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DRAGONMOUNT

A WHEEL OF TIME COMMUNITY

First Time Reading the First Book


Always Sunny
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And you guys are making it sound as if women are not taking up professions in other areas of this world. It's true that, in general, RJ ususally has men in the manual labor intensive jobs, but we see greater diversity outside of that, particularly as we get deeper into the series, and I wouldn't say women are completely excluded from those manual labor jobs either.

 

Not really. I'm just trying to respect Sunny's request that we consider only what she-he-it has had a chance to see in the pages read so far. Sunny is correct that in the first half of the first book, people are shown as largely following professions that line up with what we might think of as traditional gender roles.

 

In our real world, there is a direct relationship between the roles people play in the economy and their social standing. That is not necessarily true in a fantasy novel. So I think Sunny is wrong in inferring that there isn't social equality of the genders in the WoT just because the women are housewives and cooks, and not farmers or blacksmiths.

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Everyone keeps saying "he" or "his" I have had a notion that the author was a she from the get go. Could be wrong.

 

Anyway I love her/his observations. I find myself looking forward to the next installment with much anticipation.

Haha yeah, me too. I just used "he" because I wasn't sure.

 

I'm sexist that way. :tongue:

 

So off they go to not see the wizard when Rand gets sick or something. Shit like this happens when you walk around a filthy city in the cold weather having never been near so many people before. Rand's growing himself an immune system, boy howdy! On the other hand, no one ever gets sick in fiction unless there in an important reason. In real life, people catch colds just 'cause. In books, people are cursed or infected on purpose.

Good catch!

 

I love the Nynaeve and Lan better not get together quote. In any case, he/she dislikes the best parts of the series, the foreshadows/dreams/Pattern. So I dunno if they'll like the books. they may like CoT. As for your one question, yes even a stone has a thread in the Pattern. You can't be so literal when reading Wheel of Time, it's fantasy for a reason.

If my memory serves me, and it may not, only souls are part of the pattern. Also only humans have souls. Finally, everyone has freewill to an extent, the pattern allows for changes. The reason they were in more danger when Nynaeve came was because all together, there group was of great importents. A lot of importent threads in one place, if they all got snaped at once than the patter would fall apart. Also as you mentiond, she could have been followed,increasing the imidiate threat. Hope that helps and sorry for all my misspellings. there are many

 

The Gathering Storm Book Tour, Borders Dallas 14 November 2009 - Claireducky reporting

 

(Taking out all the Spoilers)

Brandon: Everything has a thread, not just souls. Even a stone in a wall has a thread in the Pattern.

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And you guys are making it sound as if women are not taking up professions in other areas of this world. It's true that, in general, RJ ususally has men in the manual labor intensive jobs, but we see greater diversity outside of that, particularly as we get deeper into the series, and I wouldn't say women are completely excluded from those manual labor jobs either.

 

Not really. I'm just trying to respect Sunny's request that we consider only what she-he-it has had a chance to see in the pages read so far. Sunny is correct that in the first half of the first book, people are shown as largely following professions that line up with what we might think of as traditional gender roles.

 

In our real world, there is a direct relationship between the roles people play in the economy and their social standing. That is not necessarily true in a fantasy novel. So I think Sunny is wrong in inferring that there isn't social equality of the genders in the WoT just because the women are housewives and cooks, and not farmers or blacksmiths.

Well said.

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Everyone keeps saying "he" or "his" I have had a notion that the author was a she from the get go. Could be wrong.

 

Anyway I love her/his observations. I find myself looking forward to the next installment with much anticipation.

Haha yeah, me too. I just used "he" because I wasn't sure.

 

I'm sexist that way. :tongue:

 

So off they go to not see the wizard when Rand gets sick or something. Shit like this happens when you walk around a filthy city in the cold weather having never been near so many people before. Rand's growing himself an immune system, boy howdy! On the other hand, no one ever gets sick in fiction unless there in an important reason. In real life, people catch colds just 'cause. In books, people are cursed or infected on purpose.

