View Full Version : Recurring Themes: Tool / Weapon

11-19-2010, 04:44 PM
It seems that the weapon/tool theme has been repeated a lot through Towers of Midnight. There is Rand's epiphany that he's NOT forging himself into a weapon to fight the Dark One. There's Perrin's realization that the hammer is OK because it is also used to create. But one I haven't seen talked about is the Aiel. I'm chewing on this idea, and don't have it 100% nailed down, but hope putting it to paper (so to speak) and getting other's thoughts could expand it.

I think it's interesting to be able to look at their future through Avi's eyes, and compare that to their present/past.

Think about the weapons that the Aiel use. They eschew the sword because it can only be used to kill. The spear and the arrow can be used to kill people, but they can also be used as tools and to hunt game. This is a point of pride for the Aiel.

But if you look to their history over the last few (dozen?) generations, the Aiel as a people have been changing themselves from a tool (hammer) into a weapon (axe) so that the only thing they know is war. This is the problem in Avi's vision of the future. The ONLY thing they know is war, they lack any identity other than fighting.

They have become a sword, capable of only killing humans.

I can't seem to wring any epiphanies out of it, RE: The Future of the Aiel, but I thought it was an interesting parallel with Rand and Perrin's journeys.

Bah, it's almost 5. Brain has already shut down for the weekend.
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Basel Gill
11-19-2010, 04:51 PM
Perhaps this is the whole business with revering blacksmiths since they make things?

11-20-2010, 03:14 PM
I think the only way forward for the Aiel is to be the police for the Dragon's Peace.

They can't go back to serving the Aes Sedai as the AS of the Age of Legends are not todays White/Black towers and the tentative understanding Egwene makes with the Windfinders and Wise Ones leads me to believe that we are not going to see a return to the AoL-style organisation any time soon.

The big sticking points of course are the damane. And unfortunatley I can't see anything being resolved about this situation until it becomes common knowledge amongst the Seanchan that sul'dam can also channel once taught.

As an aside - I can't wait to see how Renna and Seta are received as initiates of the Tower.

The only thing I can see working is capturing Tuon, and forcing her to channel with the a'dam. Perhaps once she feels the Power being used through her she will have a realisation.

11-20-2010, 03:27 PM
I think the only way forward for the Aiel is to be the police for the Dragon's Peace.
That is essentially what they were in the future that Aviendha saw. The problem with that is that the Aiel notion of honor revolves around war. That meant that, during the time of Peace, they felt like they lost their honor. Their entire system needs to be rearranged around different ideals or they will inevitably break the Peace (not that they were ever held to it in the future Aviendha saw).

11-20-2010, 04:55 PM
Maybe they attacked the Seanchan because the other societies didn't all want to be Red Shields. :)