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From: Michael Andre-Driussi <mantis@sirius.com>
Subject: (urth) Pelerines must disband
Date: Thu, 22 Apr 1999 18:32:42 

>> We can side with Ava, and think "Godless communist Ascians are something
>> less than human."
>> Or we can side with Severian, that the Ascians are human, and cannot be
>> killed in the guilt-free manner that butchers kill cattle or dwarves kill
>> orcs.
>> But there's a harsher side to the whole exchange.  Because even though
>> neither one knows it, the Conciliator has returned to the Order founded in
>> his name, upon his relic, and he has found it quite in error.  And the
>> thing you know, <SHAZAM!> the order has been destroyed on the battlefield,
>> never to rise again.
>> Just a coincidence?
>Could you enlarge on this a bit? I'm not quite following.

En-LARE-giing . . . now!

"Mountain out of mole hill: death, doom, and distraction; take two!"

Okay. Severian talks with Ava. Severian doesn't scold her or anything, but
he has (I suspect) a different opinion (even as a torturer, he would). Then
in the next chapter he hears the translation of an Ascian tale, and that
cements it (for readers at least): Ascians are human; they cannot be killed
like animals.

This attitude of Ava casts a bad light upon the pelerines.

Ava doesn't know she is talking to the pre-Conciliator himself; nor does
Severian realise the Order's relation to himself.  And yet, as if in grim
confirmation of Dostoyevski's "Grand Inquisitor" scenario, Severian has a
niggling different notion, and from an "objective" standpoint as readers,
it seems that the pelerines have strayed somewhat (I mean: it seems to me
that they should think all people as human, regardless of whatever cultural
brainwashing; zoanthrops are not "human" [hardware issue] but Ascians
certainly are [software issue]).

Next thing you know, the order has been wiped out on the battlefield, the
Claw lost forever (well they thought it was lost before, but now it is
=really= lost).

Nah . . . the order was destroyed, true, but it had nothing to do with
that. It was simply the fact that Severian, fresh from his mission to
Master Ash, was about to sell himself to the pelerines and be their slave,
like Winnoc; which would be a bad move, apparently!


*More Wolfe info & archive of this list at http://www.urth.net/urth/

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