Dany - Villain? Savior? Something else?

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Starry
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Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:52 am

I think why she is always seen as the villian, is because she is female. And people can't accept a female ruler. Everyone knows that Cersei will eventually be cast down. So the hate toward her is not so strong. But with Dany there is still the fear that she might actually sit the Iron Throne. So people villianize her or hope she dies in the most cruel ways to show women where their place in this world is. Especially women who are so "arrogant" to aspire to rule.

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Not Littlefinger
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Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:22 pm

Starry wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:52 am
I think why she is always seen as the villian, is because she is female. And people can't accept a female ruler. Everyone knows that Cersei will eventually be cast down. So the hate toward her is not so strong. But with Dany there is still the fear that she might actually sit the Iron Throne. So people villianize her or hope she dies in the most cruel ways to show women where their place in this world is. Especially women who are so "arrogant" to aspire to rule.
I can't speak for everyone, but I'm one of those who doesn't think Dany would be a good ruler, yet I am rooting for Sansa and I would like to see her rule in the North. If Dany was perfect, I would understand your point completely. But there are many reasons not to vouch for her leadership, as I've previously mentioned on this thread.

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QueenofThrones
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Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:35 am

I think there is a degree of dislike of Dany that is unfair and subconsciously sexist.

Research has shown that assertive women who demand people follow their leadership are seen negatively whereas assertive men who do the same are seen positively by most people (#banbossy). Many of Dany's actions would not be criticized as harshly if they were to be done by a male leader (appropriate analogs would be Robb, Jaime, Tywin, Stannis, Jon).

For example, most people agree that Robb is a military genius basically based on the opinions of the Blackfish and Tywin - I have very rarely seen people try to discredit this opinion, it's basically accepted as fact. However, many people say that Dany was not smart militarily during her conquest of Slaver's Bay, despite the fact that both Jorah Mormont and Barristan Selmy (seasoned military minds) have said she is a brilliant conquerer and commander. Why does this difference exist? I've seen a lot of people rationalizing reasons why it's different, but I honestly think it's mostly subconscious sexism. Some say for example, well Dany isn't a military genius because she "just" used other's ideas - well that's what a good commander does if the idea is good. Then the complete opposite is argued, that she is a bad commander because she doesn't listen to council, which again... of course. Sometimes she has the best idea, sometimes someone else does. That's leadership.

Ultimately, there are simply some people who adamantly refuse to give her credit for her strengths, and they harp endlessly on her weak points. There are dozens of similar examples I could give but I won't.

On the other hand there are very few people who dislike Dany for explicitly sexist reasons. For example I have occasionally run across a fan who hates her because she is a "whore".

Aaanyway, I do think that there are plenty of legit reasons to dislike Dany. There are some things that could be considered unforgivable acts - Dany has committed plenty. Human sacrifice (MMD) & collective punishment (Mereen, Astapor, and Vaes Dothrak) are a couple examples. That's fine. Much like if you hate Jaime forever for Bran I think that's a defensible position.

I think that hating her because she is "entitled" should only be applied by people who are willing to make the same statements against others like Sansa, Cersei, Stannis, Ned, Robb, etc. And I've never seen anyone who dislikes all characters who want to take their home back. Dany laid out the reasons her first meeting with Jon about why she should be queen. She thinks she should be queen because of what she has been through, what she has accomplished. Not because of who her father was, but because of who she has become.

I'd also suggest that if people's reason for disliking Dany is nothing more than a sort of ephemeral feeling "...she just rubs me the wrong way... she's so arrogant..." that maybe they should ask themselves why this bothers them so much and the arrogance of other characters does not. Or if they dislike when other characters are arrogant as well (Tyrion, Tywin, Sansa, Arya, Jon), then ok I suppose!!

ETA: oops, removed book reference.

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Raeslewolhn
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Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:23 pm

Starry wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:52 am
I think why she is always seen as the villian, is because she is female. And people can't accept a female ruler. Everyone knows that Cersei will eventually be cast down. So the hate toward her is not so strong. But with Dany there is still the fear that she might actually sit the Iron Throne. So people villianize her or hope she dies in the most cruel ways to show women where their place in this world is. Especially women who are so "arrogant" to aspire to rule.
I agree that this happens with the Some People, but I don't think it explains Everyone's view who dislikes her.

