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From: Michael Straight <straight@email.unc.edu>
Subject: (whorl) Re: (urth) silk/horn narrator
Date: Wed, 8 Aug 2001 09:31:47 

On Tue, 7 Aug 2001 Binah@aol.com wrote:

> Sorry if this is a tired old subject, but I'm new to the list. 

Welcome!  You may not be aware that there is also a list specifically for
Wolfe's Long Sun and Short Sun series.  It was established as the books
were coming out to keep people in the urth list from seeing spoilers.  
Now that the series is complete, I imagine it may get folded into the
"urth" list, but for now most of the discussion about the Short Sun books
has been on this list:


I'm "crossposting" this to that mailing list; if you'd like to continue
the discussion, it might be better to restrict it to the "whorl" list.
> I assumed that the narrator of Return to the world ( aside from the editors) 
> was an amalgam of the minds and souls of Horn and Silk- similar to the 
> combination of Rose and Marble after Rose's physical death. I understand that 
> Marble is a synthetic being, but I feel that Wolfe advances a kind of "Blade 
> Runner/ A.I." type ghost in the machine philosophy with Marble and her 
> daughter.  Couldn't the narrator be a composite like soul with Silk asserting 
> predominance at the close of Return?

This is controversial, of course, but my take is similar to yours.  That
Silk's soul had "died" - i.e. that he was overwhelmed by despair, and that
Horn's spirit joined Silk's in some way long enough for Silk to heal, and
that Horn's spirit possibly finally dies once Silk has healed (i.e. once
he can admit to himself that he is Silk and that Hyacinth is dead).

Note how Horn's lecture on the benefits of hybrid corn at the very
beginning of On Blue's Waters seems to forshadow this.


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