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Post Reply Series Discussion: Twilight
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Posted 7/17/09


In my experience, most women prefer to be the damsel in distress so that wouldn't be that unusual.



...its quite sad really.
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Posted 7/17/09

turtle_herder wrote:

Now before I begin, I have a few things to say. First and formost is that this review represents MY point of view, as such I am not saying that you a wrong for being a fan, so I ask that you extend me the same respect. Secondly, I encourage active debate on topics, however if your post is along the lines of "OMFG, Twilight does not suxxx, Edward is soo dreamy. U r an idiot." I will delete it. (Handy moderator powers).

So to the review:

Basically in overview the book is discriminatory to women, literature and several cultures.

It discriminates against literature in that it contains so many modifiers for every noun used that it makes the english literature major in me cry tears of sorrow. You do not need that kind of 'Purple Prose' in any sort of decent literature, even romance novels. All that it does is create excess pages (J.K. Rowling anyone?) and fills impressionable teenage heads with glittery and useless sentence structuring. This tween market will grow into the next generation of authors and artists, so do we really want them to be influenced by one such as Meyers? I grew up to Orwell, whose motto is 'Never use a long word where a short word will do." Now, not to be pedantic but one of these two authors is recognised as a true litterary great, while the other is Stephenie Meyer.

Secondly, the abuse and misrepresentation of cultures, mostly in Forks, is truely sickening. Meyers has not researched into any of the tribal or historical discourses surrounding the Sioux Native Americans, instead inventing her own interpretation and horrifying the locals in the process. This is not to say that authors shouldn't have leeway in creating or altering events, however showing no regard to their culture and actually perverting some of their customs is another issue altogether.

And finally we reach the crux of my passionate dislike of Twilight, its blatent Sexism and discriminatory views on women. Which, coming from a male must mean something. Firstly Bella(Meaning Beautiful) Swan, the 'plain' girl who becomes the sexual fantasy of five men. Five! The main focus is the vampire Edward Cullen, a 900 year old 'Adonis-like' vampire. However, going against such works as Bram Stokers 'Dracula', He does not prey upon humans, but rather animals. Now so far this sounds like nothing more than a male gripping about a romance book, however lets just look at certain elements of the book that show sexism at it's worst.

Bella, our 'Heroein', is unable to go a chapter without needing to be rescued by one boy or another. Next, the fact that Bella gives up her ambitions and plans for college to get married to Edward. Finally her relationships with her 'admirers' are all dangerously unhealthy and are probably the worst thing we could be putting in our young childrens hands.


First off I am not going to discuss the literary value of these novels. I am not an English major and never really did well in my English courses.

As a work of fantasy or science fiction, this novel has no need to base realistic Native American cultures to make her own. In actuality the Quileute tribe is real and does have its lore about shape shifting into Wolfs. So she did not pervert Native American customs. The Sioux tribe was in the great plains and not in the pacific north west. Also the Navajo nation also have folklore in shape shifting along with other Native American Tribes.

Edward is only a little over 100 years old in the novel considering he was transformed in Chicago in the early 1900s.

Bram Stokers is not the end all be all vampire authority. Were talking about fictional characters here, so people are allowed to change what different races can do. Meyers actually goes through the vampire stereotypes in her novels and clarifies what they can and can not do in the world that her book is based in.

You don't sound like a male griping at a romance book, you sound like someone who doesn't like people changing vampire lore and adapting it into something you don't personally approve of.

The book is not sexist. Bella is not always saved by "boys" The females in the Cullen Clan do participate in the fights, Bella actually saves the entire Clan plus other vampires, not to mention all of the Quileute werewolves in the end of the series. She does not give up the notion of going to college. She is putting it off so she can be changed into a vampire. If everything had gone as it normally did she would be able to attend college after so many odd years when it would be safe for the other students.

Your point on the "plain girl" having five guys being sexually attracted to her is completely and utterly normal. This is small town USA here in a high school's social environment. An attractive girl moves in and starts attending school of course she is going to have at least five guys being attracted to her. Go to a larger social environment and the popular girls will have a lot more that 5 guys being attracted to them. Go out to a nightclub anywhere, not a bar, a night club and as long as you have a pulse your going to be physically attracted to more than 5 women in that club without even talking to them (as a typical straight male). So whats your point here, its normal. Also that Bella is nice to all the guys who ask her out is besides the point. How is asking someone to a dance "dangerously unhealthy" anyway?

