[DWJ] Dragon history question

V Graham kalaidiscope at gmail.com
Thu Jul 15 20:41:28 EDT 2010


Hi,

"I was nodding my head in agreement when it struck me.  Wait, didn't the
dragons
steal all the treasure from humans in the first place?  Their claws do not
seem
made for smithy work.... - Esther"

In DWJ, The "Good' Dragons are *purchasing* treasures from Callette. Why the
assumption that these treasures have been stolen?  A dragon has many
tradeable attributes. As well as mundane items like flying and oxen
roasting, both DWJ and UleG have Dragons with deep, and deeply different
forms of magic, partly due to their extrodinarily long lives, and partly due
to the fact that they cannot exist without magic.
Even if the dragons are too proud or not capitalist enough to *trade* their
knowledge and wisdom is likely to bring them great gifts freely given.

So to labour Katta's point, A " good" dragon ( an intelligent, thinking
dragon) could be part of an alternate social structure that included it
being honored and gifted/ being the long lived guardian of great treasure.
The St George's of the world could be the colonists- ( what? you want us to
leave these trees and birds peacefully living here when we could farm sheep?
And why isnt that gold melted down into coins? Who needs art anyway?)

Gin

(having unlurked, far too talkative)


From: Katarina Hj?rpe <katarina.hjarpe at gmail.com>
To: Diana Wynne Jones discussion <dwj at suberic.net>
Sent: Wed, July 14, 2010 5:16:00 PM
Subject: Re: [DWJ] Dragon history question

> Is it worth distinguishing between "good" dragons and fluffy ones? A
>> good dragon is still essentially a _dragon_ - it's big and scary and
>> does things for its own reasons, and if you offend it you are likely to
>> end up as Barbecued Adventurer, but it works according to rules and
>> won't eat you if you are polite. A fluffy dragon is a dragon-shaped
>> magical pony, basically harmless, and thus has lost pretty much all its
>> draconic nature apart from the physical trappings.
>>
>
You know, this comment made me wonder how much of "goodness" attributed to
fantastical creatures is really old colonialist assumptions - i.e a dragon
is considered good when it does what humans tell it and doesn't violently
object to having its treasure stolen. [...]
Katta
______________



I was nodding my head in agreement when it struck me.  Wait, didn't the
dragons
steal all the treasure from humans in the first place?  Their claws do not
seem
made for smithy work.  So, if a "good" dragon reacts with moderation to
'its'
treasure being stolen, maybe that is an ethical decision, or the reaction of
an
uneasy conscience, instead of an example of an un-uppity native...
Esther


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