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[Column] General: When Evil = DNA

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  • TorrmwyreTorrmwyre Wilmington, DEPosts: 66Member

    I don't think you used the best examples. A lot of 'evil' creatures are actually just savage. Tusken Raiders, for example, are raiders. They survive and advance in society by raiding/fighting. If you read up on them, or play the first KotoR, you'll see that they have families, culture, and valuables; all things that they want to protect. They aren't so much evil, as they are just an opposing society.

    Tolkien orcs on the other hand, are born into a kind of aggressive society. You don't see orcs farming, or talking even. They mine, smelt, chop, blacksmith, and do all sorts of tasks that help them achieve their aggressive goals. Does that necessarily make them evil? No, but it makes them very easy to be controlled by an evil character ie Sauron or Saruman. (The exception might be Uruks, which appear all too glad to be killers and sadists)

    In short, I wouldn't say some races are predisposed to evil, but rather they are more easily manipulated by truly evil or power-mongering antagonists.

  • CazNeergCazNeerg Puyallup, WAPosts: 2,198Member

    It's fine to have evil the way D&D stories have evil, where the alignment system essentially redefines evil to just mean willing to hurt others to advance your own interests.  It is entirely conceivable to have a society that thinks that way.  But using the "classic" understanding of evil, it is always bad to include in any non-supernatural character in a story, because it simply isn't believable.   Classic evil consists of people doing things they believe are wrong, simply because they are wrong, and the character exists to do wrong.  Like the original presentation of most Marvel Comics villains back in the 60s.  That is bad writing.  Every well written (mortal) character, at his core, thinks his beliefs are the right beliefs, and that following those beliefs is "good," or at least not evil.  In either the real world, or well written fiction, evil is simply a label we attach to people whose concept of good we violently disagree with.

    Peace is a lie, there is only passion.
    Through passion, I gain strength.
    Through strength, I gain power.
    Through power, I gain victory.
    Through victory, my chains are broken.
    The Force shall free me.

  • Segun777Segun777 Jade Dynasty Correspondent Lemont, PAPosts: 97Member
    Yet at the same time, Tolkien never wrote that some races were all good, either. Someone referenced the Monghols and I think that this in an apt real world reference to the Orcs. Monghols, as the saying goes, made a desert and called it peace by killing the majority of a population and destroying all signs of civilization. It doesn't matter that a race isn't evil if their actions by-in-large cause widespread destruction. The distinction is little more than academic. The only time it ever has any real bearing is when the inevitable reaction to atrocities begin, when the actions of a group of people or race, allow their victims to justify any and all deeds in retaliation.
  • RazeeksterRazeekster Solon, MEPosts: 2,201Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by barasawa

    I don't think you can fairly complain about many of the races of evil in fantasy about them being evil. After all, they were created by an evil being/wizard/god/whatever to be evil and do evil.

    So yeah, they are going to be evil. Is it possible that there will be born a non-evil member of those races? Probably, but I don't think they'll live long enough to grow up.

    "Kid, grab that knife and cut up that halfling for stew meat. No, the squirming one, I like em fresth."

    "But mommy, I don't wanna. That'll hurt him. I don't like hurting things."

    <slice...thud> "Hey Kurggahz! Little fizzu was getting to friendly with the food so I had to kill him. Send up another one to help me in the kitchen."

     

    Of course, maybe the evil you have to deal with is a cultural thing you can't ever accept. Think cannibal tribes for example. They do something as a regular thing that is absolutely abhorrent to you. You can't abide by it, no sane person could, so therefore they must all be irredeemably evil. Of course, the young children might be saved, but few cultures would take on the orphans of the hated enemy just on the chance they may someday be respectable people. Heck, few people will take on the orphans of those from their own culture.

     

    Is this stuff fair? No.  Is it absolute? No. But stories are written to the viewpoint of the main characters, and games are written for fun. Neither one is going to go into massive detail and moralizing of the cannon fodder.

     

    Your example... I was like *mouth-open wide in horror* lol

    Smile

  • Vermillion_RaventhalVermillion_Raventhal Oxon Hill, MDPosts: 1,147Member Uncommon

    Why can't a race or species be evil by DNA?  

     

    A race of beings that are naturally more aggressive by biology is not impossible.   But humans themselves are quite aggressive on their own without constraints of society.  Even then we're still aggressive.  

