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Foreshadowing

 
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Cambo
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 2:12 am    Post subject: Foreshadowing Reply with quote

I'm a sucker for it. One of the joys of re-reading for me is picking up on little hints of what's to come in the events and the language the author employs.

Here are some I've picked up on during my re-read, please post any you come across and we can discuss! Smile

Lord Foul's Bane wrote:
As the full moon arose from the mountains, it caught Lena, cast a white haze like a caress across her head and shoulders. Standing still by the river, she held her head up to the moon, and Covenant watched her with an odd grim jealousy, as if she stood on a precipice which belonged to him


Reading the passages leading up to Lena's rape, when you know what's about to happen, you find them full of dark little hints and suggestions. Donaldson makes sure to mention Lena's beauty in a way that's not only lovely but sexual, showing us her breasts pushing against the cloth of her dress and her movements as she walks. We see Covenant's stirring desire for her, but it's not until they cross the river- which, by the way, Donaldson describes as "a kind of threshold- crises lurked in the dark hills beyond the far riverbank" - not until then that we see Covenant's desire veering towards possessiveness and violation. And this passage illustrates that with a disturbing beauty. Lena being caressed by the moonlight, offering herself willingly to that caress, I think symbolises her sexuality as a natural part of her to be offered gladly if she sees fit, and Covenant observing this jealously, wanting to take it from her and make it his. [shudder] This first half of LFB is, of course, Covenant at his most vile.

The Illearth War wrote:
"Give me fair warning next time," Covenant muttered, "so I can sit down."
The High Lord broke into clear laughter, then subdued herself abruptly. "Your pardon again, Thomas Covenant. But your expression is so fierce and foolish."
"Forget it," he replied. He found he liked the sound of her laugh. "Ridicule may be the only answer."
"Is that a proverb from your world? Or are you a prophet?"
"A little of both."


LOTS of stuff in this little exchange. Firstly, the whole situation was caused by Elena throwing a minor temper tantrum with the Staff of Law. Almost since we're first introduced to her we can observe there's something unstable and reckless about her. The image of something as powerful as the Staff being used in place of stamping a foot is a pretty clear foreshadowing of how Elena's passion and power outweigh her maturity and insight.
The there's the intriguing jibe "ridicule may be the only answer." Of course, it does turn out to be the answer- Lord Foul is browbeaten with the wild magic, yes, but ultimately he is laughed to death- laughed to death by pure, clear laughter without malice. Such as Elena's laugh here. Elena's shade even takes part.
Then we have one of the many times Covenant is alluded to as a prophet. Later in this very chapter the Unfettered One tells him that he "dreams the truth."

The Power that Preserves wrote:
Foamfollower had regained his composure. His teeth flashed through his stiff wet beard as if he were eager to be on his way- as if he were ready to fight his way through a sea of foes for one chance to strike a blow at the Despiser. And Bannor stood dourly at the Giant's side. They were equals, despite the difference in size. For an odd moment Covenant felt torn between them, as if they represented the opposing poles of his dilemma.
But odder than this torn feeling was the confidence that came with it. In that fleeting moment, he seemed to recognise where he stood for the first time.


This is our first glimpse into the Eye of the Paradox, the eventual resolution of Covenant's dilemma, and the key to the wild magic. Very interesting that it's Bannor and Foamfollower presented to us as the opposing poles Covenant must pass between.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 26, 2013 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice post Cambo! Any more of these?

Can you give just a brief explanation of what you understand from this quote re Bannor and Foamfollower being 'opposing poles of his dilema'. This is the kind of sentance I would read and absorb, but never really get to grips with and would forget in the bigger picture of what I was reading. What is really meant by this line?
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

peter wrote:
Can you give just a brief explanation of what you understand from this quote re Bannor and Foamfollower being 'opposing poles of his dilema'. This is the kind of sentance I would read and absorb, but never really get to grips with and would forget in the bigger picture of what I was reading. What is really meant by this line?

