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CoverLetter

DearMs.L,
Firstandforemost,IwouldliketothankyouformakingWriting39Banenjoyable
experienceandatremendouslearningprocess.Ihaveheardsomehorrorstoriespertainingto
writing39Bandwaswaryofthiscourseatfirst.However,Ifoundthiscoursetobean
enlighteningexperiencewhichhelpedmedevelopmyskillsasawriter.AtfirstIhadexpected
thecoursetobesimilartothewritingclassesIhadtakeninhighschool.Imadethemistakeof
approachingthiscourseasIwouldhaveinpreviouswritingclasses.Iquicklycametorealize
thatmypreviousmentalitywouldnotbeappropriatetobesuccessfulinthiscourse.Duringthe
processofcreatingmyportfolio,Ilearnedtogathermyideasandcreateoutlinestomakeit
easiertowriteanessay.Iknowthatwritingisnotmystrongestskill,butafterthiscourseIfeel
thatIhaveimprovedinanalyzingtextandcreatingwellorganizedessays.
Comingintotheclass,mygoal
justlikeofanyotherstudent,was
toreceiveanA.I
wantedtotakeeachassignmentseriouslyandputinalotofeffortintomakingmyessaysperfect.
However,Iwasnotdisciplinedenoughtodoso.TheinitialmistakeImadeinthisclasswasmy
inabilitytomanagetimeefficiently.Duringthefirstfewweeksofthisquarter,Iwasvery
wastefulofmytime.Asthequarterprogressed,itbecamedifficulttomanagetheworkloadthat
wasassignedfrommyfiveclasses.However,bythetimewegottotheRApaperIwasableto
getbackontrackandfinishmywork.IamsureIcouldhavedonebetterifIhadutilizedmytime
atthebeginningofthequartermoreefficiently.Ithinkthatoverthe10weeksinthiscourse,my
writinghasundergonearemarkablegrowthbothtechnicallyandideologically.Ifeltthatmyfirst
draftsthatIwrotereflectedvaguecomprehensionandlackofformality.Mymainweaknessin

writingwasmyfailuretocreateamainargumenttosupportmypaper
.Now,however,Irealize
theimportanceofhavingastrongthesis,asitsetsthetonefortherestofthepaper.Comparing
thecriticalreadingresponsepapertotherhetoricalanalysisessay,Ibelievethatmyabilityto
writeathesishasgotte
nalotbet
ter.
IthinkIdidagoodjobansweringthepromptfortheCRRPessay.Ilikedtheargument
thatitmadeandth
ewayitflowed.H
owever,whenIreadmygroupspapersduringthepeer
reviewIfeltthatmyessaywaslackingsomethingandneededmorework.Ihadtoreviseand
listentomypeerscommentingonmydrafttowritemyessay.Duringpeerreviewstheypointed
outthatItendtostrayawayfrommymainargumentandmakevaguestatementsinmyessays.
So,tofixthemistakesthatIhadmade,Iwentback,triedtogivemorebackgroundinformation,
andremovedpartsofmyessaythathadnothingtodowithmymainargument.Iwasnot
comfortablewiththispaperafterthat,soIhadmanypeoplelookitoverformeasImade
revisions.IfoundtherevisionprocesstobeinterestingbecauseIhaveneverreallyeditedmy
papersbeforeturningthemin.Sothisprocessofreadingandrevisingpaperswascompletely
newtome
.Itwasr
einforcedasIbegantoworkonmyportfolio.Ihavelearnedgrammarand
correctionskillsbyreadingovermyessaysnumeroustimes.UsuallyasIreadmyessays,Iam
notabletocatchthemistakesthatIhavemade.However,onceIstartedreadingthemaloudor
havingitreadtome,Iwasabletoheartheirregularsegmentsinmyessays.MyRApaperhas
shownnotonlymyunderstandingofthestructureofanessay,butalsomydescriptiveabilities.
ThereareafewthingsIlikeinthispapersuchasthetopicsentencesandthetransitionfromone
paragraphtoanother,butIreallylovetheargumentandconclusion.Ihadotherpeoplereadmy
essayandtheytoldmethatsomepartsoftheRApaperseemedtogooffonatangent,however,I

feltthosepartswereessentialtotheessayandunitesit.Ireallylovedtheorganizationofthe
essaybecauseIfeltthatitflowedfromoneideatothenext.Itisevidentthatmyroughdrafts
wererushedbutinthefinaldraftthereisavalidargumentandbettertransitions.
ComparingtheworkthatIhaveproducedtotherubrics,IthinkthatIshouldreceiveaB.
IbelievethatIanalyzedthetextseffectivelyandshowedthatIcanconstructascholarlyessay.
Writing39B,specificallytheRApaper,hasshownmethatIhavewhatittakestodoresearch
andcreatearguments.IthinkthatWriting39Cwillbeanextensiveversionof39Bthatdeepens
myunderstandingofrhetoricwhilebringingtolightthecurrentissuesandproblemsfoundin
society.IthinkthatIamreadyforwriting39CbecauseIfeelthatIdidagoodjobinfinding
sourcesandconnectingthemtomyRApaper.Ilookforwardto39CbecauseIenjoyeddoingthe
researchandfindingnewideastouseformyannotationsandpaper.IthinkthatIwilldogoodin
writing39CbecauseIpickedathemethatIampassionateabout.Iunderstandthat39Cwillbe
moredifficultandmoretimeconsumingduetotheresearch.However,Ihadlearnedfrommy
mistakesandwillnotneglecttheworkIhaveuntillater.
Idohavetoworkonseveralthingssuchasmyawkwardphrasingofcertainsentence
s
andgrammar.I
neverhadasolidfoundationingrammarbutyourbootcampshavehelpedmea
lot.Ifeelthatmywritinghassignificantlygrownandmatured.IamnowhereclosetothewriterI
wanttobe,butIhopethatbytheendofthisquarterIamonestepcloser.Ineedtolearnhowto
makemyessayflowbetterandhowtogomoreindepthinmyanalysis.Ihaveseenan
improvementinmywriting.IbelievethattheessaysIhavechosenformyportfolioshowmy
strongwritingskillsthatincludetheabilitytosynthesizeideasandconcepts,toconveythese
ideaswithclarityandcreativity,andtodevelopsubstantialwritingskills.Therefore,Ifeelthat

havingcompletedthiscourse,Iamnowequippedwithsufficientknowledgeandskillstotake
mywritingtoahigherlevel.
Sincerely,
PurvaPatel

