Sunday, February 18, 2007

Poor Igraine

I've made a good start on the book and also my first project. I was inspired immediately by Igraine, cooped up in her castle while the harsh wind and cold beat against her door and she brooded about her future. I wanted to make a shawl for a woman in such a spot and I also wanted to make it "period," so I asked some SCA people I know what kind of shawl would be correct for fifth century Britain. I was told that for that time and place people would most likely be wearing simple woven cloth squares or rectangles fastened with pins or brooches.

For a long time I've had the pattern for this Sea Breeze shawl in my stash and I thought it would be perfect

Here's what I have so far, in a heathery green perfect for Igraine's golden coloring

I'm leaving a comment to this post with some of my first impressions of the novel; I thought that would be a good way to hide any spoilers from view.


Hope said...

I'm not sure about this book so far. It is not what I expected. I am intrigued by the telling of a familiar story in a different way , but I had always heard this was a feminist interpretation and that it was about strong women. So far, the women seem like victims to me. I thought we were going to see women choosing their own destinies and instead they (so far Igraine and Morgaine) are having their destinies imposed on them. They have no choices about anything -- not even who they sleep with. I know there is still a lot of ground to cover and I am interested to see what develops. As I said, these are my first impressions.

Micah said...

Hi, Hope,
I think you are right - there are a quite a few situations where the characters seem to have little to say about what happens to them. I also am not sure that I always "agree" with the way some of the characters choose to manipulate others - even though it might be for the greater good of Britain.

I think that a lot of strength comes through in how they choose to deal with the particular situations they are dealt - and, as in real life, not everyone deals with what happens in a positive manner. (I don't mean to speak in generalizations, I'm trying so hard not to spoil anything here! It'll be easier when we all have a better feel for where we are in the story.)
I will say that Igraine is often difficult to figure out. She responds in an especially irksome manner when the Lady of the Lake places a demand on her that none of us would ever willingly oblige. I just want to shake her into taking charge - but then there would be no exposition for the story. (Still being vague, I know. Aargh! Maybe we could all tell how far along we are so that we don't have to dance around???) I'm glad to be more specific if we agree that it's ok . . . .

Linda said...

(Spoiler alert - I've just finished "The High Queen" chapter)
I think that every character in this book is constrained by their position in society, and it's not limited to women. For example, Arthur is not free to choose to marry just any woman - he must choose one that will help solidify his support and provide the most appropriate dowry.

Some women in the book are powerful and make decisions for others based on the needs of the country, while others are used as pawns to reach certain goals. You could argue that Uther (and even Arthur somewhat) are also pawns in a larger battle over the soul of Britain.

ambermoggie said...

love this shawl:) just googled for it and pattern only $5 but they want $9.50 to mail to scotland:(

J. Layne said...

I think it's a feminist story in that it's told from the female points of view, rather than the males, which is still pretty scarce in history. I don't think that means the characters themselves have to be big "empowered" females, because certainly that's a modern ideal, and imposing modern constructs onto such a lush history would be sort of cheap. The mere retelling and interpretation from female POVs makes it more feminist than the actions of the female characters ever can.