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A clash of worlds
The parallel worlds between the Aerial corps and society, although only briefly touched upon in the book, was what I found to be the most interesting theme in His Majesty's Dragon. Besides Laurence's early sense of alienation stemming from the quick change in professions, there are only three main settings in which we get a glimpse into the subject: Captain Laurence's encounter with his parents, Edith and other acquaintances in Nottinghamshire, the contrast between Rankin and the other aviators, and the brief stay on the Hibernia.

Aviators are valuable to England and its' safety. However, they are met with nothing but pity and even contempt for their lifestyle by outsiders to the Aerial corps; likewise, the aviators have their own prejudices. Living outside of society they generally didn't need to bother themselves with etiquette or any sort of formality beyond the very basics. Those sporting these traits were generally shunned for their perceived snobbery, as was Laurence, early into his training. This oil and water dynamic presents an interesting idea to think about.

At Wollaton Hall in Nottinghamshire is where we get the most insight into the subject; also Laurence as a character, but I digress. As his uniform catches people's eyes, he can tell he doesn't belong anymore and they all know it. He's met with either pity or general disregard of his being there, his father displaying the latter around his guests but not being as restrained in his private meeting with Laurence. Lord Allendale feels like his authority was breached when Laurence joined the Navy and even more so now that he joined the Aerial corps and it's not hard to see where he's coming from. Being a man of wealth and power, he must maintain a certain image and letting one of his children act this way wouldn't cut it. Although he appeared cold and distant asking Laurence to stay away from their residences in Nottinghamshire and London he was still only doing what he deemed necessary. Telling him he deserves to be disowned, even though he doesn't act upon it is, I think, his way of letting his son know he still cares for him even though he still has to wrap it in a hard shell of personal image and authority.

Edith, the woman Laurence was to marry, is also at Wallaton Hall and her short emotional outburst tells us all we need to know about the feelings of the lover who isn't in harness; taking second place in a relationship to a dragon is something no one wants. Because of this many choose to frequent brothels and bars to drown their sorrows, marking another point against them in the eyes of others.

Rankin is an interesting character, one shown in a negative light, but for the reasons mentioned above, I see him more as a product of these differing worlds and ideas of how one should be or act. Many, if not all, of the aviators we get to read about are content with their lifestyle in the Aerial corps and their dragons' company, most of them also don't come from a noble family, but Rankin does and it's something he's not willing to give up, whether that means alienating his fellow aviators or mistreating his dragon, Levitas. He doesn't want to be looked down upon like the rest of the aviators and it's not easy to see why.

The visit and dinner on Hibernia only echoes what I've said so far about aviators being pitied on their lack of seclusion from the outside world and the aviators' lack of manners.

This ended up being kind of a ramble but hopefully it's coherent enough. Any input or corrections(if I've misinterpreted something) is appreciated.

Not much else to say, I've only read His Majesty's Dragon but now that the endless training is over I hope this subject will come up more often in the following books.

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A clash of worlds - von croon - 10-21-2014, 10:33 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von klara - 10-21-2014, 10:47 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von Golol - 10-22-2014, 01:46 AM
RE: A clash of worlds - von croon - 10-22-2014, 03:12 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von Terminator - 10-22-2014, 03:28 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von IndigoRyu - 10-22-2014, 04:18 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von Terminator - 10-22-2014, 05:10 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von croon - 10-27-2014, 02:40 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von Lady Kiyomizu - 10-27-2014, 03:38 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von Daenerys - 10-27-2014, 05:07 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von croon - 10-29-2014, 02:58 PM
RE: A clash of worlds - von Lady Kiyomizu - 05-30-2015, 10:38 AM
RE: A clash of worlds - von croon - 06-07-2015, 11:27 AM

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