     

    I am sure a sentient species from a apex predator such as a lion or Komodo dragon would likely be a harsh or evil race/species.   We could assume that even if we raised a sentient lion related humanoid to be kind that aggressive behavior from their prey drive would still come out when stressed or tempted by typical prey.  

  • krantkrant Wilsonville, ORPosts: 7Member
    Originally posted by Jerek_

    It was hard to make myself read that entire article because I disagreed with all of it and had stop myself from skipping straight to a response.  I actually had to go back and read it again to make sure I was responding to what you wrote and not how much it annoyed me.

    First, Tolkien's evil races- they aren't evil creatures for the sake of evil.  You are treating them like they just evolved into evil things for no reason.  Even the title of the article, Evil = DNA, seems to be trying to put some scientific understanding around a fictional race of beings, while removing them from the context they were written in.  They didn't evolve, and their evil nature has nothing to do with DNA or science.  They were a corruption of other beings, created by a god like power, not just because he's Evil, but because he was angry and most of all jealous of powers beyond his own.

    Secondly, races in science fiction-  The idea that some intelligent species that exists on another planet might have an understanding of morality at odds with our own seems not only possible but probable.  The idea that they might be hostile with no interest in peaceful coexistence is as valid as anything else.

    If other races in fiction must be show with human morals in a politically correct way, why even bother having them at all?  If they aren't something Other, they become pointless and stale- basically the races from swtor.  You say that it makes racism and bad behavior more easily justifiable?  I say people can be stupid and mean and some are going to be bad behaving racists regardless, and I'm not interested in censoring everything in an attempt to idiot proof the world.

    The article doesn't suggest censoring anything, and that you seem to be convinced it does seems to argue against your having read it through twice.

    The article is basically asking game and fiction writers to give us a reason for the race to behave as they do besides being born evil.  For instance Orcs, a classic villain race.  But how much of their inherent evil is actual evil, and how much is people seeing them as evil and forcing them to defend themselves. 

    If adventurers stopped treating orcs communities as interchangeable XP distribution centers would orcs over time learn new interactions?  Do orcs not farm because that's what sissies do, or because whenever they settle an army shows up to wipe them out?

    Part of the laziness with respect to orcs is that they are portrayed as a warrior race.  

    But while historical examples of warrior cultures have them acting in potentially very harsh ways, They also generally have the strongest behavioral codes, and some very strict legal systems.

    Orcs on the other hand are almost never portrayed as a culture, they are instead frequently portrayed as nothing more then a really big group of smelly bandits.

  • Jerek_Jerek_ tulsa, OKPosts: 409Member
    Originally posted by krant
    Originally posted by Jerek_

    It was hard to make myself read that entire article because I disagreed with all of it and had stop myself from skipping straight to a response.  I actually had to go back and read it again to make sure I was responding to what you wrote and not how much it annoyed me.

    First, Tolkien's evil races- they aren't evil creatures for the sake of evil.  You are treating them like they just evolved into evil things for no reason.  Even the title of the article, Evil = DNA, seems to be trying to put some scientific understanding around a fictional race of beings, while removing them from the context they were written in.  They didn't evolve, and their evil nature has nothing to do with DNA or science.  They were a corruption of other beings, created by a god like power, not just because he's Evil, but because he was angry and most of all jealous of powers beyond his own.

    Secondly, races in science fiction-  The idea that some intelligent species that exists on another planet might have an understanding of morality at odds with our own seems not only possible but probable.  The idea that they might be hostile with no interest in peaceful coexistence is as valid as anything else.

    If other races in fiction must be show with human morals in a politically correct way, why even bother having them at all?  If they aren't something Other, they become pointless and stale- basically the races from swtor.  You say that it makes racism and bad behavior more easily justifiable?  I say people can be stupid and mean and some are going to be bad behaving racists regardless, and I'm not interested in censoring everything in an attempt to idiot proof the world.

    The article doesn't suggest censoring anything, and that you seem to be convinced it does seems to argue against your having read it through twice.

    yah, it does- not censorship by law, but self or social censorship.  It is pretty clearly saying that authors shouldn't write a certain way because some racists out there might read it and decide it reinforces their hate.  That's not the author's problem, and the rest of us should not be limited by the small minded among us.

