Gor/John Norman Completist

Discussions about John Norman, and his books.

How much of a JN completist are you?

All of Gor
2
8%
Most of Gor
6
23%
Some of Gor
7
27%
None of Gor
0
No votes
All of Telnarian
1
4%
Some of Telnarian
1
4%
None of Telnarian
3
12%
All of other JN
0
No votes
Some of other JN
3
12%
None of other JN
3
12%
 
Total votes: 26
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serene mistwood
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby serene mistwood » Wed Mar 02, 2016 8:53 pm

When I first read Imaginative Sex I certainly assigned the values to it as you've described. However, after re-reading it a few times over the years, and like any form of stimulus from any kind of art (however good, bad or mediocre), the way we respond to it differs over time and so did mine.

There certainly is no Madonna-Whore *complex* here as in his fiction. Unlike the FW and the kajira of Gor, he recognises the two are not mutually exclusive as you stated. In fact there is very little discussed core patterns of emotion and behavior related to either men or women (he clearly recognises indivduality and the immense capacity for variables in both sexes) and consistently uses the word *human being*, not *male* or *female*.

."...in every human being there are certain sadistic elements and certain masochistic elements. They differ in amount and degree among human beings but they exist in all."

Equality.


"These are games in which the woman, all of her, her mind, her imagination, her body, is fully and necessarily the equal of her male partner. If she is passive, if she does not understand, if she is puzzled, if she does not join fully, the games are impossible. Her ideas, her inventions, her imaginations are as needful and as important as those of the man."

(Note - He does differentiate between passive and submissive)


As Norman obviously has a leaning towards male dominance sexually, the 53 scenarios are of course in the main concerned with that - however, this is only described as fantasy, not something that happens outside of the bedroom as in the Gor environment. It is not a Real Life or, if you prefer, an *Earth* mentality. He is quite clear to convey its simply RP and fantasy. There are no whips and chains, it is pure drama, imagination and pretending. An almost cathartic experience to deal with our subconscious desires. Is it supposed to be an introduction to some kind of RL M/s mentality and way of life? I think not.

The molding of reality, I believe, is an increased intimacy not necessarily related to some kind of natural order (which is a whole other topic). Back in 1974 any kind of BDSM was quite a new concept to the masses - the introduction of the VHS made sexual material much more available to everybody. We now have pensioners clamoring for the latest Mr Grey book. It's no longer the kink it once was. It's mainstream. Having M/s pretend fun games in the bedroom (regardless of which sex is M or s) is routine for people that have never heard of Gor or Norman or Natural Order. It always was there of course, but it's no longer in the closet it once was. People ARE having imaginative sex, and that's a good thing - its not gender-centric , and its regardless of who is dominant or submissive.

In summary, this.

“Life is too short and too precious to waste it living out someone else’s values. We must find our own.”
― John Norman, Imaginative Sex

Not your Masters, your husbands, your male partners, your Dom.... your own.


(I'll come back to the Telnarian question.. I'm off to RP)
"She still had all of her marbles, though every one of them was a bit odd and rolled asymmetrically." Firebirds Rising.
Anarch
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby Anarch » Thu Mar 03, 2016 1:39 am

serene mistwood wrote:"These are games in which the woman, all of her, her mind, her imagination, her body, is fully and necessarily the equal of her male partner. If she is passive, if she does not understand, if she is puzzled, if she does not join fully, the games are impossible. Her ideas, her inventions, her imaginations are as needful and as important as those of the man."


Good advice when it comes to enjoying roleplay too, imo. Was talking to someone about this the other day, how often it feels like RP is a one way street of giving, but that it's easy to notice and much more enjoyable when instead the RP partner does effort and tries to give herself and adds her own imagination and creativity to everything in roleplay too.

Some women are much better at making sure the people they RP with stay interested in RPing more and more, compared to others.
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby Garian » Thu Mar 03, 2016 12:17 pm

@Serene

It is best to add context to such thoughts of what Norman expresses, such as equality of the sexes. That reference adds to the fact that both must be engaged equally. This is compatible with Gor, as the Gorean gets the entire female involved in the dynamic, which is what makes it a dynamic at all. The Madonna Whore complex would likely be more of a cultural phenomenon on the course to the love slave, rather than an integral part of the philosophy, just as Imaginative Sex utilizes Earth's cultural phenomenon of relationships without John Norman necessarily having to agree with it in his personal philosophy. He does commend the marital construct, but merely as a means to fulfill rather than it as a way to orchestrate the entirety of psychology and relationship structure. He does say in an essay (http://www.gorchronicles.com/modules/sm ... ?itemid=76 (One you quoted from in a previous thread)) that he feels the Gorean world is truer to biology (read on from that point), while also commenting on Imaginative Sex. It is clear within his commentary and notes on the fantasies (and between the lines within the fantasies themselves) that he thinks there is an "unequal" aspect of relation of the genders, though they are congruent with each other (quotes provided upon request). (See here, question #41 on equality: http://www.gorchronicles.com/modules/sm ... p?itemid=6) The importance, however, is discovering truth through experimentation of what works for each individual, which John Norman expresses. He leaves it open for self determination, because he knows better than to dictate what is true for all, but he does have a position on the matter and one he thinks likely will be the outcome.

What is also clear is that aspects of the fantasies are intended to move beyond that, into reality:
The master/slave fantasy, accordingly, presents the act of sexual congress in its most basic and searing realities. In a sense it is far from being a fantasy; in a sense it is one, perhaps, of the rare moments in which the truth is spoken. Truth need be no stranger to art; where but in art can truth be clearly spoken; in what other context could we face it? In what other context could we dare speak it so openly? In art, truth may be spoken, while we pretend to look elsewhere; it may be spoken, and we may hear it while we pretend not to listen. But too much has been said.
-Imaginative Sex (In a note, not in the context of a fantasy)

See here #55, when JN speaks of sexual existence/life http://www.gorchronicles.com/modules/sm ... p?itemid=6 and then recall that sexuality in the Gor ethos is beyond the bedroom. It is everywhere, in every seemingly mundane act, the master and slave are in a sexual bond. I think that is really what must be kept in mind and is part of the core of the philosophy. Imaginative Sex may seem more explicit on some matters, but it is still just a primer (and one, I think, for the Gorean philosophy).

Imaginative Sex, Hunters Ch 6, and Captive Ch 8 express the idea of a Free Companion and slave being both within women.

Let those who can break their chains, break them. Let those who cannot, keep them.
-Imaginative Sex (Epilogue)
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Sasi
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby Sasi » Fri Mar 04, 2016 6:54 pm

And so, what about the insulting way Norman describes women in the Gor books? Does he really believe and support this crap?

Sometimes, when I read his theories about women who are naturally weak and fragile, always frightened, who can't stand the pain, women who naturally want to destroy and manipulate men when not in collar (especially Earth women), women who prize their frigidity (it seemed to me that in our culture, frigidity in a woman was rather something not to brag about, which was a cause of distress for the women suffering that), women who respect men who beat them, etc etc, his obvious contempt for women in power (his description of Margaret, in Swordsmen, is a pure joke and totally unrealistic) I just wonder if he is really serious, if he can really believes what he wrote, or if he simply hates women as a whole (slave girls are so demeaned and humiliated in the Gor books, that I sometimes tend to think that Norman, through these books, expresses pure hatred and some sort of a fantasized revenge upon women.....)
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serene mistwood
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby serene mistwood » Fri Mar 04, 2016 7:12 pm

Sasi wrote:And so, what about the insulting way Norman describes women in the Gor books? Does he really believe and support this crap?


Personally I think he doesn't. If you look at his three personal major influences (Homer, Freud and Nietzsche) it becomes clear, at least to me and my understanding, that as a Philosopher he is attempting to answer one of his heroes questions

"The great question that has never been answered, and which I have not yet been able to answer, despite my thirty years of research into the feminine soul, is 'What does a woman want?'"
-From Sigmund Freud: Life and Work by Ernest Jones, 1953

And like Freud, he still doesn't know.
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby Vector » Sun Mar 06, 2016 5:53 am

I've read about 22 of them but I am finding them so heavy going and hard to follow that I have all about given up. He goes off on a tangent, reinforcing point after point, going on and on, that I no longer know where the hell I am in the story. It is for that reason that I won't be reading any further Gorean novels.
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Sasi
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby Sasi » Tue Mar 08, 2016 1:12 am

Vector wrote:I've read about 22 of them but I am finding them so heavy going and hard to follow that I have all about given up. He goes off on a tangent, reinforcing point after point, going on and on, that I no longer know where the hell I am in the story. It is for that reason that I won't be reading any further Gorean novels.


So true. It makes me boil every time. The action is pending and suddenly, 3 pages about details like the way to tie a slave, the feelings of a slave girl, the meaning of the collar, etc etc! Things you have already read dozens of times in previous books!


Else, Serene, I have the impression that Norman is rather self confident when he -states- that a woman -wants- a master through the voice of his heroes.... I didn't get the feeling he was unsure of what women really want...
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Re: Gor/John Norman Completist

Postby RexUrsus » Thu Mar 10, 2016 8:06 pm

I have read a few, mostly picked up from second hand charity book shops. I quite liked Hunters but my favourite so far is Kajira of Gor.

For your pleasure here are the two Tatrixes of Corcyrus on the couch of Ligurious...
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