[LMB] Single children (Was China), seems OT:

ANDREW BARTON andrew.157barton at btinternet.com
Wed Sep 12 18:23:22 BST 2007

K Kuhn <kknolte at ecity.net>:

> Maybe back obBujold - Ivan.  I've kinda divided the Vorkosigan books in
which he shows up with as the ones where he's Standard Humorous
Sidekick, and the ones where he's more of a person than a plot device,
and it mostly depends on whether he's around Miles or not.   

If you take the above theory as meaning that when you're young you get
stuck into a family dynamic that is almost impossible to change later,
that could be a nice Watsonian explanation of why Ivan differs between
books - around the original Vorkosigans, he's That Idiot and he's too
good-natured and afraid of looking brilliant to do the kind of
spectacular blowup that would make the original Vorkosigans re-evaluate
their opinion, but around Mark and outsiders, he gets evaluated as what
he is now, as opposed to continually stuffed back into the role that he
was assigned [1] growing up. <
  I've commented before that the one time we see Ivan through Mark's eyes we get a totally different impression of him.  I took this as Mark seeing him without the preconceptions of Miles and the other characters that grew up with him, but it may also be that Ivan himself behaves differently when Mark (who by the time Ivan meets him has put a lot of effort into appearing unlike Miles) is around.

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