[DWJ] Re: (now with minor^Wmajor spoilers for Dark Lord of Derkholm)

deborah.dwj at suberic.net deborah.dwj at suberic.net
Sat May 6 21:52:02 EDT 2006

On Sat, 6 May 2006, sally at sallyodgers.com wrote:
|Does it occur to anyone else that rape in the Dark Lord universe might not have
|the same connotations as it has for us? After all, at least part of our horror
|of rape is cultural, and goes wayyyy back to when rape was a crime against the
|victim's HUSBAND or FATHER or BETROTHED because the perpetrators had "stolen"
|from him. Maybe in future we might see it as being just the same as any other
|assault? And maybe that's the way Shona sees it. Of course, there's the whole
|thing about sex being usually given in love, but you might say
|eating-is-meant-to-be-enjoyable, so being forced to eat (say) tripe is also
|violence of a kind? 

Oh, I see this definitely.  I totally understand that the horror
of rape is cultural - but I live in *this* culture, and so I find
rape horrifying, and the book doesn't give me any preparation or
coping mechanism for seeing it as not horrific.  When reading the
book, I get to a scene I read as a violent rape scene.  I then
have a culturally-conditioned knee-jerk reaction of horror,
because nothing in the book up until that point has led me to
believe that their attitudes about sex are so substantially
different from ours.  Then the lesser reaction is just
disconcerting to me.  Sure, I can rationalize/fanwank it
away, but I shouldn't have to in order to read the book.

In plain then, what forbids he but to know,
Forbids us good, forbids us to be wise?   -- Paradise Lost

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