Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 11:53 pm
Mostly waiting for clarification also. Are you referring to Bella's gesture with the sharp rock in EC? And what alternative were you suggesting for NM? Even Alice thought it was the only hope.
A Twilight Saga Fansite
1. I kindly beg to differ, in my humble opinion, in a dire life threatening circumstance, having time to think things through and weigh them carefully, before the self-sacrifice is to be acted upon, is a luxury not a requirement for the self-sacrificial act to hold moral weight. Whether the decision is made in a minute or in a day, whether one wears a smile or frown, whether one's socks match or not, if one does anything to risk one's life to save another from death, it is a self-sacrifice (though, it is not the only example of self-sacrifice, one can't help but to put it on top of the list), regardless of the outcome. In a scenario like this, one is a hero whether one wants to be or not, regardless if no one ever knows about it or, if everyone knows about it.Knives wrote:Because this actually dovetails nicely with my point, both present and past, about how self-sacrifice is something that needs to be thought through and weighed carefully to have significant moral weight as opposed to being a thin attempt at suicide. Predicting the future, as it turns out, is not all that hard if you act on a scale proportionate with your information.
4. I don’t think Bella was eager to do the ‘noble’ thing per se, I think she was eager to save her loved ones with everything she had, even her life, if that’s what it took. I don’t get the impression Bella was trying to impress anyone and win a purple heart or something. The safety of her loved ones is worth more than any reward anyone could have ever given her for her self-sacrifice.Knives wrote:Bella, on the other hand, sprints off on the cuff, barely investing enough thought in her action to actually do it, and inevitably ends up horrifically injured (Twilight), nearly dead (New Moon), putting her friends in unnecessary and horrible danger (Eclipse) or mutilated and shattered with mind-blowing pain (Breaking Dawn) because she's so downright eager to do the 'noble' thing instead of the smart one. If she'd stopped to think about almost any of these (Breaking Dawn being the theoretical exception) she would've grokked pretty easily that throwing herself under the bus wasn't a good or even workable solution, but she doesn't. Rushing towards death with your eyes wide shut is called 'suicide', not 'sacrifice'.
One of the defining beliefs of the US military is that the "reward" always outweighs the cost. Every sacrifice is terrible and every sacrifice is necessary. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few...or the one. Each person who volunteers for duty knows that there is a very realistic chance that they could be killed. They join up because of their different beliefs, sense of honor, occasionally not having anywhere else to go, and various other reasons. Now, if you are talking about suicide bombers/terrorists...their deaths have no meaning for most except for the innocents that are harmed by their actions. That is not noble or moral. That is murder! Don't mistake of someone volunteering to be "in harms way" as being the same as someone choosing to die.Knives wrote:Likewise, 'suicide squad' missions in various military forces through history (and sometimes today) follow the same principle; a team of volunteers, in full knowledge of their fairly certain deaths, choose to attempt an objective in the hopes that their deaths will be meaningful. They don't need prescience in order to understand their choice, just a knowledge of how realistic their odds are and a belief in whatever it is they're actually dying for. These men (and women!) act carefully, weighing the reward against the cost, and then choose to die.
Then I think Bella did an excellent job of deciding what her goal was considering the information she had. And since she wasn't killing off an entire town, only trying to stop the threat to her family, I would also say that she kept it very "on scale". Was there another option? James didn't offer not to kill her if she sent Edward to him. Nor did he offer to let her mother go. Do you think Bella believed for a moment that James wouldn't still kill her mother had she actually been there? I mean really, Renee would have witnessed a vampire kill her daughter. That would draw some attention wouldn't you think?Knives wrote: Predicting the future, as it turns out, is not all that hard if you act on a scale proportionate with your information.
Not sure what this statement actually means. He didn't give the wealth back to keep the Church from using it against the poor?Knives wrote:...he chose to sacrifice himself to prevent the enemies of his faith from using its own resources against it.
I'm not certain what you mean by "barely investing enough thought in her action to actually do it," what action does she do without a lot of thought? She didn't have a whole lot of time to decide anything after James calls. Can you clarify that statement?Knives wrote:Bella, on the other hand, sprints off on the cuff, barely investing enough thought in her action to actually do it, and inevitably ends up horrifically injured (Twilight), nearly dead (New Moon), putting her friends in unnecessary and horrible danger (Eclipse) or mutilated and shattered with mind-blowing pain (Breaking Dawn) because she's so downright eager to do the 'noble' thing instead of the smart one. If she'd stopped to think about almost any of these (Breaking Dawn being the theoretical exception) she would've grokked pretty easily that throwing herself under the bus wasn't a good or even workable solution, but she doesn't. Rushing towards death with your eyes wide shut is called 'suicide', not 'sacrifice'.
GrayceM – Thank you for your compliment. I too, enjoy reading your posts and everyone else’s posts as well.GrayceM wrote:Well stated Violet Sunlight!
Hmm. Most of Bella’s actions seem reactive to me, the rational ones (all her self-sacrifices) and the irrational ones (just to mention one of the many, choosing to be the human/”singer” girlfriend/fiancé/wife of a vampire).corona wrote: I would also agree with Knives' point that Bella's actions can seem reactive and not guided by rational thought.
I, for one, am glad SM chose to have Bella express her self-sacrificial acts the way she did. It made them seem more . . . instinctual . . . genuine.corona wrote: Since this was a story about obsession (or romantic possession as phrased by December), I think there were instances where SM decided not to dwell on Bella's inner dialogue regarding those moments where she felt compelled to act to save the ones she loved. There is a distinct emotional tone throughout the series regarding all thoughts of Bella towards Edward (with a dropoff in BD2). I think SM consciously filtered out details in order to sustain that tone.
While I do agree Bella’s tone did change once she became a vampire, IMO, her independence didn’t feel it had changed at all. Even before Edward walked into her life, she was independent enough to be able to give her mother/best-friend the space she needed. Though, it was painful for Bella to do so. Also, she’s been known to be independently savvy and resourceful before she became a vampire, surprisingly towards her beloved vampire family and even more surprisingly, towards her psychic vampire-best friend. Moreover, in BD2 Bella’s preparation methods seemed more orderly, IMO, because finally there was ample notice of the enemy’s arrival, so there was the luxury of having the time to prepare accordingly.corona wrote: I'm not sure if you could have gotten both. I think we get a taste of it in BD2, where Bella is more of an independent player, seeking fight training with others when Edward can't do it, or cutting Edward out of the loop on getting fake ID's for Nessie and Jacob. Edward is certainly there, but he doesn't loom over Bella's thoughts the way he did in the first 3 1/2 books. I would posit that Bella doesn't necessarily change that much, it's that SM decided to finish the book writing Bella in a different style. And, doing so changed the emotional tone of the story.