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  1. Boring, non-fun answer: "Wit" was the least confusing thing she could call that character in a dramatic scene being read by the "average fan."
  2. This is a fantastic framework! I'll be using it for a long time, I think. Two points to add: One is that I think that we can puzzle out some of the backstories of the characters based on what we already know about them. I'm guessing that some issues from their childhoods will feed into issues that continue to develop. Using perhaps the easiest example, Lift seems to have problems with attachment or abandonment that stem from her mother's death and will likely not disappear anytime soon. Her visit to the Nightwatcher is also tied to these issues. Down the road, we might see a longer timeline for her that deals with her mother's death, the Nightwatcher visit, and even related events that haven't happened yet. (I might also put Lift in the "weirdly wise orphan-urchin" archetype slot for now.) Also, I'm wondering if there's another layer of complexity at work here. There's a non-magical "wow factor" or conflict attached to their vocation and/or archetype. Kaladin is a soldier made more complex by the fact that he could also be a surgeon. Jasnah is an atheist scholar in a very theistic society. Dalinar is a brutal warlord who becomes a reluctant king intent on unification through diplomacy. That character type doesn't traditionally pop up in fiction as a reluctant king. I'm struggling with Shallan--an artist who...?--which may be part of the reason why I sometimes have a hard time pinning her down as a character. Anyway, great post!!
  3. I imagine they'll at least be players until the prologues surrounding Gavilar's death end with book 5. Whether that will wrap up their story or make them even more important in future books is anyone's guess.
  4. I'm really hoping it's Kaladin's mother, Hesina. She's intelligent, religious, apparently from a higher social class, the book was not well received when published, and it would be a fun crackpot theory. Of course, she'd have to be referring to one of Jasnah's earliest works, since she's about 4 or 5 years older than Jasnah.
  5. I actually do think that he's hatred because that's the only thing that really fits, given the quotes you brought in and the logic and theology aspects. It was the assertion in OB that he was "Passion" or "emotion incarnate" that didn't make sense, and I was trying to figure out why Brandon would make Odium's "debut" so much about passion. Once I started thinking about the idea of Odium/Rayse as a shard of hatred who sees itself/himself as a hero in his own story (and as more than hatred), this narrative choice made more sense. But yes, I agree.
  6. Honestly, I was pretty bummed out by Odium in this book, even after 2 reads. (Stick with me here--this doesn't stay negative!) He seems illogical within the larger workings of the Cosmere. "Passion," which is what he identifies with, is not really an aspect of god(s). It's more a failing humans have that needs godly guidance to control. Why would Adonalsium shatter into a non-godly shard? It seemed like it had to either be a huge misstep in the series that could throw off the larger logic of the Cosmere or it was misdirection that resulted in a shard who claimed a name that sounds kinda silly. Then I started thinking about one of Brandon's writing-related quotes/rules that I've seen pop up repeatedly: "Everyone is the hero in their own story." In OB, he had to start showing us a lot more of Rayse/Odium as the hero in his own story. (This must be a difficult thing to do.) Given this quote/rule, I'm trying to understand the "new Odium," starting with: What do we know outside of Odium's personal heroic narrative?: Odium wants to go after the other shards and destroy them. He's trapped in the Roshar system and unable to continue destroying shards (as much). He is called Odium by multiple characters from multiple worlds with multiple affiliations in the Cosmere He is associated with hate and being hated. There are others, but we get the idea. These make sense to us as the actions of a "Big Bad," but how does the "Big Bad" see himself and others' reactions to him? What is Rayse/Odium's personal heroic narrative? It's hard to separate out what's true and what's a lie based on what we learned in OB. He sees himself (or claims to see himself) as much more than hate. And maybe it's hard to see yourself as a hero if you see yourself as hate and hated. He acknowledges that others see him as "Odium." He claims to have a different, more accurate name or intent: "Passion." He--and/or his followers--exploit and possibly require extreme emotion for some reason. He wants to get rid of Honor's remnants and Cultivation, continuing his pattern of destroying shards. He claims to want to remake Roshar, but his conversation with Dalinar (and his history) suggests he wants to leave. I speculate that Odium sees himself on some sort of mission that (in his mind) makes him the hero of his own story. It likely involves destroying shards (and those who get in his way) for reasons that seem worthy to him but not to most of the characters in the Cosmere. The exploitation or need for extreme emotion may be somehow related to the godly aspect of controlling or punishing humans for the acting on extreme emotion. Other thoughts on how we can look at OB from a different perspective if we think of it as our first real taste of Odium's heroic self-narrative?