Good catch!

 

I love the Nynaeve and Lan better not get together quote. In any case, he/she dislikes the best parts of the series, the foreshadows/dreams/Pattern. So I dunno if they'll like the books. they may like CoT. As for your one question, yes even a stone has a thread in the Pattern. You can't be so literal when reading Wheel of Time, it's fantasy for a reason.

If my memory serves me, and it may not, only souls are part of the pattern. Also only humans have souls. Finally, everyone has freewill to an extent, the pattern allows for changes. The reason they were in more danger when Nynaeve came was because all together, there group was of great importents. A lot of importent threads in one place, if they all got snaped at once than the patter would fall apart. Also as you mentiond, she could have been followed,increasing the imidiate threat. Hope that helps and sorry for all my misspellings. there are many

 

The Gathering Storm Book Tour, Borders Dallas 14 November 2009 - Claireducky reporting

 

(Taking out all the Spoilers)

Brandon: Everything has a thread, not just souls. Even a stone in a wall has a thread in the Pattern.

Thank you very much, I stand corrected.

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It is considered just as correct to use the plural third person pronoun when referring to someone of unknown gender, and it does not have the unfortunate connotation of sexism.

 

It is fairly common, but not just as correct.

 

If that which is being referred to is unknown as to number as well as gender, than the third person plural neutral is appropriate. Refering to a single person as a plural is not correct.

 

There is only a "connotation of sexism" if you don't know the rules of English.

It is not universally agreed upon, yet it is generally accepted as grammatically correct to use third person plural as a gender neutral singular pronoun. Likewise, the masculine pronoun is only generally accepted, not universally, exactly because it is not gender neutral.

 

Neither word is perfect, but using third person plural is far more elegant than awkward constructions such as 'zhe' or the like, and it avoids the connotation of sexism, which exists whether you acknowledge it or not -- using the masculine pronoun as a gender neutral pronoun implies importance compared to the feminine pronoun.

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It is considered just as correct to use the plural third person pronoun when referring to someone of unknown gender, and it does not have the unfortunate connotation of sexism.

 

It is fairly common, but not just as correct.

 

If that which is being referred to is unknown as to number as well as gender, than the third person plural neutral is appropriate. Refering to a single person as a plural is not correct.

 

There is only a "connotation of sexism" if you don't know the rules of English.

It is not universally agreed upon, yet it is generally accepted as grammatically correct to use third person plural as a gender neutral singular pronoun. Likewise, the masculine pronoun is only generally accepted, not universally, exactly because it is not gender neutral.

 

Neither word is perfect, but using third person plural is far more elegant than awkward constructions such as 'zhe' or the like, and it avoids the connotation of sexism, which exists whether you acknowledge it or not -- using the masculine pronoun as a gender neutral pronoun implies importance compared to the feminine pronoun.

 

I agree with this, and it's not a matter of being politically correct for me. As someone hoping to be a teacher, I have to be sensitive to how defaulting to 'he' every single time affects how both boys and girls are affected and how it shapes their expectations and perceptions of themselves and others.

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he is gender neutral in english. third person pleural is incorrect in this situation.

 

could just call the poster sunny. or the poster. or the blogger formerly known as the poster.

 

but grammar's grammar.

 

 

The wheel of time turns, ages come and go, what grammar was fades and will be again.

 

Okay, that was bad. The rules have changed these last few years. 'Their' is widely accepted as gender neutral singular now, and go back a few hundred years it was also gender neutral singular. It's not something new, but something old come asgain.

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It is considered just as correct to use the plural third person pronoun when referring to someone of unknown gender, and it does not have the unfortunate connotation of sexism.

 

It is fairly common, but not just as correct.

 

If that which is being referred to is unknown as to number as well as gender, than the third person plural neutral is appropriate. Refering to a single person as a plural is not correct.

 

There is only a "connotation of sexism" if you don't know the rules of English.