CRRPDraft
Thesis:Tolkienrevolutionizedtheboundarieswhichhighfantasyusedtoabidebymakingit
moredynamicwiththetheevolvedcharactersandvividworldwithhisnovelsandgavewayto
otherhighfantasyauthors.
J.R.R.Tolkien's
TheHobbit
isastoryofahobbitnamedBilboBaggins,whoiscontent
withhislifeandhistransformationfromanordinaryhobbitintoaherotodemonstratethe
hero'sjourney.Bilboismanipulatedintobeingtheburglarinthedwarfsexpeditionfortheir
stolentreasurebyGandalf.Tolkiensupports

theideathataheroissomeonewhogoesonaquest
notapersonwhoisbraveandselfless.ThisquestthatBilbogoesontransformshimintoahero
overcomingdangersmakesthestorymorecompelling.Heroesareassociatedwithnoble
qualitiessuchascourage,strengthandloyalty,however,BilboBagginsisdepictedasinsecure,
mildtempered,stereotypicalhobbit.Tolkiendescribesthehobbitsaslittlepeoplewithlittle
ornomagicaboutthem,excepttheordinarysortandareabletodisappearquietlyandquickly
(Tolkien2).Bilboisnotdepictedasthemostperceptiveoragileindividual,whichare
characteristicsthatthereaderenvisionsfortheherotohave.Thenarratorcontinuestoportray
Bilboasanintrovertedhobbitwhohasnointerestinothersbusinessandinitiallybreaksdown
whenhehearsabouttheadventure.Hevisiblyfaintingandshakinglikeajellywhichmakes
thedwarfsdoubtifheisasfierceasGandalfsaysheis(9).ByportrayingBilbointhisway,
Tolkienemphasizestheintrinsiccharacteristicsthathehassuchasloyaltyandcouragethatlead
himtosuccessinhisquest.Asthejourneycontinues,Tolkienutilizestheconstantstruggle
betweengoodandevilcausedbyinternalandexternalconflictstodevelopBilbo'scharacter.

Bilboisinitiallynotverycourageous,however,embarkingontheadventureinitiateshis
transformationintoahero.Thefirstinstancewherehiscouragebecomesevident,iswhenthe
dwarfsareindangerofbeingkilled.Mostofhissuccesswasguaranteedduetotheringthathe
foundinthecave.ThismagicringwhichledtotheGollum'sdownfall,somewhatreplacesthe
physicalstrengththatBilboislacking.ToBilbo,theringmakesagreatdifferenceandmakes
himfeellikeadifferentpersonwhoismuchfiercerandbolder(72).AsBilbobecomes
bolderandstartstobecomeaherohishamartiabecomesmorenoticeable.Bilboisnotentirely
immunetothegreedthatisconsumesmanyofthecharacterslikeThorin,andGollum.Bilbo
livesuptohistitleastheburglarwhenhetakestheArkenstoneclaimingthattheysaidhecould
choose[his]ownshareeventhoughheknowsthatthegemwastheHeartoftheMountain
andmeantagreatdealtothedwarfs(107).Hisgreedissomewhatdismissedwhenherealizes
thattheArkenstonecanusedtostopthatwar.
Intheendhisreward,ishispersonalgrowthandrecognitionasahero.Tolkienshows
thatnomatterhowdifficulttheobstacle,oreviltheenemy,onecanconquerthemandstaytrue
totheirmorals.

CriticalResponsePaperFinalDraft
ThroughtheCRRP,Ilearnedhowtoanalyzethetextratherthanjustsummarize.Ifound
thisessaytobeharderthantheRApaperbecauseIhadahardtimestickingtooneargument.I
thinkthatmyfirstdraftfellunderneaththeneedswork.Ichosethisdraftbecauseithadasimilar
argumenttotheonethatmyfinaldraftismaking.However,aftereditingitIthinkthatmyessay
fallsunderneaththesomewhateffectivecategory.Ibelievethatthispaperbelongsinthis
categorybecauseIhadathesisthataddressedtheargumentwhileeffectivelyanalyzingthetext.

HighFantasyisonethemostcompellingandrecognizablesubgenresoffantasy.
These
fantasynovels
areepicnarrativesthatrecounttalesofheroicstruggleofgoodagainstevilset
withinrealistic,intricateworldswhichdonotexist.
Inthesenovelsaheroissettogoona
questwheretheheroencountersanarrayofcharactersandchallenges.
Tolkien,afantasy
author,transformedtheboundarieswhichhighfantasyusedtoabideby,makingitmoredynamic
withevolvedcharactersandvividworlds.
InTheHobbit,Tolkienmanipulatesandadheresto
theconventionsofhighfantasytorevolutionizetheideaofwhatmakessomeoneahero.
Tolkiencompliestotraditionalhighfantasynovelsbyincludingacharacterwho
undergoesCampbell'sHero'sJourney.Thisjourneyisdemonstratedby
BilboBagginsashe
transformsfromanordinaryhobbitwhoseonlyconcernsrevolvearoundhisphysicalcomforts
intoanunexpectedhero.
At

firstglance,Bilboisnotthearchetypalherooneusually
encountersinfantasies.Typicalheroesoftenexperienceamurderattemptatbirth,haveno
memoriesofchildhood,andexperienceavictoryoverakingorbeast.Theseheroesare
usuallyassociatedwithnoblequalities,suchascourage,strength,andloyalty.However,

