A macro-view of the GP

Image
    Post your own creative writing

Moderators: ᴶᵛᵀᴬ, Omphalos, Freakzilla

User avatar
Apjak
Posts: 518
Joined: 30 Jun 2008 12:06
Location: Kansas City

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Apjak » 16 Nov 2010 11:12

Frank specifically wanted to build a human universe. In the Dune universe there are non-terran species, but not any extra-terran sentience. He did incorporate it into other stories of his, but not with Dune. He did that on purpose. He was exploring humanity's actions and destinies, and their effects on one another. A major theme was how far humanity could push itself and still remain human.
I don't think the author should make the reader do that much work - Kevin J. Anderson
We think we've updated 'Dune' for a modern readership without dumbing it down.- Brian Herbert
There’s an unwritten compact between you and the reader. If someone enters a bookstore and sets down hard earned money(energy) for your book, you owe that person some entertainment and as much more as you can give. - Frank Herbert

User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14490
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: "Whatcha having, shoog? Hurry up and order now, I ain't got all day!"
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby SandChigger » 16 Nov 2010 11:43

Also, it may be an exaggeration to say that there are no other intelligent species in the entire UNIVERSE. It's just the case that none have yet been encountered in this galaxy or any of the other galaxies that humans have reached (and returned from to tell about it?).

That people in the Duniverse at least acknowledged the possibility of other intelligent (and possibly, hostile) life (the "risk factor" you mention) is shown by the excuse they gave for keeping their atomic weapons, even though they were forbidden using them on other humans by the Great Convention.

FH in CoD (19:75) wrote:They were undoubtedly sincere in subscribing to the argument that nuclear weapons were a reserve held for one purpose: defense of humankind should a threatening "other intelligence" ever be encountered.

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18164
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Freakzilla » 16 Nov 2010 11:57

SandChigger wrote:Also, it may be an exaggeration to say that there are no other intelligent species in the entire UNIVERSE. It's just the case that none have yet been encountered in this galaxy or any of the other galaxies that humans have reached (and returned from to tell about it?).

That people in the Duniverse at least acknowledged the possibility of other intelligent (and possibly, hostile) life (the "risk factor" you mention) is shown by the excuse they gave for keeping their atomic weapons, even though they were forbidden using them on other humans by the Great Convention.

FH in CoD (19:75) wrote:They were undoubtedly sincere in subscribing to the argument that nuclear weapons were a reserve held for one purpose: defense of humankind should a threatening "other intelligence" ever be encountered.


He's obvioiusly talking about the Moon Squid there.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 16 Nov 2010 13:57

The idea is this - even if they did encounter another species, the likelihood that that species could ever find and wipe out all of humanity is next to zero. The scattering is so huge that there's simply no hope that an agressor species could ever wipe out humanity. By the time they wiped out all the settlements that existed at the time the war began, humans would have settled quadruple that number of new places.

Also, speed isn't really an issue. FH never says there are any limits to how far a ship can foldspace, so instead of just jumping from system to system, or galaxy to galaxy, humans could very possibly jump back and forth across the sphere of the universe. I imagine that the further the jump the greater the risk of collision, but still, nothing could ever hope to catch up to a species with foldspace technology.
Image

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Hunchback Jack » 16 Nov 2010 16:15

A Thing of Eternity wrote:Also, speed isn't really an issue. FH never says there are any limits to how far a ship can foldspace, so instead of just jumping from system to system, or galaxy to galaxy, humans could very possibly jump back and forth across the sphere of the universe.


Yeah, that. It was dependence on melange (and hence Arrakis, pre-Scattering) for Navigation that bound humanity to the Old Empire. To state the obvious.

HBJ
"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
- Carl Sagan

I'm still very proud of The Quarry but … let's face it; in the end the real best way to sign off would have been with a great big rollicking Culture novel.
- Iain Banks

DragEgusku
Posts: 76
Joined: 09 Oct 2009 09:59
Location: Romania

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby DragEgusku » 17 Nov 2010 07:45

I understand what you say. But I was referring to where humanity would find a non-human species is more advanced in all aspects including technology, travel in space, that might have something superior space folding technology.
In addition individuals of the species could have far greater powers than those of Leto (for example, a prescience that would see all people, including those genes of Siona)
It's only one possible example. How would the GP in this case?