In actuality these books tend to promote good morals. It shows teenagers that they don't need to have sex to be in love. It promotes the acceptance of others, Bella loves her vampire friends and werewolf friends instead of shunning both groups. This can be applied to Racism in real life. Finally it gives young people an example of overcoming the odds, just because the Cullens were vampires they didn't have to follow the vampire cannon. This can be interpreted as something to give hope to inner city teenagers. That they don't need to join the gangs or do the drugs because society expects them to.

I can understand your dislike for these novels. Everyone has a personal opinion and I tend to like a lot of literature that really isn't all that great in writing standards considering I'm reading for more entertainment than anything else. I just wish you would have gotten your points across with more concrete evidence. Start by getting a better understanding of how High school students interact with each other. Do some research before claiming someone is perverting cultures. Knowing what cultures your talking about is another good place to start.

Jon

OK If someone would please add the great and all powerful spoiler link to the quote I would be very thankful

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Posted 7/21/09

BlackMagic98 wrote:



In my experience, most women prefer to be the damsel in distress so that wouldn't be that unusual.



...its quite sad really.


How that comes to happen is beyond me though. No matter how many angles i study it from it still strikes me as being an absolutely ridiculous trait that should be treated rather than awarded. But self-reliance is a trait that continues to slip into obscurity. People who claim to be self reliant completely obsess over their stockple of weapons thinking that it will somehow make them safe, or they aren't self-reliant and having dreams about Edward Cullen.
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Posted 7/21/09


I understand why they feel like that. I guess you have to be a girl to understand it but its like...

They want to be swept off their feet, they want some handsome, strong guy to come and take them away from all their problems. Its romantic, because its like...that guy will brave all that danger to save the girl because he loves her that much.

I get how they feel and I think thats kinda sweet too, but I'd rather be able to defend myself, I'd rather be able to be independent and not need that, though it'd be cool to have someone like that.
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Posted 7/23/09

Well said. Plus Edward is a tool so that formula doesn't work anyway, or shouldn't work rather.
Hehe the last time I was 'swept off my feet' I got concussion.
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Posted 7/24/09


Why thank you! *bows*

And lol. XD
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Posted 7/27/09

fleetingthoughts wrote:


Well said. Plus Edward is a tool so that formula doesn't work anyway, or shouldn't work rather.
Hehe the last time I was 'swept off my feet' I got concussion.



Yeah well like i've said to many hopeless teenage girls who use that corny term, if you get swept off your feet prepare to land on your ass. The feeling of love doesn't hit you like that magical fuzzy feeling. It catches you completely off guard, your expression when you realize you're in love shouldn't be sparkly and happy, it should be the expression of a deer in the headlights of semi-truck hauling a tanker full of petrol. But, in the long run only love that can survive that turmoil is love that lasts. Otherwise you'll just wind up with someone you shout at for reasons that you forgot a long time ago.
Of course very few of them listened to me.
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Posted 7/27/09

BlackIceFox


Yeah well like i've said to many hopeless teenage girls who use that corny term, if you get swept off your feet prepare to land on your ass. The feeling of love doesn't hit you like that magical fuzzy feeling. It catches you completely off guard, your expression when you realize you're in love shouldn't be sparkly and happy, it should be the expression of a deer in the headlights of semi-truck hauling a tanker full of petrol. But, in the long run only love that can survive that turmoil is love that lasts. Otherwise you'll just wind up with someone you shout at for reasons that you forgot a long time ago.
Of course very few of them listened to me.

Ah that is a very refreshing stance on the topic. Any bet those girls are still desperately clinging to shallow imitations of 'love' in movies and books like Twilight, or discarding boyfriends as often as they change clothes in the hope of capturing that illusive strand of 'love' that indefinitely suspends the monotonous and sometimes cruel realities of life replacing it with some sort of fantastical chemistry that has people flustered and starstruck like drooling cartoon characters with heart shapes in their eyes.
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Posted 7/27/09

fleetingthoughts wrote:


BlackIceFox


Yeah well like i've said to many hopeless teenage girls who use that corny term, if you get swept off your feet prepare to land on your ass. The feeling of love doesn't hit you like that magical fuzzy feeling. It catches you completely off guard, your expression when you realize you're in love shouldn't be sparkly and happy, it should be the expression of a deer in the headlights of semi-truck hauling a tanker full of petrol. But, in the long run only love that can survive that turmoil is love that lasts. Otherwise you'll just wind up with someone you shout at for reasons that you forgot a long time ago.
Of course very few of them listened to me.

