Monday, January 13, 2014

Spousal Rape and Stockholm syndrome in Game of Thrones (Khal Drogo and Khaleesi) short


Spousal rape is a relatively new concept.

In the timeline (despite being of fantastical one) occupied by Game of Thrones it does not exist. Being married equals sex included and arrange marriages are a common practice. There is also the cultural viewpoint we must take to see the issues from all sides. For instance, in our Western culture an arrange is a dystopian nightmare, but for other cultures it is entirely different thing).

This is not in any way to say I condemn spousal rape in any context and I did not like Khal Drogo at first. However, Daenerys takes control of her marriage, life and sexuality and Khal Drogo becomes a lot more gentle with her.

Stockholm syndrome is also not applicable in that context.  Daenerys isn't anyone's slave or prisoner, in fact she becomes quite more authoritative and commanding. Not only with him (as they become equals), but with the entire tribe and even her brother, who she feared. She becomes a queen, or rather - a Khaleesi.

In fact, she was a lot more nervous and submissive at the beginning of a season, whereas by the end she is an entirely different person.

In conclusion: This is not the story of a someone coming down with a battered-wife syndrome, due to abuse and spousal rape. It is a semi-feminist tale (though with murky origins) about a young girl getting a hold of her own body, life and birthright.

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