fash of the ‘european traditionalist, let’s go back to a mythical idea of pre-modern europe’ variety, who also call themselves ‘nationalists’…like how old do they think the concept of the nation state is? Nationalism is a modern ideology., Europe had no hard borders or immigration controls till after the first world war, and now “traditionalists” have them at the centre of their politics? ‘Against the modern world’ my arse
I'd to point you to a couple of things. They are. Soviet Russia. Maoist China
Soviet Russia and China are examples of countries that were still entrenched in feudalism at the times of their respective socialist revolutions, which effectively catapulted them into variations of state capitalist development instead of full workers-democratically-control-production socialism. The state became the analogous capitalist class and instituted developments and policies over the course of a few decades that private capitalists elsewhere were pushing for centuries – think forced proletarianization of peasants and concentrated industrialization. The state took over the functions of a bunch of private capitalists, appropriating surplus value generated by workers and distributing the surplus where deemed necessary; they often put this towards the industrialization of infrastructure and public services, but it just as often was used to enrich the party apparatus. Even Lenin literally deemed this setup as “state capitalism”, the idea being an intermediary stage for formerly-feudal societies before full socialism.
As a libertarian socialist/Marxist, I don’t defend the actions taken in these countries, but it’s important to contextualize what was going on. The idea is that it’s near-impossible to just jump from feudalism to socialism – a period of capitalist development/accumulation and liberal institutions makes the jump more viable. As far as I’m concerned, this could have been accomplished through mutualism or market socialism, combining the liberalism of markets with the democratic accountability of worker control (thus mitigating much of the poverty and violent consequences of class domination).
To quote Terry Eagleton:
“Marx himself never imagined that socialism could be achieved in impoverished conditions [i.e. Russia and China]. Such a project would require almost as bizarre a loop in time as inventing the Internet in the Middle Ages. Nor did any Marxist thinker until Stalin imagine that this was possible, including Lenin, Trotsky, and the rest of the Bolshevik leadership…
Building up an economy from very low levels is a back-breaking, dispiriting task. It is unlikely that men and women will freely submit to the hardships it involves. So unless this project is executed gradually, under democratic control and in accordance with socialist values, an authoritarian state may step in and force its citizens to do what they are reluctant to undertake voluntarily. The militarization of labor in Bolshevik Russia is a case in point. The result, in a grisly irony, will be to undermine the political superstructure of socialism (popular democracy, genuine self-government) in the very attempt to build up its economic base…
As Marx insists, socialism also requires a shortening of the working day – partly to provide men and women with the leisure for personal fulfillment, partly to create time for the business of political and economic self-government. You can not do this if people have no shoes; and to distribute shoes among millions of citizens is likely to require a centralized bureaucratic state. If your nation is under invasion from an array of hostile capitalist powers, as Russia was in the wake of the Bolshevik revolution, an autocratic state will seem all the more inevitable…
To go socialist, then, you need to be reasonably well-heeled, in both the literal and the metaphorical senses of the term. No Marxist from Marx and Engels to Lenin and Trotsky ever dreamt of anything else. Or if you are not well-heeled yourself, then a sympathetic neighbor reasonably flush in material resources needs to spring to your aid. In the case of the Bolsheviks, this would have meant such neighbors (Germany in particular) having their own revolutions, too. If the working class of these countries could overthrow their own capitalist masters and lay hands on their productive powers, they could use those resources to save the first workers’ state in history from sinking without a trace. This was not as improbable a proposal as it might sound. Europe at the time was aflame with revolutionary hopes, as councils of workers’ and soldiers’ deputies (or soviets) sprang up in cities such as Berlin, Warsaw, Vienna, Munich, and Riga. Once these insurrections were defeated, Lenin and Trotsky knew their own revolution was in dire straights.
It is not that the building of socialism cannot be begun in deprived conditions. It is rather that without material resources it will tend to twist into the monstrous caricature of socialism known as Stalinism. The Bolshevik revolution soon found itself besieged by imperial Western armies, as well as threatened by counterrevolution, urban famine, and a bloody civil war. It was marooned in an ocean of largely hostile peasants reluctant to hand over their hard-earned surplus at gunpoint to the starving towns. With a narrow capitalist base, disastrously low levels of material production, scant traces of civil institutions, a decimated, exhausted working class, peasant revolts, and a swollen bureaucracy to rival the Tsar’s, the revolution was in deep trouble almost from the outset…
Imagine a slightly crazed capitalist outfit that tried to turn a pre-modern tribe into a set of ruthlessly acquisitive, technologically sophisticated entrepreneurs speaking the jargon of public relations and free market economics, all in a surreally short period of time. Does the fact that the experiment would almost certainly prove less than dramatically successful constitute a fair condemnation of capitalism? Surely not. To think so would be as absurd as claiming that the Girl Guides should be disbanded because they cannot solve certain tricky problems in quantum physics. Marxists do not believe that the mighty liberal lineage from Thomas Jefferson to John Stuart Mill is annulled by the existence of secret CIA-run prisons for torturing Muslims, even though such prisons are part of the politics of today’s liberal societies. Yet the critics of Marxism are rarely willing to concede that show trials and mass terror are no refutation of it.”