It is not universally agreed upon, yet it is generally accepted as grammatically correct to use third person plural as a gender neutral singular pronoun. Likewise, the masculine pronoun is only generally accepted, not universally, exactly because it is not gender neutral.

 

Neither word is perfect, but using third person plural is far more elegant than awkward constructions such as 'zhe' or the like, and it avoids the connotation of sexism, which exists whether you acknowledge it or not -- using the masculine pronoun as a gender neutral pronoun implies importance compared to the feminine pronoun.

 

I agree with this, and it's not a matter of being politically correct for me. As someone hoping to be a teacher, I have to be sensitive to how defaulting to 'he' every single time affects how both boys and girls are affected and how it shapes their expectations and perceptions of themselves and others.

 

 

That's simple enough. Teach your students, male and female, that the use of the masculine pronoun is simply a rule of grammar in English, and does not imply anything whatever about the relative importance of the two genders. In some languages, the default pronoun is feminine. That does not imply reverse sexism. In English, the default pronoun is masculine. That doesn not imply sexism.

 

But for the love of the Light, don't teach them that it is correct to use a plural pronoun to refer to a singular object.

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I get away from this board for one night and look what happens. It's fun reading what you all are writing. Believe me, I enjoy this forum as much as you enjoy the blog. That is, assuming you enjoy the blog a lot.

 

he is gender neutral in english. third person pleural is incorrect in this situation.

 

could just call the poster sunny. or the poster. or the blogger formerly known as the poster.

 

I'm rather partial to "Always Sunny" but I can deal with just plain old "Sunny." I know how acronyms are the bees knees around here but I think AS already means something else in these parts. And you can use "he" or "she" or even "shkle."

 

And as far as I'm concerned, "he" is both a masculine and gender-neutral pronoun. See? Sexism is built right into the language. But I agree that zhe and other fancy new pronouns are not the way to change things. You can't make grammar rules from the top and have them trickle down, not in English. If there is to be a change it'll have to come from the masses, from the bottom up.

 

But, anyway, I see language as what it is: a tool. It's something humans invented to do a job. It isn't perfect but it does what we want it to do. And the more we refine it, the more we work with it, the more precise it becomes. Every word we write or sentence we say sharpens that tool. Eventually we'll one day be able to express things that we can't even conceive today.

 

Of course that means we'll need to change it. We can't worry about original meanings or etymology (unless you're studying that kinda thing). We've just got to, you know, go with it. Hopefully my blog readers will go with it, too, when I turn the odd phrase here and there. I use double negatives because I can do so without the meaning getting lost. I use "ain't" 'cause it's a word like any other. Sure, I know the "proper" way to write. But who is to say what is "proper" or what is "correct?"

 

I'm getting a little po-mo there. If anybody is interested I have just recently finished a book called The Power of Babel by John Mcwhorter. It's fully of language-y goodness.

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It is considered just as correct to use the plural third person pronoun when referring to someone of unknown gender, and it does not have the unfortunate connotation of sexism.

 

It is fairly common, but not just as correct.

 

If that which is being referred to is unknown as to number as well as gender, than the third person plural neutral is appropriate. Refering to a single person as a plural is not correct.

 

There is only a "connotation of sexism" if you don't know the rules of English.

It is not universally agreed upon, yet it is generally accepted as grammatically correct to use third person plural as a gender neutral singular pronoun. Likewise, the masculine pronoun is only generally accepted, not universally, exactly because it is not gender neutral.

 

Neither word is perfect, but using third person plural is far more elegant than awkward constructions such as 'zhe' or the like, and it avoids the connotation of sexism, which exists whether you acknowledge it or not -- using the masculine pronoun as a gender neutral pronoun implies importance compared to the feminine pronoun.

 

I agree with this, and it's not a matter of being politically correct for me. As someone hoping to be a teacher, I have to be sensitive to how defaulting to 'he' every single time affects how both boys and girls are affected and how it shapes their expectations and perceptions of themselves and others.

