Ideas for Reports and Papers
1. The students who come to Ironhall on Starkmoor are often in trouble at home, or have a record that would label them as "Young Offenders" here and now. Since there is no Ironhall in modern North America, what are the possible fates for these youths in our society?
2. The students who come to Oakendown have an opportunity for education that is rare for women in their country. What are the short-term effects (for one year or five) of educating a female? What are the long-term effects for her lifetime? What are the effects of educating females (or not educating them) upon a family, or a community, or a country?
3. What is lost and what is discovered when Wart smashes his archlute? How desperate were his mentors to arm him, when they hid a sword inside a fine instrument? It cost more than he could hope to earn in ten years' service as a Blade. What is the worth of that, or any lute or artifact, compared with putting two young lives in deadly danger?
4. Is art in the service of life or is it a rejection of violence? Does Wart repudiate his musical talent when he takes up the sword?
5. The enchanters who tended Emerald's father said they could cure his terminal illness, but his pain grew worse until he needed a fresh enchantment every day. While they may not have made his sickness worse, they kept him alive till his family spent all they had, even losing their family farm. Was this the proper duty of a healer? What is the proper duty of a healer?
6. How can profiting from a patient's illness motivate a healer? How can healers be motivated by the health of all their patients, rather than by the possibility of profiting from each patient's illness?
7. Emerald's only prospect for a respectable profession is gone when she is expelled. She is willing to marry even though it will be hard to find a husband she wants who is also able to bring financial security to her and her crippled mother. Is it respectable to marry for security rather than love? Is it more respectable than prostitution?
8. What makes a profession respectable? Does gender matter? Does culture? What about resources?
9. The instructors at Oakendown do not discourage their White Sisters from...
(The entire section is 587 words.)