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Egwene's Arc (Full Spoilers)


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Egwene al'Vere's story arc in MoL was teeth-gritting. Every fiber of my dislike for her was played like a banjo whenever she was in-scene. Call me heartless, not once did I feel affection for this core character. I could write a long list of nit-picks, but I will condense it down to TWO specific examples:

 

 

 

(1) Remember after the meeting at Merrilor, when the pavilion empties and everyone stands in primal, honest wonder under the grove of Great Trees?The Song of the Ogier. The enhanced joy of holding the Power. The scent of life and Life and earth.... Everyone is awed, filled with hope and renewal. What is Egwene' opinion of this "miracle"? Let's look at page 187:

 

["We'll, whatever Rand is now," she said, folding her arms, "he can't just make a stedding appear." She seemed to find the thought comforting.]

 

Condensed in these two sentences is everything a person needs to know about Egwene. Even after 13 books and an anti-climatic meeting in the pavilion (which SHOULD HAVE BEEN RAND'S POV!!!), she displays total ignorance of Rand's purpose in the world. Balance, remember?A world free of the DarkOne? Leave the pavilion and --POOF!!-- a splinter of the world Rand wants to leave behind. Does she shift her thinking? Become curious or inspired at the possibilities? No: she ignores that the "Pattern is seeking balance" and instead goes immediately to the idea that Rand might possibly have the ability to deprive Aes Sedai from channeling.... Awesome.... Of course, shadow-spawn cannot enter stedding and they are bastions of refreshment and peace and nature, but at least he "can't just make steddings appear"..... I loooooooove Egwene ...[\sacrcsm\]

 

Point number (2): I find it telling and extremely disappointing that she did not return to the Two Rivers for a wedding ceremony. From a literary standpoint, revisiting Emond's Field via a joyful celebration would have provided counter-point to the bleak, fearful flight in tEotW. Start and finish, ya know? Alas: when she left the Two Rivers, she LEFT the Two Rivers in her dust . Really, Egwene? Not even a single visit via Gateway? A summons to her parents for a meal in Tar Valon? Nothing? You gotta wonder what happened back in the day to make her so completely reject her people and traditions. Rand and Perrin and Nyaneave and Mat all, to some degree, laud their upbringing: Egwene never once pointed at her childhood and said: "I am strong because of Emond's Field.".... Instead, we are deprived of a joyous celebration in the face of the Last Battle, and learn that she herself had to sign the paperwork for her TarValon/Las Vegas wedding. I wonder if she had a reception? Cake? Champagne? or do you thjnk they signed the papers, said the vows, did the humpry-dance and now a core character is wedded.... Delightful....,

 

Egwene is a psychopathic narcissist.... i felt whispers on my first read-thru and in this MoL re-read, they screamed like a burglar alarm. I couldn't find even a single interaction she had that wasn't laden with brow-beating, put-downs, maneuvering, coercion, or silently berating other people. She never displayed empathy, humility, contrition or even honest friendship. Yes yes yes! She DOES a whole bunch of cool stuff and succeeds in awesome ways, but DOING COOL STUFF DOESN'T EXCUSE HER PSYCHOPATHIC BEHAVIOR....

 

RIP, Egwene al'Vere: I cried a little, turned the page, and kept reading

Edited by BlueSun
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 Alas: when she left the Two Rivers, she LEFT the Two Rivers in her dust . Really, Egwene? Not even a single visit via Gateway? A summons to her parents for a meal in Tar Valon? Nothing? You gotta wonder what happened back in the day to make her so completely reject her people and traditions.

Actually she flat out told Gawyn in ToM that she wouldn't get married unless her parents were present. Then in AMoL they were married all of sudden so either Brandon forgot about it or she brought them over off screen.

 

As for the rest calling her a psychopathic narcissist is precisely the type of hyperbole that distracts from any rational discussion of her character. It's right up there with the "worse than Elaida" and "forsaken like" claims. 