 

 

That's simple enough. Teach your students, male and female, that the use of the masculine pronoun is simply a rule of grammar in English, and does not imply anything whatever about the relative importance of the two genders. In some languages, the default pronoun is feminine. That does not imply reverse sexism. In English, the default pronoun is masculine. That doesn not imply sexism.

 

But for the love of the Light, don't teach them that it is correct to use a plural pronoun to refer to a singular object.

 

I prefer making sure to mix it up and if I'm making up an example of a generic doctor that I'm just as likely to use she as he. Simply explaining to young children that 'he' is gender neutral doesn't mean they don't notice it or that it doesn't affect their expectations or perceptions. As male, and as a white male, I'm trying to be conscious of these things, and that just because I've always seen something as a normal way the world works doesn't mean it's so, and that perhaps it's more of a privilege than antthing else, an unearned one.

 

And again, I disagree with you on 'their', it was used as a singular pronoun a few hundred years ago, and it's becoming so again. The way we were taught is fast becoming archaic. And it certainly isn't unprecedented. It's not even a hardfast grammar rule anymore.

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That's simple enough. Teach your students, male and female, that the use of the masculine pronoun is simply a rule of grammar in English, and does not imply anything whatever about the relative importance of the two genders. In some languages, the default pronoun is feminine. That does not imply reverse sexism. In English, the default pronoun is masculine. That doesn not imply sexism.

 

But for the love of the Light, don't teach them that it is correct to use a plural pronoun to refer to a singular object.

 

Except it does. It implies that the male is "standard" and that female is not. Whether or not that is an appropriate distinction to make does not matter; the connotation exists, and insisting on using 'he' as a gender-neutral pronoun, when there is a perfectly viable alternative, which has been in use for about seven hundred years, implies that you agree with said connotation.

 

As I said, neither version is perfect. 'They' is a plural pronoun, and 'he' is masculine. Of the two choices, 'they' is least offensive. Both are 'correct', in that both are equally wrong (if in different ways) for the task, but they are what we have. Awkward constructions are not the solution.

 

Also, grammar is not set in stone. It evolves.

Edited by dholm
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As enjoyable as this tangent is, it's also pretty far off topic, so I propose the following:

From here on out we shall refer to Sunny as Sunny. Not He, She, It, or They, just "Sunny".

 

(I suppose OP is acceptable for "Original Poster" but it may get confused with OP "One Power" or something of that nature...)

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That's simple enough. Teach your students, male and female, that the use of the masculine pronoun is simply a rule of grammar in English, and does not imply anything whatever about the relative importance of the two genders. In some languages, the default pronoun is feminine. That does not imply reverse sexism. In English, the default pronoun is masculine. That doesn not imply sexism.

 

But for the love of the Light, don't teach them that it is correct to use a plural pronoun to refer to a singular object.

 

Except it does. It implies that the male is "standard" and that female is not. Whether or not that is an appropriate distinction to make does not matter; the connotation exists, and insisting on using 'he' as a gender-neutral pronoun, when there is a perfectly viable alternative, which has been in use for about seven hundred years, implies that you agree with said connotation.

 

As I said, neither version is perfect. 'They' is a plural pronoun, and 'he' is masculine. Of the two choices, 'they' is least offensive. Both are 'correct', in that both are equally wrong (if in different ways) for the task, but they are what we have. Awkward constructions are not the solution.

 

Also, grammar is not set in stone. It evolves.

 

In languages where a female pronoun is the default, does that imply that female is "standard"? Are entire cultures promulgating misandry through grammar? Of course not; the suggestion is idiotic.

 

The same is true of the notion that basic rules of English grammar are somehow sexist.

 

In any case, since as cindy points out, this is an informal board without grammar police, I will continue to use correct English until you PC police actually have arrest powers.

 

If you do get arrest powers, I will adopt she-he-it. And a drawl.

