What is know about “The Watermark”, the 4th title in the Wicked Cycle?
Is there any info on it?
A Lion Among Men is the third novel in Gregory Maguire’s Wicked Years and was released in the UK on October 2, 2008, and on October 14, 2008 in the US.
In an interview with the Akron Beacon Journal in October 2006, Maguire said “this book will be about the differing moralities… Among soldiers, for one, and diplomats, for another… About decisions to wage war” and “One of the main characters is the Cowardly Lion”. In an interview in March 2008, Maguire also said of the novel: “it starts off about eight years after the end of Son of a Witch”.
Previously, it had been known as A Cowardly War, Watermark, and The Depostion of an Oracle.
The summary that has appeared on Gregory Maguire’s web site is as follows: ‘In the much-anticipated third volume of the Wicked Years, we return to Oz, seen now through the eyes of the Cowardly Lion—the once tiny cub defended by Elphaba in Wicked.
While civil war looms in Oz, a tetchy oracle named Yackle prepares for death. Before her final hour, an enigmatic figure known as Brrr—the Cowardly Lion—arrives searching for information about Elphaba Thropp, the Wicked Witch of the West. As payment, Yackle, who hovered on the sidelines of Elphaba’s life, demands some answers of her own.
Brrr surrenders his story to the ailing maunt: Abandoned as a cub, his earliest memories are gluey hazes, and his path from infancy in the Great Gillikin Forest is no Yellow Brick Road. Seeking to redress an early mistake, he trudges through a swamp of ghosts, becomes implicated in a massacre of trolls, and falls in love with a forbidding Cat princess. In the wake of laws that oppress talking Animals, he avoids a jail sentence by agreeing to serve as a lackey to the war-mongering Emperor of Oz.
A Lion Among Men chronicles a battle of wits hastened by the Emerald City’s approaching armies. What does the Lion know of the whereabouts of the Witch’s boy, Liir? What can Yackle reveal about the auguries of the Clock of the Time Dragon? And what of the Grimmerie, the magic book that vanished as quickly as Elphaba? Is destiny ever arbitrary? Can those tarnished by infamy escape their sobriquets—cowardly, wicked, brainless, criminally earnest—to claim their own histories, to live honorably within their own skins before they’re skinned alive?’
Yackle: The mysterious crone who repeatedly appeared throughout Elphaba’s life. Yackle was present when Elphaba arrives at the motherchapel in Emerald City after the death of Fiyero in Wicked. She also has a hand in the conception of Liir’s daugher with Candle in Son of a Witch. She is a resident of the Cloister of Saint Glinda. While to the other maunts she is a senile old hag, she demonstrates an amazing aptitude for propechy and insight. As A Lion Among Men begins, she is nearing death but has one final deposition to give.
Brrr: The lion cub Elphaba rescued in Wicked. He visits the Cloister of Saint Glinda on government assignment wanting to speak to Yackle regarding her involvement with the Thropps. Unexpectedly however, she provokes Brrr to explore his past in order to find the courage to face the future and the people placed in his care.
Sisters Doctor and Apothecaire: Maunts in the Cloister of Saint Glinda.
Sister Hospitality: A maunt in the Cloister of Saint Glinda given the task of meeting and taking care of guests passing through.
Jemmsy: An early figure in Brr’s life and the first person Brr considered a friend although this may not have been reciprocated. He gives Brrr a badge of courage.
Cubbins: A cub Brrr meets in the forest. He belongs to the Northern Bears led by Ursaless. While the Northern Bears are extremely forgetful and uninterested in the world, Cubbins displays qualities his companions lack.
Ursaless: Queen of the Northern Bears.
Caraway Coyle, Bungler MiGrory, and Shaveen Brioyne: Bears in the forest.
Article – Sex Trafficking – What do think the world Governments should do to protect women and children?
Perilous Times and Decaying Morality *
UK Sex trade moves its modern-day slaves into the suburbs*
By David Harrison, Sunday Telegraph
Last Updated: 12:25am GMT 18/02/2007
Criminal gangs are moving sex slaves out of brothels and into private
houses in an attempt to take the trade “underground” and avoid discovery
by the police.