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Egwene al'Vere's story arc in MoL was teeth-gritting. Every fiber of my dislike for her was played like a banjo whenever she was in-scene. Call me heartless, not once did I feel affection for this core character. I could write a long list of nit-picks, but I will condense it down to TWO specific examples:

 

 

 

(1) Remember after the meeting at Merrilor, when the pavilion empties and everyone stands in primal, honest wonder under the grove of Great Trees?The Song of the Ogier. The enhanced joy of holding the Power. The scent of life and Life and earth.... Everyone is awed, filled with hope and renewal. What is Egwene' opinion of this "miracle"? Let's look at page 187:

 

["We'll, whatever Rand is now," she said, folding her arms, "he can't just make a stedding appear." She seemed to find the thought comforting.]

 

Condensed in these two sentences is everything a person needs to know about Egwene. Even after 13 books and an anti-climatic meeting in the pavilion (which SHOULD HAVE BEEN RAND'S POV!!!), she displays total ignorance of Rand's purpose in the world. Balance, remember?A world free of the DarkOne? Leave the pavilion and --POOF!!-- a splinter of the world Rand wants to leave behind. Does she shift her thinking? Become curious or inspired at the possibilities? No: she ignores that the "Pattern is seeking balance" and instead goes immediately to the idea that Rand might possibly have the ability to deprive Aes Sedai from channeling.... Awesome.... Of course, shadow-spawn cannot enter stedding and they are bastions of refreshment and peace and nature, but at least he "can't just make steddings appear"..... I loooooooove Egwene ...[\sacrcsm\]

 

Point number (2): I find it telling and extremely disappointing that she did not return to the Two Rivers for a wedding ceremony. From a literary standpoint, revisiting Emond's Field via a joyful celebration would have provided counter-point to the bleak, fearful flight in tEotW. Start and finish, ya know? Alas: when she left the Two Rivers, she LEFT the Two Rivers in her dust . Really, Egwene? Not even a single visit via Gateway? A summons to her parents for a meal in Tar Valon? Nothing? You gotta wonder what happened back in the day to make her so completely reject her people and traditions. Rand and Perrin and Nyaneave and Mat all, to some degree, laud their upbringing: Egwene never once pointed at her childhood and said: "I am strong because of Emond's Field.".... Instead, we are deprived of a joyous celebration in the face of the Last Battle, and learn that she herself had to sign the paperwork for her TarValon/Las Vegas wedding. I wonder if she had a reception? Cake? Champagne? or do you thjnk they signed the papers, said the vows, did the humpry-dance and now a core character is wedded.... Delightful....,

 

Egwene is a psychopathic narcissist.... i felt whispers on my first read-thru and in this MoL re-read, they screamed like a burglar alarm. I couldn't find even a single interaction she had that wasn't laden with brow-beating, put-downs, maneuvering, coercion, or silently berating other people. She never displayed empathy, humility, contrition or even honest friendship. Yes yes yes! She DOES a whole bunch of cool stuff and succeeds in awesome ways, but DOING COOL STUFF DOESN'T EXCUSE HER PSYCHOPATHIC BEHAVIOR....

 

RIP, Egwene al'Vere: I cried a little, turned the page, and kept reading

 

Just be happy that when the horn was blown, Egwene did not appear leading Hawkwing and the other heros shouting Amyrlin,Amyrlin,White Tower,White Tower.

Edited by XXX47
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I wouldn't call her a psychopath, but Egwene was like the Forsaken in one key aspect: she seemed to resent the ta'veren and anyone who could challenge her authority.

 

 

I think that the reason for this is, like the Forsaken, she envied the place in history Mat, Perrin, and Rand had in Moiraine's eyes, then in history. Egwene was always ambitious and she never wished to be left behind. She is a direct counterpoint to the ta'veren's characterization as reluctant heroes; the girl who dreamed of being special and who resented how small her life appeared in the larger scope of things.

 

 

Her ambition can be lauded or criticized, but the way in which that ambition informed her behavior during the LB, first with Rand then with Mat, is what compromised her as a character in my eyes. It seemed that she was ignoring both the will of the Pattern and common sense in antagonizing both, which is petty.  

