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personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 8:46 am UTC
by parkaboy
A lot of times, I've seen fiction as a mask for social commentary. Ayn Rand comes to mind first and foremost because she's jsut so ADAMANT and obsessive about pushing her philosophy on you through her fictional works as well as her non-fiction. In the General forum someone brought up a parallel between communism and Frankenstein. I'm reading a book by C.S Lewis (Out of the Silent Planet) where heavy christian imagery is used in a completely alien (and i do mean alien in the literal sense) setting, much like the Narnia books... I've seen it mostly in science fiction; the traditional dystopain world, the cyberpunk corporate-ruled dystopia, variations on a theme.

Some of the authors, like Rand, have come out with non-fiction explaining everything that is conveyed through her fictional characters... even if she is completely nuts, she seems a bit more honest for it. I DO NOT mean for this to turn into a Rand discussion, there is another thread for that, but she is the most prominent example i can think of for this topic...

but you tell me; what have you observed on the matter? What other authors are blatant, or not so blatant, about sneaking in personal agendas and commentary disguised as fictitious works? I'm interested to know what stories, what authors, what they believe and what they say. I like reading books with a goal in mind sometimes... EVERY story can become a Where's Waldo... you just have to know what Waldo is ;]

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:55 am UTC
by Fossa
Heinlein's For Us the Living was a painful example of this.

The main character would sit there quietly for a page and a half while being lectured by a futuristic expert on a given subject, say one small line of dialogue such as "Go on." and then sit there for another page of lecture from the expert before repeating the process. Heinlein basically used a paper-thin veil of fiction as an excuse for explaining, at length, his views of what a proper eutopia would be.

This book was the main reason I really stopped liking Heinlein's work.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Fri Feb 01, 2008 11:29 pm UTC
by JayDee
Ursula Le Guin comes to mind. I'm not sure how much I'm reading into it, but reading The Dispossessed, and Lathe of Heaven seemed to contain a strong agenda / commentary. While I found that slightly repulsive, I enjoyed to books as novels, so I don't mind so much.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Sat Feb 02, 2008 6:34 am UTC
by Charlie!
There seems to be a sizable individualist contingent within the cheap sci fi industry, because as I was reading through my brother's cheap sci-fi ebook collection I found myself thinking the same thing in about 1/3 of the books.


And oh god, this habit helped (among other factors) destroy Orson S. Card's writing in so many cases.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 3:03 am UTC
by Sir_Elderberry
Gotta agree with Heinlein. And yeah, Rand at least was honest about it. I went into the Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged expecting to be lectured at...it basically confesses that on the back of the book. I was entertained.

Heinlein has this irritating habit of setting up character x. When character x is talking, Heinlein is expressing an opinion. The Moral History or whatever teacher from Starship Troopers, Jubal Harshaw from Stranger in a Strange Land.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:18 pm UTC
by The Great Hippo
I think I've said this somewhere before but nothing turns me off faster than an author saying "I'm right, and I'll prove it to you by validating my own beliefs within a fictitious world of my own creation!".

But yeah, at least Ayn Rand had the balls to pretty much directly say that's what she was doing.

Piers Anthony was another author who was constantly shoving his bias down my throat. Especially in an old series of sci-fi books (can't remember the name) where the main character was Hugo something and he basically ends up as Emperor of the Universe. Even at the tender age of 14 I could tell that he was jamming his brand of crazy down my esophagus with the heel of his boot.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 11:48 pm UTC
by Belial
That was Diary of a Space Tyrant, or something similar.

Dinotopia (By Arthur Gurney, if I recall) was pretty bad about it, too. It was just "Small scale barely-regulated utopian communism, guys! Isn't it great?! Also, there are dinosaurs or something!"

But I forgave it because the art was just so awesome.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:20 am UTC
by pollywog
The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis. Now I'm going to read them again to find out why we should all believe in devils and demons and then ignore them. And be good Christians.

Belial wrote:Dinotopia (By Arthur Gurney, if I recall) was pretty bad about it, too. It was just "Small scale barely-regulated utopian communism, guys! Isn't it great?! Also, there are dinosaurs or something!"

