Crowdsourced Tanakh-GoT Connections (#GameofGaons)
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GoT IdeaTanakh IdeaHow To Use or Connect ItSeasons/ Episodes ReferencedSupport Texts or Multimedia - TitlesSupport Texts or Multimedia- LinksContributed ByContact
Red WeddingAvshalom's slaughter of Amnon at Sheepshearing festivalSame idea of sudden betrayal/ surprise attack as REVENGE for something that happenedOlivia Friedman@ollyfriedman
Sacrifice of Shireen by Melisandre (plus Onion Knight's response to it when talking to Jon)Akeida Consider Stannis' role and how it compares to Avraham, the ideas about Pagan culture in general Yoram Hazony on The Philosophy of Hebrew Scripture, Halbertal on Sacrifice Bronstein, Olivia Friedman@ollyfriedman, @avbronstein
Jon Snow hero arcKing David Compare and contrast Jon Snow to King David, using midrashim and specific events that mirror each otherArticle on Tablet comparing/ contrasting this Friedman@ollyfriedman
CerseiAtaliah (2 Kings 11)Compare and contrast Cersei causing the death of all her children to Ataliah murdering all of her sons. How are these people similar? Different? What do midrashim/ commentaries add to our understanding of Ataliah? Did these women love their children? How do you know yes/no?Rabbi Torczyner on The Killer Queen Friedman@ollyfriedman
Faith Militant / Red PriestessKIng v. Navi tensionTommen and the High Sparrow say that the faith and crown are the twin pillars of the realm. What is the Biblical view of political v. religious authority? What is the role of a priest (High Sparrow) v. that of a prophet (Milsandra)?Rabbi Jonathan Sacks on the triangle of King, Priest and Prophet, including the different roles of Priest and Prophet Bronstein, Olivia Friedman added Rabbi Sacks stuff@avbronstein
FreedomYetziat Mitzrayim and complaining in the wildernessDanerys frees the slaves in Mereen, but seems to cause more problems than she solved. What does freedom really mean, and how is it acheived? Also include the "free cities"Ramban on how the first generation in desert dies out due to slave mentality, only second generation can enter- PACING important re: freedomAvraham Bronstein@avbronstein
Margery and TommenEsther and AchashveroshEsther and Margery each found themselves in pracarious positions, navigating poltiical and sexual dynamics in an effort to remain alive and save their respective nations and houses.
Rape as transformative? (See: Sansa, Daenarys)Compare to: Dinah, Tamar in Tamar/ Amnon storyContemporary society is very upset by the overuse of rape as a transformational agent in the life of women (ESPECIALLY WITHIN TV SHOWS). In a male-dominated society, how do females change or evolve post violation and rape? What are examples from the show vs. Tanakh? What does Judaism say about rape and laws of rape? How does Yefas Toar fit in?NYT article on 'For ‘Game of Thrones,’ Rising Unease Over Rape’s Recurring Role'
Fight for the Iron ThroneCompare with Shemuel, desire for king, roles of kingWho gets to be king? What are the roles and responsibilities of a king (from OF: also a huge theme in Tanakh is the person who DOESN'T WANT TO BE LEADER leads- see Shaul, Moshe, Yirmiyahu...this seems to be playing out right now with Jon Snow) - Also, the interplay between the Iron Throne that rules over semi-authonomous regions and houses speaks to the centralization of control in the days of Solomon v. the decentralized confederacy that existed at other times.Maybe some TED talks on Leadership? there are lots of possibilities Josh Yuter,
point added by AB
Family Legacy / Tradition / Honor with respective HousesCompare Yaakov and Shimon and Levi re Shechem, appeals to family dynastyWhat does it mean to be part of a family? To have traditions, to have a family name which needs to be honored? (from OF: When are you going too far in honoring family? Could be a fascinating unit on Shimon and Levi avenging the family honor with Dinah and how Yaakov was NOT HAPPY about that) Josh
Marrying for Motive/Marriage off minor daughters or sistersShelomo marrying 1,000 wives; kiddushei ketanaShould marriage primarily be about external factors?Josh
The pillaging of the RiverlandsPilegesh b'GivahI had ZERO understanding of the horrific violence of Pilegesh b'Givah until I watched Game of Thrones.Happens more in the earlier seasons
Red Wedding2 Kings 9, 10 - Jehu destroys Achav's whole familyMass political murder deep in II Kings, which makes an otherwise obscure part of Tanakh interesting. Also highlights dynastic change.