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Her ambition can be lauded or criticized, but the way in which that ambition informed her behavior during the LB, first with Rand then with Mat, is what compromised her as a character in my eyes. It seemed that she was ignoring both the will of the Pattern and common sense in antagonizing both, which is petty.  

Psychopath, certainly not. But if we look at just ToM and AMoL def split personality disorder.

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I wouldn't call her a psychopath, but Egwene was like the Forsaken in one key aspect: she seemed to resent the ta'veren and anyone who could challenge her authority.

 

 

I think that the reason for this is, like the Forsaken, she envied the place in history Mat, Perrin, and Rand had in Moiraine's eyes, then in history. Egwene was always ambitious and she never wished to be left behind. She is a direct counterpoint to the ta'veren's characterization as reluctant heroes; the girl who dreamed of being special and who resented how small her life appeared in the larger scope of things.

 

 

Her ambition can be lauded or criticized, but the way in which that ambition informed her behavior during the LB, first with Rand then with Mat, is what compromised her as a character in my eyes. It seemed that she was ignoring both the will of the Pattern and common sense in antagonizing both, which is petty.  

 

 

She envied Rand every step of the way, from the fact that he was stronger in the OP,that he knew weaves she had no idea about,that he could protect his dreams from her till the end when she would not "lower" herself to ask Rand how he was making things grow instead asking her assistant to ask a bonded Ash'aman about it.

 

That is why I am most happy that she is not preserved as a soul among the heros like Rand will be.She always remained second best to him.

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Exaclty! I would have thought her time with the Wise Ones and the White Tower unification would have led Egwene to transcend that pettiness (and it seemed to look that way in TGS), but then Rand showed up and she immediately settled back into the same old rut. Then she questioned Mat's ability to command despite being present during the Siege of Cairhien and also having spent time with Talmanes and The Band.

 

How does she think to have the right to stop a ta'veren general lead the forces of Light in the Last Battle?

 

Pure ego. I give her credit for figuring out the inverted balefire weave. It's a shame that weave wasn't used to Seal the Bore.

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 .

 

As for the rest calling her a psychopathic narcissist is precisely the type of hyperbole that distracts from any rational discussion of her character. It's right up there with the "worse than Elaida" and "forsaken like" claims. 

 

No: my diagnosis of her character traits is not simply saying she's "worse than Elaida", and its not hyperbole. Google the Psychopathy Checklist and honestly compare her behaviors throughout the series with what the experts say. Of the 20 descriptors they measure by, Egwene could easily fit 13..... The Narcissitic variable is provable too, mostly because she cannot see anything beyond her own compulsive needs.....

 

Not hyperbole: provable through any scene she has in the series.

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Just a quick question.

 

Why does everyone assume we were suppose to LIKE what Egwene became? Her double personality stuff aside, from my perspective a lot of people say something like "Well I didn't like Egwene, she was written badly" - I just think she wasn't really intended for us to like.

 

After the emotional trauma she went through I don't doubt she became a cold bitch.

 

But I would have liked some more reasoning and discussion when she flipped her decision on the seals. 

 

The way she treated Mat was a bit annoying. It's like everyone forget he is the damn COMMANDER of the Band of the Red Hand.

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@BlueSun

 

By all means please do so then. Should be interesting.

 

She cares for the people around her and respects her teachers greatly. Further as for her own compulsive needs, she was shoved into being Amyrlin and they tried to make her a puppet. She was forced to consolidate power/get her feet under and even then we are hammered over the head with the fact that she wants a whole WT because she views it as being necessary for the world to face the Last Battle. She did more in her short time to reform the WT and bring it back towards it's true purpose than any other Amyrlin in thousands of years. It had nothing to do with her own personnel needs. You can argue her faith was misplaced in a flawed institution being the best thing to lead the world against the shadow(anything else really would be unrealistic given they have been the main force holding the shadow at bay for 3,000 years and are the only reason anyone remembers the DO) but you can't question her motivations in working for the greater good. We are literally sledge hammered over the head with them.