thesequalitiesareabsentinBilbowhoisdepictedasaninsecure,mildtempered,
and
stereotypicalhobbit.Tolkiendescribesthehobbitsaslittlepeoplewithlittleornomagic
aboutthem,excepttheordinarysort
whoare
areabletodisappearquietlyandquickly
(Tolkien2).Bilboisnotdepictedasthemostperceptiveoragileindividual,the
characteristicsthatthereadersenvisionfortheherotohave.GandalfinitiatesBilbo'squest
whereheattemptstomanipulateareluctantBilbointobeingaburglarinthedwarfs
expeditiontorecovertheirstolentreasure.Asthesceneadvances,thenarratorcontinuesto
portrayBilboasanintrovertedindividualwhohasnointerestinotherpeople'sbusiness.
Heinitiallybreaksdownwhenhehearsabouttheadventureandisvisiblyfaintingand
shakinglikeajelly.ThismakesthedwarfsdoubtwhetherheisasfierceasGandalf
saysheis(9).ByportrayingBilbothisway,Tolkienemphasizesthatonedoesnotneedto
bestrongandcourageous.Ratherpossessingintrinsiccharacteristicssuchasloyaltyand
courageleadonetosuccessonhisquest.Asthejourneycontinues,Tolkienutilizesthe
Bilbosinternalstrugglewithfearandcomforttofurtherhisdevelopment.
Asthequestbegins,Bilbofrequentlyexpresseshisuncertaintyinhisdecisiontojoin
theadventure.Bilbooftenmentionshisdesiretofeelfullandcomfortableagainand
dreamsofhisownhomewhichhecannolongerremember(52).AlthoughBilbois
constantlyhomesick,thenarratorcommentsthatTotheendofhisdaysBilbocouldnever
rememberhowhefoundhimselfoutside,withoutahat,walkingstickoranymoney,or
anythingthatheusuallytookwhenhewentout(52).Hisimpulsivebehaviorthatlead
himtoleavehishomewithouthisusualnecessitiesestablishesBilbo'syearningtogosee
greatmountainsandexplorethecavesandwearaswordinsteadofawalkingstick(8).

AlthoughBilboisprimarilyconcernedwithhisphysicalcomfortsthroughoutthenovel,he
graduallydiscovershisadventuroussidewhichgiveshimcouragetoovercomethe
obstaclesonhisjourney.
ThefirstinstancewhereBilbo'scouragebecomesevidentiswhenthedwarfsarein
dangerofbeingkilledbythegoblins.Mostofhissuccesswasguaranteedduetotheringthathe
foundinthecave.ThismagicringwhichledtotheGollum'sdownfall,somewhatreplacesthe
physicalstrengththatBilboislacking.
Bilbooftenfindshimselfneedinghelpfromthedwarfs
becauseofhisphysicalstature.Forinstance,whenBilboandthedwarfshavetoclimbinto
thetreestoescapethewolves,Bilbofindshimselfscuttlingaboutfromtrunktotrunk
becauseheistoosmalltoclimbthetree(47).HisconstantneedforhelpcausesBilboto
seemcompletelyuseless,however,theringwhichgrantshiminvisibilityhelpsbuildhis
selfconfidenceandgainrespectfromhiscompanions.
ToBilbo,theringmakesagreat
differenceandmakeshimfeellikeadifferentpersonwhoismuchfiercerandbolder(72).
WithBilbo'snewfoundcourage,heacknowledgesthathemuststabthefoulthingand
killGollum,buthemakesaheroicdecisionbypityingthecreaturewhoismiserable,
aloneandlostandshowshimmercy(41).Th
e
decisiontoshowGollummercyindicates
thataheromustmakeconsciousdecisions.Bilborealizesthatitwouldnotbeafairfight
tokilladefenselesscreaturesinceBilbohasagreateradvantagetosomeonewhoha
s
no
sword(41).Astheadventurecontinues,thedwarfsbegintorecognizeBilboasabold
adventurerwhohadsomewitsandluckandmakehimtherealleaderofthegroup
(77).

AsBilbobecomesbolderandstartstogainconfidenceandcouragehishamartiabecomes
morenoticeable.Bilboisnotentirelyimmunetothetemptationsthatconsumemanyofthe
characterslikeThorinandGollum.T
hisbecomesevidentasBilboandthedwarfstryto
regaintheirtreasurefromSmaug,inwhichtheyencounter'dragonsickness',atermused
tocharacterizeagrowinggreedanddesireforgoldandtreasure.Thegreedinessis
infectiousandinfluencesThorinwhoissoentrancedbythegol
dthatthe
lustofitisheavy
onhim.Thorin'slustforgoldiscausedbyhissenseofentitlementduetothethe
laboursandsorrowsthathisracehadtoendure(120).Thorin'sgreeddriveshisactions
andcloudshisjudgmentwhichresultsinhimrefusingtosharethetreasurewiththemen
ofLakeTown,ultimatelyleadin
gtowar.Bi
lbodisapprovesofThorin'stacticsandwould
rathergivemostofhisshareoftheprofitsforthepeacefulwindingupoftheargument
andavoidthewar(117).Bilbofindsthatthegoldisinsignificantcomparedtohisneedfor
foodandcomfort.However,whenBilbodiscoverstheArkenstone,hebecomesmesmerized
bythegemandbrieflysuccumbstothedragonsickness.
Bilbolivesuptohistitleasthe
burglarwhenhetakestheArkenstoneclaimingthatthedwarfssaidhecouldchoose[his]own
shareeventhoughheknowsthatthegemwastheHeartoftheMountainandmeantagreat
dealtoThorinandthedwarfs(107).
Bilboacknowledgesthatthereisnovalidexcusefor
deliberatelystealingtheArkenstone,whichhassentimentalvaluetoThorin.Throughthis,
Bilboemergesasaheroinanotheraspectasheisabletoovercomethi
stemptationofgreed
tosaveeveryonefromThorin'smadness.
TolkienmodifiesthearchetypalheroandillustratesBilboasaHadeslikehero.
Hades,unlikeothergods,keepstohishomeintheunderworldanddoesnotcreateany

