In literature as in life, the rules are all too often different for girls. There are many instances where an unlikable man is billed as an anti-hero, earning a special term to explain those ways in which he deviates from the norm, the traditionally likable. Beginning with Holden Caulfield in Catcher in the Rye, the list is long. An unlikable man is inscrutably interesting, dark, or tormented but ultimately compelling even when he might behave in distasteful ways.
When women are unlikable, it becomes a point of obsession in critical conversations by professional and amateur critics alike. Why are these women daring to flaunt convention? Why aren’t they making themselves likable (and therefore acceptable) to polite society? In a Publisher’s Weekly interview with Claire Messud about her recent novel, which features a rather “unlikable” protagonist named Nora who is bitter, bereft, and downright angry about what her life has become, the interviewer said, “I wouldn’t want to be friends with Nora, would you? Her outlook is almost unbearably grim.” And there we have it. A reader was here to make friends with the characters in a book and she didn’t like what she found.
Messud, for her part, had a sharp response for her interviewer. “For heaven’s sake, what kind of question is that? Would you want to be friends with Humbert Humbert? Would you want to be friends with Mickey Sabbath? Saleem Sinai? Hamlet? Krapp? Oedipus? Oscar Wao? Antigone? Raskolnikov? Any of the characters in The Corrections? Any of the characters in Infinite Jest? Any of the characters in anything Pynchon has ever written? Or Martin Amis? Or Orhan Pamuk? Or Alice Munro, for that matter? If you’re reading to find friends, you’re in deep trouble. We read to find life, in all its possibilities. The relevant question isn’t ‘Is this a potential friend for me?’ but ‘Is this character alive?’”"
Sometimes I can’t stop thinking about how Zuko accidentally spoke against his father and begged for forgiveness, on his knees with tears in his eyes, and got half his face burned off and banished from his home
Then Zuko betrayed his uncle and everything Iroh had ever taught him, begged for forgiveness on his knees with tears in his eyes, and got a hug and complete forgiveness and unconditional love
Once, in the days of time immemorial, there was a king of Greece who had thirty-three daughters. Each of these daughters rose up in revolt and murdered her husband. Perplexed as to how he had bred such rebels, but not wanting to kill his own flesh and blood, their princely father exiled them and set them adrift in a rudderless ship. Their ship was provisioned for six months. By the end of this period, the winds and tides had carried them to the edge of the known earth. They landed on an island shrouded in mist. As it had no name, the eldest of the killers gave it hers: Albina. When they hit shore, they were hungry and avid for male flesh. But there were no men to be found. The island was home only to demons. The thirty-three princesses mated with the demons and gave birth to a race of giants, who in turn mated with their mothers and produced more of their own kind. These giants spread over the whole landmass of Britain. There were no priests, no churches and no laws. There was also no way of telling the time.
After eight centuries of rule, they were overthrown by Trojan Brutus.
The great-grandson of Aeneas, Brutus was born in Italy; his mother died in giving birth to him, and his father, by accident, he killed with an arrow. He fled his birthplace and became leader of a band of men who had been slaves in Troy. Together they embarked on a voyage north, and the vagaries of wind and tide drove them to Albina’s coast, as the sisters had been driven before. When they landed they were forced to do battle with the giants, led by Gogmagog. The giants were defeated and their leader thrown into the sea.
Whichever way you look at it, it all begins in slaughter. Trojan Brutus and his descendants ruled till the coming of the Romans. Before London was called Lud’s Town, it was called New Troy. And we were Trojans.
Some say the Tudors transcend this history, bloody and demonic as it is: that they descend from Brutus through the line of Constantine, son of St Helena, who was a Briton. Arthur, High King of Britain, was Constantine’s grandson. He married up to three women, all called Guinevere, and his tomb is at Glastonbury, but you must understand that he is not really dead, only waiting his time to come again."
Remember who you are, what you were made to be. Remember your words.
"Fire and Blood."
LITERATURE MEME - nine poems: “some say horsemen, some say warriors (fragment 16)” by sappho [9/9]
The Queen of Swords, Bonifacio Bembo or family Visconti-Sforza, Tarot Cards, Italy, Milan, ca. 1450
"I am H e n r y T u d o r, heir to the Lancastrian throne and one day I will be King of England."
orphan black au where everything is the same except paul is played by natalie dormer