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Minas Tirith Forums » Silmarillion » Female Power (Page 3)
Author Topic: Female Power
Luke
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Did you think that because the fallen Ainur and maia were only defined as "male figures" that females would never be in that category? []
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Eluchil
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Only male ? Male Ainur ? Stop speaking non sense, we already had enough []
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Roll of Honor Varnafindë
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The fallen ones that are named are males, but there were other fallen ones where we don't know the name or the gender.
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Tuor
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As for the original question about why Melkor feared Varda, I believe an eariler section from the text that Eluchil quoted is also very important:
  • To Varda Iluvatar said: 'I will give unto thee a parting gift. Thou shalt take into Ea a light that is holy, coming new from Me, unsullied by the thought and lust of Melkor, and with thee it shall enter into Ea, and be in Ea, but not of Ea.' Wherefore Varda is the most holy and revered of the Valar, and those that name the light of Varda, name the love of Ea that Eru has, and they are afraid, less only to name the One.

    ~Myths Transformed, Text II

Eluchil,

My attempts with Mandos just go to prove what I said earlier and why I generally steer clear of these kinds of threads. Good luck to you if you continue in such discussions.

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Luke
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Varnafinde said what I meant to say. It was a simple syntax error that confused you in my last post. As for confusion arising out of my paradox...well, maybe you never took Critical Theory in graduate school like I did. Everything that comes out of the student's mouths is riddled with complexity. And they take many paragraphs to make just one point...which is what I do. []
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Tuor
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quote:
well, maybe you never took Critical Theory in graduate school like I did.
As long as you understand you are discussing your personal view of Middle-earth and not Tolkien's that's just fine.

I say this because Tolkien did explain his view of Middle-earth and the rules under which it operates. It simply takes a little time and effort (and interest) to discover Tolkien's Middle-earth.

Any idiot can read the book and say "this is what I think". It does not require going to college at all. You should be careful to limit your statements so that you do not say something like "this is what Tolkien intended".

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Belthronding
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And you should be careful to limit your statements to "this is what I think Tokien meant" because there is simply no way to know what his final thoughts on the Legendarium were. Even his son, who was a collaborator, can't say for certain what the professor wanted for his creation in the end.

You are simply inferring based on the surviving incomplete literature and letters that were never meant for publication.

Your opinion is stregthened by appropriate use of source material, but it doesn't change the fact that it is still just an opinion.

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Eluchil
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quote:
It was a simple syntax error that confused you in my last post.
Of course not. Or if you are willing to tell me what I think, you should do better []
For instance, how do you know that the Balrogs were male ?

Tuor : don't worry, I will certainly not spend too much of my time in such a discussion []

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Tuor
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Yes Belthording, there are always assumptions involved, such as "if this is what Tolkien explained and later writings do not contradict his explanation, we assume that Tolkien did not change his mind".

According to your reasoning, what Tolkien said two seconds before his death may not be accurate to what he believed at the exact moment of death. Therefore stating that what he said two seconds earlier is still what he thought at the moment of death is just an opinion. Everything is an opinion.

[ 11-08-2007, 05:01 PM: Message edited by: Tuor ]

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Belthronding
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Everything is an opinion.

That was my point.

Glad you're with me, grasshopper.

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Luke
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quote:
You should be careful to limit your statements so that you do not say something like "this is what Tolkien intended".
I couldn't agree more. And I know that from reading the little I've read of Letters, I can guess that he didn't leave "free will", however you define it, up to grabs. Good point, I'll make sure to leave Tolkien's intent out of the picture when I go off in one of these dirrections. Just know that my post was more like a scatter-gun approach than a focused extrapolation of only one detail or occurance in Sil. The length of my posts were neccissary to see some patterns of free will in Sil that agreed with the law of opposites.

Comming back to the subject we notice that women were'nt somehow classed above males. A female figure such as Varna had her arguments with Aule, but neither of them won. And I'm guessing that males were the vast makup of armies because most females chose to stay in the trees. Either that, or Feanor was a total sexist. []

[ 11-08-2007, 08:06 PM: Message edited by: Luke ]

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Tuor
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quote:
Everything is an opinion.

That was my point.