Edited by Suttree
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Her ambition can be lauded or criticized, but the way in which that ambition informed her behavior during the LB, first with Rand then with Mat, is what compromised her as a character in my eyes. It seemed that she was ignoring both the will of the Pattern and common sense in antagonizing both, which is petty.  

Psychopath, certainly not. But if we look at just ToM and AMoL def split personality disorder.

I think it started when the coup ended and her reaction was to immediately yell at the Tower Aes Sedai for not standing up to Elaida and then turning around and yelling at the Rebel Aes Sedai for rebelling against the White Tower.  That was the point I started to hate Egwene (who I liked for the most part up until TGS)

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Her ambition can be lauded or criticized, but the way in which that ambition informed her behavior during the LB, first with Rand then with Mat, is what compromised her as a character in my eyes. It seemed that she was ignoring both the will of the Pattern and common sense in antagonizing both, which is petty.  

Psychopath, certainly not. But if we look at just ToM and AMoL def split personality disorder.

I think it started when the coup ended and her reaction was to immediately yell at the Tower Aes Sedai for not standing up to Elaida and then turning around and yelling at the Rebel Aes Sedai for rebelling against the White Tower.  That was the point I started to hate Egwene (who I liked for the most part up until TGS)

That was a political move(and a savvy one at that) and nothing more.

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I did find her death a redemption in some ways. I hadn't got very far in my planned re-read of the books, and prior to reading AMoL I was at the part where Egwene is a damane. She was one of my favourite characters then, and this was a part of her arc which made me empathise with her like no other characters. Reading AMoL after the early books, its actually very jarring how differently her character is written.

 

I agree. You could expect a character's personality to get developed through such a long saga, but the feeling I get is Brandon Sanderson could have done better, specially with Egwene and Elayne. They were both two of my favourite characters until Knife of Dreams, then they suddenly became a weird half-hero half-brat mixture hard to figure out.

 

He got the best out of Egwene in TGS, but her role in AMoL...

 

Also, I should say, of all the bets I made before reading AMoL, Light, Egwene was not in any of the possible deathlists I imagined. She seemed to have such a bright future healing the White Tower... I thought it would be Perrin or Rand the ones that had to pay the mandatory butchers bill. It shocked me when she died, even after Gawyn's dead. To be honest, the boy had it coming, both RJ and BS had been trying to make readers hate him for too long. What I didnt expect was his dead to be as pointless as it was stupid (lol).

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i feel like i am reading a completely different book after reading most of these comments that example when she is yelling at the aes sedai and the rebels for instance conveniently left out the part where she included herself in the rebuking of the rebel aes sedai

and the comment earlier about egwene's statement about rand not creating a stedding was fairly clearly set up as comic relief

 

best i can think of is for some bizzare reason half of the fans read actions by egwene and elayne as bratty or snobby when the rest of us read them as a form of comic relief

 

gawyn on the other hand did start getting on my nerves ever since he got his hand on those rings but thats a pretty typical tragedy arc.

 

 

as for rand and egwene at the meeting i dont understand why people find it so hard to believe that egwene would be resistant to breaking the seals and releasing the dark one into the world. While we all knew it was the wrong decision from her point of view and every other character that is a very radical and risky move. Especially considering for quite a while the books were leading to trying to figure out how they sealed the dark one away in the age of legends and then just re-doing that. And then when egwene suggests taking the safe route that again is completely reasonable. Breaking the seals risks ending everything right there where as taking the safe route only risks saidin or saidar getting tainted which they would be expecting and could therefore come up with a way to combat it. Not to mention even Rand says that he isnt sure what breaking the seals will do. Personally i am normally the person who hates characters who want to play it safe in situations like that but when its the fate of existence itself in the balance i dont blame her at all not to mention rand didnt offer up much of an argument other than some metalsmithing comparisons. If it was my choice id want a little more to go on than that.

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Her ambition can be lauded or criticized, but the way in which that ambition informed her behavior during the LB, first with Rand then with Mat, is what compromised her as a character in my eyes. It seemed that she was ignoring both the will of the Pattern and common sense in antagonizing both, which is petty.  

Psychopath, certainly not. But if we look at just ToM and AMoL def split personality disorder.

