Page 7 of 7 FirstFirst ... 34567
Results 91 to 95 of 95
  1. #91
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    6,186

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by BeccaBlast View Post
    "It looks to me like the prisoners choose to stay because they've been made to love their captivity."

    You're not the first person to have that impression -- Eviless figured that, too -- that they would love their captivity so much they would make useful slaves. That lasted until Irene and company were left alone tied up in their cells. Obviously, Marston was trying for something more complex that that -- but free will is a tricky doctrine for any religion or philosophy designed to propel humanity to its ultimate.
    Yeah, he was going for something more complex, and yeah, it is tricky--and what he ended up depicting, in my view, is women who loved their captivity because it made them feel powerful and because their captors seemed loving. Eviless did not seem loving and didn't make them feel powerful. Good thing she didn't come bearing a non-sinister smile and some power rings. :)

    Liberation through submission is the core mystery of the most successful human religions -- whether through contemplation or faith, we're continually told the only way to achieve peace, happiness and fulfillment is through submission to whatever is presented as the nature of the cosmos.
    Sure. And sometimes, this results in humble servants of God and humanity like Mother Theresa; and sometimes it results in obedient prison guards who carry out the most inhumane orders. One critical difference is whetehr people have learned critical thinking, empathy and compassion as well as obedience. Mother Theresa was liberated through submission, but she was also a doubter, as revealed by journals published after he death. If there had ever been a bad pope who gave her evil orders, I don't think she would have submitted to them. In Marston's ideas about reeducation, I see a very heavy stress on obedience, and less stress--for the masses, at least--on qualities that might temper obedience and make it conditional. It just strikes me as a questionable way to educate people who are supposed to govern themselves in a democratic society.

    I suppose you could say that the very concept of God is fascistic, then
    I'm not even saying that Marston was a fascist; the first thing I said on this thread was that fascism is a specific political and economic system and Marston doesn't fit the bill. You could ask whether the concept of God is authoritarian, but if people believe that God created free will, then there's a pretty big counterargument. It's possible to believe that God wants us to liberate ourselves through submission but does not compel us to do so.

  2. #92
    Mark Millar Licks Goats BeccaBlast's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    291

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by slvn View Post
    Yeah, he was going for something more complex, and yeah, it is tricky--and what he ended up depicting, in my view, is women who loved their captivity because it made them feel powerful and because their captors seemed loving. Eviless did not seem loving and didn't make them feel powerful. Good thing she didn't come bearing a non-sinister smile and some power rings. :)
    Don't be so sure -- around October, just about ANYBODY is gonna get a visit from the Guardians, it seems...

    Quote Originally Posted by slvn View Post
    Sure. And sometimes, this results in humble servants of God and humanity like Mother Theresa; and sometimes it results in obedient prison guards who carry out the most inhumane orders. One critical difference is whetehr people have learned critical thinking, empathy and compassion as well as obedience. Mother Theresa was liberated through submission, but she was also a doubter, as revealed by journals published after he death. If there had ever been a bad pope who gave her evil orders, I don't think she would have submitted to them. In Marston's ideas about reeducation, I see a very heavy stress on obedience, and less stress--for the masses, at least--on qualities that might temper obedience and make it conditional. It just strikes me as a questionable way to educate people who are supposed to govern themselves in a democratic society.
    If that was true, the Amazons would have re-jailed Irene and the others -- but they didn't. They congratulated and rewarded them for their choice to resist evil -- and show that reform was possible. After all, these people WERE all violent criminals before Diana apprehended them -- Irene even comments that her newfound feelings of strength and power aren't like the cruel ones she had before. It's similar to the infamous "Good mistress could do wonders with them" comment -- you're reading stasis into what is clearly a process -- and in the story you chose for an example, the process is pretty obvious -- unless one is stuck into a position of already having expressed reservations on it.

    Quote Originally Posted by slvn View Post
    I'm not even saying that Marston was a fascist; the first thing I said on this thread was that fascism is a specific political and economic system and Marston doesn't fit the bill. You could ask whether the concept of God is authoritarian, but if people believe that God created free will, then there's a pretty big counterargument. It's possible to believe that God wants us to liberate ourselves through submission but does not compel us to do so.
    Well, for those who believe, that is certainly the case; not knowing your religious status -- and not needing to for the purposes of this discussion -- I have no problem with this last paragraph of yours at all. As the rest of my sentence shows, it was much more a jibe at the academic pretentiousness of the "God (or any authority who announces It acts from love) is a fascist" by reducing it to absurdity.

    I certainly don't see these Amazons as thought police, and I don't think you do, either.
    Some days a girl wants to ride ponies. Some days a girl wants to punch tanks. Today ... is a tank day.

