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Date: Sat, 9 Feb 2002 12:51:58 -0800
From: Michael Andre-Driussi 
Subject: Re: (urth)  "Hour of Trust"  and rape

Hartshorn quoted and wrote:
>> I don't think "Hour of Trust" is a "war of the sexes" story in the company
>> of such Wolfe works as "In Looking-Glass Castle" and "The Ziggurat."
>No, it is a war story, with one side having been hopelessly outevolved by
>the other.

You are banging that evolution gong again.  This is where we disagree: I
see kamikaze pilots as devolutionary to both sides.  You see it as
evolutionary, as in the next bit:

>The fact that women captives suicide does not make this a "war of the sexes"
>story.  It simply means that their side, the winning side, has gained a
>transcendent resolution, and has become able to step out of the old rules
>and define new ones under which they are winning.

Whereas I tried to show that it is devolutionary--if it is not
scorched-earth itself, it certainly demands scorched earth in response.  I
see it as the fanaticism of the medieval assassins, or the kamikaze pilots:
transcendent in the Mishima Death Cult way.

If the rebels "win" like the Mongols "won," then, as I alluded in writing
about alternate Hannibals, the act might later be seen by History as a
necessary evil.  (The Mongols won in the short term goal of creating the
first world empire; but they lost in that they were culturally absorbed by
their enemies.)  We know they will win, and we sense that America, then
Britain, and finally Europe will enter a new Dark Age as the new religion
and new political system work themselves into a new civilization.

Your other point about women as chattal, spoils of war, and reproductive
strategies begins to fall apart when it must be made plain that
reproduction is for the living, colonizer and colonized alike. Kamikaze do
not reproduce--they are far more sterile than whore-mongering fatcats, they
are the ultimate in sterility: they are dead.

To get back to the barbarian hordes, Mongol reproduction was served on the
genetic level, but lost on the cultural level.  Which level really "counts"
is different for different people, naturally.

>Government (if it is not blessed by god) becomes a predator upon the nation,
>a tyrant.   Here we have a tale of the government being thrown off by the
>tactic of premptively destroying all the "loot".  So it seems to me.

This is the opposite of Gandhi's Tactic, which was truly a military
evolution, and highly successful.

>War must be, in a sinful world.
>Therefore it had better have rules. War as a game with rules is *better*
>than war as genocide.
>By imagining that we can avoid war, in a fallen universe, we always find
>ourselves back with war-as-genocide, as the Holocaust, the Gulag, and other
>equivalently sized genocides in the pursuit of Utopia show.

Now I get confused--I thought you were saying that breaking the rules
(waving a white flag, etc., to lure soldiers to death) was =evolutionary=.


booklets on Gene Wolfe, John Crowley
57 Lexicons left until OP!


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