Methods of Torture & Humiliation (consider Ramsay Bolton psychological torture of Reek and the cutting off of Jaime's hand)Adoni-Bezek cutting off toes and thumbs and having his cut off - Judges 1: 6-7, shaving off half the beards by Hanun (2 Samuel 10:4)Discuss practical issues - when you cut off toes and thumbs that means the person can't run or wield a sword/ same issue with Jaime vs. the use of humiliation/ embarrasment (cutting off beards) which is more of a psychological issueIf you want to get into Midrashim, you can use the Midrash about how the Egyptians switched the clothing and work for the slaves so men did women's work and men did women's work= psychological tortureOlivia Friedman@ollyfriedman
Notion of the AfterlifeShe'olJon Snow says that when he was dead, he experienced "nothing at all." How does this compare with Biblical notions of an afterlife?6:3"Lo HaMetim yehalelu ya..."Avraham Bronstein@avbronstein
Bread and Salt / Guest Right / (Subverted at the Red Wedding)Lot Trying to Protect the AngelsWhy would Lot go so far trying to protect the strangers staying with him? Compare to the idea within Westeros that once a host shares bread and salt with a guest, the guest must not be harmed.
Justice by Combat
Rebelling Against KingsAvshalomWhat are the laws of being moreid bamalchut, fighting over successionAll overJosh Yuter@jyuter
Robert Barathen wronged & Lyanna + Rhaegar= JonCan compare to David, Batsheva and Uriah (especially because Shlomo as chosen child is born from David and Batsheva, like Jon comes from Lyanna and Rhaegar) OR to Shimshon and his wives (where he is angry his wife is married off to another man so he wreaks vengenace in Shoftim 13-14 using foxes and eventually having the unfaithful wife + her dad killed) Talk about love gone wrong, revenge and vengeance (when justified? when not?) and was Robert right to start that rebellion over this girl/ was Samson right to do soMichael Alweis/ Olivia Friedman
Melisandre faking her beautySheker HaChen v'Hevel HaYofi (beauty is just a trap)Show the scene where Melisandre turns out to be an ugly old crone but she's using her beauty to manipulate everyone. Talk about how here beauty is covering up her true age but how sometimes beauty is a way of covering up inner ugliness.Season 6 Episode 1
Cersei and Ned relationshipEliyahu and Izevel relationshipCersei is super sexual beautiful queen who manipulates everyone with her sexuality. Eliyahu is disgusted by her and is a zealot who believes in God. Ned has his honor code and doesn't realize that Cersei won't operate by his rules. Same situation by Eliyahu- he doesn't understand Achav's attraction or marriage to Izevel and certainly doesn't appreciate how Izevel could want to kill him the day after he's proven her gods are false (even though she wasn't in attendance- she heard about it from Achav) First Season, the meeting in the garden where she threatens him- when you play the game of thrones, you win or you dieOlivia Friedman
The Sins of the Fathers (Sansa vs. Jon about punishing the houses that were not loyal to the Starks)Whether God should continue to punish children for the sins of the fathers or not In Tanakh, there is a major shift where God changes from the Torah based accountability idea (where the sins of the fathers are placed upon the children) to the idea that no longer will one's teeth be blunted by the chill grapes i.e. one is responsible for one's own sinsSeason 7 Episode 1 Friedman
Euron promises Cersei a special bridegift as a way to prove he is a worthy suitorDavid betrothes himself to Michal with 100/200 foreskinsThe idea that bringing a trophy (one's enemies or one's enemies' foreskins/ heads)= a good bridal giftSeason 7 Episode 1"In my experience, the surest way to a woman's heart is with a gift. A priceless gift. I won't return to King's Landing until I have that for you." - Euron (after talking about killing siblings. seems likely that Cersei will get to torture Yara for info on Dany's plans) Friedman