Ah that is a very refreshing stance on the topic. Any bet those girls are still desperately clinging to shallow imitations of 'love' in movies and books like Twilight, or discarding boyfriends as often as they change clothes in the hope of capturing that illusive strand of 'love' that indefinitely suspends the monotonous and sometimes cruel realities of life replacing it with some sort of fantastical chemistry that has people flustered and starstruck like drooling cartoon characters with heart shapes in their eyes.


Amen sister. I've used this argument against homophobes also, but the hearts and flowers romance is absolutely unnatural and completely worthless. Showing someone you care for them is one thing, but believing that you can manipulate the uniquely human concept of long-lasting love just because some stupid white male with a pretty face gave you a flower is one of the major problems of this country. For dozens of generations useless concepts like romance, religion, spirituality, and even the zodiac were the core of human relationships. And that is the reason the divorce rate is so high in any place in the world that actually allows it. People who draw their morals from someone else are doing it all wrong and that's the reason love constantly eludes them, and why they are so stressed out trying to maintain the illusion of love.
Lets face it, if Bella and Edward were alive in real life that relationship would collapse faster than you can say "Where's the remote?" Relationships fueled by teen hormones (Or whatever the hell that crappy imitation vampire had) are also just as likely to fail. Screw romance and Valentines, if you want your love to work, it has to have endurance and resiliency. It has to be able to survive quarrels and hardships. Because in the end real love is nothing more than an obscenely strong friendship. Looks and sexual stamina have absolutely nothing to do with it, the ONLY basis that matters at all is personality. Not even gender is a factor if you're doing it right.
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Posted 7/29/09 , edited 7/29/09


Haha nice argument. Growing up in America, I can't say I've not been influenced by the whole 'falling in love' thing, but oftentimes, people who get married, whether in love or not, fall in love eventually anyway. If you marry someone because you love them, disregarding everything else, its doomed to fail. If you can fall so easily into love, you can just as easily fall out of it.

My parents are from Asia, and there the falling in love thing isn't so important. I can't even name one person in my family who's gotten divorced. And I have a big family.
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Posted 7/29/09





BlackMagic98 wrote:



fleetingthoughts wrote:




Wow, Way too much effort quoting the lot of you.

Anywhozle (Today's word of the day), you all make good points and had I not just spent the day in a board room I would likely be able to extract the niggling voices in my head to contribute. As it stands I will have to postpone it until I get some sleep and decent food into me.

Night all,
Shirochi.
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Posted 7/29/09 , edited 7/29/09
Mmmhh I don't think I'll bother with the quoting.

I very much agree with both BlackIceFox and BM's points. Though I don't quite understand the part when you said marrying someone you love is destined to fail, BM. On second thoughts now that I read the sentence after it again I guess I get what you mean, I think.
Hmm yeah I guess the bottom line for me is a really meaningful conversation with a partner lends itself more to love than any box of chocolates could. Yet that fickle bombarding of presents sort of mentality is ingrained into everyone as a matter of necessity, or perhaps it's just rigid tradition. I really have nothing against gift giving but if it's merely accompanied by a few grunts of appreciation and a minute of staring into each others eyes then you're not really getting to know each other, which is, what I thought the point of the whole shebang was. Sometimes I just don't get why something that seems so shallow, to me anyway, has become some sort of intrinsic part of love itself; something that can be bought from the shop up the street for $12. Anyway I have no energy after today and I fear I'm starting to sound pretentious...
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Posted 7/29/09

BlackMagic98 wrote:



Haha nice argument. Growing up in America, I can't say I've not been influenced by the whole 'falling in love' thing, but oftentimes, people who get married, whether in love or not, fall in love eventually anyway. If you marry someone because you love them, disregarding everything else, its doomed to fail. If you can fall so easily into love, you can just as easily fall out of it.

