George R.R. Martin and Homoerotic Inclusion
At the Edinburgh International Book Festival, George R.R. Martin, author of A Song of Ice and Fire, was asked the question: Why doesn’t he include gay male sex scenes? His answer is problematic in several ways.
The third person limited point of view style that Martin favors does limit the available scenes he can write. Especially when all of those main point of view characters are straight. Or largely straight in the cases of Dany and Cersie.
But why are there no male point of view characters that engage in same sex activity?
Martin claims that, “If the plot lends itself to that, if one of my viewpoint characters is in a situation, then I’m not going to shy away from it, but you can’t just insert things because everyone wants to see them.” This is where I have a problem with Martin’s answer. The inclusion of gay and bisexual characters, of characters of color, of women, or of what have you should not be determined by the needs of the plot. So often, this argument is made by readers, intentionally homophobic or not, to prevent gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered characters from appearing.
Is Jon Snow’s heterosexuality intrinsic to his character? To his story? What about Dany? Are her lesbian sex scenes essential to the narrative?
Do I think George R.R. Martin will include a gay male sex scene? Maybe if he creates a gay or bisexual male point of view character. But will he create such a character? I don’t know. He’s got two books left. I seriously doubt it.
Martin is right that, “it isn’t a democracy.” A Song of Ice and Fire is Martin’s baby. He is the absolute dictator. He is the god of that creation. Whether he wants to write a gay or bisexual male character’s point of view is up to him.
Honestly, I find Martin’s answer disingenuous. It gives, I think, false hope that Martin may create a gay or bisexual male character. He hasn’t yet. What makes anyone think that such a character/ scene will become “relevant” to the plot?
Posted on August 13, 2014, in Uncategorized and tagged A Song of Ice and Fire, Edinburgh International Book Festival, George R.R. Martin, Lack of Gay Sex in A Song of Ice and Fire. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.