was going to work out. He went into that bedroom expecting to consumate his marriage.

In fact this passage suggests that he hopes she will come to love him. This passage shows he hopes at least in part for her happiness.

Right, and that hope is symptomatic of one of Tyrion's great weaknesses: his complete blindness when it comes to women.

When you said that you don't think he minimizes the damage to her, I think you are wrong. He openly tells Jofferey were to stuff his bedding ceremony, and then when he is threatened makes a joke at his own expense to divert attention, because he doesn't want her to suffer through this. He climbs on the back of a fool to put his cloak on her instead of demanding she bow to him like a slave.

Though he initially makes poorly thought out efforts to disuade Joffrey, by the end of their marriage he is making no efforts at all to counter Joffrey's threats or even assure Sansa in private.

Also, not making her bow to him like a slave? How romantic.

I am not saying his motives are pure and angelic, I'm saying he's trying to be a decent person to her.

I agree that Tyrion does attempt to be gallant towards her (so far as he understands gallantry).

She said no to Cersei, yes. Cersei told her she'd be dragged kicking and screaming, yes. That doesn't mean that she had to lie there meekly and take whatever he did, she could have fought anyway.

... and then be beaten and made to do it anyways. Sansa is living under the constant threat of physical violence... even when the soldiers aren't in the room with her.

Yes it does. But hoping that one day she would like him enough to allow him to do so, instead of forcing himself on her, is my whole point. He hopes, he does not take.

And part of my point is that this is pretty delusional. Especially considering he pretty much makes no effort at establishing an actual relationship with her (well, except for once, but she has to shoot that down to maintain her Dontos cover).

The fact that he brought it at all proves that he was trying to give her a little control, spare her a little sorrow.

Well, he might like to think that, but really it was an empty choice that made Tyrion feel better... not Sansa.

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I don't really blame Tyrion that much during his marriage, but he isn't an enlightened visionary or something.

That is a totally fair comment. I wish more Sansa fans could share your sense.

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He climbs on the back of a fool to put his cloak on her instead of demanding she bow to him like a slave.

You must have missed the bit where he repeatedly tugs at her dress wanting her to kneel for him, which she refuses to do. Something he later begrudges her for.

It was Joffrey who had him stand on a fool's back, after he got tired of their interchange not Tyrion voluntering to do it out of the kindness of his heart.

At any rate, I think I'm getting off topic. My whole original point was that I don't believe, in this instance, that they whitewashed the character for the show. I think this is in line with his personality at this time in the books. Now in Dance of Dragons? Absolutely not. But we aren't there yet.

Name one dark act that Peter has performed on the show?

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Tyrion Lannister, Lord Protector of Winterfell. The prospect gave him a queer chill.

Sure, he would like Winterfell. Who wouldn't?

I want her, he realized. I want Winterfell, yes, but I want her as well, child or woman or whatever she is. I want to comfort her. I want to hear her laugh. I want her to come to me willingly, to bring me her joys and her sorrows and her lust.

Yes, quite the horrible motives you've listed there. He wants to comfort her, hear her laugh, and come to him willingly. I mean, that's horrible! He actually wants to love her, treat her well, and have her love him! He also, somewhat naively, believe she might actually come ot love him if he was good to her. Outrageous!

Regardless, the point is that you're judging him based on motives on which he did not act.. He had enough decency (more than you'd see elsewhere in Westeros) to suggest an alternative suitor who was closer to her age, despite these motives. Doing the right thing despite having selfish motives to the contrary is exactly what makes him admirable. Refusing to bed her despite wanting Winterfell, and despite wanting her physically, is what makes those actions noble. Lots of people have selfish motives. The difference between good and bad people is that good restrain the indulgence of those motives when it would hurt others, and the bad indulge them anyway.

Pointing out that Tyrion had selfish thoughts and interests (thought hardly immoral ones) only emphasizes the virtue he displayed by not acting on them.