Petyr Baelish (Littlefinger) asking for Sansa's hand in marriage as a "thank you" for saving JonAdonijah asking (through Batsheva) for Avishag's hand in marriage as a way of showing all's well between him and SolomonIn both situations, both Baelish & Adonijah are actually seeking power through an alliance with a powerful member of the family. Both Solomon & Jon are disgusted by the request and turn it down flat. Season 7 Episode 2 Friedman
Dany saying her father was evil and asking not to be judged by himThroughout Melachim you have people where the parents are evil (think Chizkiyahu) but they are good or where they are good but their son (think Menashe) is evilThat evil/ good are choices people make, and not something that comes about because of how you're born or even how you're raisedSeason 7 Episode 3
"You're not guilty of your father's crimes and I'm not beholden to my ancestors' vows" as stated by JonThis is exactly why the covenant needs to be renewed constantly. Har Sinai is not sufficient. This is why we say Shema, why there are public gatherings (such as in the time of Ezra etc)- we need to keep reaffirming that we personally accept God into our lives.There may be the original binding oath of Har Sinai, but we need to also accept it upon ourselves= Shema and other thingsSeason 7 Episode 3
Jon Snow is the only one who has seen the Night King + Army of the Dead (well, the only one who is trying to persuade Dany and Co). Or in his words: "How do I convince people who don't know me that an enemy they don't believe in is coming to kill them all?"All the Neviim who tried to stop the Churban (and especially Yirmiyahu). They all had nightmare visions of what was going to happen, tried their hardest to persuade the people but the people just couldn't fathom what the Neviim were telling them, didn't make the changes and so they died. Jon Snow is basically taking on the Navi's role here and you can feel for him/ the sense of frustration he must have Season 7 Episode 3 "How do I convince people who don't know me that an enemy they don't believe in is coming to kill them all?"
Euron leading the Sand Snakes & Yara through the city with lots of jeering and people throwing things at themSaul being afraid of being mocked and tortured and not wanting to fall into the Philistines' hands and therefore committing suicideEuron= Philistines, Sand Snakes are in the position Saul would have been inSeason 7 Episode 3
Secret entrance to Casterley Rock is through the sewersSecret entrance to city of Luz as brought down in Judges 1:24 Season 7 Episode 3
Conversation between Jaime and Lady Olenna about how Jaime loves Cersei but Olenna warns him Cersei is a poison and will be the death of him. Relationship between Achav & IzevelThis is very similar to the relationship between Achav & Jezebel where one could argue that Achav in and of himself was really not entirely wicked, but that his wife Izevel made him much worse. Jaime is in a similar position since the very beginning when he throws Bran off the tower and says "The things I do for love" - many (not all) of the bad things he does, he does because of Cersei. Season 7 Episode 3
Winterfell falling into Ramsay Bolton's handsEicha (Lamentations) 5:2 - what it feels like for one's ancestral home to be turned over to horrific peopleOne of the things that hurts Sansa is that Winterfell has ended up in Ramsay Bolton's hands- he's a monster and he doesn't deserve to have her ancestral home. This is one of the things she fights with Jon Snow over, insisting that they reclaim their home from Bolton. We read a lot about being exiled from our homeland when it comes to the Churban, but I think that some of the scenes with Bolton and Sansa wanting Winterfell back bring the point home.
Brothers who protect their sisters (Jon & Sansa)Equivalent to Avshalom & Tamar or Shimon/Levi & DinahNote how Jon tries to attack/ kill anyone who talks about Sansa or harming Sansa- we see brothers acting very similarly in Tanakh.