SandRider wrote:you know, I'm thinking of taking the position that the DE is now canon ...
treating the entire thing the way we treat the other "in-universe texts" Frank quotes -
unless directly contradicting something in the narrative (for an obvious purpose),
I don't see a problem with using the "facts & history" presented in the DE ....
Well, you have fun with that and let us know how it works out for you.
I think Frank's "reservations" about the DE most likely centered on the material
about the Butlerian Jihad - at the time, he was probably thinking about future
Dune books and "keeping that door open"; I don't think being dead in a few
years ever crossed his mind ...
I think it's a bit more complex than that.
There were 43 contributors to the DE
, including Dr. McNelly. It's unclear how many (if any) of them had any contact with FH other than through McNelly. It would have been stupid for FH to allow himself to be bound by the details dreamed up by that many people with differing interpretations and understandings of the first three (four?) books. (McNelly wrote that they had available an advance copy of GEoD
, but everyone probably didn't have ready access to it.)
I'm willing to accept a few details from the DE
that seem like something FH would have come up with and included himself (the Fremen Reverend Mothers reviving and instructing the tribes in an older form of their language; the "Oxygen Crisis" stuff, etc.) but a lot of it is just nonsense ("clam power"; the worms evolving on Arrakis after an asteroid impact; the ancient history of the BG; all the Holzmann cyborg bullshit, etc etc etc) and just as bad in its way as some of the shit squirted out by The Prodigal & Hack-for-Hire, and I refuse to grant it even quasi-canon status.