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Is every Amyrlin Seat just a figurehead, nothing more?


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The stories of Elaida, Egwene, Siuan are so similar to each other. The White Tower needs a new leader, so they choose an obedient figurehead. As the time goes by, they become real leaders. That's the 'official' story. But we see all the time that Aes Sedai principally care their own goals, they do/plot as they want. And they depose the Amyrlin Seat when they want to.

 

How do you see them: figureheads or real leaders?

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I don't recall that either Elaida or Siuan were appointed with the premise that they would be figureheads. Siuan was appointed because of her competence, and Elaida was almost "self-appointed", as she led the coup against Siuan.

 

What we learn from the histories is that some Amyrlin's couldn't cut it, and were reduced down to being figureheads.

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There have been a combination of Amyrlin's. If memory serves me kindly, it ebbs and flows with the strength of the Amyrlin and the power within the Hall. Often after a strong Amyrlin the Hall tries to regain power by picking weaker figureheads. However there have been the significant Aes Sedai that has risen to be an absolute powerhouse and brought change and strength to the tower. Egwene had the promise of that. 

 

https://library.tarvalon.net/index.php?title=Sereille_Bagand Is a an example of a strong Amyrlin that came to power. (Link contains book spoilers)

 

https://library.tarvalon.net/index.php?title=Myriam_Copan - Another strong Amyrlin. 

 

https://library.tarvalon.net/index.php?title=Cemaile_Sorenthaine Is an example of A "strong" amyrlin that became a figurehead after making poor choices.

 

Full list here: https://library.tarvalon.net/index.php?title=List_of_Amyrlins

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9 hours ago, Elgee said:

I don't recall that either Elaida or Siuan were appointed with the premise that they would be figureheads. Siuan was appointed because of her competence, and Elaida was almost "self-appointed", as she led the coup against Siuan.

if i recall it better, siuan was appointed because the ajas were at an impasse, unable to pick any candidate, so they decided to get a young, easily manipulated aes sedai. of course, siuan outmanipulated them

 

as for elaida, many of her supporters figured they could gain power by helping her oust siuan and then becoming her inner circle of advisors. indeed, they did for a time, before elaida gradually reasserted control

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11 hours ago, Elgee said:

I don't recall that either Elaida or Siuan were appointed with the premise that they would be figureheads. Siuan was appointed because of her competence, and Elaida was almost "self-appointed", as she led the coup against Siuan.

 

What we learn from the histories is that some Amyrlin's couldn't cut it, and were reduced down to being figureheads.

Personally i think Elaida was appointed by the Black Ajah and Mesaana as a means to destroying the White Tower. Just about everything that happened during Elaida’s rule was orchestrated by the BA, Elaida was little more then a Puppet who simply had no idea she was one. 

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15 hours ago, Harldin said:

Personally i think Elaida was appointed by the Black Ajah and Mesaana as a means to destroying the White Tower. Just about everything that happened during Elaida’s rule was orchestrated by the BA, Elaida was little more then a Puppet who simply had no idea she was one. 

 

You make a good point there. But the Black Ajah is not the Tower, or individual Aes Sedai - they're a whole sub-group with its own agenda.

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I think, for all intent, Elaida was seen much like a strong figure that was brought down by her own vices. And due to her violence and the situation of a divided Hall, the Tower lost much of it's expected integrity and grew very weak. Something that made for a good plot device more than anything. XD

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The Blacks knew who Elaida was. They contrived and manipulated events precisely so that the Tower would be guided by someone that inept. They knew they could take advantage of the resulting chaos and hoped the divisions in the Tower would prevent it from taking an effective role in the Last Battle.

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Oh, I don't disagree. But we saw through her Keeper on how 'well' the Blacks were even able to manage her. Which was not at all. Elaida may have been a blessing to the Shadow, but she certainly didn't go with their plans.

 

Which, I must say, I found both hilarious and a dose of their own medicine. 😛 

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Absolutely. That's one of the best parts of the whole "divided Tower" arc. The Black sewed the seeds of their own downfall by creating a vacuum that could be filled by Egwene.

 

The Wheel Weaves As The Wheel Wills

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30 minutes ago, Arie said:

Oh, I don't disagree. But we saw through her Keeper on how 'well' the Blacks were even able to manage her. Which was not at all. Elaida may have been a blessing to the Shadow, but she certainly didn't go with their plans.

 

Which, I must say, I found both hilarious and a dose of their own medicine. 😛 

Maybe RJ had plans to make Elaida Tuon's future servant. I mean, making Mat's life post AMOL as miserable as possible seems to be the running gag, right?

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I feel like I'd appreciate Elaida more for that chaos if I didn't HATE her so much...

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Just now, Arie said:

I feel like I'd appreciate Elaida more for that chaos if I didn't HATE her so much...

She's very hateable.

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1 minute ago, SinisterDeath said:

Maybe RJ had plans to make Elaida Tuon's future servant. I mean, making Mat's life post AMOL as miserable as possible seems to be the running gag, right?

 

I really would be curious to know what his original plans were for her, though her 'ending' I feel is goign to be both brutal and unsatisfying if just because it's happening off screen.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Actually Siuan was picked because she was young but not to be a figurehead.  I'm sure some may of thought she could be easy to control, but the BA had been killing off older Aes Sedai thinking they would be the ones involved in the hunt to find the Dragon Reborn. The other factor was in the 15 years before Siuan was raised they had 3 Amyrlin's, so the decision was to pick  young Aes Sedai.

 

Elaida wasn't going to lead the toppling of Siuan just to watch someone else become Amyrlin, besides the BA wanted her as Amyrlin knowing she would be a disaster. 

Edited by Sabio
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