But I forgave it because the art was just so awesome.


I never picked up on the communism thing, which was strange, because my mother is a socialist, with commie leanings, and she normally would have pointed such things out. Then again, I usually just looked at the pictures.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 1:18 am UTC
by JayDee
The Great Hippo wrote:I think I've said this somewhere before but nothing turns me off faster than an author saying "I'm right, and I'll prove it to you by validating my own beliefs within a fictitious world of my own creation!".
Sometimes I see it like that, sometimes I see it as more exploration than validation. Dinotopia is a good example of one I thought was really cool, and can see it as "if we have 'a land apart from time, where humans and Dinosaurs live in peace' what would it be like?" It didn't strike me as trying to push an agenda. The Sci Fi I've read that's like this is often the same, just with 'living on the moon' rather than 'living with Dinosaurs'.

Oh, one I've read that was all agenda disguised as fiction - "Survivors: You'll be surprised who gets left behind" by the Jesus Christians. I think it was a response to some other rapture / apocalypse based Christian fiction (Left Behind?) about how all the faithful would have to live through the end times. Very blatant message, but also very funny (we can still get emails, they must be getting routed through heaven!)

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 4:05 am UTC
by TheAmazingRando
I wouldn't necessarily consider The Screwtape Letters as a personal agenda disguised as fiction, since it's hardly disguised, I always mentally categorized it with Lewis's non-Christian books on Christianity.

Out of the Silent Planet is the least "Christian" of the trilogy, I would say, though I don't quite see it as an agenda to sell Christianity, as it seems to take the truth of Christianity as a given, and then proceed to explore how extraterrestrial life may fit into that. Perelandra is more directly Christian, with plenty of parallels to the Genesis myth, and That Hideous Strength is even more so than the other two, dealing much more straightforwardly with Christianity in a non-alien setting.

Chronicles of Narnia, yeah, I can see that as Christianity sold as straight fiction, but I guess it's hard for me to see it as an agenda in the rest of his works, since I've always assumed they were Christian literature to begin with.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 4:07 am UTC
by Mandiful
Terry Goodkind is the absolute worst for this.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 4:16 am UTC
by Jorpho
Sir_Elderberry wrote:Heinlein has this irritating habit of setting up character x. When character x is talking, Heinlein is expressing an opinion. The Moral History or whatever teacher from Starship Troopers, Jubal Harshaw from Stranger in a Strange Land.


Oh yes indeed. It is as characteristic of Heinlein's work as incongruous nudity.

Alan Dean Foster seemed to have a rather strong misanthropic streak in him, particularly in Glory Lane. Perhaps misantropism is just an easy theme to work in to a sci-fi novel? (Bruce Coville's young-adult stuff was a lot like that too.)

But as far as individual works go, you really can't call 1984 anything less than a "personal agenda" disguised as fiction. I am quite convinced that at some point in the process, Mr. Orwell said, "This is so boring no one will want to read it! I know, I'll throw in some sex!"

The most recent example I recall coming across is Orson Scott Card's rather incongruous "Hooray for Heterosexuality!" rant in Shadow Puppets.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 6:26 am UTC
by The Great Hippo
There's a fine line between validating your crazy by means of fictitious settings filled with mouthpieces and strawmen versus exploring your crazy. C.S. Lewis is a great example; the Chronicles of Narnia is an engaging narrative that uses a rich wealth of Christian mythology to tell us a good story--and regardless of how you personally feel about Christianity, some of its mythology is fucking amazing.

Even in the Screwtape Letters, where--yes, he's selling us a particular brand of morality--it's clear that he's exploring the material, not throttling us over the head with it. I think that the key distinction lies in the way the characters are portrayed.

Are the characters interesting and believable? Or do they exist only to illustrate the author's point? Perfect example: Dean Koontz's villains. Almost all of them are wildly evil, and not in a clever way. They're woman-raping sociopaths who want to rip your skull off and use it to drink Bloody Maries made out of your children's entrails. There's rarely ever any complex motives or distinguishing factors beyond their vileness; they exist to demonstrate to us what Dean Koontz believes is evil.