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I guess you also believe Tywin to be a wonderful father to Tyrion, seeing how many times in Westeros dwarf babies are left to die. Yet, Tywin did abandon baby Tyrion in a forest and actually provided for him. Despite the shame he felt from having a dwarf for a son.

Truly Tywin is the best father of the series.

I wasn't aware that I was making an over-the-top and tearful tribute to Tyrion's general character in my post. I was writing of judging a character's individual actions in societal context. So to take your example of Tywin, I would analyze his act of raising his dwarf son as an unusual act that makes him a more complicated character. It potentially says many things about him. But in no way does that mean I think his general character or his quality as a parent is defined by that one act.

Name one dark act that Peter has performed on the show?

They have him blackmail and threaten Lancel, with a hint of the tune of the Rains of Castamere tune in the background. They frame that scene to show a certain ruthlessness. By contrast, the scenes with Slynt and rooting out the informer in the small council are portrayed lightheartedly.

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Well, he might like to think that, but really it was an empty choice that made Tyrion feel better... not Sansa.

Ha, even when he tries to do a nice thing where he stands to gain nothing he does for selfish reasons eh? That might be a good sign that you're going over the top with your dislike.

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They have him blackmail and threaten Lancel, with a hint of the tune of the Rains of Castamere tune in the background. They frame that scene to show a certain ruthlessness. By contrast, the scenes with Slynt and rooting out the informer in the small council are portrayed lightheartedly.

I would hardly argue that they portrayed that as a dark act, instead it was shown as means to display how awesome and intelligent he is.

I wasn't aware that I was making an over-the-top and tearful tribute to Tyrion's general character in my post. I was writing of judging a character's individual actions in societal context. So to take your example of Tywin, I would analyze his act of raising his dwarf son as an unusual act that makes him a more complicated character. It potentially says many things about him. But in no way does that mean I think his general character or his quality as a parent is defined by that one act.

I don't care about societal values in this context not raping a sacred girl or killing your deformed baby isn't a noble act. Instead, it just means you are not a complete and utter monster.

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I guess you also believe Tywin to be a wonderful father to Tyrion, seeing how many times in Westeros dwarf babies are left to die. Yet, Tywin did abandon baby Tyrion in a forest and actually provided for him. Despite the shame he felt from having a dwarf for a son.

False analogy. I don't recall reading that the nobility in Westeros commonly put their dwarf babies out to die. Peasantry might do it sometimes simply because of a mouth to feed that could not work, marry, etc.., but I don't recall it being stated that was common among the nobility. Dwarves were said to be "mocked", which would be difficult if they were generally killed at birth. And of course, there were Penny and her brother, further demonstrating the lack of wholescale dwarf-slaughtering.

So no, I give him no points for not slaughtering Tyrion when he was born, though I take away massive points for the way he treated him afterwards. Which is perfectly fair given that aime proves that not all Westerosi are cruel to dwarfs in their own family.

Which makes Stannis a terrible King, seeing as he actually thinks about his people during war. Makes Tywin an awesome High Lord, I KNEW IT.

Another false analogy. Where is it ever established that Kings are not supposed to think about their people during war, such that Stannis is violating some sort of social taboo by doing so? We see Renly being nice to the poor. Robb considering them as well. And Stannis, as you pointed out.

Tyrion, in contrast turned down his legal right to bed Sansa, and defied expectations that he do so as well, while amongst people who mocked him for his refusal. In his time and place, that was a noble act.

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False analogy. I don't recall reading that the nobility in Westeros commonly put their dwarf babies out to die. Peasantry might do it sometimes simply because of a mouth to feed that could not work, marry, etc.., but I don't recall it being stated that was common among the nobility. Dwarves were said to be "mocked", which would be difficult if they were generally killed at birth. And of course, there were Penny and her brother, further demonstrating the lack of wholescale dwarf-slaughtering.

So no, I give him no points for not slaughtering Tyrion when he was born, though I take away massive points for the way he treated him afterwards. Which is perfectly fair given that aime proves that not all Westerosi are cruel to dwarfs in their own family.