1) You can’t just expect socialism to quickly arise in materially- and socially-isolated countries in the throngs of feudalism (Russia and China). A material base of industrialization and a social base of liberalism are generally understood to be useful/basically-necessary prerequisites to build from. If other capitalist countries had undergone socialist revolution and provided aid to the struggling formerly-feudal state capitalist countries, they probably wouldn’t have congealed into top-down bureaucracies. A domino effect of worker revolutions across capitalist countries is considered necessary for socialism to fully take hold, just as a domino effect of bourgeois revolutions across feudal countries was needed for capitalism to fully take hold.
2) The violent primitive accumulation of early capitalism and the concentrated industrialization of state capitalist Russia and China served similar analogous functions in the broader context of historical materialism. Private capitalism for the enrichment of individual capitalists over the centuries, state capitalism supposedly for the enrichment of society’s material base and an eventual transition to full socialism.
3) Capitalist societies have unleashed violent imperialism, mass enslavement, systemic poverty, and police states. If we’re going to bring up the disasters of isolated countries that set their aims at socialism, then we need to bring up the centuries-long disasters of not-isolated capitalist countries that have actively oppressed domestic and foreign populations of people.
4) We live in an era of material abundance aided by advanced technology and automation; any attempt at socialism in late-capitalist countries would be significantly easier than what Russia and China experienced. As such, these industrialized late-capitalist countries need to undergo social revolution and provide aid to each other and to struggling countries that would have otherwise been state capitalist.
(This answer has mainly been for the benefit of people already at least relatively sympathetic to anti-capitalism; I realize it is unlikely to sway someone so entrenched in capitalist ideology that they have no clue what socialist movements have entailed and strove for. If your analysis stops at “Russia and China were bad and that’s what socialism means and therefore it’s not worth fighting for”, then I don’t know what to tell ya. If your analysis stops at “capitalism preaches liberal individual freedom so therefore it is good”, then I don’t know what to tell ya. Dig past the ideology you’ve been spoon-fed by capitalist media and the state since childhood and recognize that you’ve been conned, all for the enrichment of the bosses and the bureaucrats.)
The “Folkloric Devil” is a term applied to the figure who appears in folk-tales and legends and who is often called “the devil”, but it’s obvious that he emerges from a different source than the theological background of Christianity.
Old divinities or diminished Gods that maintained a presence in the minds or cultures of European peoples are suggested (often enough, and for good reasons) as a source of this figure; but beyond that, the pre-Christian societies had spiritual forces and persons that they related to in the sense of “outsider” powers that could be shady or tricky or dangerous at times, but who often had kinds of relationships nonetheless with human beings. These are the main source of the “folkloric” Devil/Devils.
The Folkloric devil isn’t concerned with damning souls, primarily, but he always wants to make deals or pacts to help humans who need things, but so that he can gain, too- a sign of his origin in the older world of spirit-relationship and spiritual ecology. In Christian gloss, he begins more and more to want “souls” for his help, but he is always able to be tricked, himself- and this is very important. Human heroes or protagonists can outwit him. This is something that would be impossible to do to the Theological Devil, who is far beyond humans in power, and second only to God himself in power.
Modern Pop Culture produces surprising emergences of the old Folkloric Devil- Charlie Daniel’s song “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” is an appearance of a Folkloric Devil, who can be out-played by the intrepid and arrogant local boy, on the fiddle. There is the Christian conceit of the Devil seeking souls in that song, but that’s just a minor detail, more suited to a Christian audience and born from the imagination of a low Protestant folk singer.
The Folkloric Devil is a being- and a representative of a whole class of beings- who can be engaged with by humans, for gains. They can be harmful, they can be helpful, and they can be outwitted or outdone at times. Sometimes, they become protagonists themselves.
