SMDND-Exploring the Theme of "Choice"

General discussion about the Twilight Series Universe.
Post Reply
Cocoa
Clarifying Base Running for Edward
Posts: 2461
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2006 1:16 pm
Location: Gettin' Lucky in Kentucky!
Contact:

SMDND-Exploring the Theme of "Choice"

Post by Cocoa »

This is a thread to discuss the theme of Choice running through out the books. This is not a debate thread. And I caution you to remember the Manifesto when posting on this thread.

December is to be considered Moderator on this thread.

A message from December:

Anyone who is just joining us...welcome to the Choices thread, also known as Ars Longa Vita Brevis (art is long, life is short). To get us started, we thought we'd post our introductory statement again, newly updated:

The idea for this thread grew out of a series of private messages exchanged between four of us: December, Truelove1, LisaCullenAZ and IloveTwilight. As it went on we began asking ourselves why we were having the conversation in pms rather than out on the existing threads. We realized that we were looking for a space where a particular style of conversation was possible: thoughtful, passionate and above all open-minded. Conversation where we were trying to reach a consensus -- or clarify our differences -- rather than argue our positions. There are lots of debate-oriented threads on the boards -- and they've generated some wonderful discussion and insights. But this thread is for something different. Our ideal here is for everyone to get a clearer sense of why other people have the views they do, not to challenge their views -- or change them.

There aren't that many places on the Lex where it's easy to do this. So please, if you want to contest anything someone says on this thread, ask them to step outside and debate it somewhere else on the Lex. It's easy enough to find a suitable place for it. And remember, this thread should be a place where everyone feels comfortable posting. There is always a way to state your opinion which remains respectful of the existence of other views -- even views that no one is putting forward here at the moment. Be mindful of all the opinions out there on the Lex. Achieving this is partly a matter of tone. Listen to yourself before you post. If someone says something you disagree with, it's more conciliatory to say "that's interesting, because I felt differently for the following reasons...." than to say "how can you say that?" or "I have to totally disagree...."

Full disclosure -- the four of us are all Edward-girls of one sort or another. You're a little bit in Swoony-girl territory, here. But we hope that everyone who is interested in our collaborative style of conversation will come join us, whatever their views.

And a brief word of warning: a lot of us tend to write at length. Long posts don't scare us. That's why it's Ars Longa....

Which brings us to a crucial request: the conversation here can get pretty elaborate, and it's hard enough to keep track of where we are with a single topic under discussion. PLEASE, EVERYONE, IF THERE IS A NEW QUESTION YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE DISCUSSED, DON'T JUST PUT IT OUT FOR DISCUSSION! If you pm one of us, we can return to it when the existing conversation peters out. (And please, if someone who hasn't read this does propose a new topic, try to resist the urge to take the question and run with it!). If we end up with several conversations going at once, everything just gets chaotic. Especially since we want people to feel free to return to any question that we have previously been discussing. Part of the point of Ars Longa is being able to take as long as you need to assemble your thoughts on a subject. It's never too late to add to the conversation here....

As for our topic, we're interested in the theme of choice. The whole Twilight series revolves around choices: Should Bella give in to her her feelings for Edward, knowing that he is not human, and dangerous? Should Edward involve himself with Bella even though he is a danger to her? Should Bella choose Edward, rather than Jake and a normal human future? Should she become a vampire? Should Edward be the one to change her? The list goes on... You might say that everything that happens in Twilight comes back to the one central choice of Bella's: whether to give up her human life for love.

So, as for Vita Brevis... well, will he bite her -- should he bite her -- or not?