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18164
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Freakzilla » 17 Nov 2010 10:45

There's no single set of limits for all men. Universal prescience is an empty myth. Only the most powerful local currents of Time may be foretold. But in an infinite universe, local can be so gigantic that your mind shrinks from it.
~Leto II

As long as there are still people somewhere the GP endures.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 17 Nov 2010 14:16

DragEgusku wrote:I understand what you say. But I was referring to where humanity would find a non-human species is more advanced in all aspects including technology, travel in space, that might have something superior space folding technology.
In addition individuals of the species could have far greater powers than those of Leto (for example, a prescience that would see all people, including those genes of Siona)
It's only one possible example. How would the GP in this case?


The likelihood of finding another species with that kind of tech (which according to how prescience works in the Dune universe is possibly impossible) is probably just so low as to be negligable. Nothing is ever truely 100%, we just say things are when the odds get up into insane numbers.

Obviously, there is going to be life elsewhere in our universe, even our own galaxy. Some of that life will evolve to sentience, some won't, some that does will become space-faring, and some of those will survive long enough to become good at it. But the one major variable is time - the likelihood of a super-advanced species existing at the same time as the Human one in the Dune universe is much lower - they could have died out long before, or not yet risen to that level. When you add in these kinds of overlaps the odds become much much lower. Still possible, but considering we're talking about near-godly levels of tech I think it's fair to say that it's simply unlikely that humanity would run into something capable of taking them all out.
Image

User avatar
Shaitan
Posts: 292
Joined: 27 Aug 2010 22:52
Location: Freeport, Maine USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Shaitan » 18 Nov 2010 19:06

I always found it interesting and frustrating that the Duniverse contains no nonhuman sentience (ignoring how intelligent the worms may be).

Though, I was always a bit unclear whether the Muadru were human or alien. I'm sure you guys know the answer to that....hell, I'm not sure if I remember the Muadru being mentioned in Canon at all.
"When the going gets weird, the Weird turn Pro." -Hunter S. Thompson
"Man, a guy gets drunk *once* and it's all anyone remembers..." -HBJ

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18164
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Freakzilla » 18 Nov 2010 19:28

Shaitan wrote:...I'm not sure if I remember the Muadru being mentioned in Canon at all.


That's because they weren't.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 18 Nov 2010 19:47

Personally I loved Dune being human-only. First off, outside interferance would have ruined the whole point of the first 4 books (the stagnation of humanity). Second off, aliens are almost ALWAYS cheesy. Dune is so ridiculously serious that sentient aliens, especially humaniods (which were popular at that time) would have taken away from the un-ending seriousness that was part of what made Dune unique.

Also, I have a soft spot for human only SF. It forces the author to write more about the "enemy within ourselves" rather than us vs them and so forth. Whatever problems we have, we created, whatever the solutions are, they're up to us to find and impliment. Just like reality.

Not that SF with aliens is automatically less serious/deep literature, far from it, lots of great stuff out there - but I think there is more likelihood of crapolo in a non-human only universe.
Image

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18164
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Freakzilla » 18 Nov 2010 20:40

The point of the GP was, no matter what the threat, humanity would keep expanding faster than the threat. Mankind was already multi-galactic before The Scattering and had yet to encounter aliens and even if they did they could never even destroy all of humanity because of No-tech and the INM.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
merkin muffley
Posts: 1584
Joined: 23 Apr 2010 15:18
Location: War Room

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby merkin muffley » 19 Nov 2010 03:51

A Thing of Eternity wrote:Personally I loved Dune being human-only. First off, outside interferance would have ruined the whole point of the first 4 books (the stagnation of humanity). Second off, aliens are almost ALWAYS cheesy. Dune is so ridiculously serious that sentient aliens, especially humaniods (which were popular at that time) would have taken away from the un-ending seriousness that was part of what made Dune unique.


I agree, I think it was an unusual and extremely intelligent choice to leave out aliens. One of those great Frank Herbert decisions.
"I must admit, you have an astonishingly good idea there, Doctor...."

User avatar
Shaitan
Posts: 292
Joined: 27 Aug 2010 22:52
Location: Freeport, Maine USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Shaitan » 19 Nov 2010 04:13

Freakzilla wrote:
Shaitan wrote:...I'm not sure if I remember the Muadru being mentioned in Canon at all.


That's because they weren't.


