From: "Andy Robertson"
Subject: Re: (urth) TBOTSS and colonialism Date: Tue, 21 May 2002 08:51:58 +0100 ----- Original Message ----- From: "Adam Stephanides" > Unlike the colonists of 5HC, the colonists on Blue aren't displacing > anybody, since the Neighbors have left and the inhumi live on Green. > Rather, it is the inhumi who savagely and without provocation assault the > colonists, killing and enslaving them. Silkhorn's attempt to treat the > inhumi as human beings, rather than automatically killing them as is the > colonists' usual practice, ends in complete failure. Jahlee, whom he treats > with the most kindness, treacherously tries to murder Nettle; and Juganu, > another inhumu whom Silkhorn had treated as human, repays him by attacking > his son's wedding. (Though Silkhorn had goaded Juganu into attacking him, > that Juganu would kill hundreds of innocents to hit back at Silkhorn > indicates his savagery.) To top it off, we learn that the inhumi don't have > souls of their own, just souls they've stolen from humans, so it is > presumably alright to exterminate them or reduce them to animality. In > short, the portrayal of the inhumi seems nothing less than an apologia for > genocide. I would like to think that Wolfe actually hopes for peaceful > relations between the humans and inhumi, but imo the books don't support > this reading. But there is a simple point to understand here. Contemporary western morality enforces a deeply unreal hierarchy of virtue based on class, gender, and race. It also enforces a doublethink, whereby the priviledged and favored races, gender and classes are labelled as "oppressed". Non-whites are morally superior to whites, women to men, and the poor to the rich. Wolfe, you may easily note, does *not* submit to this group ethnomasochoism. He is not any sort of racist, but the PC cues of race, gender, and class are rarely obeyed. This, I believe, is a conscious policy on Wolfe's part. He knows what he is doing. --- *** --- Thus, for example, the (moral and physical) ubermensch Silk is a blond Aryan type; most of the oppressed and suffering in Wolfe's books are poor whites; the women warriors of whatisitname are a bunch of bitches, and so on. Read some of Wolfe's stories with race, class and gender in mind. The messages are very clear. --- *** --- Now, The astonishing thing to me, really, is that you should find Wolfe's writings on the subject of interspecies conflict odd. The inhumi are *not* another human race. Why the hell *should* an alien species like the inhumi be peacefully inclined towards humanity? Why should humanity not strive to exterminate its enemies? It is a completely real picture of the natural processes of evolutionary rivalry and conflict. --- *** --- I am irresitably reminded of another very wise writer, Cordwainer Smith. The message of his Underpeople stories was that **everything that seems human is human**. The message of the inhumi may be **no they are not** --- *** --- Yet I am not sure of this. The inhumi are *not* human, but they may indeed represent the human "other". And the attempt to redeem them by love may be the greatest mistake humanity will ever make. Or it may be the only way to solve the problem. Silk/Horn repeatedly says it is. Who knows if he is right? I suspect Wolfe himself could not tell you. --- *** --- Now let's really, really, stir this one up. Inhumi = jews? hartshorn --