-- December, llovetwilight, LisaCullenAZ, Truelove1
Last edited by Cocoa on Mon Feb 25, 2008 1:01 pm, edited 3 times in total.
eyelinerislife
Banging out dents with Tyler
Posts: 319
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 5:28 pm
Location: Reading New Moon for the 50th time

Post by eyelinerislife »

Well, I can say now, one of the reasons I love the Twilight series is because of how much choice is involved within the stories. It seems everyday that Bella is encountered with a choice that has to be made, whether it is to be totally freaked out that Edward is a vampire or to accept it and still love him in Twilight, whether to give what she she has left of her heart to Jacob, just to make him happy in New Moon, or whether to choose to stay with Edward or to be with Jacob and make him happy in Eclipse. All of the 'what ifs..' that can be brought up if you ponder if she made the opposite decision is what makes the books such a wonderful experience to read, and why I continue to read them again and again.
"I felt like-Like I don't know what. Like this wasn't real. Like I was in some Goth version of a bad sitcom. Instead of being the A/V dweeb about to ask the head cheerleader to the prom, I was the finished-second-place werewolf about to ask the vampire's wife to shack up and procreate. Nice."
Jacob, Breaking Dawn, pg. 185
December
Banging out dents with Tyler
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2007 5:16 pm
Location: Ars Longa Vita Brevis

Post by December »

Welcome to Ars Longa Vita Brevis! (Art is Long; Life is Short)

The idea for this thread grew out of a series of private messages exchanged between four of us: December, Truelove1, LisaCullenAZ and IloveTwilight. As it went on we began asking ourselves why we were having the conversation in pms rather than out on the existing threads. We realized that we were looking for a space where a particular style of conversation was possible: thoughtful, passionate and above all open-minded. Conversation where we were trying to reach a consensus -- or clarify our differences -- rather than argue our positions. There are lots of debate-oriented threads on the boards -- and they've generated some wonderful discussion and insights. But this thread is for something different. Our ideal here is for everyone to get a clearer sense of why other people have the views they do, not to challenge them.

There aren't that many places on the Lex where it's easy to do this. So please, if you want to contest anything someone says on this thread, ask them to step outside and debate it somewhere else on the Lex. It's easy enough to find a suitable place for it. And remember, this thread should be a place where everyone feels comfortable posting. There is always a way to state your opinion which remains respectful of the existence of other views -- even views that no one is (yet) putting forward here. Be mindful of all the opinions out there on the Lex.

Full disclosure -- the four of us are all Edward-girls of one sort or another. You're a little bit in Swoony-girl territory, here. But we hope that everyone who is interested in our conciliatory style of conversation will come join us, whatever their views.

And a brief word of warning....a lot of us tend to write at length. Long posts don't scare us. That's why it's Ars Longa....

As for our topic, we're interested in the theme of choice. The whole Twilight series revolves around choices: Should Bella give in to her her feelings for Edward, knowing that he is not human, and dangerous? Should Edward involve himself with Bella even though he is a danger to her? Should Bella choose Edward, rather than Jake and a normal human future? Should she become a vampire? Should Edward be the one to change her? The list goes on... You might say that everything that happens in Twilight comes back to the one central choice of Bella's: whether to give up her human life for love.

So, as for Vita Brevis... well, will he bite her -- should he bite her -- or not? There's the whole story in those two words...


-- The Brainshadows: December, Ilovetwilight, LisaCullenAZ, Truelove1

Image
Penumbrae Dixerunt ~ The Brainshadows Have Spoken...
Last edited by December on Thu Nov 29, 2007 11:11 am, edited 2 times in total.
December
Banging out dents with Tyler
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Sep 10, 2007 5:16 pm
Location: Ars Longa Vita Brevis

Post by December »

Ok here is a question to start us off again. And for a change it's not about Bella's choices but about Edward's.

If Edward were faced now (ie the end of Eclipse) with the decision he had to make in Twilight -- whether to gamble on his self-control and bring Bella to the Meadow -- would he make the same choice? Or at this point would he be completely unable to contemplate taking that kind of risk with her?

It's been pointed out to me that this can be taken two ways:

a) would Edward be able to risk Bella's life again, if he had to do it now?

b) does he regret having made the choice he did and would he do it again if he had the chance to go back and do it all over?