I think there are valid reasons to dislike her, and choose other faves. But I also think some people are harboring mysoginistic dispositions towards her as well. There's sexism, but that's not true of everyone who dislikes/judges her.

Also, a person can be sexist and also have good reason to dislike her. Or a person could be generally really reasonable but in Dany's case they are unintentionally judging her based on internalized gender dynamics without sexist malice or usually being like that. It's really complicated, imo. Much of these gender offences are so much a product of environment the person displaying them isn't really to blame. Of course, there are clear cases where a mysoginist is to blame, and is overt, but I'm saying we all perpetuate it systemically no matter who we are, how feminist or equalist, we perpetuate our culture.
Not Littlefinger wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:22 pm
I can't speak for everyone, but I'm one of those who doesn't think Dany would be a good ruler, yet I am rooting for Sansa and I would like to see her rule in the North. If Dany was perfect, I would understand your point completely. But there are many reasons not to vouch for her leadership, as I've previously mentioned on this thread.

Okay, like here's a perfect example. I DO NOT think NLF is being sexist and never got that vibe from NLF before, at all. I think it would actually be rude to accuse NLF of this.

But the argument you're giving, NLF, actually can be dismissed as perpetuating sexism. You obviously didn't realize this!

Sansa has already been so much more dominated and subjugated and we still need to root for her, she hasn't yet shown the ambition or masculine aspect internally that Dany has. She's a survivor, not a dominator herself.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think you meant it that way. And I love Sansa as much as Dany. I really just love everyone!

Well, except a few I want to die painful deaths, like Joffrey, Cersei, Ilyn Payne, Thé Mountain....Ramsay :)

My point is, it's complicated. We have to cut ppl slack and meet them on their terms as best we can, while still fighting systemic sexism and overt sexism (2 diff things) each in their own way.

I think BK to myself as 11 yrs old, using retarded as an insult, and I'm glad I grew up. But I was never a bad person for it, I just had to learn, ya know? How it hurts others.

On the grown up level, its way more subtle, but that doesn't mean we're all aware of how we perpetuate it without ever meaning too... we're still imperfect humans. And most likely, we never chose to be human in the 1st place....

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Not Littlefinger
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Sat Aug 26, 2017 6:23 pm

Raeslewolhn wrote:
Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:23 pm
Not Littlefinger wrote:
Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:22 pm
I can't speak for everyone, but I'm one of those who doesn't think Dany would be a good ruler, yet I am rooting for Sansa and I would like to see her rule in the North. If Dany was perfect, I would understand your point completely. But there are many reasons not to vouch for her leadership, as I've previously mentioned on this thread.

Okay, like here's a perfect example. I DO NOT think NLF is being sexist and never got that vibe from NLF before, at all. I think it would actually be rude to accuse NLF of this.

But the argument you're giving, NLF, actually can be dismissed as perpetuating sexism. You obviously didn't realize this!

Sansa has already been so much more dominated and subjugated and we still need to root for her, she hasn't yet shown the ambition or masculine aspect internally that Dany has. She's a survivor, not a dominator herself.

Don't get me wrong, I don't think you meant it that way. And I love Sansa as much as Dany. I really just love everyone!

Well, except a few I want to die painful deaths, like Joffrey, Cersei, Ilyn Payne, Thé Mountain....Ramsay :)

My point is, it's complicated. We have to cut ppl slack and meet them on their terms as best we can, while still fighting systemic sexism and overt sexism (2 diff things) each in their own way.

I think BK to myself as 11 yrs old, using retarded as an insult, and I'm glad I grew up. But I was never a bad person for it, I just had to learn, ya know? How it hurts others.

On the grown up level, its way more subtle, but that doesn't mean we're all aware of how we perpetuate it without ever meaning too... we're still imperfect humans. And most likely, we never chose to be human in the 1st place....
The thing is, I want Sansa to be ambitious, dominating, etc. It's not like I don't like those traits in women. I don't like the fact that Sansa has been dominated all her life, and I am eager to (hopefully) continue to watch her rebound and reach a position of power similar to what Dany has. I won't stop cheering for Sansa if/when she displays masculine traits, unless she does something completely stupid (of course.) It would be sexist for me to say that I prefer women who are in a position of submission, yes. But I favor her character in spite of that rather than because of that.