trouble.Moreover,Hades
does
notsquanderhiswealthorlustformanypossessions.
Rather,hedesiresonethin
gPer
sephone.Hadescanbeperceivedasaninvisiblegodsince
herarelycausesdisturbance.Similarly,eventhoughBilboisthecentralcharacterofthe
novel,TolkienillustratesBilboasanobscureherowhoisinvisibleandbecomesevenmore
invisiblewiththering.Hedoesnotpossess
anyqualitiesthatmightmakehimahero.Bilbo
doesnothavethebloodlinenordoeshehaveany
relationtoagod.Insteadhehasa
physicalobscurityandalsoageographicalobscuritysincehishomeinlocatedintheshire
wherenoonevisits.Ratherthanwantingtoberecognizedforhisaccomplishmentsand
gainingglory,Bilboisjustthere.Typicallynooneiscontentwithwhattheyhave,theyhave
feudswitheachotherandyearnforwhattheydonothave.Bilbodoesnotpossessthese
qualities.Whileothersholdgrudgesandhavepettyfights,Bilboisabletoovercomethe
temptationsbecausehedoesnotwantpowerormoney.Bilbodoesnotwantglory.Thatis
whatmakes
him
suchagreathero.Hedoesnothavetheweaknessthatotherheroeshave
whichmeansthatthereisnowaythathecanbreakliketheothersdo.
Throughouthisjourney,Bilboisabletomaintaindecency.Decentpeopleseeothers
introubleandtrytohelpthem.Theydonotgoonadventuresbecausetherearetasksthat
needtobeaccomplished.Inourworldtherearemanypeoplewhoarehonorablewhereas
inmiddleearth,mostcharactershaveahardtimemaintain
ingdecency.
Bilbo
demonstratesthatdecencyisaheroictraittoposs
essif
oneknowshowtowielditcorrectly.
Somepeoplewhogoonthesetypesofadventuresbecomepettyandendupfailingintheir
quest.However,Bilboisabletomaintainhismodestywhichmakeshimtheperfectonefor
thejob.

RhetoricalAnalysisDraft
IntheGameofThrones,G.R.R.Martinusesafamiliarnarrativeformandsubvertsitto
revealtheflawsthatarepresentinthefantasygenre.Martinchallengesthereadersexpectations
forhighfantasyandabandonsthecommonstrugglebetweengoodandevilinfavorofapolitical
strugglebetweenrulingfamilies.Olderhighfantasynovels,suchasTolkien'sTheHobbit,focus
aroundonemainherowhoisgenerallyacommonerfightingagainstevil.Ontheotherhand,
Martin'snovelrevolvesaroundmultiplecharactersofnoblebirthfightingforpower.TheHobbit
andGameofThronesalsodepictwomendifferently.Tolkien'snovelisdominatedbymenwitha
briefmentionofBelladonnaTook,whoisthemaincharactersmother.Belladonnaprovides
Bilbowithpowerbycontributingabitqueerinto[Bilbo's]makeupwhichultimatelyfuelshis
curiositytogoontheadventure.(2)Althoughtherearenoapparentreferencestowomen
throughouttheHobbit,BelladonnaTook'sfamily'sheroictraitsarethebasisofunfolding
Bilbo'sheroicqualitieswhichhelpinfacingthedangerousworld.Similarly,Martin'snovelisa
maledominatedsociety,however,therearemanywomenpresentwhoareheroicand
powerhungry.IntheGameofThroneswomendonotinheritpropertyorbecomewarriors.
Insteadtheyareexpectedtomarryakingandrulehiscastleandproduceheirs.(174)The
womeninthissocietyareusedaspoliticalpawnsandrarelypossesspoweroftheirown.The
littlepowerthattheydoacquireisgivenbythemalesthattheyareassociatedwith.
ThewomeninGameofThronesdoreceivesomepower,however,itisnonexistent
comparedtothemalesaroundthem.Thewomenareportrayedasinferiortothemalecharacters
andoftenhavenoinfluenceinsituations.Thepowerthatthewomendoreceivefrommen
ultimatelydeterminesifthewomenisdefiantorsubmissivetosocietiesexpectations.Intheir

societythewomenareexpectedtoengageinfeminineactivities,suchasneedlework,caringfor
thechildrenandcreatingpoliticalallianceswhilethemenfightandhunt.Althoughthereare
certainexpectationthatfemalesshouldfollow,somecharacterschallengetheexpectationsin
theirownway.Aryaisoneofthecharactersthatchallengesocietiesexpectations.Sheisseenas
atomboywhoisfascinatedwithswordplayandthinksitisashademorefunthanneedlework
andlovesarchery.Aryaregularlyquestionsthesocialstandardsandrealizesthatlifeisnot
fair.AryaisluckyenoughtoliveintheNorthwithafatherwhoiswillingtosupporther
interests.However,evenNedisuncomfortablewiththeideaofhisdaughtersteppingtoofar
outsidethesociallyacceptedrolesforwomen.Anothercharacterthatdefiesthesocietal
expectationsisDaenerys.Daenerysisseenasaweakandtimidcharacteratthebeginningofthe
novelandismarriedofftoKalDrogobyherbrothertogainpoliticalpower.Aftershebecomes
marriedsherealizesherleadershipabilityandbecomesastrongindependentwomen,whichis
notseenintheGameofThrones.Ontheotherhand,thereareafewfemalecharactersthatfitthe
traditionalfeminineroleandabidebytheroleoutlinedbythesociety.Forexample,Catelynis
portrayedastheperfectwifewhoisdevotedtoherfamily.Catelyndoesnotattempttogain
power,insteadprioritizestakingcareofherfamilyandplayingtheroleofthemother.Another
characterwhoembodieswhatawomenshouldbeisSansaStark.Sheisbeautiful,knowstodress
andsew.Sansaisincrediblynaveandimaginesherlifebeingafairlytaleandisonlyinterested
inmarryingJoffrey.

