Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Different Kinds Of Sex In Fiction

Several times, Manse Everard of the Time Patrol and Dominic Flandry of the Terran Empire have sex in ways that are:

appropriate to their characters;

relevant to the plot (consider Everard's two sexual liaisons in "Ivory, and Apes, and Peacocks");

not described explicitly.

Sometimes, SM Stirling gets more explicit. Unpleasantly (not a complaint, just an observation), this includes Walker and Hong on pp. 522-523 of On The Oceans Of Eternity, Chapter Twenty-Five! It sounds horrific. I would never half-strangle or half-smother a woman, even at her request, not only because I find the whole idea distasteful but also because I would not want to risk a murder charge. Of course, neither of these considerations carries any weight with William Walker, King of Men, who has made his own will the whole of the law in his empire. Other writers tell us that their villains are evil. Stirling, like Alan Moore, shows us in detail. And how can we complain? It is is only fiction. And it is only reminding us what the world is sometimes like.

I am not only talking about violent sex. In the same passage, read about Walker's relationship to the men that he commands. If one of them assassinates him, this can only be a Good Thing. And in an earlier post, I entertained the idea of nuking the Draka capital. The Devil with fire etc.


Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Poul Anderson had attitudes toward sex that most, alas, would think old fashioned today. Briefly, a gentleman neither physically abuses women or reveals intimate details about them. But, William Walker and the monstrous Alice Hong would have no such scruples!

Merry Christmas! Sean

Paul Shackley said...

Modern attitudes are against abuse.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

Sadly, I don't think that is true in PRACTICAL terms, else we would not need laws punishing rape or other forms of abuse.


David Birr said...

Paul and Sean:
John M. Ford, in the fantasy novel *The Last Hot Time*, slowly revealed that main character "Doc Hallownight" had inclinations toward sadism, or at least the desire to tie up or chain up his lover.

Being a fundamentally decent person, Doc didn't trust himself to not go too far with this, so it was a desire he never even mentioned, let alone trying to fulfill. He was afraid, too, of ruining a good relationship if he suggested such a thing. Then a woman who loved him drew the secret out of him — and she trusted him....

Ford didn't, by the way, deal in explicit sex scenes, at least not in that book.

Paul Shackley said...

Thank you. You may have noticed that I have been posting on other blogs.