I think it started when the coup ended and her reaction was to immediately yell at the Tower Aes Sedai for not standing up to Elaida and then turning around and yelling at the Rebel Aes Sedai for rebelling against the White Tower.  That was the point I started to hate Egwene (who I liked for the most part up until TGS)

imo u should reread that part cus it honestly feels like u missed some of the important parts of that

or  ur just over-exaggerating, not quite certain

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 Alas: when she left the Two Rivers, she LEFT the Two Rivers in her dust . Really, Egwene? Not even a single visit via Gateway? A summons to her parents for a meal in Tar Valon? Nothing? You gotta wonder what happened back in the day to make her so completely reject her people and traditions.

Actually she flat out told Gawyn in ToM that she wouldn't get married unless her parents were present. Then in AMoL they were married all of sudden so either Brandon forgot about it or she brought them over off screen.

 

As for the rest calling her a psychopathic narcissist is precisely the type of hyperbole that distracts from any rational discussion of her character. It's right up there with the "worse than Elaida" and "forsaken like" claims. 

Egwene was also the only known main character to have written letters to her parents after the Two Rivers (as far as I can remember) - which happened off-screen in Perrin's PoV. I agree with Suttree about the hyperbole.

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Egwene - I have always disliked her since book 1. On re-reads I would skim her chapters or skip them altogether. I do like her taking back over the tower from the inside arc but that is about the only part of her story i enjoyed. After becoming Amrylin, she seems to have caught on to the same Aes Sedai naivety that effects the rest of them. The "I am Aes Sedai, hear me Roar, I know best, everyone kneels to the tower, we control all, we know all", mentality. So when she died I actually smiled. I smiled first when Gawyn died because he was another character I pretty much disliked throughout the series and also smiled at the pain it caused Egwene.

 

Discussion:

 

Here is where I ask others to think about her character and ask what happened to her in AMOL. She spent the entire series following someone around trying to learn how to be like them. Nynaeve, Moraine, Aiel Wise Ones, Broken Tower, Full Tower. I get it, she is not a quitter and is extremely focused on achieving what she sets out to. She is intelligent and strong in the power. At what point in all of this though, does she learn the qualifications to be a world leader, a diplomat, a General of Armies, a expert on the past histories of AOL, etc. She acts like she is the worlds authority on all of this. At multiple times during the last battle she "sees" the battle going poorly and questions Mat's tactics.... I can understand this from other leaders that have fought in battles but she has never lead a battle before. She has no memories from her past. She has never dealt with high up authority other than Elayne and the high ups in the White Tower. She basically rode in on others coat tails and we are supposed to accept that she is all of what she is in AMOL after 2 years and the majority of that time she is just trying to be a wisdom or an aes sedai or a wise one. 

 

She knows the best way to fight the last battle, how to direct Rand through his fight with the Dark One, she knows when to break the seals and that Rand is wrong. At the time they argued about this she didnt know. She just assumed she was right VS a man with all the past memories of Lews Therin. 

 

Wasn't she with Rand and the Aiel during all the battles Mat was directing during books 4-6? Is it possible that she is all of the above yet she never heard the rumors or stories about Mat. So instead of taking those into consideration she reflects back to a child hood memory of him saving someone as her reasoning to grant Mat control of all the armies for the last battle?

 

I can go on and ON with her... I am glad to wash my hands of her character and again very very satisfied to not only see her die but to have her experience the loss of Gawyn before she died. 

I think u missed a good portion of the series where Egwene is raised as a rebel amyrlin and learns from siuan.

 

as for mat he has always been the sort of responsibility shirking character and everyone has always seen him that  way its not just egwene very few ppl in the book actually know about mat's "memories"

 

as for she has dealt with no high up authority other than elayne. She is the highest authority in the land as amyrlin seat and eqwene is arguably one of the next highest as queen of andor.

 

and as for question mat's tactics everyone in the last book did that, from what we got from the text mat was laying a trap essentially letting the shadow gain the advantage on purpose. However mat told no one else of his plans so the entire army is in the dark and all they can tell is that the battle is not going well and they lost the high ground right away.