RhetoricalAnalysisFinalDraft
IfoundtheRApapertoeasiertowritethantheRApaper.ForthispaperIcreatedan
outlinethathelpedmeorganizemyideas.Theresearchaspectofitwasabitdifficultbutit
becameeasierafterIfiguredouthowtolookforarticlesandpapersonmytopic.Comparedto
myinitialdraftthisessayhasimprovedsignificantly.Ithinkthatthisessayfallsbetweenthe
showsprogressandsomewhateffectivecategories.Theessayanalyzeshowthetextreflectsits
historical/culturalcontexts.However,Idonotreallyliketheflowoftheessayandfeelthatit
couldbeorganizedinabettermanner.

GeorgeR.R.Martin's
AGameofThrones
suggeststhattogainpoweronemustbecorrupt
andmanipulative.InWesteros,specificallyKing'sLandingwherethethroneislocated,poweris
wieldedbythosewhoarewillingtobetreacherousorasQueenCerseicomments,thosewhoare
willingtoplaythegameofthrones.Itisdifficulttoobtainpowerandthosewhodowieldit,no
matterhowrighteoustheircause,areinevitablycorruptedbypower.Eventheoppressedwomenof
Westeros,thatseizethelittlepowertheydoreceive,inevitablyfallpreytocorruption.Inthenovel,
readersencounterfemaleswhoareeitherparticipatinginthegameofthronesforpowerorare
beingusedtogainpower.Thevariousfemalesreadersencounterspanthespectrumofrolesthey
play,ranksandpersonalities.Martindepartsfromhighfantasynarrativeswhileutilizingother
stereotypesregardingwomenseizingpowerandsocietalexpectations.Throughthis,Martin
demonstratestheproblematicnatureofsocietynotonlyinfantasynovels,butin
ours
o cietyin
general.
IntheGameofThrones,G.R.R.Martinusesafamiliarnarrativeformandsubvertsitto
revealtheflawsthatarepresentinthefantasygenre.Martinchallengesthereadersexpectations

abouthig
h fantasyandabandonsthecommonstrugglebetweengoodandevilinfavorofapolitical
strugglebetweenrulingfamilies.AlthoughhisworkisderivedfrompostTolkiennovelsthatare
fullofknights,dragonsandmagic,
AGameofThrones
drawsacloseparalleltoourpresentsociety.
Olderhighfantasynovels,suchasTolkien's

TheHobbit
,
focusaroundonemainherowhois
generallyacommonerfightingagainstevil.
Martinstraysfromthetypicalhighfantasystoryline,
optingforastrugglethatrevolvesaroundmultiplemenandwomenofnoblebirthfightingfor
power.Inth
e
GameofThrones
,
Martinincorporatesmanywomenwhoplayasignificantrole
whereasinTolkien'sTheHobbitwomenarescarcelyfound.
Tolkien'snovelisdominatedby
menwithabriefmentionofBelladonnaTook,whoisthemaincharactersmother.Belladonna
providesBilbowithpowerbycontributingabitqueerinto
[his]
makeupwhichultimatelyfuels
hiscuriositytogoontheadventure(Tolkien2).Althoughtherearenoapparentreferencesto
womenthroughouttheHobb
it,Bel
ladonnaTook'sfamily'sheroictraitsarethebasisof
unfoldingBilbo'sheroicqualitieswhichhelpinfacingthedangerousworld(Green1).Adversely,
Martin'snovelisamaledominatedsociety,however,therearemanywomenpresentwhoare
heroicandpowerhungry.IntheGameofThroneswomendonotinheritpropertyorbecome
warriors.Insteadtheyareexpectedtomarryakingandrulehiscastleandproduceheirs(Martin
174).Thewomeninthissocietyareusedaspoliticalpawnsandrarelypossesspoweroftheirown.
Thelittlepowerthattheydoacquireisprovidedbythemalesthattheyareassociatedwith.
ThewomeninGameofThronesdoreceivesomepow
erhow
ever,itisnonexistent
comparedtothe
p owermenaroundthemhave.
Thewomenareportrayedasinferiortothemale
charactersandoftenhavenoinfluenceinsituations.Thepowerthatthewomendoreceivefrom
menultimatelydeterminesifthewomenisdefiantorsubmissivetosocietiesexpectations.Intheir
societythewomenareexpectedtoengageinfeminineactivities,suchas
doing
n eedlework,caring
forthechildr
en,andc
reatingpoliticalallianceswhilethemenfightandhunt.
Thewomeninthis

societyaresubjectedtomisogynyandpatriarchy.Althoughtherearecertainexpectationthat
femalesshouldfollow,somecharacterschallengetheexpectationsintheirownway.For
example,
AryaStarkisseenasatomboywhoisfascinatedwithswordplayandthinksitisashade
morefunthanneedleworkandlovesarchery.Aryaregularlyquestionsthesocialstandardsand
realizesthatlife[is]notfair(Martin50).
Aryaiscontinuouslydeniedtheequalitythatshe
yearnsforandisrestrictedbythelimitationsofthestandardsforwomenintheirsociety.
Thoughsheyearnsforthefreedomthatmenhave,sheneverdenieshergenderandassertsthat
sheisagirl
o n
multipleoccasionssuggestingthat
she
wantsrespectasagirlwhocandowhata
boycan.Thisconflictofrejectingwhatisexpectedofafemalewhilestillremindingpeoplethat
sheisstillagirlisdemonstratedwhenshenamesherswordneedle.Identifyingherswordas
needlesuggeststhatwhileAryaisnotalady,Needleembodieswhatsheshould
be,whi
chis
aladywhodoesneedleworkandisobedient.Aryaisgiventhepowertoabandonherroleinthe
societyasafemaleduetoherfather'swillingnesstosupportherinterests.
However,evenher
fatherisuncomfortablewiththeideaofhisdaughtersteppingtoofaroutsidethesociallyaccepted
rolesforwomen.
Similarly,
Daenerysdisregardssocietiesexpectations.Althou
g hshe
doesnothave
wealthliketheLannisters,ortheStarkmenonherside,sheisabletosucceedagainsttheodds,
provingthatshehasthestrengthtoovercomeanyobstacleinamasculineworld.Atfirst
Daenerysisdepictedasaweakandtimidcharacter
whoisafraidtowakethedragon(Martin
154).HerbrotherViserys,hasanincrediblystrongholdonherwhichresultsinhimusingDany
tofulfillhisplansofrevenge.Inhislustforrevenge,DaenerysissoldtoKhalDrogoasa
politicalploysoherbrothercangainanarmytogetbackhisthrone.AlthoughDaenerysis
againstthemarriage,sh
eisi
ncapableofactingonherown.Sheiscontinuouslyafraidof
Viseryswhothreatens
thatifshedoesnotpleasehimthedragonwillawaken.However,after