  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,754Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Jerek_
    Originally posted by krant
    Originally posted by Jerek_

    It was hard to make myself read that entire article because I disagreed with all of it and had stop myself from skipping straight to a response.  I actually had to go back and read it again to make sure I was responding to what you wrote and not how much it annoyed me.

    First, Tolkien's evil races- they aren't evil creatures for the sake of evil.  You are treating them like they just evolved into evil things for no reason.  Even the title of the article, Evil = DNA, seems to be trying to put some scientific understanding around a fictional race of beings, while removing them from the context they were written in.  They didn't evolve, and their evil nature has nothing to do with DNA or science.  They were a corruption of other beings, created by a god like power, not just because he's Evil, but because he was angry and most of all jealous of powers beyond his own.

    Secondly, races in science fiction-  The idea that some intelligent species that exists on another planet might have an understanding of morality at odds with our own seems not only possible but probable.  The idea that they might be hostile with no interest in peaceful coexistence is as valid as anything else.

    If other races in fiction must be show with human morals in a politically correct way, why even bother having them at all?  If they aren't something Other, they become pointless and stale- basically the races from swtor.  You say that it makes racism and bad behavior more easily justifiable?  I say people can be stupid and mean and some are going to be bad behaving racists regardless, and I'm not interested in censoring everything in an attempt to idiot proof the world.

    The article doesn't suggest censoring anything, and that you seem to be convinced it does seems to argue against your having read it through twice.

    yah, it does- not censorship by law, but self or social censorship.  It is pretty clearly saying that authors shouldn't write a certain way because some racists out there might read it and decide it reinforces their hate.  That's not the author's problem, and the rest of us should not be limited by the small minded among us.

    Of course it is censorship, Lisa is demanding authors write with her political correct sensitivities in mind. I do not question her motives, they are the best possible, but we need a society where people are discerning, critically aware and intellectually independent. We do not want one where the Ministry of Truth decides how authors should write for the poor masses who know no better.

  • tordurbartordurbar Alexandria, VAPosts: 429Member

    Humans love to see things in black and white. This is especially appealing to children. Nothing to think about. Orcs are evil - kill them. This is why there is pure evil (and pure good). This is why evil to the core is pervasive throughout literature and mmos.

    I doubt if Marvel comics was the first to have villains that were not pure evil but it was a major reason for their success in the 60s. The story of when Galactus came to Earth the first time and the origin of Doctor Doom are two classics that cemented my enthusiasm for all things Marvel.

    My favorite "not pure evil" moment of all time is when Darth Vader gives up his life to save his son. The Dark Lord's ending was perfect.

    Redemption is a common theme in literature. Pure good versus pure evil dominates yet if you look at critic awards who does better? The Hugo Awards are full of such. Enders Game and Lord of Light are just two examples.

    Look around in the fantasy and sci-fi book section of any book site. You will see more and more books coming out with anti-heroes. Compared to the number of pure evil versus pure good the numbers are low but it is nice to know that there are people who realize and appreciate that all in life is not pure - good or evil.

    As the OP alluded - how can you say that you are good when you slaughter hordes of evil? Pure good would never do that.

      

  • tordurbartordurbar Alexandria, VAPosts: 429Member
    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    Why can't a race or species be evil by DNA?  

     

    A race of beings that are naturally more aggressive by biology is not impossible.   But humans themselves are quite aggressive on their own without constraints of society.  Even then we're still aggressive.  

     

    I am sure a sentient species from a apex predator such as a lion or Komodo dragon would likely be a harsh or evil race/species.   We could assume that even if we raised a sentient lion related humanoid to be kind that aggressive behavior from their prey drive would still come out when stressed or tempted by typical prey.  

     

    Let us start with a race that is the perfect predator. The race that has wiped out countless species for purposes or eating or just getting in the way of desired real estate. Let us start with the race that, not content to kill any threatening species, kills portions of itself again and again and again. Of course I am talking about humans. Our DNA is predator based. We are the greatest killing machine on the planet and continue to prove it. If you want a race of pure evil the best place to start is with humans.

  • Four0SixFour0Six Missoula, MTPosts: 1,181Member Uncommon

    Without Evil, there is no Good.

    Without the contrast there is NO media, games, books, movies any of it. I don't engage in media to expand my philosophical perspective. I have other pursuits for that.

