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Frank Herbert's Marbles


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Well...  Did he lose them?

I dont know the answer to this really. I have talked to some people though, some serious sci fi junkies who

have told me stories that I cannot verify. Basically I heard that he was going senile from his illnesses. You

can specifically see this in Heretics and Chapterhouse. Have you guys heard about this before? If anybody has

any information I'd be interested in hearing it. From reading both books, and getting bits of information here

and there, the story doesn't sound unlikely.

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It certainly never occurred to me that Frank Herbert was losing his marbles.  However, I was always of the opinion that in his later years (Heretics and Chapterhouse) Frank became inordinately preoccupied with the subject of sex.  I mean, look at the Honored Matres and the weapon that they employed to enslave legions of men.  The Bene Gesserits also perfected the art of seduction and sexual prowess in order to manipulate their prey.  And finally, Frank saw fit to equip Duncan Idaho with the ability to do the same to women.  Poor Murbella never knew what hit her.

Hmm...I suppose that could be the manifestation of some mental or psychological aberration.

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These sci fi junkies, they use sources to refer you to?

I personally thought that it was going more super-power sci fi as it went to the end. It's not only the sex thing, it's also Miles Teg for example. So it's really main aspects of Dune which are turning that way.

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oh no sources whatsoever. This thread was by no means an attack on Frank Herbert. I am so thankful for Dune, as it what opened my eyes to literature. It was a sort of creative leap in my mind. Helped me to perceive monolithic concepts in a new way. Great for reading while in that awkward teenage transition.lol

I just see a lot of truth in what I heard about Frank and his possible mental deterioration. I remember actually mentioning Frank Herbert and his fixation on sexuality in Heretics and Chapterhouse. There was some laughter, then we started talking about the similarities to Heinlein. I was just curious if you guys noticed how bizzare the two last books of the Dune Series really were, and if any of you have heard about any sort of deterioration.

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FH's forays into sexual politics were weird, but not necessarily indicative of insanity.

ON the other hand, I don't think there's any need to be protective and say "no, he was so intelligent, he couldn't have been insane!" - everyone has a state of mental health, and for everyone it varies. Just because someone is a little further down the scale than you might find comfortable accepting, doesn't mean they're idiots or uninteresting or uninspired.

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It is possible that he started by the external and more usual, later permitting himself to go deeper (and less mainstream?). GEOD remains the one seen as intellectually obscure and hard to crunch, but it still seems to get "weirder" as it goes on. And maybe more introspective as well.

Just imagine if Frank had started the series with the last parts :O

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However, I was always of the opinion that in his later years (Heretics and Chapterhouse) Frank became inordinately preoccupied with the subject of sex...

I suppose that could be the manifestation of some mental or psychological aberration.

It's known as DOM syndrome (dirty old man)

Seriously though, a pretty central theme in Dune is what talents humanity might develop in the future (mentats, BG mothers, Guild navigators...) and the whole sex manipulation thing does fit in that catagory.

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Well, exploring the depths of humanity might indeed challenge one's sanity. And Frank looked very deep. Also, creative people, artists, scientinst are all in the "risk group" because their intellect functions at very high levels.

Sanity should not stand in the way when acquiring knowledge is concerned.

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