Daenerysbecomesmarried,she
gainspowertodefyherbrother'sorderandquicklyrealizes
herleadershipabilities.Bygainingpower,Daenerysisabletobecomesomeonewhothe
Dothrakineed.Bylearningwhatthecommunityismissingsheevolvesfromthemistreated
individualtoaheroineleaderwhoknowshowtoconsidertheneedsofothers.Despite
Daenerysbecominganinfluentialfigureandbeingthebloodofthedragonherabilityto
enactpowerisduetothemenaroundher(Martin72).Daenerysordersareonlyexecuteddue
toKhalDrogo'ssupportwhichisdisplayedwhenDaenerysordersnorapetotheDothraki
andclaimsallthewomen.ItbecomesapparentthatDaeneryspowerisnothersalonewhen
membersoftheKhalremindherthatshewillhavenopoweroverthemifDrogodies.
Nonetheless,DaenerysisabletogainsomeretainersandpowerafterKhal
Drogo'sdeat
hwhen
sheemergesasthemotherofdragons.Ultimately,Daenerysisabletogainrespectandpower
inhercommunitywhichisuncommoninWesteros.
FemalessuchasAryaandDaenerysusethepowerthattheyreceivetostrayfromthe
typicalfemalero
les
.Ontheotherhand,thereareafewfem
a lechar
a ctersthatfitthe
traditionalfeminineroleandabidebytheroleoutlinedbysociety.Sa
nsa,fore
x ample,isthe
polaroppositeofArya.SheembodieseverythingayoungWesterosnoblewomenshouldbe.
However,Sansaisincrediblynaveandimaginesherlifebeinglikeafairytalewishingfor
thingstobeniceandpretty,thewaytheywereinthesongs(Martin98).Sansabecomes
obsessedwiththeideaofbeingaqueenandgivingJoffreyasonwithgoldenhairwhowill
bethekingofalltherealm(Martin327).Sansa'sromanticillusionofbraveknights,ladies
andkingsisdismantledandreplacedwiththeharshrealitiesbehindthefairytaleworld.Sansa
comestounderstandthatbeingtheQueenandhavingpowerisnotwhatshedesiresandthat
lifeisnotasweetsong(Martin323).Sansagoesfrombeingaromanticidealisttoacynicand
realizesthatsheisonlyalittlebird,repeatingthewordstheytaughther(Martin512).

Similarly,CatelynandCerseifindthemselvesintraditionalfemaleroles.Botharevery
differentregardingtheirapproachtocompliance,however,theyareabletomaintaintheir
strengthregardlessoftheircircumstancesandsocialstatus.Unliketheaforementionedwomen,
CerseiandCatelynareinapositionofpowerbutarestrugglingtomaintainit.Bothwomenare
used
as
politicalpawnsbytheirfatherstocreatealliances.CerseiandCatelynarethemost
powerfulwomeninWesteros,yettheyarestilldominatedbytheirsons,whothey
serveas
a
dviserstoo.Cerseiisabletoobtainsomethingresem
blingto
powerduetoherbeingroyaltyin
Westeros.Shefightsforanypowerorrespectthatshecouldgetandwhenshefinallygets
power,sheclingstoit.
She
istheidealladyyetsheistheperfectplayerinthegameofthrones.
Sheisabletocontrolpeoplewiththreatswithherpoliticalpowerandpullsstringstomake
thingshappeninherfavor.
Boththesubmissiveanddefyingwomenareimportanttothedevelopmentofthenovel
andchallengethereadersviewsoffemininity.Thefemalesthatdefysociety'sexpectations
demonstratethatwomencanbestrongbybreakingthenormandnotabidingbythetraditional
roleofwomen.However,characterslikeSansaandCatelynillustratethatstrengthdoesnot
onlycomefromfighting.Eventhewomenwhofollowsociety'sexpectationsareabletoendure
challengesandovercometheminamannerthatissociallyacceptable.Thefemalesareableto
conformanddefysocietiesstandardswiththepowertheyreceivefromthemalesaroundthem.
Thepowerprovidesthemwithidentityanddetermineshowothersperceivethem.Without
powerthefemalesareseenasirrelevant.InWesteros,femalesreceivepowerfromthementhat
theyareconnectedto.Thewomansidentityandpowerisdependentontheextentofmale
power
theirrank
,wealthandland.Thevastmajorityofmeninherittheirpositionofauthority
throughalineofsuccession.Thekeydifferenceisthatthispowercanbeusurpedorotherwise

achievedonlybyothermen,generallythroughforce.Directfemalerulingandhavingthistype
ofpowerisunheardofinWesteros.
Mar
tin'su
seoffemalecharacterspres
ents
socialandpoliticalthemessuchaspower,
genderpoliticsandidentity.Martin'sadditionofwomeninhisnovelcreatesanimmense
differencebetweenhisworkandTolkien's.SinceTolkien'snovelsplayedabigroleinshaping
thehighfantasygenre,hisstyleofmedievalinspiredfantasyisconsideredatemplateforthe
genre.Hisomissionofwomenfrom
TheHobbit

