Anathema wrote:Or, that the face dancers during Muad'Dibs era were still considered equals to "normal" tleilaxu and that as they were further "developed" they were "devolved" into tools.
That's what I always assumed. The face dancers before Waff's time were mostly servants, but not entirely without personality or will.
Scytale is "a Tleilaxu of the Face Dancers", thinking of himself: "He was the human chameleon, a Face Dancer, and the shape he wore now invited others to judge him too lightly."
First, this means a face dancer can indeed have intelligence and will. And, from Scytale's way of "wording" this, as it were, it does not seem that this use of his chamelon-powers are particularly out of order for a face dancer. He is not thinking about how he, as a master with face dancing abilities, is able to use these abilities in a particularly clever way - it is part of being a face dancer.
I'd say this suggests that the Tleilaxu is a society which breeds specialists who are, unless otherwise stated, more or less equal. Maybe not entirely, but no master/slave relationship (ie. more western society's male/female-divide a couple of hundred years back, then the white/black-divide).
Note also that the whistling language was a control mechanism which was not specific to facedancers - it is used on Hayt! Later on, it becomes specific to the face dancers. It does not seem to be so in GEoD, where Leto hears "Screams and shouts replaced the petitioners' chanting. Leto recognized Tleilaxu battle-commands" - the face dancers are not predisposed to obey any order yet, a special creation not fully human, but they are used as cannon fodder!
The change is begun is GEoD:
"That was Nunepi-a proud, flinty-faced man who had come up through the ranks of Tleilaxu management. Not a Face Dancer himself, he considered the Dancers his personal servants; they were the water through which he moved."
In HoD, Waff is thinking:
"They were constructs, tools, just as the ghola on Gammu was a tool, all designed with the language of God spoken only by Masheikhs."
I don't think this is the same thing at all - "considering them servants" does not even make much sense if they are only tools. And there is a huge difference between rising through the ranks, and being a "Masheik", which is a specific, nearly religious, class of citizen.
Didn't Frank write something about how various forms of government would become aristocracies and/or feudal in nature, over time...?
I short, I think the Tleilaxu changed. After Hayt, some of them began being resurrected and this led to lifetimes of accumulated power within their society - and hence to "the ultimate hereditary system". At some point, those not serially resurrected would become mere slaves, and the masters begin to be a aristocratic/religious ruling class. (Maybe the whole religious language-of-god-thing came before this, but one could easily imagine it would be a consequence of having acheived immortality and ruling as gods).
Face Dancer become a sub-human class, but Scytale was ressurected as a master - presumably because of his memories of Muad'Dib. Maybe this was only after the Tleilaxu started venerating Leto II...? Or, as Redstar suggests, he was part of the change and arranged to be resurrected as non-face dancer early on - maybe as they began to lose status.