why is a sex driving? where is it going? does it have its license this cannot possibly be legal
So I get really narky when people pull the whole ‘oh Eowyn’s
storyline came to such a sucky ending; she was really cool going around killing
orcs and Witch-Kings and then she got shoved into a traditional girly role by marrying
Faramir and becoming a healer’ thing, because no. No-no-no-no-no. Not only does that
stray dangerously into the territory of ‘women only have worth if they’re doing
traditionally blokey things’, but that misses almost the entire point of Lord of the Rings.
Tolkien was in the trenches in the first world war, right?
He got all that ‘for death and glory’ shit shoved down his throat, that was the
whole point about the war, it was when so many people came to see how awful and
misleading all the propaganda about winning glory through violence and death was. And Tolkien’s work completely shows
that: it’s why the hobbits, who’ve never craved power or battle the way men do,
are the heroes of the book; it’s
why strong men like Aragorn and Faramir are shown to be lovers of peace rather
than war. It’s why the quote – but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for
its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory; I love only that which they
defend – is so poignant and beautiful, when
seen in the context of all Tolkien had gone through. He’d seen all but one of
his closest friends die in an utterly pointless war; the prevalent message in
his books is ‘if you’re going to have that many people die, let it be for
something worth dying for.’ (Like
defending your home from the lord of all darkness, for example.)
might be a fantastic female character, but she’s also got so much development
to go through, and she’s by no means perfect. I find it really interesting that when Eowyn talks to Aragorn
about wanting to go off and fight she never really actually mentions protecting
her people, but speaks about wanting to ‘face peril and battle’, and to
do ‘great deeds’. And it’s not that Eowyn doesn’t want to protect her people, because of course she does, but she’s also got such a
driving motivation within her to do glorious and fell deeds simply for the sake
of valour and renown. It’s one of her defining features, having an attitude
that got so many young men killed in the war and which, obviously, Tolkien
would have been very wary of.
(Also, I think, there’s so much in Eowyn that wants to prove
herself to be more than ‘a mere woman’; because twice in that conversation she
asserts that she’s no mere ‘dry-nurse’ or ‘serving-woman’, but a member of the
house of Eorl and therefore capable of greater things. There’s almost this
slight sense of Eowyn considering herself more than ‘just’ a domesticated woman that I
sometimes get from her in the books? Which is very sad – the idea of Eowyn having less regard for others of her sex who do mind the house or raise the children – and why I so love that ‘I am no man’ moment in RotK. Eowyn’s no longer hiding herself, or dismissing fellow women as the weaker sex,
but acknowledging and embracing the fact that women in all their forms can fuck you up.)
And then we reach
the Houses of Healing, and Eowyn yearning for death in battle just like her
Uncle Theoden, and basically buying into that whole world war one ethos that
Tolkien would have considered so poisonous. Which is why her friendship and
courtship with Faramir is so fricking beautiful.
Remember that quote I wrote earlier? That’s from Faramir. He’s not backing down
from conflict, he’s in no way less of a ‘real man’ than anyone else; he’s just
saying there needs to be more to the fight than simply having a fight. There needs to be a reason; something worth
fighting for. Eowyn recognises that Faramir is a good man in every sense of the
word: he’s strong and valiant, but he doesn’t fight simply to prove himself or
for the sake of winning glory, he fights for other people. And Faramir gently challenges Eowyn on her
idolisation of battle-glory and encourages her not to scorn gentleness or
peace, and he’s so freaking good for her.
(Seriously. Can we just stop for a moment and think about how
wonderful Eowyn and Faramir are for each other: Faramir encouraging Eowyn to
turn towards life and healing and openness while never denying her strength or courage, and Eowyn giving Faramir the
validation and security he never got after so many years of an awful
relationship with his father? I honestly don’t know why I don’t get all giddy
about these two more often, because they make the very best otp.)
And the result of the departure of the Shadow and her
friendship with Faramir is Eowyn’s decision that ‘I will be a shieldmaiden no longer, nor vie with the great Riders, nor take joy only in the songs of slaying. I
will be a healer, and love all things that grow and are not barren.’
I think that last bit is so important because I’m certain
that Tolkien doesn’t mean for Eowyn to immediately pack up her sword and shield
and become a good girl sitting at home with her knitting and waiting for the
men to return home after the fight – after all, she’s going to be the wife of
the Steward of Gondor and there’s a lot of mess to clean up after the War of
the Ring. Eowyn’s probably still going to find herself defending hearth and
home from time to time. But the important thing is that she’s no longer
defining herself simply by the doing of valiant deeds; she’ll no longer compare
herself to the great warriors of her house and feel lacking simply because she
hasn’t killed as many men. Most importantly, she’s not going to take joy only in the songs of the slaying, in
destruction and death. Tolkien was all about healers symbolising life and
rebirth, and Eowyn’s decision to become one – to aid in the preservation of
life rather than the taking of it – is so beautiful. I don’t think Tolkien ever
wrote Eowyn’s ending to make her reclaim her ‘lost femininity’; I think it’s a
lovely way of adding to the ever-present theme in Lord of the Rings of hope and
frailty and healing and friendship over glory and battle and strife.
Also, the other really fucking significant healer in the text is Aragorn. He acknowledges his claim to kingship of Gondor not through the sword but by healing the wounds that the Enemy has inflicted – “The hands of the king are the hands of a healer, and so shall the rightful king be known.”
So much of what Eowyn does is motivated by her heatwrenchingly awful and unhealthy love for Aragorn. She puts all of her hope in him – and he can’t reciprocate. So she follows him out of a black despair at her perceived loss and a desire to make something of herself through the only avenue she thinks that she has open to her. She’s fighting for Middle Earth because she loves Theoden, because she loves her brother and because she loves Aragorn, but not because she loves herself. She is valiant and brave and she fucking kills a goddamn Nazgul. It’s amazing, but it breaks her because she doesn’t even get the death she was chasing.
Aragorn heals her from her wounds, but it is Faramir who heals her despair. This healing doesn’t just give her a second prize husband; Faramir is better for her, understands her and welcomes her. And with a healthy love in her life, she understands the core of the King. She is able to love Aragorn in a way that Aragorn can return. At the end of Return of the King, Eowyn takes up Aragorn’s standard again, and follows him into battle against death and decay. She does for Ithilien what Sam did for the Shire. That is motherfucking triumphant.
I love Eowyn so much. She got a happy ending, and she had to fight tooth and goddamn claw for it and I will fight you if you want to take it away from her.
What if aliens visited Earth during the Jurassic Period, found it to be occupied with a bunch of mean, giant lizards and thought “Well, fuck this planet” and never came back?
what if when humans went out into the galaxy all the aliens panicked because if the dinosaurs’ tiny fur snacks now had spaceships and laser blasters and interstellar colonies then what the fuck were the dinosaurs up to???
jurassic park movies as extremely important interstellar propaganda
This is probably the best post on Tumblr tbh it combines aliens, dinosaurs, space travel, evolution, and borderline absurd humor in one thing
idk if any of u guys are in ap us history but its one of the hardest classes in high school to take and a few years ago 1 of the students at my school found this online resource with answers to all the tests and she shared the link with the rest of the students in her class and years later we’re all still using this website to pass the class without our teacher knowing its great that student saved my life i think