[quote quote=4024]I just started reading this thread yesterday, and have really enjoyed the thoughtful discussion, and analysis of the book.
I didn’t stumble upon Outlander until last December. I am about to finish my second full reading of the books. At the time I found it, I had no idea it was going to become a TV show. I am 43, married 17 years, with 2 kids. I love them like no books I have ever read. I love Claire for her strength and intelligence and, well, who among us does not love Jamie? While he is certainly not without flaws, I feel a bit sorry for mere mortal men. Jamie sets the bar pretty high.
Am I the only one who thinks that the show will temper Claire’s strapping by Jamie by having Willie strapped as well? He was left behind that day to watch after Claire, and his failure led to her being nabbed by the Redcoats. Of course, in the book she was left alone – that is why I think he was left with her in the show…
The strapping bothered me when I first read it. Given the context of the time and culture, and the fact that it’s mentioned that a man who had done what she did would have suffered worse – well, that makes it easier to take. The scene in DIA where a couple of the men, including Jamie, were strapped for not being vigilant enough in guarding their camp adds context as well.
What bothered me more, especially until I read some of the Lord John books, is the homophobia in the books. I get that it’s a reflection of the thoughts and attitudes generally held by people of that time, but it still bothered me. I’m also not crazy about all the characterization of Native Americans in the books. I love these books so much, and would love to share them with my aunt, but she is a Native American and I just don’t feel right about recommending them to her.
I came away with a very different feeling.
Yes, the 18th century characters reacted to the Native Americans as most real people did back then. But what is great about this series is that the initial fear and prejudices are overcome by Jamie, Ian and others as they learn more about the Native Americans. We (the reading audience) are shown how dangerous preconceived notions are – that rumors, racism, etc are wrong.
Another (!) thing I love about these books is the way they handle issues with Native Americans. DG doesn’t sugar-coat and try to play PC with historical fact. But through her lens we are shown how wrong certain issues were handled.