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Ned’s Honor: Was Ned Stark the Good Guy?

I’d wager that most people reading this article think of Ned Stark as one of Game of Thrones‘ heroes. Ned has integrity and principles – he won’t stand for a wrongful claimant on the throne, especially not the product of his best friend’s two-timing wife’s incest. Ned has a code. He refuses to be an accessory to  killing Cersei’s children or the innocent Targaryen princess across the sea. This articles argues that the very reason George RR Martin created Ned is to make us…

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The Mystery of Hodor’s Brain

This guest post about Hodor is by the French blogger Didymus. Please give Didymus a warm welcome and check out his blog at Les Histoires de Didymus.   Do you know Hodor? Of course, you know him. Everybody knows Hodor. You even know all of his replies: he always repeats the same mysterious word, “Hodor.” Did you know that Hodor is not even his first name? According to Old Nan, his first name is Walder. Where does the word Hodor come…

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Guardians or Guards? Theon Greyjoy and the House of Stark

A Polite Fiction We’ve spent the last few weeks discussing the story of one of George R.R. Martin’s more divisive characters, Theon Greyjoy. We have looked at his relationship with Robb Stark, we’ve examined the effects that being held hostage for a decade have had on Theon, we’ve discussed choices he was forced to make between his two families and the crimes he committed in the pursuit of ambition. If we take a closer look at Theon’s relationship with his…

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Florence and Braavos: An Introduction

The article takes a first look at Game of  Thrones‘ Free City of Braavos and Florence. Given Braavos is a lagoon city that is famed for its banking and skilled assassins, it seems possible Venice and Florence inspired it. This article takes a first look at some of the similarities between Florence and Braavos – and in particular, the Braavosi assassins. While the Wars of the Roses raged on in England and English nobles tried to increase their power while aligning…

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Game of Thrones Reaches Academia

Is academia embracing Game of Thrones? And, if so, what does this mean? Does it mean the world is changing or simply that Game of Thrones is worthy of analysis? Recently, I learned from David Levesley’s great Mic.com article that the University of Virginia is offering an English summer class on Game of Thrones. The course aims to use literary techniques to teach students how to analyze television. Instructor Lisa Woolfork describes Martin’s work as follows: “Literarily speaking, it’s very diverse and rich text….

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George RR Martin’s French Interview Translated, His Use of Burgundian History

Recently, George RR Martin did a book signing in <gasp> Burgundy. Why is this a reason to get excited? Because he also gave an interview with the French alternative rock station Le Mouv from the burial site of Philip the Bold and John the Fearless, who were key players in the French civil war that inspired so many events A Song of Ice and Fire. Saying I was excited about Martin’s interview when I found it on Nerdalicious is the…

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