My parents are from Asia, and there the falling in love thing isn't so important. I can't even name one person in my family who's gotten divorced. And I have a big family.


That's what we call Stockholm's Syndrome. It doesn't have to be a person developing an attachment to a kidnapper, it can be shock adjustment on a smaller scale. Which is why the "Old fashioned" marriages looked nice on the surface when the wife quickly succumbed to the low-grade Stockholm's as her own religion betrayed her and demanded she remain loyal to her husband, no matter how much of an asshole he was. Since i look past the surface and analyze to the mentality as well as morality of couples often as a force of habit, most relationships to me look like something straight out of Law and Order SVU. With how shallow a majority of people really are and how the stranglehold of religion is gradually weakening on America, it's hardly a surprise that the divorce rate is through the roof. People are still getting married but it's now acceptable to get a divorce. Nowadays, most people just marry so that they don't have to buy their own blenders.
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That's what we call Stockholm's Syndrome. It doesn't have to be a person developing an attachment to a kidnapper, it can be shock adjustment on a smaller scale. Which is why the "Old fashioned" marriages looked nice on the surface when the wife quickly succumbed to the low-grade Stockholm's as her own religion betrayed her and demanded she remain loyal to her husband, no matter how much of an asshole he was. Since i look past the surface and analyze to the mentality as well as morality of couples often as a force of habit, most relationships to me look like something straight out of Law and Order SVU. With how shallow a majority of people really are and how the stranglehold of religion is gradually weakening on America, it's hardly a surprise that the divorce rate is through the roof. People are still getting married but it's now acceptable to get a divorce. Nowadays, most people just marry so that they don't have to buy their own blenders.


Still drawing from your bottomless well of cynicism, huh Wolf? Guess it must really piss people off when you actually call it right. But, whether you call it acquired taste or mental scarring, there really is something lacking with most new couples these days. And something like Twilight really doesn't help when most teenage girls have poor judgment as is.
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Yeah I know what you mean, I'd rather marry someone that I know very well then just someone who bombards me with presents. As the saying goes, 'it's the thought that counts', its not the present itself but the thought behind it that matters.

Which is also why I don't believe in love at first sight, if you believe in love at first sight, then you're kinda shallow. How can you love someone only by appearance? That's not love at all, just lust.

Oh and, just to be clear, I didn't exactly mean marrying someone you love is destined to fail. Its just in stories the woman or the man will just abandon everything they stand for, who they are, their family, they'll abandon it all to be with the person they love. Nothing else matters except that they love them. Its very romanticized. I said that if you fall in love, you can fall out of it too. So if one day, you wake up and realize, you don't love this person anymore (or they don't love you), you're basically completely screwed.

You gave up everything you had and everything you were for this person, and you realize you did it all for nothing, because you don't love each other anymore. Now how will you go back to your life? You had centered it around someone else and now you have nothing left.

It sounds all pretty and nice when you read it in a book or see it in a movie, but if you really think about it, its not so great.

Oh wow, reading that, that sounds so cynical and emo... I'm not dissing love, I'm just saying there should be more to marriage then just that.

And if the only thing connecting you to your spouse is love, what kind of life is that? If you're two completely different people, you'll never be able to just talk or do things together that you both love. How boring.



Perhaps I should've explained it better, but that's not what I meant. If two people who were pretty similar got married, and they were both kind people, but were not in love, their marriage would probably work out fine, and they might fall in love eventually anyway. If most of the people in the world married their friends, the divorce rate would probably be a lot lower.

I didn't mean that you can match any two people up and it doesn't matter who they are because they'll fall in love anyway. Assholes should not be marrying anyone, except maybe other assholes. Arranged marriages don't really exist anymore anyway, so I don't think that should be involved. Everyone chooses who they marry, and a lot of people who have abusive partners won't leave them because they are in love with them, so they justify their partners actions and won't get help.

'Strangehold of religon'? Are you against it? Though your sentence suggests the opposite, it sounds like you're saying that Americans are getting less and less religious, the divorce rate is going up, but 'stranglehold' sounds like you think religion is a bad thing.

As for the "as her own religion betrayed her and demanded she remain loyal to her husband", I'm not Christian so I don't know how it works for you, but though adultery is wrong in my religion, getting divorced is not. And husbands have to treat their wives respectfully.
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