     

    I might actually suggest that your efforts as a writer focus on "real" issues that show racism and other horrible issues, and not "hidden" ones in games. There are plenty of examples in todays news that need voices. Issues of real violence and real loss of life.

    While I do see potential problems when "tropes" and "memes" are used in media, I see more potential problems in everyday society. For example the policy of many inner city gangs to shoot rival gang members on sight. I guess we should change the RvR system then?

    Personally I don't think the Crips or Bloods, or Yakuza have been influenced by WoW, Rift, Tolkien, or even the ultra violent Unreal Tournament. No these organizations were hyper violent by design.

    The choice to "blame" serious societal issues on media. Shows a lack of desire to approach the real underlying problems.

     

    My 2 pence.

     

  • sakersaker harrisburg, PAPosts: 993Member Uncommon

    "Evil" is a simplistic idea created, and used to justify actions against "the OTHER". Human beings are limited mortal creatures that by ancient genetics are group (small tribal) based going back to when we were little hairy creatures still in the trees. We see things as US, and THEM. And project the bad things on THEM. Our deep seatted knowledge (fear of) of our own mortality exacerbates this. We seek out things to put absolute belief in as immortal (various politics, governments, religions, "isms"), things that will endure beyond us. We put those things up as absolute "good", and put our energy into serving them praising them as absolute good (and anything that seems to oppose them as absolute EVIL). These things, our immortality projects will endure on beyond us, we in a way through them will endure.

    Time to evolve.

  • sakersaker harrisburg, PAPosts: 993Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by tordurbar
    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    Why can't a race or species be evil by DNA?  

     

    A race of beings that are naturally more aggressive by biology is not impossible.   But humans themselves are quite aggressive on their own without constraints of society.  Even then we're still aggressive.  

     

    I am sure a sentient species from a apex predator such as a lion or Komodo dragon would likely be a harsh or evil race/species.   We could assume that even if we raised a sentient lion related humanoid to be kind that aggressive behavior from their prey drive would still come out when stressed or tempted by typical prey.  

     

    Let us start with a race that is the perfect predator. The race that has wiped out countless species for purposes or eating or just getting in the way of desired real estate. Let us start with the race that, not content to kill any threatening species, kills portions of itself again and again and again. Of course I am talking about humans. Our DNA is predator based. We are the greatest killing machine on the planet and continue to prove it. If you want a race of pure evil the best place to start is with humans.

     

    well and truly said. If I believed in evil as a thing unto itself, as some kiind of force, or essence, as there being some kind of "author of evil" (what a stupid dodge that one is).

  • NixeskaNixeska Menan, NYPosts: 15Member

    You know what else is tired and has had its day in the sun? "Evil" beings that are pitiable. That have very good reasons for what they do, they just don't coincide with your hero so you have to fight them anyways. Sometimes they end up joining you to fight for something you all can accept.

    It's all been done, you're just complaining about something you don't like.

  • krantkrant Wilsonville, ORPosts: 7Member
    Originally posted by Vermillion_Raventhal

    Why can't a race or species be evil by DNA?  

     

    A race of beings that are naturally more aggressive by biology is not impossible.   But humans themselves are quite aggressive on their own without constraints of society.  Even then we're still aggressive.  

     

    I am sure a sentient species from a apex predator such as a lion or Komodo dragon would likely be a harsh or evil race/species.   We could assume that even if we raised a sentient lion related humanoid to be kind that aggressive behavior from their prey drive would still come out when stressed or tempted by typical prey.  

    Two races immediately come to my mind that fit your basic description, the Kzinti from Larry Niven's Known Space series of stories, and the Poosleen from John Ringo's Aldentnata saga.

    Both races evolved from apex predators, both races are extremely violent, both races kill humans in job lots.  And both races are not racially evil, they simply follow the prerogatives of their of their species, and in both cases some members of the species find admirable traits in humanity and eventually find a peaceful solution to their problems.

    And in both cases the author took the time and trouble to flesh out his races culture and background, which is all that this article is asking future game and fiction writers to do.

  • CazNeergCazNeerg Puyallup, WAPosts: 2,198Member
    I'll take Joe Abercrombie, Scott Lynch, or Richard Morgan over Tolkien or Goodkind any day.  Give me "real" believable people who happen to exist in fantasy or science fiction settings, not individuals or races constructed to embody some philosophical principle which requires them to act in a blatantly unbelievable fashion.  Good writing recognizes that morality itself is fiction, and to the extent it includes concepts of good and evil at all, it views them from the perspectives of it's characters, not the perspective of the author.

