(urth) The Politics Of Gene Wolfe

Chris P rasputin_ at hotmail.com
Thu Mar 19 11:18:14 PDT 2009

> There's another aspect of Gene Wolfe's politics which is mentioned
> prominently in many of his stories, and that is his intense distrust of
> government. I assume that this is less controversial than his support of
> an armed citizenry. I am still a bit nonplussed that anyone would question
> that still, but no matter. I am well known to be an extremely ignorant
> person, knowing almost nothing (and trying hard to un-learn that little
> bit).
> I'd like to solicit a discussion of this particular aspect of his work.
> The last one was quite lively, and some people did get their feelings
> hurt. Well, literary discussion is a tough business, and not meant for the
> faint of heart. I hope that this discussion can be equally lively, but
> perhaps less fraught with emotional trauma for some of the participants.

Relax. I attributed an emotional reaction to you not as a form of projection but because you seem unable to discuss some topics in a cooperative, rational way. If I think you're resorting to counter-productive rhetorical shenanigans in an attempt to "win" a discussion that can have no winner, then I will poke fun at you. What I don't do turn it into an ongoing war after it's over.

Wolfe's distrust of government I also take to be a given, as much as his position on guns. My main interest in this particular line, though, is the way it seems to change a bit (as it did with guns) when you look at BotNS. In BotNS it seems like the reader is asked to just take some things as necessary. This could either be an indication that the Autarchy as a state is a special case in this story, or it could simply be Severian's point of view that in this case overshadows Wolfe's.

Windows Live™: Life without walls.
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