Most marriages in Westeros are not forced liked how Sansa's marriage was, thus Tyrion receives no points for not raping her.

Tyrion only receives points if Tywin does.

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Most marriages in Westeros are not forced liked how Sansa's marriage was, thus Tyrion receives no points for not raping her.

Not from you, but apparently from others. Including the author, who would not have included all those scenes with him arguing against the marriages, telling her she could have Lancel, refusing to bed her despite being ordered, willing to take public abuse for not doing so, humiliating himself so that she doesn't get abused, if it wasn't a positive reflection on his character in Westeros. And of course, in Westeros, it's not rape. Or do you think Sansa (or any other woman) would have come screaming out her wedding room saying "help, my husband is trying to rape me?"

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Sure, he would like Winterfell. Who wouldn't?

Yes, quite the horrible motives you've listed there. He wants to comfort her, hear her laugh, and come to him willingly. I mean, that's horrible! He actually wants to love her, treat her well, and have her love him! He also, somewhat naively, believe she might actually come ot love him if he was good to her. Outrageous!

Regardless, the point is that you're judging him based on motives on which he did not act.. He had enough decency (more than you'd see elsewhere in Westeros) to suggest an alternative suitor who was closer to her age, despite these motives. Doing the right thing despite having selfish motives to the contrary is exactly what makes him admirable. Refusing to bed her despite wanting Winterfell, and despite wanting her physically, is what makes those actions noble. Lots of people have selfish motives. The difference between good and bad people is that good restrain the indulgence of those motives when it would hurt others, and the bad indulge them anyway.

Pointing out that Tyrion had selfish thoughts and interests (thought hardly immoral ones) only emphasizes the virtue he displayed by not acting on them.

Other people were arguing that he married Sansa in order to save her from a marriage with Lancel. I was simply pointing out that he, in fact, had selfish motives... something we appear to be in agreement on.

Those motives weren't necessarily bad, horrible, or 'evil' (I never said they were). In fact they are perfectly understandable. The core of his desires are simply independence from his family (his father in particular) and companionship (in the form of a loving spouse). Who wouldn't want these things?

However, Tyrion is persuaded to try and obtain them in a completely idiotic fashion: forcibly marrying Sansa, his family's prisoner.

Tyrion should know that this won't work out. He's seen first hand the misery that comes from unhappy marriages.

Unfortunately for Tyrion, he has a lot of flaws as a character and this marriage plays on some of his biggest (particularly his tendency towards disfunction when dealing with women and his persecution complex).

When Sansa rejects him in their marriage bed, it's probably the first time in his entire life that he's been rejected romantically (he's used to whores after all). Tyrion is way out of his element here.

Ha, even when he tries to do a nice thing where he stands to gain nothing he does for selfish reasons eh? That might be a good sign that you're going over the top with your dislike.

I like Tyrion, but I appreciate him as a flawed character. The truth of Tyrion's 'offer' is that it doesn't make Sansa feel any better or give her any kind of real choice... that's clear in her POV.

Why does Tyrion make the offer? Well, we aren't in his head when he makes it, but we know that he has a deep desire to be gallant and also to be wanted. My guess is that it stems from those two desires.

On the whitewashing front:

It's not just that they've taken away a lot of Tyrion's more questionable actions. They've actually given him actions he didn't have in the books. For example, TV!Tyrion is the one who corrects Jon's bad attitude at the watch instead of one of the Night's Watch.

