(urth) Father Inire

David Stockhoff dstockhoff at verizon.net
Tue Jan 3 14:15:49 PST 2012

On 1/3/2012 1:59 PM, Jeff Wilson wrote:
> On Tue, January 3, 2012 10:46, David Stockhoff wrote:
>> On 12/27/2011 1:23 AM, Jeff Wilson wrote:
>>> But he does mention Rudesind's oversized parts (hands as long as feet,
>>> disporportionate limbs and neck) but does not mention any parts that
>>> would make him any smaller overall.
>>> So yes, he's similar to Inire in his simian physique, but he's easily
>>> 2-3 times his size.
>> I think this analysis is correct.
> Thank you!
> Just now it has occurred to me that perhaps the shared simian qualities
> are meant not to link Rudesind to Inire so much as to link them and the
> various other characters with primate appearances, and indirectly but no
> less strongly with the other persons characterized with animal features to
> animals in general.
> That is, I think it's part of the intended subtext that all these created
> beings are still humble beasts to some extent, but for the grace of the
> Increate who gives them a soul and the capacity for good and evil. Inire's
> more pronounced animal features despite his lofty origins may symbolize
> his squandering or misuse of that gift, in particular his hand in the
> creation of the mastiff men and the other underpeople. His undertaking to
> lift them up closer to man has left him below man in the Increate's
> esteem.

Maybe. The theme of raising up and lowering down Man---or at very least 
the stretching of the definition of Man---is strong in BNS. Wolfe does 
seem to want us to be always conscious of a great scale or Chain and 
think about our development and our future: the stars above, the abyss 

However, I can't say I've noticed a motif of describing characters in 
terms of animals. Dr Talos is certainly one such. For all we know Inire 
is an australopithecine. Perhaps the intent is merely to emphasize our 
animal nature as well as our distance from the Increate?

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