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Re: [mythsoc] Jackson/Contamination

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  • SusanPal@aol.com
    In a message dated 3/6/2002 5:18:41 AM Pacific Standard Time, ... Ah, okay -- the confusion probably came from the Mary Sue references (which I wasn t the
    Message 1 of 35 , Mar 6 7:46 AM
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      In a message dated 3/6/2002 5:18:41 AM Pacific Standard Time,
      WendellWag@... writes:


      > One of them is
      > the sense which you mean, Susan, when one experiences the emotions and
      > thought processes of a character when one reads a story. The other is when
      > a
      > reader demands that there be a character like themself in the story and
      > thus
      > finds it impossible to enjoy stories that don't have any such character.
      > This sort of reader is more likely to want to write a piece of fan fiction
      > in which they have inserted themself as a character.
      >
      > We assumed that you meant this second sense when you began talking about
      > this
      > issue.

      Ah, okay -- the confusion probably came from the "Mary Sue" references (which
      I wasn't the first to make, I'll hasten to point out). I'd also observe that
      Mary Sue's a figure of considerable, often vicious, derision among fan
      writers themselves. A Tolkien fan writer whose work I follow recently wrote
      a withering parody of Mary Sue stories in which a female character who's
      fluent in all known languages of Middle Earth, braver than Aragorn, better
      with a bow than Legolas, more beautiful than Arwen and more magical than
      Gandalf (and, presumably, has hairier toes than Frodo) is roundly scorned by
      everyone in the Fellowship, who -- understandably -- want nothing to do with
      her. Mary Sue's are never really the author: they're a totally idealized
      fantasy versions of the author; and, one suspects, the more idealized the
      Mary Sue, the less stunning are the author's accomplishments in real life.

      Most of the fan writing I've seen, though -- and ALL of the good stuff --
      uses writing (rather than reading) as a way of further exploring characters
      who *aren't* necessarily like the author. I'd be cautious about making
      statements like "This sort of reader is more likely to want to write a piece
      of fan fiction in which they have inserted themself as a character." My
      classroom experience *strongly* suggests that the type of very unskilled
      reader you're describing isn't likely to want to WRITE anything -- let alone
      write fan-fiction, of any sort, just for the love of it.

      But I also think that the issue of narrative sympathy isn't one we can simply
      dismiss as "fannish naivete" (which is often, in my experience, a phrase
      invoked by people who are pretty naive about fandom). Don't most of us
      require *some* entry point into the text, some ability to sympathize or
      empathize or at least be interested in some aspect of the narrative?
      Question to those of you who pride yourselves on never inserting yourself
      into the text: have you never put down a book, lost interest in it, because
      the author gave you nothing you could care about?

      Tolkien has given a great many people a great deal to care about. That's why
      we're all here, no?

      Susan


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • etades@aol.com
      In a message dated 3/7/02 6:26:11 PM Pacific Standard Time, Stolzi@aol.com writes: What s PCA? Peer Counseling Anonymous? Presbyterian Church in
      Message 35 of 35 , Mar 11 7:47 PM
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        In a message dated 3/7/02 6:26:11 PM Pacific Standard Time, Stolzi@...
        writes:

        << > What's PCA? Peer Counseling Anonymous?

        Presbyterian Church in America... >>

        Patient Controlled Analgesia
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