  3. #93
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    6,186

    Default

    Becca,

    Sorry for the late response I moved recently and don't have internet access at home yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by slvn
    In Marston's ideas about reeducation, I see a very heavy stress on obedience, and less stress--for the masses, at least--on qualities that might temper obedience and make it conditional. It just strikes me as a questionable way to educate people who are supposed to govern themselves in a democratic society.
    Quote Originally Posted by BeccaBlast View Post
    If that was true, the Amazons would have re-jailed Irene and the others
    But why? Once they've learned to love their chains (so to speak) they don't need them anymore; their captivity is internalized. (In Emotions of Normal People, Marston actually uses the term "captivand"--as in captivated one--for the submissive lover. I don't think it's too much a stretch to say that he thinks of loving submission as a kind of captivity--albeit a benign kind.) ) It's the paradox you spoke of--captivity sets her free, apparently. And you're correct that religions often celebrate this paradox, in various forms, with various levels of emphasis on free choice. Orwell, too, portrayed this kind of paradox--or perhaps, for him, mere contradiction--in a society that emotionally reeducated its citizens to take pride in being obedient. But Orwell portrayed it in order to warn us about that kind of reedcuation, while Marston portrayed it in order to celebrate and encourage it. They both had a point--Marston's right that some kind of submission to the common good is necessary for peace. But I have to say, in the wake of the state-directed atrocities of the 20th Century, Orwell's warning seems, overall, more cogent than Marston's celebration.


    -- but they didn't. They congratulated and rewarded them for their choice to resist evil -- and show that reform was possible. After all, these people WERE all violent criminals before Diana apprehended them -- Irene even comments that her newfound feelings of strength and power aren't like the cruel ones she had before. It's similar to the infamous "Good mistress could do wonders with them" comment -- you're reading stasis into what is clearly a process -- and in the story you chose for an example, the process is pretty obvious -- unless one is stuck into a position of already having expressed reservations on it.
    I don't really know why you think I'm reading stasis into it. I don't see stasis. She says "I don't feel cruel or wicked as I used to--the Amazons have transformed me! I love Wonder Woman and Queen Hippolyte--I must save them." There's a passive kind of reform here (that is, a lack of the "evil desires" she used to have) and an active kind (a love for the authorities that held her captive, and a desire to save them). Does she have an independent conscience? We're not really shown that. Loving good people isn't really the same as loving to be good and to do good. But clearly, she has changed and reformed, in a particular sense: she has come to love her captivity and her captors, as well as the power that they have given her, and as long as they need her help or tell her to do good, she will do good. And if she always does good, that's a good end; but the end doesn't necessarily justify the means, in my view.

    Her captivity has, indeed, made her feel powerful and free--and perhaps it has even, paradoxically, made her actually free, in some sense. But has it really made her an autonomously ethical agent, or would she perform an evil action if Wonder Woman or Hippolyta (for some reason) commanded her to do so? And did she voluntarily submit to reform--did she choose to change--or did the girdle change her heart and mind for her? As I mentioned, the fact that some criminals weren't reformed "yet" doesn't convince me; they may have just needed more time in the girdle, or the girdle may simply have failed on them. Mala says that the girdle blocks evil desires and compels complete captivity, and I see so indication that the girdle is intended to allowed them to choose whether to experience "evil desires" or not. I honestly don't think it mattered very much to Marston; what mattered was that loving submission, not so much how loving submission was attained. And I understand this; he saw that reducing violence was an urgent need. It's just that I think you have to be careful not to sacrifice free will in the name of peace, and one reason for this is that peace attained that way may not be lasting, if the apparently "loving" authority discovers a need for violence against some enemy. And in a democracy, you need the masses to be educated to participate not only to submit to authority but also to participate in collective decision-making; but Marston, in Emotions of Normal People, wanted most women and all men to be educated not for decision-making but for submission to the decision makers. That kind of education seems, to me, to be more suitable for an authoritarian society.

    I certainly don't see these Amazons as thought police, and I don't think you do, either.
    You're right--I don't, if by "thought police" you mean people who punish others for thoughts that don't manifest as deeds. I just don't think Marston makes it clear that they care about whether their reformees freely choose reform and learn to discern and do the right thing for the sake of doing the right thing, and not just for the sake of the authorities whom they have come to love.

    I'm not, by a long shot, saying that the Amazons are like Orwell's 1984 government in every way. The Amazons are much nicer, nobler, wholly well-meaning totalitarians. :)
    Last edited by slvn; 07-10-2012 at 11:57 AM.

  4. #94
    DC Comics Forum Moderator The Darknight Detective's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    4,231

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by carabas View Post
    I don't get this thread...

    Someone comes up to you and tells you they don't like the way you're thinking. You're locked up in a prison and forced to wear a magical contraption that will forcibly change the way you think until agree with your captor.

    How this is not pure black and white supervillainy I just do not understand. "It's okay if you do it only to bad people" doesn't fly with me.

    Nobody would even blink if Lex Luthor did something like this. It's Anti-Life. Darkseid territory.
    I actually would have no problem with it IF you had a choice between incarceration or being brainwashed (or whatever you want to call it). Having it forced upon a baddie? Yeah, that's no good.
    A bat! That's it! It's an omen.. I shall become a bat!

  5. #95
    Marquis de carabas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Belgium.
    Posts
    31,765

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Darknight Detective View Post
    I actually would have no problem with it IF you had a choice between incarceration or being brainwashed (or whatever you want to call it). Having it forced upon a baddie? Yeah, that's no good.
    Well, you don't get that choice.
    'The marquis. Well, you know, to be honest, he seems a little bit dodgy to me.'
    'Mm,' she agreed. 'He's a little bit dodgy in the same way that rats are a little bit covered in fur."

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •