RFTIT Tumblr Weekly Roundup!

book2

Hey folks, sorry about the two Tumblr Roundups in a row, but I don’t quite have the next chapter ready. Dany V is roughed-out and I’ve got a page written up for Arya X (which I am really looking forward to) – the former should go up on Monday, since I’ll likely be snowed-in this weekend, and the latter will follow.

On the other hand, I’ve got some good Tumblr stuff for you:

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18 thoughts on “RFTIT Tumblr Weekly Roundup!

  1. winnie says:

    Thanks for the insights Steve. ITA about Daemon Targaryen.

    Hope you’re set with supplies for the weekend. I’m in Pittsburgh and its Winter Wonderland out there.

    Something to look forward to on Monday!

  2. Space Oddity says:

    You know–a personal theory on one of Bloodraven’s informers: Otho Bracken, “the Brute of Bracken” (aka, “That guy who’s ranked a mention in every Dunk and Egg story so far”) is mentioned as a possible participant in the tourney at Whitewalls. And yet he never actually shows up…

  3. Steven Xue says:

    As much as I love Dany’s crusade to end slavery, I feel her efforts are all for naught. Slavery seems to be a very important aspect of the Essosi economy. Ever since the slave trade in Meereen has grinded to a halt, the price of gold has increased all over Essos which indicates Dany created quite a bad ripple in the economy.

    I feel that even if Dany somehow manages to succeed in eliminating slavery once and for all in Slaver’s Bay, she still won’t be able to stop the demand for slaves. Slavery is a very lucrative market and even if Slaver’s Bay stops producing these ‘human resources’, other places will open up to fill this niche.

    I doubt shutting down Slaver’s Bay will stop the Dothraki from offloading their human cargo elsewhere. Also Dance we learn that as the price of slaves increases, Lysenni slave traders have been capturing and trafficking Wildlings they caught up North as they have become a viable alternative slave source. And as the Westerosi economy is in the shape it is I wouldn’t be surprised if some minor lords begin selling criminals to passing slave ships the same way Jorah did.

    • thatrabidpotato says:

      That’s correct, until you take into account that Dany likely isn’t done with the worldwide slave trade. I guarantee that she is going to smash Volantis, and Myr and Pentos will likely follow as she marches up the coast. She may take down Lys and Tyrosh as well.

      I see her final chapter in Dance as a hardening of attitudes against slavers everywhere. She will not compromise, and she will not allow any of them anywhere to continue doing what they do.

    • If Dany stops the Dothraki from harvesting slaves and then Volantis is taken out, that’s a big bite taken out of both supply and demand.

    • Keith B says:

      So far she seems to have made things worse. The people of Slaver’s Bay are now free to die of hunger, plague, war, gang violence, and the occasional dragon. Some are trying to sell themselves back into slavery.

      It won’t be possible to end slavery unless you end what makes it profitable, and Daenerys doesn’t have a clue how to do that. To be fair, neither does Braavos. Although they imposed an anti-slavery treaty on Pentos, it stlll exists surreptitiously.

      GRRM doesn’t tell us much about how the slave trade works or what sustains it, but it’s essential to the economy of Essos from Quaithe to Pentos. We’re led to believe that Astapor, Yunkai, and Meereen specialize in Unsullied, bed slaves, and pit fighters, respectively, but the vast majority of people would be agricultural workers, miners, and menial laborers.

      • Some are, but far more are organizing to fight for their freedom in the Mother’s Men, Stalwart Shields, and Free Brothers.

        And I really disagree that you can’t end slavery without ending what makes it profitable. You end slavery by crushing the slave-owners completely.

        • Space Oddity says:

          Hell, everything about the Western Essosi slave society screams “unsustainable” to me–it’s essentially a very bad habit left over from the Valyrian Freehold that’s been kicking the can down the road to keep itself going. (With a bit of help from skilled outsiders like the Dothraki.) Look at its center, Volantis, a city that has been in a state of constant decay since the Century of Blood. That is not a stable society–it’s a collapse waiting to happen.

          • Space Oddity says:

            Right. This whole system may have worked when a bunch of twisted dragon-riding sorcerer kings were running things, and needed a pyramid of victims to ensure that there was always blood for the blood god, but now that they’re gone it’s persisting out of tradition more than efficiency.

            (And let me add a personal conjecture–for all the old Ghiscari were known as the slave empire, I suspect that what we see now in Slaver’s Bay is based more on Valyrian slavery, not Ghiscari practices, which were probably somewhat… saner.)

        • Steven Xue says:

          While I agree there are other sources of income that can be exploited to give Slaver’s Bay and rest of Essos a stable economy. The problem is because slavery is such a big part of the Slaver’s Bay economy, with so many industries centered around the training and selling of slaves, its just not feasible to outright ban the practice without causing an immediate recession which would take a long time for the region to recover from. To me its like if Nevada decided to pass a law illegalizing gambling. That would completely ruin Las Vegas.

        • Keith B says:

          Consider Astapor. Daenerys did crush the slave owners, and left a ruling council that was quickly overthrown and replaced by a new ruler, who immediately started to bring back the Unsullied. Different people, same system. “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.”

          The disruption of the slave trade has led to rising prices for slaves throughout Essos. One symptom of that is that slavers are capturing wildlings in Hardhome. It’s risky business because of the chance that Braavos will seize the slave ships, but they’re still doing it. If slavery were really unsustainable, you shouldn’t see a big increase in prices, because buyers would quickly adjust to the shortage of supply.

          Daenerys might well be able to set some forces in motion that would lead to the decline of slavery. But she hasn’t done it. She doesn’t know how.

      • vandalcabbage says:

        It’s not only seen as an economic necessity by Slaver’s Bay, but it also protects them from predatory Dothraki armies, both by providing the feared Unsullied (whose reputation is even more important than their skill) but also by making it stupid for Khals to attack the Masters because they’d be targeting their own customers.

        If slavery in Slaver’s Bay is suddenly abolished and/or the Unsullied are brought to Westeros to conquer it, suddenly a target is painted on the back of Astapor, Yunkai and Meeren, now more valuable for plunder than to sell slaves to. In addition, the economic chaos in the short – medium term will hinder the alternative of bribing the Khals to stay away.

        Not to mention, without an alternative practical economic system, the Masters plus any ambitious, unscrupulous former slaves have an incentive to go back into slavery.

        • thatrabidpotato says:

          Until you realize that Dany is also going to unite most or all of the Khals under her, and bring them to Westeros with her, where a large proportion of them will likely die in the Long Night.

          • vandalcabbage says:

            That certainly is a possibility, and it is the promise that Dany will eventually return to Westeros that forms the second facet of the Masters trying to hang on to the old order – Dany will leave and they can reassert themselves like they did in Astapor. That’s why her marriage to Hizdhar was so important – since everybody knows Westerosi despise polygamy, Dany is cutting off the possibility of getting a Seven Kingdoms marriage alliance, which is why the Green Grace is so hyped for a marriage.

          • ^ Yep. Dosh Khaleen kneeling to her in the shadow of the Mother of Mountains, etc.

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