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Bread & Cheese [Contains CoS (bk 7) spoiler]


AprilRyan
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[Note that there is a Mat subplot spoiler for A Crown of Swords]

 

 

I was wondering if what happens to Mat in the chapter "Bread and Cheese" with Tylin was a big problem for anyone else.

I found myself seriously disturbed by the events, which basically was a rape that was told as though it was supposed to be funny.

I really don't understand Jordan here.  If you replace Tylin with, say king Paitar, and replace Mat with Nynaeve, and then tell the exact same story, with the exact same dialogue:

 

He was not smiling now. Nynaeve let go of Paitar's arm carefully. He did not lessen the pressure of his blade, though. He shook his head. "Tsk, tsk. I do try to make allowances for you being an outlander, duckling, but since you wish to play roughly.... Hands at your sides. Move." The knifepoint gave a direction. Nynaeve shuffled backward on tiptoe rather than have her neck sliced.  "You can't do this to me," she mumbled at him, ... "Watch and learn, my kitten," Paitar said, and drew his knife...

 

then afterward:

 

Nynaeve put a hand over her eyes and tried very hard not to weep.

 

Not so funny anymore, is it?  Jordan spent a lot of time later with Mat's internal dialogue making it seem like it was just that Mat preferred to pursue rather than be pursued, but realistically he said "no" and she forced him into a bed at knifepoint, and I find the entire episode very disturbing, and it sticks in my mind.

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That bothered me, too.

 

It is one thing to flip many of the gender role tropes of fiction (and perhaps the world)... it is one thing to have strong women in positions of power... but that is no excuse for rape, no matter the sex-on-sex direction. No matter that the one who was raped is normally the pursuer rather than the pursued.

 

You know, I had the same feeling regarding the movie 40 Days and 40 Nights (starring Josh Hartnett). At the end of his 40 days of celibacy (gave up sex for lent), Hartnett's character is handcuffed to the bed so that he can't do anything to break his vow. In the middle of an apparent erotic dream, he wakes up to find his ex-girlfriend riding him. Raping him. And apparently, in this movie world, the worst thing about the rape isn't that it happened, but that it ended his celibacy... oh, and that his current girlfriend thinks that he cheated on her.

 

Wonderful.

 

Turned the movie off at that point. Ruined an up-to-that-point funny movie. There's nothing funny about rape, and nothing funny about that scene between Mat and Tylin.

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Past threads discussed Tylin's treatment of Mat.

 

I wasn't able to find any, but given the responses so far, I do see that the subplot stuck in other peoples' minds as much as mine.  The WoT has so much interplay revolving around typical notions of gender that I wasn't sure that this particular detail would stand out so much to everyone else too.

 

The really enjoy the theme in WoT that the characters always assume that their misunderstandings or lack of communication revolve around gender, but are revealed not to be by showing how the thoughts and frustrations of both genders mirror one another.  The fact that the gender-linked flavors of the one power are so different stands as an interesting contrast.  I wondered with a friend the other day how Jordan might have treated channelers who are transgender or gay, but I digress - that's another thread for another day...

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This concerned me too, but I think it might have been possibly not intended as a "haha, Mat, humour" plotline, but rather a subtle and rather dark exploration of rape, double standards and hypocrisy.

 

Truly, it was a dark and disgusting thing of Tylin and I really feel for poor Mat. Rape is never funny, no matter the gender. I wonder of the repercussions it all had for Mat?

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That bothered me, too.

 

It is one thing to flip many of the gender role tropes of fiction (and perhaps the world)... it is one thing to have strong women in positions of power... but that is no excuse for rape, no matter the sex-on-sex direction. No matter that the one who was raped is normally the pursuer rather than the pursued.

 

You know, I had the same feeling regarding the movie 40 Days and 40 Nights (starring Josh Hartnett). At the end of his 40 days of celibacy (gave up sex for lent), Hartnett's character is handcuffed to the bed so that he can't do anything to break his vow. In the middle of an apparent erotic dream, he wakes up to find his ex-girlfriend riding him. Raping him. And apparently, in this movie world, the worst thing about the rape isn't that it happened, but that it ended his celibacy... oh, and that his current girlfriend thinks that he cheated on her.

 

Wonderful.

 

Turned the movie off at that point. Ruined an up-to-that-point funny movie. There's nothing funny about rape, and nothing funny about that scene between Mat and Tylin.

 

I agree with both issues...That part of the movie always bothered me.

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