Senior officers are finding an “alarming” number of young women, mostly
east Europeans aged 18 to 25, held captive in privately owned flats and
houses and forced to have sex with up to 30 “clients” a day.
The gangs are moving hundreds of women out of the “overt” sex industry –
massage parlours and other brothels – and into the “covert” industry,
because it is more lucrative, to increase their control over the
victims, and to make it more difficult for police to find them.
Graeme Maxwell, Yorkshire police’s deputy chief constable and programme
director for the UK Human Trafficking Centre, said: “The traffickers and
pimps are taking the girls to rented flats and houses in areas all over
the UK where there is a transient population and neighbours don’t really
notice when people move in and out.”
Mr Maxwell said the gangs were “ruthless criminals determined to protect
their income from exploiting and abusing young women”.
The key to finding the criminals and rescuing the women was “local
intelligence”, he said. Beat officers were working to win the trust of
communities and give people the confidence to inform police if they
suspected girls were being held against their will. The trafficked
women, most of whom are lured to Britain with false promises of jobs as
waitresses or au pairs and are routinely beaten and raped, had been
found in rented homes in city centres, including Birmingham, London and
Sheffield, but also in “leafy suburbs”.
D S Steve Titterton, the trafficking centre’s tactical adviser, said:
“We are finding girls being kept in ‘studentland’ and other ‘bedsit’
areas but also in buy-to-let accommodation in smart residential areas
where the neighbours are used to a high turnover of tenants.”
One Ukrainian woman told The Sunday Telegraph last week that she was
duped into coming to Britain on the promise of a job selling ice cream
in London. Instead Tatanya, 25, was taken to a flat in a north London
suburb where she was forced to work as a prostitute from 10am to 10pm
every day and to hand over all of the money to two Albanians, a man and
a woman, towards the £20,000 “cost” of bringing her to England.
Tatanya escaped by jumping from a second-floor window. She went to the
police and, despite death threats to her family in Ukraine, gave
evidence that helped to convict her captors who were jailed for a total
of 25 years.
Police believe the traffickers are going “underground”, in part as a
response to Operation Pentameter, a three-month police crackdown last
year in which 232 suspected traffickers were arrested and 84 women
rescued in nationwide raids on brothels.
Pentameter II, a joint operation with several other European countries,
is to be launched later this year.
Thousands of young women – mostly from eastern Europe – are trafficked
to Britain every year and forced into prostitution, a phenomenon blamed
on European Union expansion, lax immigration controls and the UK‘s
growing sex industry.
Concern over the traffickers’ changing tactics comes before a
photographic exhibition on human trafficking which opens at St Paul’s
Cathedral in London this week. The exhibition highlights 21st century
slavery to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the abolition of slavery.
Last month the Government pledged to sign the European Convention
against Human Trafficking, which allows victims to stay in the UK for
six months to recover from their ordeal and prepare to testify against
Vernon Coaker, the Home Office minister, said that the Government would
launch an anti-trafficking “action plan” next month.
1 – The Governments of the world must recognize that hundreds of thousands of people worldwide are being forced into the prostitution business. Each year, an estimated 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked across
international borders, and millions more are trafficked internally.
2 – The world Governments and general public must recognize that prostitution is not only the result of poverty.
3 – Everyone must recognize that forced prostitution for any reason is a form of slavery. People should not use the economic disadvantage of women and children against them in order to use them for sexual purposes.
4 – The Governments of the world must recognize that forced prostitution/sex trafficking is a severe violation of human rights. (men’s rights, women’s rights and children’s rights). The Governments must recognize that people are being forced to work against their will under the threat of violence.
5 – The Governments that have legalized prostitution must recognize that their decision to legalize prostitution has facilitated the problems associated with prostitution. More men, women, and children will be treated as commodities and exploited by criminal organizations. The Governments who have legalized prostitution should immediately rescind the legalization of prostitution.
