Pronouns and Rider Haggard

alexandra.bolintineanu at alexandra.bolintineanu at
Sat Jan 29 18:52:55 EST 2000

> Alexandra
> (who muses how very odd it is to find oneself spoken of in the third
> person.  Oddly pleasant, too--as if getting more than the first/second
> person somehow confirms one's existence, or something.  I am "she"
> than "I" or "you" to somebody, therefore I am. :)"

"Wait 'til they call you She Who Must be Obeyed (may she live
forever)", wrote Elise.


As a side remark, I must say, I really did like Rider Haggard (except for
the painful style).  But oh, it did set my teeth on edge to hear people
say things like We are waiting for She Who Must Be Obeyed. Reminds me of
Ursula K. LeGuin's splendid essay, "From Fantasyland to Poughkeepsie",
where she mercilessly satirizes exactly this kind of grammatical
misdemeanour.  "I will give it to she who has my love?  It sounds like
Tonto talking to the Lone Ranger."  (That essay, by the way, is extremely
worth reading.  It cuts up bad fantasy to little bleeding bits and then
roasts them for our enjoyment.  The whole book of essays that contains it,
in fact, called "The Language of the Night", which I think somebody has
mentioned before, is a delight.)


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