Thursday, April 6, 2017

Daemons Discuss - Podcast: Take 14! | Gender Roles in the All Souls Trilogy - Do They Exist?


Take 14 - The One With the X's and the Y's

Description: Well, this discussion sure threw us for a loop!  Gender roles in the All Souls Trilogy tend to challenge what the reader may consider 'the norm'. We found a few instances of traditional gender roles, but with closer inspection we wound up questioning what 'normal' actually is.  Follow us on this perplexing journey and form your own opinions.  A short-ish episode -- letting you know so you can plan for commutes/gym time/tasks accordingly (these are the times when most listen to us😉!)

SPOILER ALERT! We (The Daemons) approach this podcast with an assumption that the listener has read The All Souls Trilogy, including A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night, and The Book of Life.  If you haven't, and you don't mind, we certainly don't mind!  😊  Let's do this.


1. Show notes:

For newcomers to the series:
- We'll start with the basics: The books in discussion are A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night and The Book of Life.  Together they make The All Souls Trilogy by Deborah Harkness. 
- Our Daemon Guides to the All Souls Trilogy are available for download: ADOW, SON, TBOL
- If you'd like a ready-reference from the author herself, be sure to download the All Souls Real-Time Reading companion (free e-book at online booksellers via Penguin and Headline books).
- Deborah Harkness usually conducts a real-time reading on her Facebook Page (starting in September), and shares her posts across social media.  Check out her website for all of her social media links, and of course all that she has to offer her readers!
- To see what's available on the web as far as the All Souls universe fandom, check our links page.

In this episode:
Passes: $79, virtual passes: $0 (! --> thanks goes to Penguin Books for sponsoring the live stream)  All early bird prices end the 15th of June, 2017 -- Virtual passes will remain absolutely free!  Regular passes will go up to $99. 

* (02:33) Sarah and Emily’s relationship – the gender roles displayed in their relationship perhaps falls into a stereotypical male/female assignment, however, we aren’t patrons of the stereotypes in same-sex relationships -- or in any relationship for that matter ...

* (03:56) With vampires, or at least in the de Clermonts, gender roles seemed to be more dictated by the times vs. by the family’s attitude.  Tasks were dictated by the needs of the clan.

* (04:40) Reddit Q/A with Deborah Harkness - also available on .pdf

* (05:07) Gender roles and how they related to assignments within the family (Verin):
“We all have a role in this family, Verin.” Matthew’s voice dripped with bitterness. “Does Ernst know yours—how it begins between soft sheets and a man’s thighs?”
* (06:37) Gerbert/Domenico as vampire heads - what we know.  We asked Deb in Seattle!  Read the entire post: Our Fan Girl Experience At the Seattle Tour Stop
In response to a question regarding other vampire families and whether Deb has "become acquainted" with them, she indicated we had "met" several of them, specifically identifying Domenico and Gerbert as the head of prominent vampire families.
* (07:25) Marcus is "talking Deb’s ear off"…we’ll see how that goes.  Our author has revealed that lately it's been Marcus that's been talking to her for the purpose of writing.  We'll see which book we get first!  Surprise!

* (08:33) Ysabeau collected broken children -- we think it could be because of her background. From The Book of Life:
“All of that was the truth—just not the whole truth.” Ysabeau met Marcus’s eyes squarely. “Philippe did find me in a fortress and rescued me from that terrible place. But I was no beauty then, no matter what romantic stories your grandfather told later. I’d shorn my head with a broken shell that a bird had dropped on the window ledge, so that they couldn’t use my hair to hold me down. I still have the scars, though they are hidden now. One of my legs was broken. An arm, too, I think,” Ysabeau said vaguely. “Marthe will remember.”
* (09:07) Witches: it seemed like lineage played a huge role in gender roles.
From A Discovery of Witches:
"To my aunt this only compounded their already marginal position in the hierarchy of beings. She valued a witch’s family traditions and bloodlines, and she didn’t approve of daemonic unpredictability."
From The Book of Life:
“Hello, Mrs. Harrison.” The Harrisons were an old Hamilton family. They’d come from Connecticut, and, like the Bishops, the women kept the family name regardless of marriage. Vivian’s husband, Roger, had taken the radical step of changing his last name from Barker to Harrison when the two wed, earning him a revered spot in the coven annals for his willingness to honor tradition and a fair amount of ribbing from the other husbands."
* (09:38) Susanna Norman seemed to be the head of the household in 1591.  She ran her business out of the house.  We concluded that it was matriarchal for the time, however she deferred to her husband when she had to.

* (12:19) Witches (the women) in history appear more prominent possibly because they tended to be easy scapegoats: Salem Witch Trials

* (13:51) We didn’t see a lot of gender norms within the daemon community – Sophie and Nathanial seemed to have a traditional relationship(?) Again, what does that even mean? 😐

* (14:00) We own the assumption that Agatha wound up with Sarah … only because this quote kind of pointed us there.  They could be really good friends?  We are guessing yes, and then some.  Imagination mileage may vary . . .  read this passage from The Book of Life, and you decide:
“There’s a picture from Sarah and Agatha,” I called out. The two women were on a beach somewhere in Australia. “Come and see.”
“They look happy,” Matthew said, looking over my shoulder with Rebecca in his arms. Rebecca made sounds of delight at the sight of her grandmother.
            “It’s hard to believe it’s been more than a year since Em’s death,” I said. “It’s good to see Sarah smiling again.”
* (15:46) Angela makes the point that she pictures daemon gender roles blended, only because the interests among daemons are pretty unisex, and have been considered so throughout history (art, theater, music, and yes economics).