To me, that's propaganda. And it makes for a bad read.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 2:18 pm UTC
by Malice
Michael Crichton does this constantly--and yet, I still love his books. Partly because, unlike some of the authors mentioned, he actually provides a good, fast-paced plot and at least 2-d characterization along with the sermons.

Partly because I actually enjoy seeing how he manages to interweave the popular novel formula with his message, using different characters to present and refute different arguments and counter-arguments. He's pretty convincing, too (although maybe that's just me). For months after I read "State of Fear" I didn't really believe in global warming. It's fairly nifty in its own way to get "interesting tidbit about chaos theory" in the same book as "the dinosaurs are gonna eat them!"

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 4:45 pm UTC
by pinkgothic
Belial wrote:Dinotopia (By Arthur Gurney, if I recall) was pretty bad about it, too. It was just "Small scale barely-regulated utopian communism, guys! Isn't it great?! Also, there are dinosaurs or something!"

But I forgave it because the art was just so awesome.


Snap! Though I'm also generally always annoyed if meateaters are just lumped as the 'badguys' (even if it's not as bad in Dinotopia as elsewhere). I never really understood how Enit (the Deinonychus in the Waterfall City clock tower) fitted that picture, but anyway... I'd recommend reading the novel "The Lost City" if you can, it's... different. It doesn't throw everything out of the window, but it tosses out the "weapons are enemies even to their owners" credo, and it's Troödons... what else would you want? *grin* Of course, there aren't any pictures in it, but I liked it.

Well, liked. I don't have it anymore and as such I haven't read it for years, quite literally, so I might just want to throw it out of the window now. (The books are written for children, after all, and the prose is accordingly dumbed down; I know this is the case for River Quest, I don't know how bad it's with The Lost City.)

Also, since someone mentioned Crichton: in the end, I think this thread is likely to be filled to the brim with mentions, since fiction will always be about the author's personal views in some way, shape or form. I believe it's very hard to convincingly bring across something you don't believe is true, simply because if you managed that, you'd convince yourself, and then, bam, it's your personal agenda again. (Oh, yikes, the arguments I've had with myself!)

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 4:50 pm UTC
by Belial
I never really understood how Enit (the Deinonychus in the Waterfall City clock tower) fitted that picture, but anyway...


Yeah, it was weird, there were a lot of carnivores about...Enit, the oviraptors, and so forth. It seems like only the *big* carnivores got the pariah-treatment.

I'd recommend reading the novel "The Lost City" if you can, it's... different. It doesn't throw everything out of the window, but it tosses out the "weapons are enemies even to their owners" credo, and it's Troödons... what else would you want? *grin*


Sounds like fun. I should look it up. I only ever read Dinotopia and The World Beneath.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 5:04 pm UTC
by The Mighty Thesaurus
Jorpho wrote:But as far as individual works go, you really can't call 1984 anything less than a "personal agenda" disguised as fiction. I am quite convinced that at some point in the process, Mr. Orwell said, "This is so boring no one will want to read it! I know, I'll throw in some sex!"


I found everything other than the political stuff boring. My favourite part of the book is when Winston is reading The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 10:40 pm UTC
by JayDee
Belial wrote:
I never really understood how Enit (the Deinonychus in the Waterfall City clock tower) fitted that picture, but anyway...
Yeah, it was weird, there were a lot of carnivores about...Enit, the oviraptors, and so forth. It seems like only the *big* carnivores got the pariah-treatment.
I thought it was only the carnivores that chose not to become part of the civilisation / culture / whatever. And they got the lost basin to themselves and treated with respect as much as fear. I got the impression that the meat eating dinosaurs all ate fish.