Quite a statement of fact from a person who views everything as an opinion. []
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Belthronding
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Check the tape, genius. It was your statement of fact, not mine.

You ought to know that I tend to lean toward a relatavist view of the world. I am suspicious of any and all statements of fact - my own as much as anyone else's. In truth, that was my actual point. Your poorly considered response provided a reasonable common ground for driving home a general idea - intended only to pull the soap box out from under your feet. Your presumed authority stands on very little, and I think that has been made clear, grasshopper.

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Tuor
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quote:
Check the tape, genius. It was your statement of fact, not mine.

If everything is opinion, then your statement itself is just opinion. Therefore the statement is not true, it is just your opinion. Quite a little circle you've painted yourself into. I'm sure you are unable to see it, but that just makes it all the more interesting and sad at the same time.
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Roll of Honor Wandering Tuor
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Belthronding - You are aware, I'm sure, that Athene is the Goddess of Wisdom []
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Roll of Honor Athene
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Hey! [] Don't drag me into this one. [] Everyone knows my wisdom is generally dubious.
[]

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The Dread Pirate Roberts
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Not to drift too far afield, (this is a MANDOS thread so why should I worry about that?), but why are Tolkien's later ideas considered stronger/better/more accurate than his earlier ones?
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Tuor
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People who are interested in Tolkien's later thoughts simply want to gleen the Silmarillion Tolkien intended on publishing if he had lived long enough to publish it.
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Madomir
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quote:
but why are Tolkien's later ideas considered stronger/better/more accurate than his earlier ones?
Generally speaking, Tolkien would have had more of the established story behind him and thus at his disposal when formulating the later concepts and/or changes. Therefore it stands to reason that those later ideas would be more refined and developed as to where and how they fit within the legendarium. But that's just a theory.
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Eluchil
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quote:
Tolkien would have had more of the established story behind him and thus at his disposal when formulating the later concepts and/or changes.
Which was usually the way he worked.
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Belthronding
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Tuor -

I haven't painted myself anywhere, and I'm quite aware of what it is I'm saying - read the posts again, or better yet, don't read them.

Getting back to the point of the thread, and your question Eluchil about what I meant when I said the Tolkein appeared to be holding up particular female characters above even the heroic males that dominate the storyline...

Well, think about it. First, consider the Valar. There is Manwe the King, Tulkas the powerful wrestler, Eonwe the herald - all central in the first confrontations with Melkor, and yet hidden in the very beginning of the tale is the quote I mentioned in the initial post of this thread. Now Tuor quoted a section of Myths Transformed (I believe) which appeared to frame the situation in the clasic light vs. dark dichotomy (which I also mentioned in the first post) by noting that it was the light of Eru that was given to Varda, not Varda herself, that caused Melkor such fear. Fine. But then we might ask - why would Tolkein choose a female character for this role? Is there anything important he might be trying to say (consciously or unconsciously) about women?

Additionally, consider the tale of Beren and Luthien. Now, I would say that what drives the tale at the deepest level is their love for eachother - that is, no doubt, the source of their courage and their power, and perhaps the sngle most important theme at work in the story. And yet, I think it is worth noting that Luthien - a female figure - ultimately comes across as the more heroic character, both in terms of her deeds and certainly in terms of her sacrifice.

There is also Melian to consider, who is mentioned several times as one whose power Melkor could not undo or face directly. And of course, Galadriel, whose central role in the Third Age can't be debated.

What is going on here with all these very powerful, very influential females?

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Eluchil
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Belth : what is still puzzling me is the "above even" part. I mean, I know there are quite some strong and heroic female characters in the Legendarium, but "above even" ? You mentionned Varda, but I could also provide some quotes on Manwë []
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Tuor
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There might be a link between Varda and the Virgin Mary. Some might say that the God chose Mary to bring "the holy light" into the world. Such a point of view might be expected from a Catholic.
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Eluchil
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Tuor, have you read VT43 ? There you can find translations in Quenya of the Pater Noster and of the Ave Maria. Quite interesting (if you are interested, pm me) []
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Tuor
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I don't think I've read it. I'm not really into the language aspect of Tolkien's Secondary world. Thanks anyhow.
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