Answer either one that interests you (or both!).
[img]http://i236.photobucket.com/albums/ff118/DecembersPhotos/icefogbranchesphotocropmore.jpg[/img]
adultae lexiconum recipientes nuntiis singulis
Lizzie222
Buying a Better Raincoat
Posts: 50
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2007 2:19 pm

Post by Lizzie222 »

I completely agree with that.
I think most of the three books is based on choice.
Everytime you turn around, there, usually Bella, is, stuck in a dilemma between two decisions.

I think the biggest decision she is faced with is the whole turning into a vampire thing. Even though she seems so sure of it, and who wouldn't want ot be a vampire with Edward for eternity? :P But, she is also leaving every single human aspect of life behind, a big part of this the people she loves, i.e. Charlie and Renee, and dare I say, Jacob (which might not be such a bad thing...)

And the whole Jacob/Edward thing...
I can't help but feel for Bella, because she's just an amazing person who doesn't want to hurt anyone who she loves, even though it's really a lose/lose situation, well, really a lose/reallywinbutsortoflose situation after she picks Edward :p

Poor Bella. I'm glad I don't have to make all of these decisions on a daily basis xD
LindsAy
Banging out dents with Tyler
Posts: 334
Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 12:17 pm
Location: People call it St. Nowhere

Post by LindsAy »

December wrote:Ok here is a question to start us off again. And for a change it's not about Bella's choices but about Edward's.

If Edward were faced now (ie the end of Eclipse) with the decision he had to make in Twilight -- whether to gamble on his self-control and bring Bella to the Meadow -- would he make the same choice? Or at this point would he be completely unable to contemplate taking that kind of risk with her?

It's been pointed out to me that this can be taken two ways:

a) would Edward be able to risk Bella's life again, if he had to do it now?

b) does he regret having made the choice he did and would he do it again if he had the chance to go back and do it all over?

Answer either one that interests you (or both!).
See, I think it's a little of both. Looking back on the meadow scene in Twilight, he probably sees it both ways - he seriously regrets putting the love of his life in danger, and yet it was the best decision he's ever made. And I think he must realize that despite his own personal self hatred, he has given Bella new joy and meaning in her life, too. He just wishes she didn't have to sacrifice so much for him. If Bella changes and everything goes well for a few centuries or so, and he sees she still loves him and doesn't regret her choice, he might stop seeing himself as such a negative force in Bella's life.

Since the end of New Moon, he has slowly started accepting that he is what Bella really wants, and that she will become a vampire in the end. Now I still am undecided if the events in Eclipse will make for a potentially angsty Edward in the beginning of Breaking Dawn. On the one hand, he seemed so calm and didn't seem in any panic over what Bella was feeling for Jacob at all (he handled it a lot better than I did!). On the other hand, I wondered if maybe there was some pain there under the surface that just hasn't been dealt with yet.

I think overall, being with Bella for this amount of time now let him to trust himself. He could have and wanted to kill her so many times, but he didn't. Even when he says he felt like he literally could not stop from drinking her blood, at the end of Twilight, he still does. Despite it is his very nature, he physically cannot cause pain to Bella. I think that's why in Eclipse he was finally willing to agree to try and have sex while Bella's still human, because if he believed he would hurt her he would still have told her no regardless of her pleading. He's going to definitely be taking a risk, but now he realizes the self control he has and how careful he can be.
eyelinerislife
Banging out dents with Tyler
Posts: 319
Joined: Fri Sep 28, 2007 5:28 pm
Location: Reading New Moon for the 50th time

Post by eyelinerislife »

December wrote:Ok here is a question to start us off again. And for a change it's not about Bella's choices but about Edward's.

If Edward were faced now (ie the end of Eclipse) with the decision he had to make in Twilight -- whether to gamble on his self-control and bring Bella to the Meadow -- would he make the same choice? Or at this point would he be completely unable to contemplate taking that kind of risk with her?

It's been pointed out to me that this can be taken two ways:

a) would Edward be able to risk Bella's life again, if he had to do it now?

b) does he regret having made the choice he did and would he do it again if he had the chance to go back and do it all over?