Figures. I had a sneaking suspicion they were a McDune creation.
"When the going gets weird, the Weird turn Pro." -Hunter S. Thompson
"Man, a guy gets drunk *once* and it's all anyone remembers..." -HBJ

User avatar
Serkanner
Posts: 2831
Joined: 17 Feb 2008 18:44
Location: Den Haag - The Netherlands

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Serkanner » 19 Nov 2010 04:17

merkin muffley wrote:
A Thing of Eternity wrote:Personally I loved Dune being human-only. First off, outside interferance would have ruined the whole point of the first 4 books (the stagnation of humanity). Second off, aliens are almost ALWAYS cheesy. Dune is so ridiculously serious that sentient aliens, especially humaniods (which were popular at that time) would have taken away from the un-ending seriousness that was part of what made Dune unique.


I agree, I think it was an unusual and extremely intelligent choice to leave out aliens. One of those great Frank Herbert decisions.


Combined with the idea to keep the Familiy Atomics "just in case" ... brilliant!
"... the mystery of life isn't a problem to solve but a reality to experience."

“There is no escape—we pay for the violence of our ancestors.”

Sandrider: "Keith went to Bobo's for a weekend of drinking, watched some DVDs,
and wrote a Dune Novel."

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18164
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Freakzilla » 19 Nov 2010 08:11

Serkanner wrote:
merkin muffley wrote:
A Thing of Eternity wrote:Personally I loved Dune being human-only. First off, outside interferance would have ruined the whole point of the first 4 books (the stagnation of humanity). Second off, aliens are almost ALWAYS cheesy. Dune is so ridiculously serious that sentient aliens, especially humaniods (which were popular at that time) would have taken away from the un-ending seriousness that was part of what made Dune unique.


I agree, I think it was an unusual and extremely intelligent choice to leave out aliens. One of those great Frank Herbert decisions.


Combined with the idea to keep the Familiy Atomics "just in case" ... brilliant!



No aliens, no robots, no tech... what kind of science fiction book is this? :P
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

DragEgusku
Posts: 76
Joined: 09 Oct 2009 09:59
Location: Romania

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby DragEgusku » 19 Nov 2010 08:48

I do not know whether the introduction of non-humans would have altered the essence of Dune.
Perhaps the problem is that not able to achieve in-depth experience of contact with other beings, perhaps because we can not really imagine a completely different psychology to our (and any interaction with something completely foreign).
Maybe that has exceeded even the power of imagination of Frank Herbert and therefore focused exclusively on men.
There are only possibilities.
Speaking of possibilities, it is possible that Honored Matres to flee from an enemy non-human? I am not talking robots of the novels of Brian Herbert, but to a non-human biological species.
In volume HoD (Heretics of Dune), is a sentence that mentions the possible existence of beings in the Cosmos that life brings them enormous power. Perhaps the phrase refers to people from spilling, but I thought I may refer to other beings (non-human).

User avatar
SandChigger
KJASF Ground Zero
Posts: 14490
Joined: 08 Feb 2008 22:29
Location: "Whatcha having, shoog? Hurry up and order now, I ain't got all day!"
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby SandChigger » 19 Nov 2010 08:58

(People from The Scattering. ;) )

The Enemy were most likely super-advanced Face Dancers.

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18164
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Freakzilla » 19 Nov 2010 09:12

DragEgusku wrote:Maybe that has exceeded even the power of imagination of Frank Herbert and therefore focused exclusively on men.



Have you read any of FH's "other" books? He explored alien possibilities in some of his non-Dune books. From this we might conclude that FH left non-humans out of Dune because he wanted to focus on the human condition.
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

DragEgusku
Posts: 76
Joined: 09 Oct 2009 09:59
Location: Romania

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby DragEgusku » 19 Nov 2010 09:47

SandChigger wrote:(People from The Scattering. ;) )

The Enemy were most likely super-advanced Face Dancers.


Sorry, the mistake is human. :oops:

Yes, it can be very advanced Face-Dancers. But I had the impression that it referred to other beings, that's all.

Freakzilla wrote:
DragEgusku wrote:Maybe that has exceeded even the power of imagination of Frank Herbert and therefore focused exclusively on men.



Have you read any of FH's "other" books? He explored alien possibilities in some of his non-Dune books. From this we might conclude that FH left non-humans out of Dune because he wanted to focus on the human condition.


Yes, I read one of those books (Dosadi experiment), but as I say, do not approach the level of the Dune books.