 

She didnt ride in on coattails she was initially raised as a puppet amyrlin but managed to not only take control of the rebel aes sedai but also gain their respect. Of course she had help doing that but she most certainly contributed the most to the effort.

 

i could go on but most of ur points seem to point to parts of the book u skimmed over and missed some important or at least semi-important details

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Point number (2): I find it telling and extremely disappointing that she did not return to the Two Rivers for a wedding ceremony. From a literary standpoint, revisiting Emond's Field via a joyful celebration would have provided counter-point to the bleak, fearful flight in tEotW. Start and finish, ya know? Alas: when she left the Two Rivers, she LEFT the Two Rivers in her dust . Really, Egwene? Not even a single visit via Gateway? A summons to her parents for a meal in Tar Valon? Nothing? You gotta wonder what happened back in the day to make her so completely reject her people and traditions. Rand and Perrin and Nyaneave and Mat all, to some degree, laud their upbringing: Egwene never once pointed at her childhood and said: "I am strong because of Emond's Field.".... Instead, we are deprived of a joyous celebration in the face of the Last Battle, and learn that she herself had to sign the paperwork for her TarValon/Las Vegas wedding. I wonder if she had a reception? Cake? Champagne? or do you thjnk they signed the papers, said the vows, did the humpry-dance and now a core character is wedded.... Delightful....,
This is partly to you, partly to another post that is similar but don't remember where it is.

 

Back in the first book Egwene hints to Rand that she doesn't want to marry him because Wisdoms don't marry and don't stay in the same town that they were born in.  From the very begining we see her not liking who she is and where she is from.  She is utterly devoted to becoming a Wisdom so she can get out of town, then ooh! an Aes Sedai!  I can use her to get out of here!  Hmm, I'm now surrounded by Aiel and Wise Ones, they are pretty powerful, I'm going to do all I can to be like them for the next couple books.  (This is partly so we can get to know the Aiel better through her eyes, but it still made me hate her)

 

Also, did she lie to that king that shows up out of no where at the begining of the meeting at Merrilor?  She congratulates him on solidifying his rule and then says "You're welcome," implying that she helped some way, when she didn't.  She then tells Gawyn that maybe she will set up a few false trails for him to find when he gets back home.  I have been trying to think of a way for this to be skirting the three oaths, but anything I come up with sounds flimsy.

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Also, did she lie to that king that shows up out of no where at the begining of the meeting at Merrilor? She congratulates him on solidifying his rule and then says "You're welcome," implying that she helped some way, when she didn't. She then tells Gawyn that maybe she will set up a few false trails for him to find when he gets back home. I have been trying to think of a way for this to be skirting the three oaths, but anything I come up with sounds flimsy.

How would that possibly be a problem with the oath against lying?

 

Also not sure how wanting to see the world equates to not liking yourself or where you are from. You also seem to imply a drive and a will to learn is negative which I find odd.

Edited by Suttree
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@BlueSun

 

By all means please do so then. Should be interesting.

 

She cares for the people around her and respects her teachers greatly.

 

You mention her "great respect" for her teachers: I'd like to address that. However, your statement that she "cares for people" is confusing because I don't remember single time when she went out of her way to orovide ease and comfort to someone. Expressing sympathy doesn't count; merely being the Amrylin doesn't count. Maybe I missed something, so if you can provide a solid, irrefutable example, I will retract this statement and bake some cookies in your honor. .... And if you can find three people she has truly sacrificed herself for, I will send you $10....

 

Anyhow: Which of her teachers does she "show great respect"?

