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Lit Amilyn Holdo's speech patterns aka "Holdo speak"

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Gruntz, Feb 11, 2018.

  1. Gruntz

    Gruntz Jedi Youngling

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2018
    Hi everyone, I'm a big fan of Amilyn Holdo from Claudia Gray's book "Leia, Princess of Alderaan", and I've long been wondering about the origins of her peculiar speech patterns aka "Holdo speak", i. e. the way she speaks in cryptic metaphors.

    In particular, I'm curious whether it is just her personal quirk or something relatively common on Gatalenta. Gatalenta's culture seems to be heavily inspired by Eastern religions and philosophy, and in these religions, it is very common to speak in riddles, proverbs, metaphors, and koans. And though Amilyn, on the surface, wants to be "anti-Gatalenta" in everything, deep down she is very much a Gatalentan: she loves astrology and meditation, and her life philosophy, which she explained to Leia, is about happiness, love, etc. I wonder whether her speech pattern was also an imprint of her culture?
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  2. jamminjedi23

    jamminjedi23 Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 19, 2015
    Not sure if it has ever been mentioned rather or not acting like that was common in Gatalenta. However http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Joph_Seastriker was from Gatalenta as well and he was described as being another cool pilot type if I remember correctly.
     
  3. Sarge

    Sarge Chosen One star 6

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    Oct 4, 1998
    Darmok and Jelad at Tenagra.
     
  4. vncredleader

    vncredleader Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 28, 2016
    Darmok and Jelad on the ocean
     
  5. LelalMekha

    LelalMekha Jedi Grand Master star 5

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Kiteo, his eyes closed!

    (Seriously, that episode was nice, but the whole idea of a language consisting entirely of allegories makes no sense whatsoever.)
     
  6. BobaMatt

    BobaMatt TFN EU Staff star 7 VIP

    Registered:
    Aug 19, 2002
    I only remember Holdo doing this once, but she's quoting Leia, and trying to talk around the plan without giving details. It seems situational, to me.
     
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  7. vncredleader

    vncredleader Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 28, 2016
    It is muddy, but i think SF Debris made a good case for how it could work
    http://sfdebris.com/videos/startrek/t202.php
     
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  8. BobaMatt

    BobaMatt TFN EU Staff star 7 VIP

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    Aug 19, 2002
    The problem is there needs to have been an underlying language to begin with.
     
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  9. LelalMekha

    LelalMekha Jedi Grand Master star 5

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    Oct 29, 2012
    Precisely. And if said underlying language exists (and it necessarily does), why would anyone restrict oneself to metaphors ONLY? The concept is cool, but doesn't hold water.
     
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  10. vncredleader

    vncredleader Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 28, 2016
    Well theoretically they communicate with each other differently than they do with outsiders. Either their language is so different that they have to use local history as a basis for metaphor since the alternative would be the Ent speak in LOTR. They CAN speak, but it's to long or complex for translation.

    Or alternatively they have a written language among their people which they can use to convey this history to one another, but again it's easier for some reason to use speak only using metaphor either for speed or cause their written language is complex but their verbal language is somewhat lacking.

    Or possibly they can communicate telepathically, or via smell with one another. The smell idea is one I have always liked in alien races. I just recently learned that the Weequay do that, which makes them more interesting to me than they even where before. So perhaps something like that is easier for them.

    Apparently the Trek eu had an explanation

    "
    The Tamarian language is explored further in the short story "Friends with the Sparrows" from the TNG anthology The Sky's the Limit. In the story, it is explained that Tamarians have a fundamentally different brain structure to most humanoids, and as such experience concepts such as time and self differently.

    The story explains that Tamarian children learn the stories behind the metaphors, and thus their meanings, through enactment and repetition. Variations of meaning in metaphors were conveyed through subtle vocal and gestural cues that the universal translator had previously missed. In fields such as engineering and programming, a musical language was used to convey precise equations, numbers and instructions; thus explaining how Tamarians could effectively operate starships."
    Compliments of memory alpha.