From this I conclude that Frank Herbert was unable to imagine non-humans and contact with them as he did with people.

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 19 Nov 2010 14:03

DragEgusku wrote:I do not know whether the introduction of non-humans would have altered the essence of Dune.


It would have been distracting from the main issues is all. Why add aliens when they aren't necessary to the story? The humans being all alone by themselves added a sense of seriousness to any threat of extinction I feel.

DragEgusku wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:
DragEgusku wrote:Maybe that has exceeded even the power of imagination of Frank Herbert and therefore focused exclusively on men.



Have you read any of FH's "other" books? He explored alien possibilities in some of his non-Dune books. From this we might conclude that FH left non-humans out of Dune because he wanted to focus on the human condition.


Yes, I read one of those books (Dosadi experiment), but as I say, do not approach the level of the Dune books.

From this I conclude that Frank Herbert was unable to imagine non-humans and contact with them as he did with people.


That's a hell of a conclusion to reach based on ONE non-Dune FH book! Seriously, he wrote the ConSentiency series (Dosadi being the second book), which was populated by many many alien races (tens and tens of them at least) and had humans living in a complex inter-species society. Not sure how that means he couldn't imagine it. Especially the first book in that universe (Whipping Star) focussed almost entirely on first-contact with a difficult to understand (to say the least...) alien race.

Also, the Pandora series deals in extreme and near-perfect detail a very moving encounter between humans and alien sentience. The Pandora series is pretty close to on-par with the Dune series in my opinion.


FH was perfectly capable of writing fantastic alien and human stories, but that doesn't mean every single story has to have aliens. What would aliens have added to the themes/philosophy of Dune? As Freak said, Dune is about humans, all about humans, adding aliens would just dilute the purpose of those books (the first 4 anyways).
Image

User avatar
Shaitan
Posts: 292
Joined: 27 Aug 2010 22:52
Location: Freeport, Maine USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Shaitan » 19 Nov 2010 20:40

I think that Marty and Daniel weren't human....even in the distant manner of Face Dancers. A human-like species from Earth in another Universe maybe? I always thought that the fundamental tension of humanity being "alone" in the Duniverse needed some kind of resolution in the 7th book but that might just be me.
"When the going gets weird, the Weird turn Pro." -Hunter S. Thompson
"Man, a guy gets drunk *once* and it's all anyone remembers..." -HBJ

User avatar
Hunchback Jack
Posts: 1982
Joined: 30 May 2008 15:02
Location: California, USA

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Hunchback Jack » 19 Nov 2010 20:50

DragEgusku wrote:Yes, I read one of those books (Dosadi experiment), but as I say, do not approach the level of the Dune books.

From this I conclude that Frank Herbert was unable to imagine non-humans and contact with them as he did with people.


Read Whipping Star. It deals with this topic extensively. It will also blow your mind.


Edited to add: Ah, AToE, you beat me to it. Should have read your post first.

HBJ
"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
- Carl Sagan

I'm still very proud of The Quarry but … let's face it; in the end the real best way to sign off would have been with a great big rollicking Culture novel.
- Iain Banks

User avatar
Freakzilla
Lead Singer and Driver of the Winnebego
Posts: 18164
Joined: 05 Feb 2008 01:27
Location: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Contact:

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby Freakzilla » 19 Nov 2010 20:56

Shaitan wrote:I think that Marty and Daniel weren't human....even in the distant manner of Face Dancers. A human-like species from Earth in another Universe maybe? I always thought that the fundamental tension of humanity being "alone" in the Duniverse needed some kind of resolution in the 7th book but that might just be me.


I've read the series over a dozen times and the thought never crossed my mind. What made you think that?
Image
Paul of Dune was so bad it gave me a seizure that dislocated both of my shoulders and prolapsed my anus.
~Pink Snowman

User avatar
A Thing of Eternity
Posts: 6090
Joined: 08 Apr 2008 15:35
Location: Calgary Alberta

Re: A macro-view of the GP

Postby A Thing of Eternity » 20 Nov 2010 01:18

Shaitan wrote:I think that Marty and Daniel weren't human....even in the distant manner of Face Dancers. A human-like species from Earth in another Universe maybe? I always thought that the fundamental tension of humanity being "alone" in the Duniverse needed some kind of resolution in the 7th book but that might just be me.


They do almost 100% say that they are face dancers though...
Image


Return to “˲”