    Peace is a lie, there is only passion.
    Through passion, I gain strength.
    Through strength, I gain power.
    Through power, I gain victory.
    Through victory, my chains are broken.
    The Force shall free me.

  • kkarrabbasskkarrabbass Palm Springs, CAPosts: 152Member

    I would like to make a short remark here, even though the subject is quite complicated, more than most of the people posting here might suspect.

    The category “Evil” came to existence from children’s fairy tales. It was made as opposite to “Good”, and has a purpose to make a moral statement: “Do not be evil, be good!” This “black and white” paradigm was not intended for more complicated grown-up world. However, not all of us apparently are grown-up enough. Some politicians start to use this word to make enemies look scarier (Empire of Evil – for example). Finally “Evil” formed to characteristic of immoral behavior containing no even little ”Good” in it. So if our enemies are good to each other, they cannot be considered “Evil”. “Evil” creature is evil only, if it is evil to everything and everyone. In opposite case, that creature is just somebodies enemy (ruthless or not). This definition excludes all cultural references. Because no matter how absurd outrages and savage cultural traditions are from our point of view (say cannibalism), those who belong to that culture are good to each-other, and to their children. The fictional figure, who actually can be considered an “Evil” is “Satan”.

  • HardangerHardanger Appleton, WIPosts: 226Member
    Evil isn't a real thing, so this article is kind of baseless.  Certainly an entire species or culture could be innately cruel or immoral from an outsider point of view.

    image

  • TheCrow2kTheCrow2k Adelaide, AKPosts: 953Member
    Interesting column, in many games I always assumed "the bad guys" aren't evil but rather in conflict with "the good guys" for a reason, be it expansionism, fighting over finite resources or to protect what is theirs. Sometimes main protagonists bring conflict to gain tangible power but even that is usually only a precursor to expansionism.

    Even simple zombies usually come into conflict with the player not because they are evil but because they need food to survive.

    I am actually struggling to think of a game I have played where the bad guys are just evil (which is actually just a point of view) without motivation.
  • bbbb42bbbb42 none, FLPosts: 297Member Uncommon
    Originally posted by Lustmord

    Can't things just be evil?

    A fantasy world is typicaly set in a middle age, where people are divided, uneducated, and superstitious. Your enemy is your enemy, and your enemy is evil.

    Orcs kill humans to eat them because they are evil. We don't need to look through a progressive lense of the modern day liberal, and justify their actions. We just need to kill them.

     

    wut? lol

    image
  • ArdnutArdnut LondonPosts: 188Member

    evil is a concept that can change from one moment to the next it seems. take a huge group of people who are more advanced than some smaller nations, get them to think they can do what they want when they want - like invade other countries because of perceived slights, or made up fears that a smaller country would really raise arms and invade a much bigger one. let them kill thousands of people and bully other races into helping them. let them bully other nations by threatening to invade or cut off their ability to trade with others. such a nation might be seen as evil by other people who just want to be left alone to live their lives by their own codes. even though the nation in question might not see themselves as evil,.

    there are nations out there like that at the moment, one in particular springs to mind but i'll let you guess which one that is.

    loads of races have been called evil and still are, either for their current or past actions. but not every one of that race is evil just because of the actions of a few.

    in games though, the devs feel we need an antaganistic foe who is classed as evil, the bad guy, someone we feel justified killing every one of that race. but do we? are we in need of an excuse to kill everything just because it's not of our chosen race? are we not the evil ones when we rush up and slaughter some critter that was just out minding it's own business and then nicking all of it's belongings. stuff we'd be condemned for doing irl as evil.

    tbh, i dont think we care if our foes are evil or not in games, were just evil sods ourselves that get a kind of enjoyment out of trashing the hell out of whatever gets in our way to riches and better gear and abilities in game.

     

    as an aside has anyone read the Orc books by Stan Nicholls? worth a read, and shows another side to orcs

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  • KonfessKonfess Dallas, TXPosts: 949Member Uncommon

    So in your article on the over use of evil, you portray the victim as evil?  "to the many chapters of Star Wars (Tusken Raiders)"  The Sand People are the indigenous people of Tatooine, where they defend themselves from invading hostile settlers.