And wasn't Enit the Deinonychus a librarian? And there weren't any raptors, they renamed them all. [/nit-picking]
Belial wrote:
I'd recommend reading the novel "The Lost City" if you can, it's... different. It doesn't throw everything out of the window, but it tosses out the "weapons are enemies even to their owners" credo, and it's Troödons... what else would you want? *grin*
Sounds like fun. I should look it up. I only ever read Dinotopia and The World Beneath.
Don't know if I've read the Lost City. I loved the two novels by Alan Dean Foster - Dinotopia Lost (Dinotopia with Pirates!) and Hand of Dinotopia (which had a nice lost civilisation with ancient secrets vibe.) Apparantly James Gurney has just released a fourth book - Journey to Chandara, although I can find no reference to a third. Nice to see there will finally be some pictures of the capitol.

Hmm, and slightly more on topic, James Gurney is interviewed or something in the book "Utopian and Dystopian Writing for Children and Young Adults" available at their store.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 10:58 pm UTC
by Sir_Elderberry
Malice wrote:Michael Crichton does this constantly--and yet, I still love his books. Partly because, unlike some of the authors mentioned, he actually provides a good, fast-paced plot and at least 2-d characterization along with the sermons.

Partly because I actually enjoy seeing how he manages to interweave the popular novel formula with his message, using different characters to present and refute different arguments and counter-arguments. He's pretty convincing, too (although maybe that's just me). For months after I read "State of Fear" I didn't really believe in global warming. It's fairly nifty in its own way to get "interesting tidbit about chaos theory" in the same book as "the dinosaurs are gonna eat them!"


I haven't read State of Fear, but after The Andromeda Strain, Timeline, Jurassic Park, and Prey, I'm really, really tired of obscure tech companies secretly working on revolutionary technology in the desert/on an island, and then everything goes wrong, frequently after they bring in a visitor to help work out a problem of variable immediate significance.

As 1984, I was under the impression that this is, like Rand, another that isn't "disguised" as fiction--Orwell wrote it as a political piece, and I doubt anyone has ever read it expecting anything else.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:02 pm UTC
by Antimatter Spork
I present to you Orson Scott Card's newest Enderverse book.

Card returns to his Hugo and Nebula award-winning Enderverse saga (after 2005's Shadow of the Giant) with a heartwarming novella for the holidays. When Zeck Morgan, the young son of a puritanical minister, qualifies for admission into the International Fleet's Battle School, he is brought to the school against his will. Citing his pacifist religious beliefs, Zeck refuses to participate in any simulated war games, but when he sees a Dutch student give a friend a small present in celebration of Sinterklaas Day, he reports the violation of the school's rules against open religious observation and sparks an uproar over religious freedom and the significance of cultural traditions. Meanwhile, Zeck becomes a pariah until series hero Ender Wiggin finds a way to show him the real meaning of the holidays. Exploring themes of tolerance and compassion, this story about stuffing stockings is, fittingly, a perfect stocking stuffer for science fiction fans of all ages.

Ender teaches [never before mentioned character] the TRUE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS! (Also, Battle School is run by those meany violent immoral athiests, doncha know)

(Disclaimer: I have not actually read this book, it could be better than it looks)

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 11:26 pm UTC
by aion7
The Ender I remember would be more likely to make this random person question his worth than learn the true spirit of Christmas.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 12:23 am UTC
by btilly
This happens all of the time. For instance many books which involve psychic powers will also grind the axe of psychic powers being possible, and how stupid scientists were to not see it all along. Julian May is an example of an author who does this.

Generally speaking I'm able to ignore that kind of thing when it involves a premise that is central to the story. That's just part of the suspension of disbelief you need when reading that genre of fiction. I'm also able to ignore many political diatribes. Probably because it doesn't bother me that other people disagree with me on politics. However what gets me is when an author, like James Hogan, decides to (for no apparent plot reason) try to convince people of a crank theory that I strongly disagree with. For instance when he pushes his belief that Einstein's theory of Special Relativity is false. (Among other notable examples of theories he believes.) In that case I wind up wanting to tell the author the refutations of the flawed arguments that were presented, which I can't do, so I just put the book down instead.

A pity. Because I really enjoyed his work until he started doing that.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 3:37 am UTC
by nevskey1
The Mighty Thesaurus wrote:
Jorpho wrote:But as far as individual works go, you really can't call 1984 anything less than a "personal agenda" disguised as fiction. I am quite convinced that at some point in the process, Mr. Orwell said, "This is so boring no one will want to read it! I know, I'll throw in some sex!"