influencedthewayreadersviewfemale
charactersinfantasy.Onecanaccredittheremovalofwomenfromthenoveltothefactthat
thenovelisanadventurestorythatwaspublishedduringinterwaryears.Thiscanbeseenasa
reflectionoftheallmaleatmosphereoftheWorldWars.FemalesarescarceinTolkien'snovel
becausehisstoriesrevolvearoundaheroonanadventure.Theadditionoffemaleswouldbring
infemininevirtues
suchaspassivityandfearofadventurewhichareweaknesses(Green4).
Furthermore,womenareexcluded
becausetheydo,howeverinnocently,temptandcause
mentobehavecontemptiblyaroundthem(Green4).Tolkiendoeshisbesttoexclude
femininityfromhisnovelswhereasMartinembracesit.Martinusesthewomentocreatea
critiqueonpeople'sheroicfantasy.
WhileTolkien'sexperiencesduringWorldWarIshapedthestory,Martinwasinspired
bythesocialmovementsthatwereoccurringinthe1950's.Inthe50'swomenfoundthemselves
beingcriticizediftheydidnotconformtothetraditionalroleofhousewifeandmother.This
movementcausedabacklashinthe50'sandwomenfoundthemselvesatwithkids.Martin
respondedtothismovementbycreatinganoveltoremindwomenwhattheirliveswerelikeand
togobacktohowthingswerebeforetheywerepushedbackhome.Fantasyisamansworld
idealizedtimeperiod,whereprincesseslivedincastlesandprincesovercameobstaclestosave
them.Martinemphasizedtheproblemsthatwerepresentinthenoveltodisplaywhatlifewas

like.Hedepartedfromtheprevalentheroicknightsandchivalryschematoshowthatitsnot
asprettyasoneimagines.ThroughthisMartinimplicitlywarnsreadersnottopineforthat
pastbecauseitisnotwhattheyimagine.

AnnotatedBibliography
Battis,Jes,andSusanJohnston,eds.
MasteringtheGameofThrones:EssaysonGeorgeR.R.
MartinsASongofIceandFire
.Jefferson,N.C:McFarland&Company,Inc.,Publishers,

2015.Print.
InthearticlebyKarinGresman,theauthorreferstoDaenerysasagrotesque
beingwhoembracesthetotalityofallbeings.Therearetwomainviewsofthegrotesque
inthearticleonethatperceivesthegrotesqueasaregenerativeprocesswhereastheother
portraysitaproblematicprocess.Bakhtinperceivesthegrotesqueasadeeplypositive
andlifeaffirmingcyclewhichrepresentsthecommunalbody'srelationshiptothelife
cycleandsocialregeneration.Bakhtindescribesthislifecyclesasaprocessof
regenerationinwhichthenewlifehadtotakeanold.Iagreedwiththisideathatthe
deathfeedslifewhichinturnmarriesandgivesbirthagain.AlthoughIdidnotagreewith
Bakhtin'sideaofthecarnivalwhichseemstobeabitofastretchwiththeideaof
terracottacollectionoflaughing,pregnanthags.Anotherviewthatwasgiveninthe
articlewasKristeva'swhosawthethegrotesqueandmonstrosityasproblematic.Iagreed
withKristeva'sideathegrotesqueisdepictedinaproblematicwaythathighlightshow
Martindoesnottreatwomenuniformly.Unequaltreatmentofwomenisshowninthe
ideathatbloodcanbeassociatedwithdesirabilityandrichancestryorthebetrayalof
girlssafestatus.Sansa'sbloodsignifiesaconnectiontothosearoundher.Dany'sonthe
otherhandisassociatedwithpromiseandapositiverepresentationofreproductive
power.ThepromiseofherbloodiswhatallowedDanytoacceptfullyherfemininity
andfulfillherhumanpotential.Sheisabletoconnecttoanimalswithherbeingthe
motherofdragons.OneanimalthatDaeneryshasaspecificconnectionwithisthehorse
thatKalDrogogivesherontheirweddingnight.ThehorsegivesDaeneryspowerand
autonomyandisverysignificanttoherwhichcanbeseenwhenshesaystellKalDrogo
thathehasgivenmethewind.


Green,WilliamH.(WilliamHoward).WheresMama?TheConstructionoftheFemininein
TheHobbit.
TheLionandtheUnicorn
22.2(1998):188195.Print.
InWilliamGreen'sarticle,hepointsoutthattherearenofemalecharacters
howeverthemalecharacterspossessfemalequalities.Tolkien'sfearofsexuality,as
evidencedbyhisletterofadvicetohisson,displaysTolkien'sbeliefthatwomenhavethe
abilitytotemptmen.ThisbeliefledTolkientogototheextremewhilewritinghisnovel
andleavingwomencompletelyoutofthenovelinordertopreventthischildren'snovel
toincludeanyformofsexuality.Greenpointsoutthewomanlessworld
The
Hobbit
likeamanlessworldbyafemaleauthormaybeseenasaUtopianconstruction,
anEdenicworldwithoutsexualtensionandguilt,aworldconsonantwithpreFreudian
ideasofchildhoodinnocence.ThiscomparisonoftheHobbittoaUtopian
constructionandEdenicworldindicatesthatperhapsthereisaFreudianinfluencein
novelsandmoviesthatwedonotrealize.Althoughtherearenoapparentreferencesto
womenthroughouttheHobbit,thereisabriefmentionofBelladonnaTook'sfamily's
heroictraitsthatarethebasisofunfoldingBilbo'sheroicqualitieswhichhelpin
facingthedangerousworld.Theauthorgoesontomentionthatthecharactersinthe
Hobbitpossesfemininequalitiesdespitetheirmasculinity.Iagreewiththisideathat
theauthormadebecausetheBilbo'sTooksideiswhatunleashedhisdesireforan
adventure.Forthemostpart,Ithoughttheauthorbroughtupinterestingideasaboutthe
exclusionofwomenfromtheHobbitforexample"menbehavecontemptiblyaround
them".IfounditinterestinghowTolkiendisposedofthe"contempt"thatmenfeelfor
womenandkeptitfrominterferingwiththeeventsofthestory.Whereas,intheGameof
Thrones,Martinembracesthe"contempt"thatmenfeelandutilizesittogivetheGame
ofThronesamorerealisticapproach.Asthearticlecontinued,theauthor'sFreudian
analysisonthetheabsenceofwomendidnothavesufficientprooftomakemeagree
withhisideas.Statementssuchas"manlinessisevil"andGaldalf"isafictionalproxyfor
Tolkien'sscientistaunt"seemedtobeabitextreme.