     

    "If the prevailing culture tells us a thing, and tells us often enough, we internalize that thing, often holding on to it as a given until we are forced to examine it consciously."  I came across a thread on this site dotted with hate speech, and reported it to the moderator.  The mod either couldn't or wouldn't recognize the hate speech, so I was warned.

     

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  • ScotScot UKPosts: 5,754Member Uncommon
    A descendant of the Sand People? Have I got my wires twisted about what you said or have you had too much sun? :)
  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member

    Frankly, I call bunk. It's neither bad writing nor is it particularly unhealthy for the psyche of fans. It's not even particularly inacurate biology.

    When authors write (or GM's run a campaign) they need make a purposefull choice in what style they use to represent thier naratives. One style availble is to use a somewhat "idealized" cosmology and a classical representation of "Evil". There is nothing "wrong" or "lazy" about this any more then choosing a sonnet over a haiku becomes a poor choice. Nor is it particularly wrong or lazy to write in a gritty, "thousand shades of grey" style. It's just different style choices.

    Authors like Tolkien and Milton choose to write in an idealized style with a classical representation of "Evil", to call them either "lazy" or bad authors because of that style choice is laughable on it's face. They are better writers then 99 percent of published fantasy or science fiction authors. What's actualy important is to be relatively consistant in how one uses the chosen style within a work.

    In terms of psychology, writing (or GMing) in this style is a form of escapism for the reader. That's one of the core essences of what fantasy is for many people. In that sense, not only is it not damaging to a normal psyche but it is actualy quite healthy. Escapism provides a healthy release from the complexities and stresses of modern life. It's only when a person has difficulty in distinguising between fantasy and reality that it can become unhealthy.....and that's rather rare.

    In terms of biology, the concept of "Evil = DNA" isn't all that unfounded either. I know it's not in vogue these days to think about....but human beings ARE actualy members of the animal kingdom. We are high order thinking animals to be sure...but like chimps, dolphins, whales and wolves we are still animals and like all other animals we are subject to instincts which have been ingrained in us by millions of years of evolution. Those instincts influence our behavior. To a seal, the Great White Shark might seem the epitomy of "Evil". Science tells they aren't, of course, they are simply driven (by instinct) to do what sharks do. Not very comforting from the seals perspective, but it's how nature works. Likewise all high order animals, including us humans are subject to instincts. We aren't slaves to our instincts, but we certainly aren't completely divorced from them either. In a fantasy universe, where there are multiple sentient species..... it's not actualy unfounded in science to think some of those species might have developed instinctual behaviors that others would define as "Inherently Evil" much like the seal, if he could speak might not have a very compassionate opinion of the shark.

  • GrumpyMel2GrumpyMel2 Catskills, NYPosts: 1,832Member
    Originally posted by CazNeerg

    It's fine to have evil the way D&D stories have evil, where the alignment system essentially redefines evil to just mean willing to hurt others to advance your own interests.  It is entirely conceivable to have a society that thinks that way.  But using the "classic" understanding of evil, it is always bad to include in any non-supernatural character in a story, because it simply isn't believable.   Classic evil consists of people doing things they believe are wrong, simply because they are wrong, and the character exists to do wrong.  Like the original presentation of most Marvel Comics villains back in the 60s.  That is bad writing.  Every well written (mortal) character, at his core, thinks his beliefs are the right beliefs, and that following those beliefs is "good," or at least not evil.  In either the real world, or well written fiction, evil is simply a label we attach to people whose concept of good we violently disagree with.

    I disagree with you emphaticaly that representation of classical "Evil" constitutes "bad" writing, it's simply represents a different style of writing and a different choice of cosmology. The "classical" author doesn't neccesarly represent villians who do wrong simply in order to do wrong. They all have reasons behind them. They often do wrong, knowing it is wrong but still do so because they give in to thier own compulsions or are slaves to them either internaly or through some outside influence.

    This does not make the likes of Milton, Goethe, Stoker, Mallory, Tolkien, etc "bad writers". It's simply a choice of how they present thier cosmology. If we look at Milton for example,  the ultimate classical villian, Satin chooses purposefully and knowingly to reject God not simply because he wan't to "do bad" but because he values his pride and vanity more then he does his love and loyalty to God.

     

     

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