2013-01-28

more on gender






By the 14th book Egwene is through her cunning the , the leader of the Aes Sedai and she is thinking another woman a slut?

Now you'll say something about Perrin and the his loss of respect when his men though he'd cheated on his wife, but it's not the same.* We, the readers, know that Berelain uses sexuality as a political tool, how can brilliant Egwene be hung up about how many people Berelain has fucked?




Wheel of Time makes a show of a matriarchal society, with Aes Sedai as the hub around while the wheel turns (you can't read these books without picking of a lot of spinny metaphors), but it's not really how it works

There is one of those truism that says that man keep women subservient by conquering and dividing; by making women compete with each other over the approval of men they won't threat the male power base  In a world where power is concentrated among women there would be competition among women for power, of course, but there should be no need for slut shaming. In fact, if women dominate the political life it would make sense they would dominate the sexual life as well. And yet.


* When you marry, even the World of Wheel of time, there is not just an expectation of monogamy, in fact you promise not to sleep with other people. Oaths are very important in Wheel of Time. Gareth Bryne is rather obsessed with them. Loyalty is also very important. By cheating Perrin would have broken an oath and displayed disloyalty. What did Berelain do?

As I said, Jordan delights in exposing his characters prejudice. We, the readers, know that Berelain uses sexuality as a political tool. She tells Perrin that despite appearances he will be the third man to share her bed. Not only does Egwene not see through Berelain's act, which is odd, but Jordan feels the need to redeem Berelain, which is bizarre. Wheel of Time is very traditionally prudish, despite all the nakedness, spanking and Rand screwing three women, where responsibility for containing sexuality is placed on women.

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