* (16:41) WHAT THE HECK IS A ‘PROPER’ VAMPIRE WIFE?! We’ve seen no conclusive model of one, but it was alluded to a couple of times by a couple of de Clermonts.  No one actually explained what it meant (besides being able to obey?!)

From Shadow of Night:
“And His Holiness proclaimed the age of miracles had passed,” Hancock crowed. “Matthew de Clermont is mated at last. But no ordinary, placid human or properly schooled female wearh who knows her place would do. Not for our Matthew. Now that he’s decided at last to settle down with one woman, it had to be a witch. We have more to worry about than the good people of Woodstock, then.”
From The Book of Life:
“Matthew told you to go to his tower.” Verin’s eyes narrowed. “He is your mate, and you’re supposed to obey him like a proper vampire wife.” Her accent was softly Germanic—not quite German, or Austrian, or Swiss, but something that borrowed from all three.
* (19:22) What is considered a vampire “head of house”?  Does it have to be male?  Originally we assumed it was a male.  However, what if the strongest vampire were female?  One might recall the riddle about the surgeon!  Anyway, here’s the quote (it should muddle things up properly for you); from A Discovery of Witches:
“Spit it out, Ysabeau. Why must I do what Matthew says?”
“Because he is the strongest vampire in the château. He is the head of the house.”
I stared at her in astonishment. “Are you saying I have to listen to him because he’s the alpha dog?”
“You think you are?” Ysabeau chortled.
* (21:45) We've concluded the term “proper vampire wife” is a myth propagated by male vampires to make themselves feel better. 😏 The end.

* (22:47) Identities of some of the vampires we found – mentioned: Melisande & Labana the mathematician.

* (26:16) Jean wins the internet!  She shares a personality type with Justin Trudeau 🇨🇦. See The One With Personality.
* (26:43) Lilith and the All Souls Trilogy?  Hmmm … We wonder because Marcus has been talking to Deb; he's a fan of the Pre-Raphaelites (who purportedly loved Lilith).  We were wondering about the seeds planted in A Discovery of Witches:
“Damn,” Sarah breathed again. “Who’s Lilith?”
“The first witch.” I drew Matthew’s diagrams closer, remembering his cryptic response in Oxford to my asking if he was searching for the first vampire. “Or at least the first witch from whom present-day witches can claim matrilineal descent.”
“Marcus is fond of the Pre-Raphaelites, and Miriam knows a lot of mythology. They picked the name,” Matthew said by way of explanation.
“The Pre-Raphaelites loved Lilith. Dante Gabriel Rossetti described her as the witch Adam loved before Eve.” Marcus’s eyes turned dreamy. “‘So went / Thy spell through him, and left his straight neck bent / And round his heart one strangling golden hair.’”
* (29:03) Angela has never got over the fact that Pierre is not around in The Book of Life.  Val mentioned Françoise, however Angela described her as a “clucker” (as in hen).  Also she mentions the word “pie-face” as a word she frequently uses.  She goes on to say that she has a language of her own, and that we, as Daemons, sometimes have "twin triplet speak" syndrome.  Yeah, we do.

* (30:09) We forgot to mention in the blood rage episode/Take 11 that Philippe indeed used Matthew as a weapon! There, we’ve righted that wrong!

* (31:03) The word “mothership” – what we mean by the term.  The term comes from Valerie’s dependency on Apple devices.  The current “Mothership” in her digital arsenal is a 27” iMac 5K retina display intel core i7.  If you are interested – it handles video, audio, web publishing, and Photoshop simultaneously without breaking a sweat.  She replaced another that looked just like it, but didn’t have the same intestinal fortitude. The original was purchased to handle email, do some Photoshop dabbling, and to maybe play The Sims occasionally.  We then started our online life with Armitage4Clairmont.  Oh dear!   The elder mothership’s hard drive crashed hard while using a RAM-resource hogging program to make --> this video … it was down for almost 2 weeks!  She was fixed, but still slowed down during intense Daemon pressure, and couldn’t handle the stress!  Enter Mothership 2.0 – it dictates everything all of the other gadgets do. She’s the mama. BTW, Mothership 1.0 is currently enjoying her sunset years in a peaceful retirement.  Her new activities consist of fantasy football, bill paying, and probably porn! 😜  In the picture below, you may be wondering where Val’s iPhone was?  It was taking the picture.  Note the bright colors on her keyboards and headphones!  Tech doesn’t have to be boring!  Yes, she's also got the watch 😳.  Yes, we are aware that Valerie may have a serious addiction.  Intervention, you say?  Good luck with that.  Some ladies like their pricey shoes, Val likes her Apple devices.

We’ve adopted the term for Daemons DomainDaemons Domain is the Mothership.  Daemons Discuss! & Armitage4Clairmont are the kids.  It works for us -- 2 websites and three platforms later.  😉

Discussers!  We're sorry!
P.S. 😞  Dear, Discussers!  We apologize!  We didn’t get emails out for this recording (covers this episode & the one coming in two weeks) because we had to plan a last minute session to allow us to function in our lives (major ‘adulting’ happening right now).  Jean is still getting her home optimized for sale, Angela has been busy with her kid’s activities and traveling for work, and Valerie is in the midst of multiple home improvement projects.  We had to fit this recording in early so that we wouldn’t be stressed out trying to record in the madness we currently call our lives.  Our priority is to keep a regular publishing schedule and deliver quality episodes to you on time.   Luckily, we were able to find a pocket of time, but didn’t have enough lead time to send an email that would allow for punctual responses.  We will do better! In the meantime, feel free to comment in the form below, or call and leave a voice mail: 1 (360) 529 -7836!  You can comment on this episode, and send us your thoughts.  You don't have to wait for our emails, you can reach out to us!

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Credits/Copyright Information 
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