Edited by randsc
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That's simple enough. Teach your students, male and female, that the use of the masculine pronoun is simply a rule of grammar in English, and does not imply anything whatever about the relative importance of the two genders. In some languages, the default pronoun is feminine. That does not imply reverse sexism. In English, the default pronoun is masculine. That doesn not imply sexism.

 

But for the love of the Light, don't teach them that it is correct to use a plural pronoun to refer to a singular object.

 

Except it does. It implies that the male is "standard" and that female is not. Whether or not that is an appropriate distinction to make does not matter; the connotation exists, and insisting on using 'he' as a gender-neutral pronoun, when there is a perfectly viable alternative, which has been in use for about seven hundred years, implies that you agree with said connotation.

 

As I said, neither version is perfect. 'They' is a plural pronoun, and 'he' is masculine. Of the two choices, 'they' is least offensive. Both are 'correct', in that both are equally wrong (if in different ways) for the task, but they are what we have. Awkward constructions are not the solution.

 

Also, grammar is not set in stone. It evolves.

 

In languages where a female pronoun is the default, does that imply that female is "standard"? Are entire cultures promulgating misandry through grammar? Of course not; the suggestion is idiotic.

 

The same is true of the notion that basic rules of English grammar are somehow sexist.

 

In any case, since as cindy points out, this is an informal board without grammar police, I will continue to use correct English until you PC police actually have arrest powers.

 

If you do get arrest powers, I will adopt she-he-it. And a drawl.

 

Haha, again, it's got nothing to do with political correctness for me. With that said, I'm willing to let the conversation end and get back on topic, even if I find the discussion very intriguing.

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In languages where a female pronoun is the default, does that imply that female is "standard"? Are entire cultures promulgating misandry through grammar? Of course not; the suggestion is idiotic.

Yes, languages using the female pronoun as a gender-neutral pronoun has the exact same implications in reverse. That is self-evident.

 

The same is true of the notion that basic rules of English grammar are somehow sexist.

It may seem inconsequential on the surface, but it is not.

 

In any case, I am not telling you what to use. I am telling you what is grammatically correct.

 

In any case, since as cindy points out, this is an informal board without grammar police, I will continue to use correct English until you PC police actually have arrest powers.

 

If you do get arrest powers, I will adopt she-he-it. And a drawl.

Heh. I am not the PC police. Far from it. I have simply made a study of the subject, as I enjoy researching grammar.

 

I repeat, using singular 'they' is every bit as correct as using gender-neutral 'he' (or 'she', if you insist). It has been used in that manner since before America was colonized.

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In languages where a female pronoun is the default, does that imply that female is "standard"? Are entire cultures promulgating misandry through grammar? Of course not; the suggestion is idiotic.

Yes, languages using the female pronoun as a gender-neutral pronoun has the exact same implications in reverse. That is self-evident.

 

The same is true of the notion that basic rules of English grammar are somehow sexist.

It may seem inconsequential on the surface, but it is not.

 

In any case, I am not telling you what to use. I am telling you what is grammatically correct.

 

In any case, since as cindy points out, this is an informal board without grammar police, I will continue to use correct English until you PC police actually have arrest powers.

 

If you do get arrest powers, I will adopt she-he-it. And a drawl.

Heh. I am not the PC police. Far from it. I have simply made a study of the subject, as I enjoy researching grammar.

 

I repeat, using singular 'they' is every bit as correct as using gender-neutral 'he' (or 'she', if you insist). It has been used in that manner since before America was colonized.

 

Just because something is or was in common usage does not mean it is grammatically correct.

 

I don't really care all that much about the grammar issue one way or the other. Use whatever you like, and those of us better schooled in English grammar will simply snicker behind our hands. Isn't that how it's done?

 

What is both insulting and absolutely idiotic is the notion that following the rules of English grammar is sexist. What is amusing is to read a poster claim that his objection to the proper grammar isn't political correctness, and then give an explanation of his objection that comes close to being the very definition of political correctness. What is depressing is that children are, apparently, being taught that they should find gender and race-based greivance behind every bush.