Theological Elites in the Pre-Modern period of Europe saw no distinction between their Theological Devil and the various emergences of the Folkloric Devil. The “Devil” of witch cults and covenants and of individual sorcerers or witches was of the Folkloric variety, though in their own personal understandings, even they may have believed that he was the same as the theological devil, such was the nature of their times. It’s not like there was a neat chart that spelled all this stuff out to earlier people, and folk in Pre-Modern times heard Christian ministers ranting alongside fire-side bards telling folktales, and so the Folkloric Devil/Devils could take on Christian gloss and attributes at times, and the Theological devil could appear in decidedly “folkish” ways.
What’s important to remember is that the Theological Devil doesn’t exist except as the shadow of Christian psychology. He is born from the idealistic Christian imagination, as the necessary counter-ideal or counter-force to their idealistic notion of good, the warped good, the fallen good, born in their continuation of earlier dualistic religious tropes that posited a cosmic war between good and evil cosmological forces.
The Folkloric Devil, on the other hand, very much exists, both in the form of a powerful former divinity worshiped by practically every human culture known previous to Christianity, and as a folk-memory of certain spirit-entities (very much tied to this world) that people have always engaged in relationships with, though they are a group of entities who are, in ways, challenging, dangerous at points, and ambiguous.
The Theological Devil is a remnant of idealism and the diseased imagination of absolutists and idealists. The Folkloric Devil is a remnant of ancient spiritual ecology and human relationships to the wilder, stranger Otherworld.
yes i get that the idea of pre-modern Europe being totally what you’d consider ‘white’ by modern standards is false and should be dismantled. i mean we should totally talk about how the Roman Empire was very much a multiethnic civilisation with North African and Middle-Eastern influences and existed with completely different race categories altogether. we should consider how empires we often regard today as non-European like the Islamic caliphates, the Achaemenid Empire (aka Iran) and Ottoman Turkey influenced what we now consider to be ‘Western civilisation’. or consider how Christianity is ultimately a religion of Middle-Eastern origin. we should remember that modern constructs of whiteness are exactly that- modern. they were not perpetual.
but i can’t completely get on board with the way people often only fixate on US-centric race categories to present Europe as diverse. there are numerous European ethnic minorities who you might consider ‘white’ in the US who have historically faced erasure and genocidal violence at the hands larger and more powerful European countries. diversity in the European context is very much about representing ethnic diversity too.
by all means, I understand the term POC has some validity if you’re addressing say, a US-based game developer or a US movie studio making a Hollywood movie when they start saying things like ‘premodern europe was all white’. but all the same, the way racism and exclusion has occurred in Europe has very often been about ethnic faultlines. things like antisemitism, a very old European prejudice, just do not fit simply into a white/POC dichotomy. so i can’t help but feel the way the term ‘POC’ gets flung around carelessly in that context is subtle US cultural imperialism, because this is also kind of implicitly predicated on the idea that whiteness as it is understood in the US exists the same way in various European countries.
I actually made a small post a few weeks ago when I found this particular picture on Sarah’s pintrest.
Keep in mind this is just a theory.
Gist of it is Elide Crochans bloodline. We know she has witch blood. Now at the time we only knew of Manon’s Ironteeth Blood. So my proposal is that the witch blood in Elide’s veins is actually Crochan, and an oracle. I also think that the Crochans are actually hidding in the Southern Continent. (Chaol!!!) Now for the evidence!
The name Lochan mean in Sanskrit The Eye.
The Crochans have been in hidding as Healers and Wise Women .
Annieth Goddess of Wise Things.
“The term “wise woman” usually refers to a folk healer or midwife, often in the context of pre-modern European peasantry.
A wise woman can be a type of witch
One of the cunning folk” CUNNING FOLK
Cunning Folk (Wikipedia again) Cunning folk, also known as folk healers or (more rarely) as white witches, are practitioners of folk medicine, folk magic, and divination within the context of the various traditions of folklore in Christian Europe (from at least the 15th up until at least the early 20th century).
Now the part that intrested me in that was Divination.
Divination (from Latin divinare “to foresee, to be inspired by a god”, related to divinus, divine) is the attempt to gain insight into a question or situation by way of an occultic, standardized process or ritual.
Or an Oracle. (Wikipedia again) In classical antiquity, an oracle was a person or agency considered to provide wise and insightful counsel or prophetic predictions or precognition of the future, inspired by the gods. As such it is a form of divination
WISE is the keyword there.
See how it becomes full circle?
