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November, 12 2005
OK, folks-this is the general forum now for questions that don't seem to fit in any of the other threads. I'm going to sort some of the earlier posts into the appropriate forums, but it might take a while, so bear with me. I'll delete the ones that have already been reposted by their authors.
Hello, Isabeau! I've been reading through a lot of the comments made and I thought I'd add a couple here. The discussion about Arwen has me sort of confused because everyone thinks she changed her mind about her choice and I guess I've never read it quite that way. I see someone who is beginning to grieve over a beloved husband who is leaving and is asking him to stay when he clearly could have stayed for at least some time longer. I don't think she regrets her choice, just wants more time with her husband which is a pretty natural thing.
I suppose it is-unless you're 3000 years old. But Tolkien specifically states that she finds the Gift of Men hard to bear in the end, and implies that she regrets her decision. I believe that Aragorn even suggests she take ship (I can't find my LOTR omnibus) and she says that one wouldn't take her. The inference is that if she thought it would, she'd be out of there like a shot, and that's what I don't like-it cheapens their love.
I would have much preferred some dignified resignation on her part, instead of all the waffling and over-dramatic grief.
I think I've said to you before that I want Hethlin to end up with Imrahil and I think they will be good for each other in many different ways. She wants to have children, she has said so and had the surgery so that she can and I can't see her going north and marrying a Dunedain and having children there. I don't think she gives anything up by marrying him and she gains a whole lot, he loves her deeply and I think that she is starting to love him as well. He will not keep her caged up and locked away, he has never been that kind of a man.
Yay! Imri has another advocate! I think it's running 50/50 now.
I always keep in mind that the story is set in Middle-earth and not here and now and so things are much different in that world. Women's roles are different. What Hethlin is doing is extraordinary, what Eowyn did was extraordinary. I don't see that Eowyn marrying Faramir and having children is changing her expected life in a radical way. She was raised as a princess of Rohan - yes, a shield maiden, but a princess who would have been expected to marry well and have and raise children. Going and killing the witch-king was the unexpected, unusual thing and was done out of frustration and longing and anger and lots of different things. But I don't think that marrying Faramir (or anyone she loved) is settling for something less than she could have been. Not in that culture and not in that time. Not in the culture that Tolkien created.
This is true, though I do think women may feel stifled at times. I have tried to indicate in Ultimatums that even Nimrien, a more "proper" sort of woman, has regrets about not being able to take a more open role. Though there have always been those throughout history who took it and be damned to anyone who stood in their way.
By the way, Isabeau, I do like the way you write Aragorn, who is my favorite LOTR character! :)
I am very glad to hear that, because he is not a very easy one for me to write. He doesn't always talk loudly enough.
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