I found everything other than the political stuff boring. My favourite part of the book is when Winston is reading The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism.


I don't know. Obviously, yeah, he's expressing the view that "dictatorship sucks." But I don't think that the point was to shove a political thesis down the reader's throat. It was just to open his/her eyes and heart, and get them to think and feel more deeply about the world. Basically what art and literature and science have been doing for the past 82 years. Also, I thought the torture scene especially was devastatingly compelling.

Another writer that may be considered guilty of agenda pushing is Dostoevsky. He doesn't so much argue his own view (some weird sort of pious Christian nihilism), but each character is basically a mouthpiece for a different philosophy and they battle it out amongst themselves. That's a bit too simplistic on my part, but by and large that's how the Big D rolls.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 2:10 pm UTC
by Jorpho
Antimatter Spork wrote:Ender teaches [never before mentioned character] the TRUE MEANING OF CHRISTMAS! (Also, Battle School is run by those meany violent immoral athiests, doncha know)


Ugh. I was hoping you were joking.

Science fiction and Christmas should not get mixed up together.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 5:42 pm UTC
by pinkgothic
JayDee wrote:I thought it was only the carnivores that chose not to become part of the civilisation / culture / whatever. And they got the lost basin to themselves and treated with respect as much as fear.


Hence why I said it's not quite as bad as in other places, where they're accused of doing it out of some sort of sadism rather than the need to feed.

JayDee wrote:I got the impression that the meat eating dinosaurs all ate fish.


The ones integrated in society? Yeah. :) At least snap on the impression, it's been a while since I read it.

JayDee wrote:Apparantly James Gurney has just released a fourth book - Journey to Chandara, although I can find no reference to a third.


Just a head's up: the third is called "First Flight".

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 6:59 pm UTC
by Jesse
Fables. Bill Willingham writing an immense story that turns out to be an allegory for Israel.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:10 pm UTC
by Belial
Lalalalalala I can't hear you it's totally not the crappiest, most inaccurate allegory ever, it's just a great story unconnected to anything lalalalalalalalalalalaall

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:21 pm UTC
by SecondTalon
Jesse wrote:Fables. Bill Willingham writing an immense story that turns out to be an allegory for Israel.


How do you figure?

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:24 pm UTC
by Belial
Because the author opened his big stupid mouth.

I mean....

lalalalalalalalalalalalalala

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:40 pm UTC
by SecondTalon
Ray Bradbury doesn't think Fahrenheit 451 has anything to do with censorship. Doesn't mean he's right.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 7:44 pm UTC
by Belial
I know. That's why I'm trying to forget it.

Bigby's big "Have you ever heard of a place in the mundy world called Israel? It's kindof like Fabletown...." speech makes it difficult, though.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 8:13 pm UTC
by SecondTalon
See, even when he made that little speech, I didn't think it meshed up. I mean, it's not like Fabletown exists in a former part of the Empire's territories. A better comparison would be Flycatcher's digs, but that's also a bit of a stretch.

tl:dr? I don't see it, but.. whatever, I guess.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2008 8:32 pm UTC
by Belial
Which is why it's such a crappy allegory. But my awareness that the author thinks it's an allegory is going to taint my perception of it from now on. I'm going to read plot twists, and I'm going to think "Wait. How does the author think this is about israel? Is this really what he's going for? How dumb is he?"

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 1:41 am UTC
by JayDee
pinkgothic wrote:Just a head's up: the third is called "First Flight".
Thank you! Although I should probably buy this years uni text books first. :?
Belial wrote:Which is why it's such a crappy allegory. But my awareness that the author thinks it's an allegory is going to taint my perception of it from now on.
Hmm. Maybe I should stop reading this thread. I don't want to have any future reading spoilt.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 4:36 pm UTC
by Belial
JayDee wrote:
Belial wrote:
I never really understood how Enit (the Deinonychus in the Waterfall City clock tower) fitted that picture, but anyway...
Yeah, it was weird, there were a lot of carnivores about...Enit, the oviraptors, and so forth. It seems like only the *big* carnivores got the pariah-treatment.
I thought it was only the carnivores that chose not to become part of the civilisation / culture / whatever. And they got the lost basin to themselves and treated with respect as much as fear. I got the impression that the meat eating dinosaurs all ate fish.