TheWomenofGameofThrones:AStudyonGenderRoles.
TheGeekiary
.N.p.,n.d.Web.
10Feb.2015.
Inthisarticle,thewriteranalyzeshowthewomengoagainsttheexpectationsthat
womenshouldweardresses,barechildrenandagreewiththeirhusbands.Theauthor
pointsoutthatG.R.R.Martinpresentsmanywomenwhochallengetheseexpectationsin

variousways.TheauthorfindsthatMartin'sapproachinconstructingthesefemalesis
"bothrefreshingandincredibly"realisticduetothefactthereisadiversesetofstrength
andweakness.Ithoughtthisarticlewasveryhelpfulbecausetheauthordividedthe
femalesintothesamecategoriesthatIhad.Thethreecategoriesarethenonconforming
women,femalebadasses,andtheunassumingones.Iremovedthebadasscategory
becausesomeofthecharactersthatwerediscussesarenotpresentinthefirstnovel.I
likedtheideathatdefyingthegenderrolesisnottheonlystrengththatawomencan
have.Thatstrengthmeansbeingabletoovercomeobstacles.Justbecauseonefollows
thetraditionalfemininityandfitsintothegenderrolesthatareoutlinedbysociety,does
notmakethemweak.Readingthenovel,IneverthoughtthatSansawasstrong.I
characterizedherasastupidgirlwhoistoonave.However,asIcontinuetowatchthe
show,Sansadoesdisplayacertainstrength.Sheutilizeshernaivetytoheradvantageand
manipulatespeopletosurvive.Shemightnotpresentherselfasastrongwomenwhois
abletodefysociety'sexpectationsbutshehasastrengthwhichhashelpedherstayalive.

RhetoricinPracticeProject
FormyRhetoricinPracticeImadeapinterestaccountforLunaLovegood.Ithinkthat
RIPisassignedtohelpusgetadeeperunderstandingofHighFantasywhileexposingusto
writinggenres.TheRIPrequiresustoanalyzetheauthorspurposeforcreatingthecharacter.
WhileworkingontheRIPIhavelearnedthatthebestargumentscomefromsharedassumptions.
Usingbeliefsthatboththewriterandreaderssharestrengthenarguments

https://www.pinterest.com/lovelunagood/

FormyRIPIchosetocreateapinterestaccountbecauseIthoughtitwouldbean
interestingandcreativewritinggenre.WhenIlookedintowhatpinterestwasIfoundthatthere
weremanyquirkyandcreativeaspectstoit.Furthermore,aslookedatotherpeoplespinsI
immediatelythoughtofLunaLovegood.Creatingapinterestallowedmetobecreativeand
depictLunainthewaythatIseeher.IseeLunaasaneccentricindividualthatdoesnotcare
aboutwhatothersthink.Lunaisverycleverandseesthingsinadifferentlight.Sheisableto
acceptthingsastheyarewhichisnotcommonintheWizardingworld.
IhaveneverhadaPinterestbefore,sothiswasalearningprocess.IfoundthatPinterest
isaplacewhereonecanideasordiscovernewinterests.Itisaplacetobeexposedtocreative

ideasandorganizewhatyoulikes.Itallowsyoutogetinspirationwhileinspiringotherswith
newideas.Theconventionsofthiswritinggenreallowonetoshareideasindifferentcategories
andbecreative.Pinterestactsasapersonalizedcollectionofdifferentformsofmediawhereone
isabletoexplorepolitical,socialandhistoricaltopics.Todoso,therearecertainrulesthat
shouldbefollowedwhileusingpinterest.Ilearnedthatsourcingthingpropertywithcorrect
linksitveryimportant.Itallowstherightpersontobegivencreditandotherpinnerstofindthe
realcontent.Alsopiningwithcaptionswithoutbeingapinaddict.Ithinkthatusingpinterest
broughtacreativeoutlookonLuna.InsteadofbeingconfinedtoonecategoryIgottodisplay
differentaspectsthatLunamightenjoysuchastraveling,craftideas,andfashion.Byusingthis
genreIwasgiventhechancetoconsiderwhatherinterestsmightbeorwhattypesofthingsthat
shemightlike.
IthinkPinterestistheperfectwritinggenretouseforLunaLovegood.Pinterestletyou
becreative,uniqueandletsyouexaminewhatthecharactersinterestsanddislikeswouldbe.I
imagineLunatravelingandlookingforunusualcreaturesandplants.Shewouldhaveaquirky
styleandbereallyintorecyclingitems.IwasabletolearnaboutplantsthatIhadneverheardof
andcreateuniquejewelry.InsteadofbeingconfinedtoonethingIgottoexploremany,
somethingthatLunaembodies.Shedoesnotlimitherself,insteadshefollowsherheartand
dressesandactshowshereallywantstowithoutworryingwhatotherpeoplethink.
ThroughthisprojectIhavelearnedthateverythinginhighfantasyhasanobscure
connecttosocialorhistoricalcontexts.Therewillmostlikelybeexplicitorimplicitreferences
tosociety.Forexample,intheHarryPotternovelstherearesocialissuesdealingwiththeidea
ofsuperiorracesandpoliticalissuessuchascorruptingpowerandblindallegiance.Highfantasy

isutilizedtoshowtheimportanceofrealismandthingsthatarenotdealtwithinsociety.
Fantasyauthorscreatewhatappearstobenewanewworld,butinrealityisjustaconvoluted
novelexaminingsocialorpoliticalissuesfromourworld.Thoughfantasymanyprovidereaders
withanescapefromreality,theoverallcontextofthenoveldealswithissuesinsociety.