Answer either one that interests you (or both!).
Hmm, very interesting question. Well, we all know that Edward cares about nothing more than Bella's safety, and would do anything to protect her from harms way. If he was faced, maybe at the end of Twilight and at maybe the beginning of New Moon with that choice, we all know that he would go back to change everything, to make sure she had nothing to do with him (since essentially, he tried to do just that in NM). But, like LindsAy said, by the end of NM, you knew Edward could tell how much Bella truly wanted to be part of his family, and by Eclipse, it is apparent that if Edward had the chance to go back, that he wouldn't change anything. Like he said, he would be much to selfish to consider 'leaving her' again.
"I felt like-Like I don't know what. Like this wasn't real. Like I was in some Goth version of a bad sitcom. Instead of being the A/V dweeb about to ask the head cheerleader to the prom, I was the finished-second-place werewolf about to ask the vampire's wife to shack up and procreate. Nice."
Jacob, Breaking Dawn, pg. 185
TrueLove1
Teaching Eric Social Graces
Posts: 270
Joined: Wed Aug 08, 2007 5:08 am

Post by TrueLove1 »

December wrote:Ok here is a question to start us off again. And for a change it's not about Bella's choices but about Edward's.

If Edward were faced now (ie the end of Eclipse) with the decision he had to make in Twilight -- whether to gamble on his self-control and bring Bella to the Meadow -- would he make the same choice? Or at this point would he be completely unable to contemplate taking that kind of risk with her?

It's been pointed out to me that this can be taken two ways:

a) would Edward be able to risk Bella's life again, if he had to do it now?

b) does he regret having made the choice he did and would he do it again if he had the chance to go back and do it all over?

Answer either one that interests you (or both!).
Thank you all for joining us here. We finally have a place to carry on with the conversation we've been having in the back rooms! For any first timers-please read our posting guidelines-and welcome to Ars Longa, Vita Brevis!



Excellent first question December:

I don't think I had a chance to respond anything to this question. This is a really tough one for me to call. I have to imagine, that like everything else, Edward is ambivalent about this. This is the double-edged sword he's been living with ever since meeting Bella. She has "saved" him in a way just as significant as the ways that he has saved her and yet, he will carry with him torturous memories of her crumpled and broken (dying really) on the floor of the dance studio with him through eternity.

In the meadow that day, once he has internalized the fact that he would not, could not harm her, he is giddy with the joy of first love. In his 90 years of living death, his 10 best days have been with her. She is what brings all true happiness to his existence. She is the best thing that's ever happened to him and yet, he battles with himself about the losses her love for him will ultimately bring her.

In NM the scales have been tipped and he can't see past his hatred for himself and his love for her. He can only see the negatives that he brings to her life. He sees himself(family) as a monster again. I think initially Bella made him feel almost normal. He references several times his humanity resurfacing because of her. Once she is harmed, he sinks fast into reality. He is not good for her and he's desperate to set her free from the danger. When he says this in the forest in "The End" it's what he believes. He can say it to her with a straight face, because it's true. When he has to turn the tables on her, and tell her he doesn't love her, and she wouldn't be good for HIM, he flinches a little first and then stone's his gaze and delivers the blow, the lie, expertly.

I think it's at that point that he shudders at the thought of allowing himself the selfish (in his opinion) joys of that first day in the meadow.

When he returns in NM he realizes that now that he has seen her again, there is no way he can be separated from her. He also has to acknowledge that she needs him just as desperately. I think this is the reason for his-over protectiveness at the start of Eclipse. If he is going to stay with her (because in addition to the love he has for her, he can no longer deny that Bella is better off with him, than without him) then he will go to hell and back to make sure no harm comes to her. He can't leave her because of their desperate need for each other, but he is still battling with himself about her desire/need to become a vampire. "Bella, you could do so much better", " I want this more than anything, for me, but for you I want so much more..."

At this point, he seems resigned, but still full of guilt and remorse for her now WANTING this thing that he knows to be horrifying.

