Shaking hands with Death

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Shaking hands with Death

Postby Siren » Sun May 01, 2011 6:21 pm

I watched thisspeech by the great man himself last night. A very interesting (although not exactly uplifting) talk, but what I was really struck by was the amount of links I was finding between the personal experiences he describes and narrative which takes place in the Tiffany Aching series. (Regarding Granny Aching and Mrs.. Treason in particular) It would seem to me that perhaps the series of books have a pro euthanasia message, at their very core? His way of changing peoples opinions on the subject, without them even realizing it?

Maybe I'm stating obvious.... Just something I found interesting and wondered what others might think?
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Postby Tonyblack » Sun May 01, 2011 6:39 pm

I think there's some truth in what you are saying. :)

Euthanasia has been around for as long as humans have been around and it was often the local wise woman, nurse or witch who would be there for a person in great pain. And it was them who would help that person let go of life as a kindness. There's nothing sinister about this - it's a very human thing to do.

This sort of thing was never talked about, because we've been told that it is wrong. But someone needed to do it and this act of kindness often put them outside of the community and caused them persecution.

I Shall Wear Midnight, in particular deals with this 'unsaid contract' between the public and the witches. No one wants to acknowledge what goes on, but people are often glad that such people exist.

Terry seems to, quite rightly, want to make people talk about this. People wouldn't even mention (for example) the word 'cancer' a few years ago. Now it is talked about, discussed and better understood. Talking is good! :)
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Postby spideyGirl » Sun May 01, 2011 7:37 pm

Tonyblack wrote:...Talking is good! :)


Paraphrasing there Tony? :D

I agree too.
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Postby Who's Wee Dug » Sun May 01, 2011 7:58 pm

The Dimberly lecture, I was lucky enough to get a ticket for that. :D
He willnae tak' a drink! I think he's deid! , on the other hand though A Midgie in yir hand is worth twa up yir kilt.
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Postby rockershovel » Sun May 01, 2011 8:33 pm

I'm afraid ISWM didn't work for me. There aren't many Discworld books I have only looked at once but that's one of them ( the others are Carpe Jugulem and Equal Rites, FWIW )

Granny Weatherwax is referred to at an early stage as performing this role, although I don't believe she ever actually carries it out "on stage" with the arguable exception of her game with Death for the lives of a cow and a baby.

Personally, I found that unconvincing ... because a cow is a valuable asset in a peasant society in a way that one more baby simply isn't. Child mortality would be too high for that.

the Dimbleby Lecture was very good, saw it on TV
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