In Season 1, everybody loved Dany and hated Cersei. We wanted to watch Dany overcome her submissive role to her brother and Drogo, and cheered when she did so. Were we all sexist for liking Dany (who was in a submissive role) and not liking Cersei (who was already in a position of power and displayed such traits?) I wouldn't say so. Even though my fondness for her has diminished over time, I cheered in Season 1 when she stood up to her brother "the next time you hit me will be the last time you have hands." I thought is was fantastic that she overcame her position as a survivor and became a leader. Man or woman, I enjoy seeing characters that I consider to be good-hearted (as was certainly the case with Dany in Season 1) overcome their adverse circumstances and change their role.

I can't speak for "systematic sexism" or "overt sexism" and won't claim to be an expert on them. Maybe you are. But I can only speak for myself. And all I can say is this: I judge characters by their traits, not the roles that they have found themselves in. And I don't prefer a certain gender of character because they are in a certain role.

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Raeslewolhn
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Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:42 pm

Not Littlefinger wrote:
Sat Aug 26, 2017 6:23 pm
]

The thing is, I want Sansa to be ambitious, dominating, etc. It's not like I don't like those traits in women. I don't like the fact that Sansa has been dominated all her life, and I am eager to (hopefully) continue to watch her rebound and reach a position of power similar to what Dany has. I won't stop cheering for Sansa if/when she displays masculine traits, unless she does something completely stupid (of course.) It would be sexist for me to say that I prefer women who are in a position of submission, yes. But I favor her character in spite of that rather than because of that.
Same.

Proves my pt exactly. One, even super short, post from NLF and it's clear you're not sexist. I totally expected that if you responded it would clarify this well, which you did. (Bc we can't assume everyone is sexist for disliking Dany)

Sry if I put you on the spot, I needed an example of innocent and equalist intention accidentally reinforcing it, but it's DnD to blame not you!!!!

In Season 1, everybody loved Dany and hated Cersei. We wanted to watch Dany overcome her submissive role to her brother and Drogo, and cheered when she did so. Were we all sexist for liking Dany (who was in a submissive role) and not liking Cersei (who was already in a position of power and displayed such traits?) I wouldn't say so. Even though my fondness for her has diminished over time, I cheered in Season 1 when she stood up to her brother "the next time you hit me will be the last time you have hands." I thought is was fantastic that she overcame her position as a survivor and became a leader. Man or woman, I enjoy seeing characters that I consider to be good-hearted (as was certainly the case with Dany in Season 1) overcome their adverse circumstances and change their role.
I couldn't agree more, well put.
I can't speak for "systematic sexism" or "overt sexism" and won't claim to be an expert on them. Maybe you are. But I can only speak for myself. And all I can say is this: I judge characters by their traits, not the roles that they have found themselves in. And I don't prefer a certain gender of character because they are in a certain role.
I'm DEF Not an expert, but I've studied this stuff.

I personally feel that it would be DnD to blame, not the viewers, for portraying power as corrupting for women more than men. (In the systemic/covert way).

We can only blame viewers for Overt mysogyny, which was NOT at all present in your post, NLF.

It has happened in the fandom though, in general, so I feel where Starry is coming from. It's just too BnW for me.

Systemic on the other hand is hard to dissect, bc it def lies in the hands of DnD, so it's hard to say when a viewer is perpetuating it bc they got all their info from GoT!

(I'm not talking about ASOIAF that's a whole other thing). DnD have a nice range of women, but that's bc of GRRM.

DnD don't do this that much, it's EXTREMELY minor and subtextual.

.....

Overall I give GoT n DnD two thumbs up in this category of empowering women, esp with where the story is AON. They def equalist!! Though I recognize a case can be made for Starry's perspective in the fandom, in some cases. Then again, bc of our culture it can really be made almost anywhere. We need to dismantle mysogyny together, not shame ppl who happened to be born into this world,we've all perpetuated it one time or another.