 

NYANAEVE: Her Wisdom from Edmond's Field, she pounds into submission, over and over, using all methods possible. Shame. Belittlement. The Silent Treatment. Speaking while Nya is speaking. And let's not forget their especially wonderful episodes in TR. Force feeding Nyanaeve vile substances. Further belittlement. More coercion and browbeating. And the rruthless act of subjecting Nya to a gang-rape scenerio. That Nyanaeve ultimately grows more awesome from all this is because she's Nyanaeve.'Egwene's entire INTENT WAS TO COMPEL NYANAEVE'S SILENCE, because she was breaking her promise to the Wise Ones, and exposure would mean Egwene would be deprived of what she wanted. rather than tempwer herself and modify her behavior, she instead terrorizes Nyanaeve to keep her mouth shut. It doesn't end there, though: she continues reinforcing this psychological pressure on Nyanaeve for the remainder of the series, even going so far as participating and contributing in Nyanaeve's brutal Testing in ToM.. .. Let's put aside that they pretty much grew up together, that they shared common roots, and ask: What part of her behavior to Nyanaeve is "showing great respect"? It's self-serving coercion. Period.

 

The Wise Ones: the ENTIRE TIME she was with them, SHE LIED, about her being a full Aes Sedai and the chronically broken promise to stay out of TR unsupervised. For months she ignored that single provision, justifying her behavior and employing a variety of deceptions [see above]. And when her training was complete and their usefulness ended, then, and only then, does she seiously consider telling them the truth. How long did she live with the Aeil? Six months? Eight months? She maintained her deceit for obvious human reasons, sure, but it is interesting to note that she developed the guts to finally come clean when there were no serious consequence. If I remember correctly, her actual motive behind confessing was because she assumed the WO would find out through other means, and hey, why burn a bridge, eh? but atill she dithered and delayed until the last possible minute.....It is the that she kneels down, admits her toh, gets beaten.... And then asks for the secret of entering TR in the flesh. See what she did there? Display the veneer of nobility, and immediately turn the credit into advantage. The timing of all this raises great suspicion to her motive, because from that point on, there is little contact or warmth between Egwene and her WO teachers. They note her allegiance shift, and become suspiscious of her motives from then on.... Where in all this, or the handful of meetings in TR, does she "show great respect" to these teachers?

 

Finally, none of her Aes Sedai teachers//groomers are shown "great respect". Deference? Yeah, kind of. Gratitude? Sure, but where is there "great respect"? Oh, that's right: She's the Amrylin Seat and the Amrylin Seat is supreme beyond all others......

 

So I guess "shows great respect to her teachers" an example of hyperbole, huh?

Edited by BlueSun
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@BlueSun

 

[.....]Further as for her own compulsive needs, she was shoved into being Amyrlin and they tried to make her a puppet. She was forced to consolidate power/get her feet under and even then we are hammered over the head with the fact that she wants a whole WT because she views it as being necessary for the world to face the Last Battle. She did more in her short time to reform the WT and bring it back towards it's true purpose than any other Amyrlin in thousands of years. It had nothing to do with her own personnel needs. You can argue her faith was misplaced in a flawed institution being the best thing to lead the world against the shadow(anything else really would be unrealistic given they have been the main force holding the shadow at bay for 3,000 years and are the only reason anyone remembers the DO) but you can't question her motivations in working for the greater good. We are literally sledge hammered over the head with it.[\quote]

 

Yes, everything you say here is the basic story line, but perhaps you and I analyze things in different ways. i am less concerned of WHAT somebody does as to WHY they do it. WoT is so deep and rich and perfect for my spinning brain. And once i saw waht motivated Egwene, I could not NOT see it any longer and every subsequent scene of hers shone with a clarifying light.

 

I state unequivocally that Egwene does NOTHING for the greater good. Everythjng is self-referential and slef-serving. This conclusion is reached if we ignore the vicarious confusion of reading her PoV. in kther words, DON'T FEEL, THINK! Look at what she does, how she does it and truly as why she's doing ut. AKA: discover BEHAVIOR, METHODS, and MOTIVATION. ,

 

If she really and truly wanted the Tower to be reunited for the Last Battle, the most obvious and efficient option would have been this:: "Hey, everybody! Look, I know you all-- I mean all of us-- are rebels, but if we really want the Tower to reunite, then maybe we should go back to Elaida. No, don't freak out!! i mean, the White Tower needs to be whole because the Last Battle is coming: we've had 6,000 pages sayin it, so maybe we should grit our teeth and take what comes. you know, for the greater good of mankind....." Egwene of course doesnt take this route, citing the pure partisanship ans self-preservatikn. No sacrifice for the greater good, there.....

