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Postby SadisticCynic » 29 Sep 2009 18:32

Often I must speak otherwise than I think. This is called diplomacy

Stilgar says this in Dune Messiah during Council. Then in Children of Dune an anonymous official in Alia's court says it. Jessica immediately finds it repulsive, and contrary to her Duke's morality. Since the Fremen were impressed with Duke Leto, I found it odd that Stilgar would come out with the same things as some court tagalong. Anyone else find this interesting? It's exactly the same phrasing.
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Re: Diplomacy

Postby Ampoliros » 29 Sep 2009 21:21

I think it has to do with sincerity, Stilgar was sincere when he said it, the other man was using it as a joke in front of people he was trying to impress.
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Re: Diplomacy

Postby Schu » 29 Sep 2009 22:03

I thought it might have been them quoting Stilgar, and Jessica found them getting laughs off another man's quote to be repugnant - their unoriginality.

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Re: Diplomacy

Postby SandChigger » 29 Sep 2009 22:59

It might help having the passages in question, no? ;)

FH in Dune Messiah wrote: Immediately, she [=Mohiam] decided to take the offensive, said: "So, the great Paul Atreides deigns to see the one he banished."
Paul smiled wryly, thinking: She knows I want something from her. That knowledge had been inevitable, she being who she was. He recognized her powers. The Bene Gesserit didn't become Reverend Mothers by chance.
"Shall we dispense with fencing?" he asked.
Would it be this easy? she wondered. And she said: "Name the thing you want."
Stilgar stirred, cast a sharp glance at Paul. The Imperial lackey didn't like her tone.
"Stilgar wants me to send you away," Paul said.
"Not kill me?" she asked. "I would've expected something more direct from a Fremen Naib."
Stilgar scowled, said: "Often, I must speak otherwise than I think. That is called diplomacy."
"Then let us dispense with diplomacy as well," she said. "Was it necessary to have me walk all that distance. I am an old woman."
"You had to be shown how callous I can be," Paul said. "That way, you'll appreciate magnanimity."

FH in Children of Dune wrote: Jessica glanced around the room, seeing eyes turn away. They were such seriously futile people that she found herself wanting to cry out against their ready-made justifications for pointless lives. Oh, if only The Preacher could see this room as it looked now!
A fragment of a nearby conversation caught her attention. A tall, slender Priest was addressing his coterie, no doubt supplicants here under his auspices. "Often I must speak otherwise than I think," he said. "This is called diplomacy."
The resultant laughter was too loud, too quickly silenced. People in the group saw that Jessica had overheard.
My Duke would have transported such a one to the farthest available hellhole! Jessica thought. I've returned none too soon.

Jessica was on Caladan and not present when Stilgar spoke; it's possible she could have heard word of it, but how likely? There were attendants, courtiers and guards present at the audience with Mohiam, so anyone at the court on Arrakis could eventually have heard about what Stilgar said, so the Priest could have been consciously quoting him.

I tend to agree with Amp: since Jessica probably didn't(couldn't?) know the Priest was quoting Stilgar, it was no doubt more his flippancy and insincerity that angered her.

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Re: Diplomacy

Postby Schu » 30 Sep 2009 01:11

I'll pay that :)

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Re: Diplomacy

Postby lotek » 30 Sep 2009 02:09

To me it's a very good example of the mastery of language and storytelling from Frank:
"Often, I must speak otherwise than I think. That is called diplomacy."
This same sentence takes on different meanings depending on context, and I feel that meaning is subtly(not sure about the use of that word here btw)impressed on the reader/me.

And also we must remember the fact that Jessica is a fully trained Reverend Mother, and as such she sees much more than most people even in the simplest sentence.
I feel that Frank is showing us that by making us understand the falseness of the Priest and that sentence taking a completely different meaning than when Stilgar says it.

Once again we have an example of how Dune lets you think for yourself while guiding your reasoning with the necessary elements.

Maybe the Priest is quoting Stilgar, probably there were some kind of records of Paul's meeting with Mohiam, but I think here that we/readers are that record, and we are left to make our own assumptions on double entendre and truthfulness.

Now shoot me if I don't make sense :whistle:
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Re: Diplomacy

Postby Lundse » 30 Sep 2009 03:55

My two cents:

I think Stilgars use of the sentence has a certain sadness to it. He is still fremen and wants to be straightforward and direct. But he cannot. He is mourning this loss (just as Dune Messiah is mourning the fremens loss of their identity).

Also, Stilgar is almost threatening Mohiam with that sentence. He is telling her he really feels differently, and exposing the hypocrisy of diplomacy.

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Re: Diplomacy

Postby inhuien » 30 Sep 2009 05:18

Also attention must be paid to the use of the word "that" and the word "this" in the statement of the Stilgar and the Priest. Stilgar is saying I am honestly expressing by disdain for having to use oblique/diplomatic means of communication where as the Priest is enjoying his own cleverness while making a diplomatic statement regarding diplomacy, lying in other words.