  7. Apologies for the vague title. I hope it's obvious enough for people who've read the book! I wanted to start a thread to specifically talk about whether or not Odium is actually “Passion.” I think it deserves its own topic, but if it’s better folded into an existing topic, that’s fine, too. I know there’s been some discussion about whether the emotions that Odium claimed qualify as negative or positive emotions, and I think there’s more to be said there. I also think that we need to consider whether “emotion incarnate” or “passion” even qualifies as a potential shard of Adonalsium. The reason I don’t buy Odium as a “Passion” shard is because passion is not really a godly characteristic in theology—and I don’t just mean Judeo-Christian religions. Why would there be a shard of Adonalsium dedicated to globally representing strong feelings such as lust, joy, hatred, anger, exultation, glory, hunger, longing, loss, etc.? As best we know, the shards represent godlike actions or characteristics (Ruin and Cultivation or Autonomy and Devotion, for example). Passion, extreme or unrestrained emotion, is something of humans. Something like Odium, whether we want to think of it as hatred, wrath, fury, etc., might better be thought of as a godly response to badly behaving humans. The idea that there’s a single shard of Adonalsium that represents human emotion just doesn’t make sense. It seems like Vessels become less emotional (or passionate) as intent takes over. Stormfather even describes this as happening to Honor: I could see if Odium needs to exploit or harvest extreme human emotion for some other purpose. I wouldn’t be surprised if a combination of the Unmade (the Thrill etc.) and cultural elements, such as the Thaylen Passions, have been encouraging heightened human emotion for Odium’s benefit. Do we have any other evidence that Odium is more accurately described as the shard of Passion? Something other than Odium’s word or Dalinar’s interpretation of an Odium-provided vision? Otherwise, it just seems like a con.
  8. When Kaladin says: I remember thinking that it wouldn't hurt Kaladin to listen to his own advice. "I will accept that I cannot protect all who need protecting."? This is similar to many of the above, but the fact that he said it to Elhokar and it made me want to shake some sense into him, suggests that there's something there.
  9. Considering how mega-CR and cognitive related the Back 5 are looking to be, having Eshonai's flashback book and (possibly the Willshaper order) act as a transition makes sense. ETA: Assuming this stuff comes toward the end of Book 4 or if Book 5 is "her" book...
  10. I just noticed this in the "No Mating Scene" when Adolin says that Shallan's ego doesn't count as a "separate individual" in the room. Shallan says: This is about her insecurity at first glance, but it could also be foreshadowing/trolling about her lack of a core persona from a psychoanalytical standpoint... (Funny how I've started thinking of foreshadowing and trolling as the same things so often.)
  11. As much fun as it was sticking Lopen and other sundry objects to the wall, I agree that Adhesion needs some more power. Maybe Brandon was holding off on it until we got to the Bondsmith book so he wouldn't give too much away about the surge. We also haven't seen much of an order using both surges much. Although we've seen a lot of Shallan's Illumination, she can barely Transform. We've really only seen surface level explorations for most of the other surgebinding characters. Can't wait to see someone with two full surges!
  12. I'm still thinking it's Evi, maybe even more now. The passage about Experience suggests the One in Iriali/Riran religion and hints at possible heretical views if taken too far. The lack of confidence in her intellectual abilities reminds me of Navani and Ialai dismissing her and Adolin recalling that she admired Ialai's wit. And she and her brother appeared practically out of nowhere, shardplate thieves on the run. Did they kill people, possibly for some greater good? Did Evi kill Toh? And who knows, it's even possible that she was a tidereader (and that they are legit), have access to visions, and can see beyond...
  13. I was curious to see if the term "race" shows up in SA, and after appearing a few times in WoK, it very abruptly disappears. One incident in WoK, the Recreance vision, uses the word: The only post-WoK use of the word is in Arcanum, to describe Rhyshadium. My guess is that with the greater exploration of slavery and discrimination coming up, Brandon decided to stop using the word altogether. Certain groups or nationalities are still associated with phenotypical characteristics, but it's likely he saw the word "race" as having too much baggage to be useful. All this aside, "monochrome" skin shades (as Eshonai put it) don't really provide a classification scheme for discrimination at all. Hair and eye color are important as physical characteristics used for creating cultural hierarchies. (Of course, being Aimian, Listener, or of Listener descent, like the Horneaters, is another story.) I am interested to see the terminology he decides is most useful going forward. As of WoR, it doesn't look like it will be species, either.
  14. Agreed and chiming in with the OED: "make to" is an even more obscure form of "make for." Essentially, it should correspond to: "proceed or direct one's course towards; go in the direction of." So in an attempt to double-translate a choppy, compact passage from a section of Floorboard 17 that hilariously uses the word, "apricity," I would keep that four-sentence complex in mind. (They are with the Shin. We must find one. Can we make to use a Truthless? Can we craft a weapon?) "The Honorblades are with the Shin! We have to get ahold of an Honorblade. What about directing our efforts toward acquiring the services of an Honorblade-wielding Truthless? Can we mold the Truthless into a weapon (that will presumably cause worldwide political instability)?" Yeah, English is weird, but it can be really fun in its weirdness...
  15. This quote about Zuln leads me to believe that generally, dullform can hear the rhythms: The passage makes a special distinction between Zuln's representation of dullform Parshendi and parshemen, "those without songs," indicating that dullform do have songs. From my reading of the scene with the malen dullform Parshendi that Eshonai encounters, I got the sense that his lack of rhythm was related to the despair that drove him to seek dullform. Shen/Rlain is only described as using rhythms when he's changed out of dullform, but this seems to be because the humans would have noticed a parshman who spoke too much like a Parshendi. In fact, when he's introduced as Rlain, he's specifically described as speaking like a Parshendi. That said, you may be onto something interesting. I don't think that non-dullform Listeners are able to shut off the rhythms. This could suggest that the reason they chose dullform was because it's "rhythm-optional," and that it was the only way to cut off contact with their gods. More evidence that the rhythms are connected to forms of power and that this will be an issue, both for the Listeners and for the parshpeople Kaladin is traveling with. ETA: Ninja'd!
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