EDIT: And I do it too, despite being a woman raised by a single mom to be a feminist. Despite loving every female we've mentioned except Cersei. Bc I'm not from some perfect alien world, I'm a human from Earth.

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Raeslewolhn
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Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:49 pm

Also, I missed this, and I'm usually thorough. Sorry!

Very well put:
QueenofThrones wrote:
Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:35 am
I think there is a degree of dislike of Dany that is unfair and subconsciously sexist.

Research has shown that assertive women who demand people follow their leadership are seen negatively whereas assertive men who do the same are seen positively by most people (#banbossy). Many of Dany's actions would not be criticized as harshly if they were to be done by a male leader (appropriate analogs would be Robb, Jaime, Tywin, Stannis, Jon).

For example, most people agree that Robb is a military genius basically based on the opinions of the Blackfish and Tywin - I have very rarely seen people try to discredit this opinion, it's basically accepted as fact. However, many people say that Dany was not smart militarily during her conquest of Slaver's Bay, despite the fact that both Jorah Mormont and Barristan Selmy (seasoned military minds) have said she is a brilliant conquerer and commander. Why does this difference exist? I've seen a lot of people rationalizing reasons why it's different, but I honestly think it's mostly subconscious sexism. Some say for example, well Dany isn't a military genius because she "just" used other's ideas - well that's what a good commander does if the idea is good. Then the complete opposite is argued, that she is a bad commander because she doesn't listen to council, which again... of course. Sometimes she has the best idea, sometimes someone else does. That's leadership.

Ultimately, there are simply some people who adamantly refuse to give her credit for her strengths, and they harp endlessly on her weak points. There are dozens of similar examples I could give but I won't.

On the other hand there are very few people who dislike Dany for explicitly sexist reasons. For example I have occasionally run across a fan who hates her because she is a "whore".

Aaanyway, I do think that there are plenty of legit reasons to dislike Dany. There are some things that could be considered unforgivable acts - Dany has committed plenty. Human sacrifice (MMD) & collective punishment (Mereen, Astapor, and Vaes Dothrak) are a couple examples. That's fine. Much like if you hate Jaime forever for Bran I think that's a defensible position.

I think that hating her because she is "entitled" should only be applied by people who are willing to make the same statements against others like Sansa, Cersei, Stannis, Ned, Robb, etc. And I've never seen anyone who dislikes all characters who want to take their home back. Dany laid out the reasons her first meeting with Jon about why she should be queen. She thinks she should be queen because of what she has been through, what she has accomplished. Not because of who her father was, but because of who she has become.

I'd also suggest that if people's reason for disliking Dany is nothing more than a sort of ephemeral feeling "...she just rubs me the wrong way... she's so arrogant..." that maybe they should ask themselves why this bothers them so much and the arrogance of other characters does not. Or if they dislike when other characters are arrogant as well (Tyrion, Tywin, Sansa, Arya, Jon), then ok I suppose!!

ETA: oops, removed book reference.

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Wimsey
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Sat Nov 25, 2017 1:28 pm

QueenofThrones wrote:
Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:35 am
I think there is a degree of dislike of Dany that is unfair and subconsciously sexist.
I agree entirely. A certain group of fans have been "Hillarying" Daenerys since before Hillarying was a verb.

Well, almost entirely: I think that there is some conscious sexism involved, too! Fantasy fandom is filled with a lot of young-men-scared-of-women who often are drawn to fantasy worlds because those worlds basically have women "in their place."

A lot of the hatred of Daenerys is based on a misunderstanding of character-driven storytelling, which also abounds among fantasy-fans who are used to plot-driven storytelling. You will often read that "Daenerys is incompetent!" because she makes mistakes. Well, d'uh: this is a novel/adaptation of a novel, and character-driven stories always depend on people being in some way incomplete at the outset. If Daenerys was Aragorn and just magically born with wisdom, then she could have no arc in the story. The mistakes that she makes and how she evolves are critical to the story, just as the mistakes that Jon makes (and he makes at ton!) as well as the ones that Tyrion (ditto!) and Arya make.