And wasn't Enit the Deinonychus a librarian? And there weren't any raptors, they renamed them all. [/nit-picking]


I totally meant to reply to this earlier.

Yeah, only the carnivores who didn't buy into the utopia got relegated to the lost basin, but in the case of the largest carnivores, the Tyrannosaurs and Allosaurs and so forth, they really couldn't buy into the utopia because their meat requirements were altogether too large to get by without eating other dinosaurs.

And yeah, most of the socialized carnivores ate fish. And when the Dinotopians had to bribe the lost basin carnivores, they did it with carts of smoked eels and such.

And yes, Enit was the librarian, and the oviraptors were called "ovinutrixes" or somesuch, which is really a more accurate name.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2008 6:35 am UTC
by JayDee
Belial wrote:Yeah, only the carnivores who didn't buy into the utopia got relegated to the lost basin, but in the case of the largest carnivores, the Tyrannosaurs and Allosaurs and so forth, they really couldn't buy into the utopia because their meat requirements were altogether too large to get by without eating other dinosaurs.
Yeah. I realised as I was posting that the choice to be part of the utopia was made on a species basis, not an individual one. Before this thread, I didn't really think about it much. I gave my copies of the books to my little sister, but I'm at their place for a couple days, so I can reread them tonight.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Thu Feb 07, 2008 6:44 am UTC
by The Mighty Thesaurus
It's a white supremacist's fairy tale.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2008 4:04 am UTC
by Kendo_Bunny
I'm surprised no one's mentioned Jean M. Auel. I couldn't get through 'Clan of the Cave Bear' because the female supremacy was so in-your-face. It was all 'Ha-ha, women invented everything worth having, men are worthless brutes and women designed the perfect society and men destroyed it and men destroy everything that is good and pure and holy and rape everything that moves, while women fart sunshine and rainbows because they are so wonderful and intelligent and perfect.'

I have nothing against equality, but did anyone else find this a tad offensive? If it was reversed, there would be cries for blood.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:13 am UTC
by pollywog
Kendo_Bunny wrote:I'm surprised no one's mentioned Jean M. Auel. I couldn't get through 'Clan of the Cave Bear' because the female supremacy was so in-your-face. It was all 'Ha-ha, women invented everything worth having, men are worthless brutes and women designed the perfect society and men destroyed it and men destroy everything that is good and pure and holy and rape everything that moves, while women fart sunshine and rainbows because they are so wonderful and intelligent and perfect.'

I have nothing against equality, but did anyone else find this a tad offensive? If it was reversed, there would be cries for blood.


Ummm, I read three of her books, but with a very specific purpose in mind. I don't really remember anything else about themm. :oops:

I was 14 at the time, and the memories have stuck with me ever since.

Re: personal agendas disguised as fiction

Posted: Fri Feb 08, 2008 2:31 pm UTC
by no-genius
The Mighty Thesaurus wrote:
Jorpho wrote:But as far as individual works go, you really can't call 1984 anything less than a "personal agenda" disguised as fiction. I am quite convinced that at some point in the process, Mr. Orwell said, "This is so boring no one will want to read it! I know, I'll throw in some sex!"


I found everything other than the political stuff boring. My favourite part of the book is when Winston is reading The Theory and Practice of Oligarchical Collectivism.

I took the sex to be a form of rebellion? Just by disobeying Big Brother, it means it isn't all-powerful. Or something, its about 7 or 8 years since I read it. (Ah, was I ever so young?)

I found Tom Clancy to be just boring. Every book is the same, and most of his series's aren't even written by him. That is, unless Bill Bailey is reading it. "Evil appears to get the upper hand, but Good triumphs, with vastly superior automatic weapons"