 

....Don't laugh or sneer at this suggestion: it was a completely viable option, especially because Egwene brought the tower down from the inside, so a full and immediate reunification could have bypassed 4 full novels. But she got honey in her tea, which sounds kind of dirty, but it's not.....

 

Because this is a work of fiction, of course, we are in favor of Egwene's rule, but beyond emotional favoritism, let's ask this: WHY WAS EGWENE'S LEADERSHIP SO PRAISE-WORTHY? Separating out how we feel about what she did with what she actually did exposes that she manipulated Salidar with the same ruthless efficiency that Elaida/Alviarin did. In fact, Egwene's entire tenure as Amrylin is rife with political intrigue, the constant breaking or bending of rules, coercion, intimidation, subterfuge, the illegal swearing of oaths, deceptions, partial truths, circumventing the rules, sidestepping the Three Oaths, espionage, attaining goals through force of will, blackmail, taking advantage of Tower Law to either gain advantage or neutrelize a rival, publicly condemning the splintering of the Ajah while taking full advantage of the weakness, deception, dishonesty, dissension and discord, continue the dissemination of the Logain Lie knowing full well is was ficticious and devicive. a wedge, and although I might have missed another dozen smaller examples, we must NEVER forget that she knowingly sheltered one of the Forsaken for the sole purpose of gleaning knowledge of the AoL, because, well: f**k time-honored laws and basic morality!

 

Really, besides our emotional investment in the story, you gotta ask WHY the Salidar faction is any better the Elaida, because almost identical machinations take place....

 

This is an extremely important point because as we can see in the last few books, Egwene doesn't institute systemic reforms, and here we are in the Last Battle and Accepted are safely tucked away, because tradition dictates that they not be part of the fighting. Lovely. She doesn't answer the basic question about what the Aes Sedai role in the world actually should//could be. Instead it is more of the same..... And in the last, she doesn't, not once, ask: "How can the White Tower help?" Sure, she did a lot of fresh stuff, and the given reforms are refreshing, but in no way was she a Great Reformer...... Which calls into question Egwene's entire motivatation in leading the Salidar faction, but in the end, Elaida flew out on a lizard and, Egwene floated in on a boat, and the Tower continues to manipulate, coerce, intimidate and expect everyone to bend the knee without demonstrating WHY they deserve it.....

 

Egwene didn't undertake the Salidar mandate out of benevolence, nor did she merely see a great task that needed doing and begin the work. Something about her internal architecture compelled her to do it. Her competitiveness. Her undiluted sense of importance. The excitement at playing the Game of Thrones (is that reference okay, here?). She was attracted to the task because she could freely exercise her subconscious nature: to dominate, like every other Aes Sedai we have seen. She was simply better than all of them..... RIP, Egwene al'Vere. I'll miss you.....

Edited by BlueSun
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Hyperbole:

Noun

Exaggerated statements or claims not meant to be taken literally.

Synonyms

exaggeration - hyperbola - overstatement

________

psychopathy

noun

1. a mental disorder in which an individual manifests amoral and antisocial behavior, lack of ability to love or establish meaningful personal relationships, extreme egocentricity, failure to learn from experience, etc.

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How does Egwene NOT fit this basic description? People respect her, they folkw her, they fear her, but who besides Gawyn "loves" her?

 

 

 

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Blue Sun nailed it in post #321: Egwene never, at any moment, showed respect for her teachers. The only thing she wanted from her teachers was the knowledge, and the closest she came to respecting them was seeking validation ie authority.

 

It was always a power struggle with her. It's strange because reading that post made me feel a little more sympathetic towards Nynaeve. I forgot how much of a #$%(# Egwene acted as soon as they were out of the Two Rivers.

 

This is also why I wasn't surprised at her taste in men. Gawyn was insecure and could be exploited.

 

Still not calling her a psycho, and she's still better than Faile, but that's not really saying much. Perhaps a Type A personality.

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