*Elide pretended to be an Oracle in EOS and part of her costume was RED ROBES. EOS374 We also know from EOS that Rhiannon was Brannon’s oracle and she wore a crown of stars. Matron Blackbeek owns that crown now..
*Elide is constantly decsribed as cunning.
*Lorcan often says the “cunning witch in EOS”
*Uncle Vernon didnt trust healers to fix Elides leg.
Why is that? I argue because they could have been a Crochan and would realize Elide as one of their own, and that would upset Vernon’s plans.
We also know that Cal and Marion were very protective of Elide and sheltered her. But wanted to seen her to Magic school also. (HOF)
* QOS p211 Marion and Call visted the Southern Continent.
* HOF Manon is hunting the Crochan in Fenharow, where Yrene is from. Yrene goes to the Southern Continent to learn to be a healer.
*P70 HOF Manon killed her first Crochan in the mountains 100 years prior. Marion is a bastard born in the mountains of Roseamel (Possibly Marions grandmother or great grandmother )
Now in EOS Elide’s says that the Wyrdkey speaks to her it whispers EOS12-14.
Also she can sense Lorcan and danger.
Elides scent is another that is constantly thrown in our face. Cinnamon and elderberries.
Here what google has to say about each:
*Cinnamon can increase concentration and helps with focus, especially if practicing divination.
*Elderberry is a potently magical fruit that has been used for healing and blessings, but it also finds itself used for curses, summoning ghosts and evil spirits and banishing as well.
Maeve herself offers up a clue in EOS p645
“Lady Elide Lochan, daughter of Cal and Marion Lochan. No wonder the witch itches to retrieve you, if her bloodline runs in your veins”
Which bloodline is that?
And now on to those images. They are from SJM pintrest , and really what got me to look into this whole thing. If you add up everything in my opinion the evidence is strong that Elide is a Crochan witch not an Ironteeth.
Also would like to note that @propshophannah has a post about Elide’s scent and another about her part to play. I didnt link it because I’m on mobile and cant find it. Im not sure if anyone eles does.
“Pretentiousness suits her, though. And the ‘B’ is ambiguous, gives her an air of mystery– what does it stand for? Is it her first name, her last? The casual observer would have to ask if they really wanted to know. It hints, teases, rather than just shouting out an answer to a question no one’s asked.”
Can you pretty please do the fainting one for lams (it's number 38) thaaaanks much appreciated darling :D
AHHHHH OH MY GOODNESS is this a popular fic request! And you guys know I sure love it because ANGST ANGST ANGST YESSSSSSS (Want me to write you a lil fic, too? Choose a prompt from the old list or new one and just let me know which list you used!)
“You fainted… straight into my arms. You know, if you wanted my attention you didn’t have to go to such extremes.”
Alexander was in the zone. He was sitting in the library, furiously clacking away on his keyboard, nearing the conclusion of the second essay he’d started that day.
He’d left the Washington’s house bright and early that morning, even though the library didn’t open until nine, and sat outside the locked doors on the cold granite bench, reading ahead in his physics textbook. As soon as he could get into the library he went to his usual carrel, took out his laptop, and began writing, not stopping once for over the next eight hours.
Around five-thirty his phone buzzed, but he ignored it. Everyone knew where he was. He’d left a note on the counter. He’d said not to wait for him at dinner that night. They knew he liked to spend entire days working at the library, so he ignored the text, figuring it was Laf.
Around six o’clock someone tapped him on the shoulder. Alexander turned to see Laurens staring down at him, arms crossed.
“Laf says you’ve been here all day. He said when he woke up you were already gone?”
“Yeah, it’s a Saturday. Library day,” Alex said, as if this was obvious.
“Yeah, well, I’m guessing you haven’t left the library all day?” Laurens retorted.
“Why are you being so snippy, John?” Alex asked, narrowing his eyes.
“Because my boyfriend is spending his entire Saturday in the library!” he exclaimed.
An old lady perusing the nearby stacks shushed him. Alex had to stifle a laugh. He forced himself to be serious again.
“John, what’s really going on?”
Laurens sighed. “I have to go to a stupid fundraising party for my dad tomorrow and I really don’t want to.” He looked down at his shoes. “You know how those things make me feel.”
“Oh, babe, I’m sorry,” Alex said. “Was that text earlier from you?”
“Yeah. When you didn’t answer I texted Laf.”
“I’m sorry,” Alexander said again.
Laurens shrugged. “At least you’re predictable.” He gestured to the library.
Alex laughed. “Wanna go get something to eat?”