    I will be the first to admit that the idea is far fetched and does break down, but frankly it holds more water than a lot of trek staples and I think people vastly over exaggerate it's flaws. Plus at least it makes some sense, it's not Voyager's deuterium mishap

    ad to the point on why someone would limit themselves to metaphor. SF Debris broke that down pretty well. We can communicate almost entirely in shorthand. And in our world there are written languages in which the simplest change can make a few symbols have an entirely different meaning. One could switch to shorthand if the alternative takes longer or is harder to use vocally
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  11. Gruntz

    Gruntz Jedi Youngling

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    Feb 10, 2018
    DELETE
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  12. Gruntz

    Gruntz Jedi Youngling

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    Feb 10, 2018
    She does this A LOT in Claudia Gray's book "Leia, Princess of Alderaan". Unfortunately many of her interests and quirks didn't make it into the movie.
     
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  13. BobaMatt

    BobaMatt TFN EU Staff star 7 VIP

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    Aug 19, 2002
    More likely the book extrapolated from the script.
     
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  14. vncredleader

    vncredleader Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 28, 2016
    Yeah didn't Dern say that she was not aware of the events of the book until after it had been released?
     
  15. Noash_Retrac

    Noash_Retrac Jedi Master star 4

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    Nov 14, 2006
    The difference between Amilyn Holdo of "Leia: Princess of Alderaan" and Amilyn Holdo of "The Last Jedi" is the thirty years between them. In "Leia", Amilyn was trying to find herself. In "The Last Jedi", she was an adult and had found herself.
     
  16. Shadowrain10

    Shadowrain10 Jedi Padawan star 1

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    Sep 12, 2017
    I really wish that there was more communication between all the sources of canon, I feel like it's kind of being held back at the moment.
     
  17. vncredleader

    vncredleader Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 28, 2016
    I think there's no way to avoid that here though. The book had to wait for the film to happen in order to incorporate Holdo. There was no way the film could work in tandem with Grey
     
  18. Daneira

    Daneira Jedi Master star 4

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    Jun 30, 2016
    It's ridiculous to expect a weird teenager to act the same way 40 years later. She grew up.
     
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  19. vncredleader

    vncredleader Jedi Master star 4

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    Mar 28, 2016
    Yeah especially when said teenager will be involved in a war by the end of the novel. Holdo just a week after the book is likely different
     
  20. Gruntz

    Gruntz Jedi Youngling

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    Feb 10, 2018
    Anyway, my question was about Amilyn from Claudia Gray's book, not about her adult version seen in the Last Jedi.
     
  21. Gruntz

    Gruntz Jedi Youngling

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    Feb 10, 2018
    I feel like we didn't get much of her personality in the movie, we only saw her professional side, as a skilled leader, and people tend to be very different on duty and in personal life. It is as if we only saw Padme as Queen Amidala and weren't shown the Padme/Anakin scenes.

    My own experience tells me that deep down, a person often remains similar to how he/she was in child and teenage years, it is mostly the exterior and behavior (i. e. the social side) that changes: it's unsurprising she's so different from the way she used to be when she serves as Vice Admiral, but IMO, she could be quite close to her book version when she's not on duty and alone with Leia (her still-quirky fashion sense definitely implies this). Besides, hobbies like meditation are frequently lifelong, so it is possible that she still does that even after 30 years ;)
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2018
  22. Gruntz

    Gruntz Jedi Youngling

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    Feb 10, 2018
    One additional interesting detail is that Gatalenta's culture is known for its flowery poetry; perhaps this also has to do with the way she speaks?
     
  23. GrandAdmiralJello

    GrandAdmiralJello Comms Admin ❉ Moderator Communitatis Litterarumque star 10 Staff Member Administrator

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    Nov 28, 2000
    Amilyn Holdo speaks like Amilyn Holdo because she is Amilyn Holdo.
     
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  24. AdmiralNick22

    AdmiralNick22 Fleet Admiral of Literature star 6 Staff Member Manager

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    May 28, 2003
    I still wanna know where Gatalenta is located in the Galaxy... [face_waiting]

    --Adm. Nick
     
  25. Gruntz

    Gruntz Jedi Youngling

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    Feb 10, 2018