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Not from you, but apparently from others. Including the author, who would not have included all those scenes with him arguing against the marriages,

The scene where he is seduced into marrying her and when offered an unattractive, but willing alternative, he would rather have the forced child bride whose family has been murdered by his, which he is well aware of. And that he is also aware the only way he becomes Lord of Winterfell is when they kill off her other brother.

telling her she could have Lancel,

The man who assisted Joff in her beatings. Seriously? Also that offer came across as complete conscience salving. There was no way it could have been changed to Lancel at that stage and she had just been threatend by the Queen, dragged there by guards and told by the King, that she had to marry.

refusing to bed her despite being ordered,

Wow, he refused to rape a 12 year old prisoner that had been forced to marry him against her will. Give the man a cookie!

willing to take public abuse for not doing so,

What public abuse? Tyrion gets comments from Joff and Tywin and the rest of the laughs are as likely because it is known the bride was dragged to the alter and refused to kneel for him and that the only bride he could get was a forced prisoner child, as much as the non-consummation. Especially as the author has stated that it was common when a girl was married young to wait a few years to bed them. so if that was normal, why are people laughing at him. could it be unreliable narrator on Tyrion's part? especially as he feels his horse is laughing at him and it is easier and more in character for him to believe that he is being laughed at for nobley not consummating the marriage than the fact the bride had to be dragged there and refused to kneel for him.

humiliating himself so that she doesn't get abused,

That actually can be seen as him protecting her, but can also be viewed as him not wanting the bedding as she was on the verge of tears and hysteria and it was bad enough having a bride being dragged to the alter, but having a screaming/ crying girl brought to your bed chamber would have been awful for both of them.

Also he spoiled any attempt to shield her further by making the joke about wanting to rape her in front of everyone, and he didn't have to do it to avoid the bedding as Tywin had already dispensed with it.

Or do you think Sansa (or any other woman) would have come screaming out her wedding room saying "help, my husband is trying to rape me?"

No, because having said vows she wouldn't think of it's rape. That doesn't change the fact that that's whatit would have been, or that people like Ned and Jaime saw the horror in Robert and Aerysraping their wives.

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Just for the record, I'd like to say that I don't blame Tyrion for their situation. In fact I thought it was sweet that he wanted to treat her well (although terribly unrealistic of him to expect her to respond positively). My beef (as I feel like I mentioned, pages ago at this point), is that people continue to call Sansa nasty names for not running into Tyrion's arms, or being SO thankful that he's a decent guy. She's been through hell and back, and is now getting forced to marry a member of the family who put her through that hell.

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Just for the record, I'd like to say that I don't blame Tyrion for their situation. In fact I thought it was sweet that he wanted to treat her well (although terribly unrealistic of him to expect her to respond positively). My beef (as I feel like I mentioned, pages ago at this point), is that people continue to call Sansa nasty names for not running into Tyrion's arms, or being SO thankful that he's a decent guy. She's been through hell and back, and is now getting forced to marry a member of the family who put her through that hell.

I blame him for not seeing what a train wreck it was going to be, but at the same time, he is used to prostitutes who have been paid to act and is used to falling for his own delusions, especially with Shae.

But in terms of a marriage. Imagine Saddam Hussein had killed your family and you were forced to marry his nice (but had kept you prisoner uncle, who had also helped consolidate Saddam's power), how can anyone expect that to work well. Apart from in romantic fiction of course.

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Just for the record, I'd like to say that I don't blame Tyrion for their situation. In fact I thought it was sweet that he wanted to treat her well (although terribly unrealistic of him to expect her to respond positively). My beef (as I feel like I mentioned, pages ago at this point), is that people continue to call Sansa nasty names for not running into Tyrion's arms, or being SO thankful that he's a decent guy. She's been through hell and back, and is now getting forced to marry a member of the family who put her through that hell.

This.

It's also kind of funny that a lot of people will praise Tyrion's act of not raping his wife as ~good and noble~, and then not really acknowledge Sansa saving Dontos despite her being a hostage under constant threat of beatings and worse at the time. Some people just have blinders on when it comes to particular characters that they develop an initial distaste for, I suppose.

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Tyrion scores points for how he handled the Sansa marriage. It clearly marks him out as being far better than the median Westerosi highborn. And yes, not consummating the marriage when Sansa clearly didn't want him to was a nice and kind thing to do.

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