6 – The world Governments and the general public must recognize that pimps are worse for society then murderers, rapists or pedophiles. Appropriate punishment should reflect the crimes committed.
7 – All Governments around the world must work together to eliminate prostitution.
8 – Worldwide strict laws must be created and enforced.
A – According to the Christian Science Monitor, Brunhilde Raiser, director of the National Council of German Womens’ Organizations, said: “Forced prostitution has yet to become a public issue of concern as a severe violation of human and women’s rights.
B – Concern over the traffickers’ changing tactics comes before a photographic exhibition on human trafficking which opens at St Paul’s
Cathedral in London this week. The exhibition highlights 21st century slavery to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the abolition of slavery.
Americans: What do you like about the British? – What do you like about the UK?
Anyone can answer, but this is mainly directed at Americans.
Is it the accent, the music, London, Manchester? etc.
I love everything about the British. I think the UK is f**king awesome and I’m plotting to live there sometime. The history, the culture, the attitudes of the people, the music, it’s just great. Plus where I went to London I couldn’t believe all the different cultures that were mixed there – it was so different from NYC, which I always though was supposed to be the most culturally diverse place in the world.
The only thing that got to me a bit was how cramped everything was, but I think it wasn’t cramped; Europeans just know how to maximize space because there’s less of it. Which is a good thing.
Europeans and people in the UK also seem to be more environmentally conscious, and they also seem to be conscious of things like protecting the aesthetic beauty of a city/town with urban planning laws and the prevention of urban sprawl (which is an ugly problem in north america that nobody seems to care about). I also think Europeans protect unions and labor more than we do here in North America.
Europeans/people from the UK also aren’t so puritanical. Nobody is all hung up on morality or nudity there (which is foolishness anyways) and I find that refreshing. So yah, when can I move in? 🙂
how do you define law, ethics and morality?
also, What is religion? Be very clear and specific.
then, define religion?
Law: is a set of rules which defines ‘acceptable codes’ of conduct, at that particular time, in that particular place. Where breaking of those rules results in punishments ‘enforced by a ruling authority’.
*Acceptable codes* of conduct and *enforced by a ruling authority*
are the key words here they change according to culture, social norm, time and with whom is the ruling authority (Thanks Sweetie). Whilst the principles of equity, truth and justice SHOULD be paramount in any legal decision, it is clearly evident by looking at cases throughout history that often it is not. Laws have many functions such as disincentives, controlling the masses, creating a harmonised ‘civilised’ society, serving the interests of politicians or dictators etc. So don’t look at laws to decide what is ethical.
Ethics is a set of moral rules and analysis of human behaviours. It is a set of rules that attempts to encourage moral behaviour and the analysis and measuring of human ACTS for their rightness or wrongness, but importantly it is about measuring them FOR Truth and Justice. There can be no ethics without justice. Justice is ethics realised.
Morality: is a time specific, location specific judgement made on a particular act or behaviour. This judgement does not just determine rightness or wrongness it also determines what is good or bad, which acts are virtuous and which are not, which acts cause most benefit, which result in most harm, what is accepted at that particular period of time, in that particularly geographical place, and how able the person is to understand the wrongness of the acts (ie people with dementia, very young, those with mental health issues etc)
For example: Under Hitler, Nazi’s torturing Jews could justify that their behaviours were morally good (period of time, location, legislation). UK Governments have passed legislation that prevented black people from being housed in Council accommodation (until the 1973). Unmarried mothers were imprisoned in the Workhouse or mental asylums and long term Gay relationships were not legally recognised.
Religion: A blind faith. A belief in an unheard/invisible/ supernatural power(s) that controls the believer’s entire destiny. Rules, rewards and punishments vary according to period of time, location, religious belief and cultural norms. These rules, rewards and punishments are ‘handed out’ by invisible non humans such as angels and devils or self elected people who decide to spread the supernatural beings word such as popes, vicars, priests, nuns etc.