Laurens’ face lit up a bit. “Yeah, that’d be nice. Sushi?”
“Sure!” Alex said. As he packed up his stuff, Laurens’ phone started to ring.
The old lady shushed him with even more force. This time both boys started to laugh. Laurens motioned to Alexander that he was going to take the call outside, leaving Alex alone to finish packing.
Alexander zipped his backpack shut and stood, grabbing onto the chair as he did, his vision going black for a moment. “Woah,” he said as his eyes cleared.
The old lady shushed him again. Alex slowly made his way toward the front of the library and outside, where Laurens was speaking into his phone in a hushed tone.
“Yeah, Dad, I get it. I’ll be home in time.” He paused, turning as Alex approached him, He rolled his eyes and pointed at the phone. “I said I know!” He sighed. “You’re right. I’m sorry.”
Alex stood in front of Laurens, swaying a bit on his feet. His head was pounding and little black dots were dancing in his field of vision. He tried to focus on what Laurens was saying to his father over the phone, but his voice was fading, fading, fading…
“Alexander? Alex?” John’s voice broke through the darkness.
Alex felt something soft, warm… He blinked his eyes open and realized he was in Laurens’ arms, and they were still right outside of the library.
“Wh-what happened?” Alex asked.
“You fainted… straight into my arms.” Laurens said. Then, seeing Alex was okay, he smirked. “You know, if you wanted my attention you didn’t have to go to such extremes.”
“Shut up, Laurens,” Alex mumbled.
“Come on. Let’s get you home,” Laurens said, standing up with Alexander still in his arms.
“God, John, no. I can walk,” Alex said, but made no attempt to get out of Laurens’ arms.
“Mmhmm, babe, sure. Just let me do this.” He leaned over and planted a gentle kiss on Alexander’s forehead.
“Fine,” Alex mumbled, shutting his eyes, nuzzling against John’s chest, for once okay with accepting help.
One weird thing about 5th edition Dungeons and Dragons is how it narrows down things that you would think would be rather general capabilities of adventurers. Like how the Assassin archetype of Rogue can create false identities for themselves by spending 7 days and 25 GPS (shipping and handling from the old identity warehouse, I guess) to establish an identity’s history and documentation. But it can’t be the identity of a real person, even though you would think that in the pre-modern settings of most campaigns, most people have very little in the way of complex documentation or even photographic records. This, by the way, is a 9th level ability. At 13th level, they can finally mimic other people’s mannerisms and speech and can pass as them. Which oddly kind of ignores the fact that “people” in this setting includes dragon men, catfolk, fishmen, spider centaurs, and three types of short ‘uns. Can my female halfling assassin pose as a bull minotaur warrior? I guess?
So…can nobody but assassins impersonate people? Even other rogues? A thief with a forger’s kit can’t fabricate a new identity, even with the charlatan background? The arcane trickster, who can explicitly learn several types of illusions and Alter Self, can’t pass as another person? A wizard, bard, or even a smart and charismatic soldier can’t play pretend? And if anyone can do these things with enough good roleplaying, prep time, and rolls, is the Assassin given two completely pointless dead levels?
(Also: if only the Assassin can infiltrate, what is the rest of the party doing? Are you just going to play a subgame of Hitman: Blood Money while the other 3 or 5 players kill some orcs on the other side of town?)
Speaking of smart soldiers, the Battle Master’s maneuvers include such titles as: evasive footwork, feinting attack, lunging attack, parry, riposte, and trip attack. Which makes you wonder what the hell every other class is actually doing in combat. Is a rogue assassins not performing evasive footwork and feints before lunging? Is the swashbuckler or paladin not parrying and reposting with his rapier? WHY CAN’T A LEVEL 20 BARBARIAN WITH A POLEARM TRIP ANYONE
anyone who has been reading my blog lately can probably guess, I’ve been loving
the new season of Samurai Jack. In a
media culture saturated with mediocre and/or outright bad reboots and remakes,
Season Five of Samurai Jack retains
everything fans loved about the first four seasons, while the TV-14 rating
allows for storytelling opportunities that weren’t available when it was a Y-7
show, and yet feel like a natural extension of the original.
emotional touchstones of the new season have thus far been Jack, as is only
fitting, and Ashi, one of the Daughters of Aku, and by Episode XCV, the only surviving daughter of Aku. The
Daughters, Ashi especially, have been set up as parallels and foils for Jack in
terms of their upbringing and their ‘purpose’ in life. In particular, the show
explores a running theme through the both of them: violence as the annihilation
of the self.