He is still not reconciled to it. It seems that in the end, when it is out of his hands completely, and Bella has a good option to consider and refuses it, I think it's only then that he becomes reconciled to it. And when I say reconciled, I mean that he will never be ok with the fact that she was harmed because of who he is, but he is willing to accept that he deserves love too, in the form of Bella and can't regret taking the initial steps to be with her.

So, all of that blabber just to say there will probably always be a part of him that is scarred by what happened to her, but now he has to acknowledge that the love they have far outweighs everything else.

Whew! We do love long posts here, don't we!
echo1
Jump Starting Bella's Truck
Posts: 118
Joined: Thu Sep 20, 2007 5:44 am
Location: Alabama

Post by echo1 »

I will answer b. right now.

On the one hand, I do not think that Edward regrets his decision. I think he loves her too much,and she him, for there to be regret. Her becoming a vampire makes him sad for her but not for himself.
Having said that though, I have very little doubt* that if he were presented the opportunity to literally go back in time and do it all over again? He would make a different choice. He would love her from afar. He has seen the future and (as far as we know at this point) there is no way out of her becoming a vampire. We might see something different once MS comes out but I imagine even with Alice telling him she foresaw it, he was able to delude himself into thinking it wouldn't be so but now, now he KNOWS that is what it will come to and also, he knows that Bella can love Jacob and she can have a life. So yeah, he would go back further, and try to never speak to her again and/or move away. He would hurt himself to keep her human.



* and now that I have made that statement, I am quite sure someone's post is going to totally change my mind. I love it!! :lol:

Wait, I had another thought though, if he goes back in time ....is Bella's number still up? He couldn't change his mind in saving her could he? I don't think so...and even if he did change his mind about going into the meadow their paths would have likely continued to cross for that reason ........and I think this line of thinking is likely moving away from choice and into fate/destiny territory isn't it?
Last edited by echo1 on Sun Nov 25, 2007 6:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Why do you have that tape on your nose?"

"Exactly!"
Lizzie222
Buying a Better Raincoat
Posts: 50
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2007 2:19 pm

Post by Lizzie222 »

December wrote:Ok here is a question to start us off again. And for a change it's not about Bella's choices but about Edward's.

If Edward were faced now (ie the end of Eclipse) with the decision he had to make in Twilight -- whether to gamble on his self-control and bring Bella to the Meadow -- would he make the same choice? Or at this point would he be completely unable to contemplate taking that kind of risk with her?

It's been pointed out to me that this can be taken two ways:

a) would Edward be able to risk Bella's life again, if he had to do it now?

b) does he regret having made the choice he did and would he do it again if he had the chance to go back and do it all over?

Answer either one that interests you (or both!).
I missed this question before I posted =p So anyway...

As for the whole making the same choice thing, I believe that he would have made the same decision. Really, what was there to change his mind?
Maybe the contributing factors of all of the danger Bella has been faced with throughout the books, makes him realize how fragile she really truly is, and maybe will even make him question himself a lot more if faced in the same possition.
Actually now that I think about it, even the things that happened between the two of them could possibly show him that the meadow was a bad idea.

Especially because of the meadow, Bella was nearly killed, had it not been for the werewolves. If Edward hadn't introduced her to it, then she would have never been there with Laurent that night.

So, with the whole putting her in danger, I'd say that he would try everything he could to keep her out of any potential danger, because as I said before, he had no idea how much of a danger magnet Bella would be in the future, and now that he knows, there's no way he'd put her life at stake.

So after all of this:

a) I think maybe he would've done the same thing, bringing her to the meadow, because it was something he really wanted to do, and obviously, nothing life threatening happened. But I don't think that he would do it now...
Gah, I really think I should stop talking. I'm rambling so much and I don't even know what I'm talking about xD

I'm going out on a limb here trying to answer B...

But,
b) I don't think he regrets the choice. It was cool with the whole sparkling thing, and it gave him the chance to kiss her and later get more intimate, and it only led him to become stronger and not as out of control, so I honestly think it was a good decision, and he should live with no regrets =p

Okay I'm done, for a while :D
Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 18 guests