I assume you are making connections between law, ethics, morality and religion? What are those connections in your view? I believe that historically ‘The Church’ has been THE ruling authority in the UK until recently now it is big business. However it does not mean that the laws, ethics and morals which ‘The Church’ enforced were legally Just, truthful, ethical nor moral, in my view anyway.
Do you think that Gay Marriage should be legalised in the UK?
Title basically explains the question.
Just wondering peoples views on the subject. Do you think it would be a good idea as it would mean equality, and people wouldn’t be calling it “Civil partnership”, they’d just be calling it marriage (well hopefully)
There is a 1:40 video that talks about it in more detail: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSEpi4dRyPI
Anyone who disagrees can you give me reasons why?
No Because it Harms Me, and I will Tell you How, First Understand that Harm is a relative term. What might be considered harmful to one person might not to another. There are different kinds of harm: physical, emotional, spiritual, financial, etc. Therefore, harm is a personal thing that is experienced and is a bit subjective. So, when we ask how gay marriage harms anyone, we have to look at more than just one aspect.
Marriage has been universally acknowledged throughout history as a legal contract between a man and a woman in which there is emotional and sexual fidelity, along with childrearing. But homosexual marriage would change this. Since marriage is also a moral issue, redefining marriage is redefining morals. Furthermore, marriage is an extremely wide-spread practice within any society and has many legal and moral issues attached to it. So, when marriage is redefined, the society is dramatically effected. Legalizing gay marriage means changing the laws of the land. The ramifications are vast and we are seeing the effects of homosexual legal “rights” affecting housing, education, the work place, medicine, the armed forces, adoption, religion, etc. Are all the changes good? That is hotly debated. But we have to ask, is it morally right to force all of society to adopt the morals of a minority?
So, how would gay marriage harm anyone? First, let’s define harm. Harm is damage to a person physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, financially, morally, etc. The definition is obviously broad and subjective, and this is problematic. People experience harm in different ways.
Here is a list of ways in which gay marriage can bring harm.
It can bring huge financial and emotional stress.
Homosexuals can sue people who are exercising their religious beliefs. For example, a heterosexual married couple with children who do not want to rent a room in their their own family household to homosexuals could be sued for discrimination based on “sexual orientation.” This can incur significant financial and emotional stress upon the family, not to mention the “prior restraint” effect of the fear of being sued which results in a family not renting out a room.
The health risks are enormous to themselves and others.
The fact is that homosexuals do not live as long as heterosexuals due to the health risks associated with the lifestyle, and billions of dollars are spent annually in health care for them.
But the HIV/AIDS epidemic is not only in the homosexual community. It has crossed over to the heterosexual community.
Whether or not you want to say that HIV/AIDS is a homosexual disease, the fact is that it is highly prevalent among the gay and lesbian community due to their great number of sex partners. The collateral damage to the rest of society, as far as health risks, cannot be denied.
Gay Marriage means having the morals of the minority forced upon the majority.
This can also be said in the reverse. Either way, there is a problem. Normally, morals should not be forced on anyone, though there are exceptions. We force morals on others by preventing them from stealing, raping, murdering, etc. So, it is not automatically wrong to force morals on someone. But the issue then becomes what is morally right and wrong in the first place, and altering morals in a society definitely causes stress.
The percentage of homosexuals in society is less than 5%, yet it is being forced upon the other 95% of society in movies, TV, literature, and political periods.
Gay Marriage means a redefinition of sexual morality, and with it other sexually related practices will be affected and this can be harmful.
Gay Marriage reduces the number of children born in society and we need a stable population base to operate properly. Therefore, society can be harmed.
Gay Marriage effects people spiritually.
Don’t assume that people’s spiritual beliefs are irrelevant. People consider spiritual issues to be extremely important, and the stress imposed on religious people by forcing them to “accept” and/or support homosexual practice and/or intimidate them into silence harms a person’s spiritual and emotional health.
It forces government to get involved in changing laws which automatically affect everyone in society.
Homosexuality is being force fed to our youth via the education system.
Civil unions are being recognized by employers which effect co-workers, money payouts, work time, etc.
It exposes adopted children within potential homosexual unions to ridicule from others.
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