[DWJ] (now with F&H spoilers)

mecha godscylla mechagodscylla at hotmail.com
Tue Jan 23 18:13:15 EST 2007

> The muddled manipulator in the book is Ivy rather than Laurel, I'd suggest.
> (Their both having plant-names, and appropriate plant-names at that, is a
> small joy to me: Laurel, the bay-tree, the symbol of the victor, kills
> anything that tries to grow in its shadow; Ivy, clinging, can't stand
> alone, kills the tree it battens onto.)  Laurel does know exactly what she
> is up to, and has no qualms about *using* muddle as a means to manipulate
> people: she's the one who knows what is *really* going on, and misdirection
> about it is her tool not only in the book but in the legends and ballads.
> Ivy doesn't have a clue about reality, but thinks she knows what is going
> on: her husband is cheating on her, her lover is deceiving her and doesn't
> really care about her, her daughter is a sly piece who is colluding with
> Granny and with Dad to try to manipulate her, and so on -- and by assuming
> these things and asserting them, she makes them happen.  Her husband does
> leave her for another woman, her lover does start to deceive her, and in
> self-defence Polly does have to conspire with Granny.
> I have a suspicion that both are aspects of DWJ's own mother, who was
> certainly as destructive in many ways as either of them, and a great one
> for manipulation of all sorts.

Recently I've been reading about personality disorders.  One in particular leaps out as describing so
many of the villains in DWJ's books and, of course, most definitely her mother.  There are lots of links
available for clinical symptoms of narcissistic personality disorder, but here is one that describes the disorder
in terms of behaviors, actions and relationships.  See if you don't recognize Laurel and Ivy (and Minnow's descriptions
I've excerpted and quoted above) in here:


Hope everyone is doing well.  I now return to lurkdom,

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