I have an idea of what Donaldson meant, even though it's a bit obscured by not knowing when that passage appears in TPTP, so I'm going to provide my possible answer.

IIRC, Foamfollower is committed to staying and fighting in the land, and Bannor eventually decides to leave it. Covenant initially commits (when talking to Triock after Lena dies, IIRC) to leaving The Land to keep the ring out of Foul's hands, but after destroying the Staff of Law he decides to go take the struggle to Foul instead.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's my opinion too, Hoselty. Bannor represents walking away from it all, while Foamfollower represents leaping into the breach.

It's your basic Flight or Fight response. Smile
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

wayfriend wrote:
That's my opinion too, Hoselty. Bannor represents walking away from it all, while Foamfollower represents leaping into the breach.

It's your basic Flight or Fight response. Smile

Covenant ultimately manages both extremes, at least in a way: after saving the land in its extremity, he turns down a life there in favor of returning to his own world.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 8:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice explanation guys - and one that works well. One thing; we all know the Haruchai tendancy to 'walk away' at key stages [just when they are needed most], but Bannor [still probably my favorite Haruchai] was somewhat different. My question is 'would Bannor have still walked away had not Foamfollower been there to stand alongside TC.' Was this a case of the Haruchai tendancy to judge [very accurately] what was needed in any given situation - no more and no less - or was Bannor truly turning away from the fight against Corruption [not a normal Haruchai response].
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 11:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

peter wrote:
Nice explanation guys - and one that works well. One thing; we all know the Haruchai tendancy to 'walk away' at key stages [just when they are needed most], but Bannor [still probably my favorite Haruchai] was somewhat different. My question is 'would Bannor have still walked away had not Foamfollower been there to stand alongside TC.' Was this a case of the Haruchai tendancy to judge [very accurately] what was needed in any given situation - no more and no less - or was Bannor truly turning away from the fight against Corruption [not a normal Haruchai response].


Cool discussion guys! Smile Was waiting for some indications of interest before posting more.

Personally I think Bannor would have walked away regardless. He would have seen striking directly at the Despiser as a continuance of the folly that saw the Bloodguard brought down in the first place- stretching beyond "the limits of their worth" as he called them.

And I agree with Holsety- like several seemingly irreconcilable paradoxes in the series, Covenant manages to have it both ways when it comes to the example of Bannor and Foamfollower. He fights for the Land, but walks away from a hero's life that would not be his.

Some stuff that I've noticed in the Second Chrons coming soon Cool
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 4:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe Bannor walked away because he felt his assistance (or the assistance of the Bloodguard) would be a hindrance and work directly against the desired outcome. That's not to say they did nothing, the remaining Bloodguard decided to help the Ranyhyn instead of going home. But they felt they would be a liability in a direct fight against Foul and opted out to avoid betraying their allies.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What specifically, was it about the Bloodguard/Haruchai that they felt would lead them to betray the Land if they were to join directly into the fight against Foul? I don't deny that this might have been the reasoning behind their/Bannors actions - but I struggle to see what this apparent failing in their nature actually was. Yes, they were not above coecion by the Despiser - but who was! With the Illearth stone he had already demonstrated his power over both Giants and Haruchai. By the time of the meeting cited above, the Bloodguard had already been disbanded - the decision had to be Bannor's alone did it not? Was he turning his back for the whole Haruchai collective - I had assumed this was a personal decision [ It was about the first time in the chrons [IIRC] that we had encountered a Haruchai in complete isolation from his people and I remember this striking me at the time as significant.]
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Didn't Bannor seek to accompany the Ramen and Ranyhyn? Maybe he didn't particularly think Covenant would be successful, or that he wouldn't add much to Covenan't chances, but wanted to accompany a a manifestation of the Land's Earthpower and see it protected and served?

And I think it's true that one haruchai wouldn't add a great deal to the exposition, because most of it was undertaken in a way that avoided notice.
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