Still, I do find it distressing, though, how much less often Jon or Tyrion are called incompetent for their mistakes. I wonder why that is.... :x
QueenofThrones wrote:
Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:35 am
I think that hating her because she is "entitled" should only be applied by people who are willing to make the same statements against others like Sansa, Cersei, Stannis, Ned, Robb, etc.
This one in particular irritates me. How often do Martin, Benioff & Weiss have to hit it over our heads that this is a world where only being literally entitled entitles you to anything? This is the way primogeniture works. Moreover, how often do we have to be hit over the head with the notion that in this sort of world, Daenerys not trying to take back the throne is considered immoral? "Good people" (in their morality) do everything that they can to further their families' positions. If Daenerys ignored her familial duties and decided to not pursue the throne, then even her enemies would deem her essentially immoral. By our modern usage of the word (which seems to have added "selfishly" as an unspoken adverb), Daenerys would be acting entitled if she did not try to take back Westeros: then she would be shirking responsibility and duty in favor of pursuing her own desires.

And, again: it seems to be held against Daenerys more than others. How much, dare I ask, is it because some people feel that women are supposed to understand that it wrong for them to be executives?
"If in the first act you have hung a pistol on the wall, then in the following one it should be fired. Otherwise, don't put it there."
A. P. Chehkov

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Wimsey
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Sat Nov 25, 2017 1:43 pm

Raeslewolhn wrote:
Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:42 pm
I personally feel that it would be DnD to blame, not the viewers, for portraying power as corrupting for women more than men. (In the systemic/covert way).
I do not think that this is true. Show!Cersei is not portrayed as having been corrupted by power: she is portrayed as a selfish and unthinking bitch who craves power for the sake of power. She was perfectly horrid before she was powerful. Show!Joffery is portrayed in basically the same way, and he's male. Show!Daenerys, on the other hand, sticks to her principles even after she actually gains power: if anything, then Daenerys (book or show) is corrupting power (in the minds of many in Essos!) rather than the other way around. That is why the powerful fear revolutionaries.

The one thing that is apparent on the show (and in the books) is that power forces a greater number of decisions upon people in which all of the options are horrible. And as the female characters grow more in power, this means that they have more situations in which they get to pick between Horrible Choice A, Horrible Choice II and Horrible Choice 3. Remember, the Fairy Tales are 99% lies! :D
"If in the first act you have hung a pistol on the wall, then in the following one it should be fired. Otherwise, don't put it there."
A. P. Chehkov

Mercedes
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Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:31 am

Wimsey wrote:
Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:05 pm
Daenerys is none of these: she's "just" a protagonist. I think that the problem comes from looking at the roles from typical fantasy stories (in which there is "good" and "evil," and thus "heroes" and "villains") and trying to put them onto characters written according to modern literary/cinematic conventions. Yes, there are dragons and magical spells, but these characters could be found in any decent novel today. And that's something that one simply cannot state about characters from most fantasy novels.

Like everyone else, Daenerys has her pluses and minuses. She is a genuinely empathetic character, which is a plus. She is blinded by the morality of her world, for good or for ill. Somewhat ironically, being blinded by morality leads to all of this (put on whiney voice) "Daeny's so self-entitledddddd" stuff: we live in a world in which it's ok to think that you are not born being "owed" anything, but Daenerys lives in a world in which you are born with title (figuratively and in her case literally) to something and it's not just your property, but your obligation.

The big issue for Daenerys this year is: choosing the enemy. We'll think that she's dumb for not taking the Walker threat more seriously and being selfish for thinking that the Lannisters are somehow an equal threat. I mean, didn't she watch Hardhome?!?!? Um, actually: no, no she did not. She and Jon will buttheads about how to prioritize, and Tyrion will get in some headbutts, too: and up north, we'll see the same thing. That's not people being "evil" or "good," but just politics: even if I agree that your concern is genuine and thus a priority, obviously it is not as important as my concern. After all, if you had seen what I had seen (which would have precluded you from seeing what you saw, but, hey! never mind that because nobody ever does mind that), then you would agree!

Now, let's all get to work on the talk that I have to give in three weeks. I mean, we all have to agree that this is our most important overall concern in life, right? :D
Oh, gush I absolutely agree!!) http://mega-moolah-play.com/
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