From: "Dan'l Danehy-Oakes"
Subject: RE: (urth) Meschia and Meschiane Date: Thu, 28 Mar 2002 08:47:47 -0800 > We all agree that the play Eschatology and Genesis closely echoes what > really goes on, Modulo some meaning of the word "closely," I think we can all agree with this proposition, yes. > People seem to be primarily arguing about the indentity of Blue as > Urth - and I use the trees to justify it. That's where my credulity falls down and goes boom. I simply fail to see any connection from the trees to the "return to Urth" scenario. It is, as Cornelius Ryan might put it, a hypothesis too far. > Is it the trees that are one step too far for most people, or do > most people agree that the trees can eat people and spit out copies > sans Blue=Urth? That some trees on Green are carnivorous seems beyond argument. That some trees on Blue are carnivorous seems at least plausible. Spitting out copies, I'm not so sure about, nor could I, if you held a gun to my head, believe any argument given thus far that the trees spawn the Neighbors. > Is it the actual hybridization between plant and human that is too > hard to accept, or is it the idea of sentient trees? Neither of these bothers me particularly. (BTW, there's an interesting quote in the Green Man passage of "Claw" that might be relevant here. I don't have my copy to hand, but it's something to the effect that "even if trees were to follow the one path in a million that leads to sentience, they would not have the form or mind of men.") > Whatever else I may have done, I have made a huge case for the > carnivorous sentience of these trees, and I have tied them to > the vanished people regardless of whether eating humans creates > new neighbors. Does anyone want to argue that vital first step? The only part of this I question is the sentience of the trees. Carnivorous, certainly; related to the Neighbors, absolutely. > Trees = or approximate primitive neighbors; > vines = or approximate primitive inhumu. Again, I question this. I don't say "drop it" the way I do the "Blue = Urth" hypothesis, because I think it has merit and is worth pursuing. I simply don't think it's sufficiently established yet. But there aren't the kind of strong arguments _against_ it that there are for the "Blue = Urth" hypothesis, so its explanatory power is a prima facie argument for its plausibility, if not its probability. Can I say this too many times? My point about the "Blue = Urth" hypothesis is that, in the presence of so much evidence against, you need a textual smoking gun to make the hypothesis even _plausible_. That doesn't apply to the whole "trees = neighbors, vines = inhumi" business, where the only real counterargument is Fava's story -- do I have her name right? -- about being a young inhuma swimming around in a Greenish river. What she describes doesn't _sound_ like a vine. > As far as I can see, it's all tied together inextricably - just > say Horn is in Babbie? My only mechanistic proof (I mean, how it > was done) for that transfer is the presence of the huge tree at > the end of On blue's Waters where Horn/Silk has a vision of being > Babbie. That isn't proof; but it is a mechanism. (I'm also agnostic about your "Horn is in Babbie" theory.) I'm not clear on what this hypothesis seeks to explain or why it's necessary. It certainly _seems_ to me that the Narr still "contains" Horn right up to the end (indeed, I'm not at all convinced by the arguments some make that the Narr is "only" Silk after his confession-crisis). No, wait: I do recognize _one_ thing it _could_ explain: Marble's prophecy. It does not, however, explain the Narrator's comment on the prophecy, particularly since that comment is made _before_ the vision of self-as-Babbie; I believe that comment implies that Marble's prophecy has come true in the Narrator's mind by that point. > This of course explains a lot about the narrative changes and > Babbie's later behavior, as well as the changes in the narrator > at this point. What changes, specifically, are you referring to? How does the Narrator and the narrative in the second book differ from that Narrator in the first, and how is this explained by Horn being transferred to Babbie? Similarly, what changes in Babbies behavior does it explain and how? (And _why_ would the tree do this? - you have a mechanism, but it is a totally unmotivated mechanism as far as I can see.) > I just don't see how I could back off from one position and > keep anything at all of my theory. All the way back to "Seawrack > is a spy"? (Nicely confirmed by GW, I might add.) How does any of it require Blue to be Urth? I simply do not get this. --Blattid --