Edited by randsc
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You know I love languages, too. I'd rather enjoy continuing the conversation elsewhere but I'm a tiny bit confused about the structure of the forums here. There are Social Groups that are supposed to be free of role playing (or so say the stickies there) but still divided into RP-based categories that make no sense to me. But then there are DRRP Groups that are divided the same way. So, yeah.

 

I don't want to go exploring too much for fear of spoilers. There's got to be some place to start a topic on language. General Discussion, maybe?

 

Anyway, back to the book!

 

I've written up four more chapters for your enjoyment. One of them was pretty good. One of the best in the story so far, I think. Then there was a stinker, too. Hey, take the good with the bad, right? There is some mention of gender in there but we've talked that topic to death so maybe we can hold off talking about that right now. How about we talk about a two theories I've come up with (that are, of course, probably both wrong).

 

One, did Perrin die in Shadar Logoth? Keep with me, here. So there have only been two mid-chapter line breaks in the book so far. Both of them were when Rand fell asleep and went to the Dream World. But then there was a third line break in Shadar Logoth that switched POV to Perrin. So, maybe Rand is dreaming that he's Perrin. Maybe he's got a whole Fight Club thing going on. Maybe the stress is making him insane like that.

 

Two, was Rand supposed to be the main character of this book? I get this feeling that Robert Jordan wanted Moiraine to be the main character. Everyone tells me that women become much more involved in the story later on so maybe she was intended to be the protagonist here. Maybe this book was supposed to be about Moiraine's quest to bring the Two Rivers Boys home. But because "they" wanted him to start the book in familiar fantasy territory he switched POV over to Rand. I mean, really, Rand hasn't done much in this book so far.

 

Now, there are two non-controversial conversation topics for us to ponder. Can you comment on it without being spoilery?

 

Oh, and before I go, here is a nifty link to today's blog:

 

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Just because something is or was in common usage does not mean it is grammatically correct.

When it has been used as such for hundreds of years (and has not changed through that time)? Yes, it does. That is how the language evolved in the first place. Which is also why it is important to preserve the language to some extent.

 

I don't really care all that much about the grammar issue one way or the other. Use whatever you like, and those of us better schooled in English grammar will simply snicker behind our hands. Isn't that how it's done?

I am not sure how much more clearly I can say this -- they are both grammatically correct. If your schooling taught you differently, then it clearly had flaws. Research it yourself, if you do not believe me.

 

What is both insulting and absolutely idiotic is the notion that following the rules of English grammar is sexist. What is amusing is to read a poster claim that his objection to the proper grammar isn't political correctness, and then give an explanation of his objection that comes close to being the very definition of political correctness. What is depressing is that children are, apparently, being taught that they should find gender and race-based greivance behind every bush.

It is not idiotic to believe that how we speak influences the way we think.

 

My objection is not based on political correctness, even if it is a politically correct objection. There is a marked difference. I am far from politically correct on many issues, even if I am so on others.

 

I believe we should do away with as many gender and race-based grievances as humanly possible. I see no reason to preserve them.

 

 

EDIT: You are right, we have gone far too off-topic on this issue already. My apologies for my contribution.

Edited by dholm
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I am not sure how much more clearly I can say this -- they are both grammatically correct. If your schooling taught you differently, then it clearly had flaws. Research it yourself, if you do not believe me.

 

 

You can say it as clearly, or as many times, as you like. You're still wrong. See, for example, Chicago Manual of Style, 16th Edition, paragraph 5.223.

 

If you find yourself unwilling to use the grammatically correct pronoun, the proper course is to recast the sentence such that you no longer need the pronoun. It is not appropriate to use the plural in place of the indefinite.

 

As for the rest of the PC nonsense in your post, I agree that we are too far off track, so I'll leave it be.

Edited by randsc
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