I wanted to make a strong mother character. The portrayal women in epic fantasy have been problematical for a long time. These books are largely written by men but women also read them in great, great numbers. And the women in fantasy tend to be very atypical women… They tend to be the woman warrior or the spunky princess who wouldn’t accept what her father lays down, and I have those archetypes in my books as well.
However, with Catelyn there is something reset for the Eleanor of Aquitaine, the figure of the woman who accepted her role and functions with a narrow society and, nonetheless, achieves considerable influence and power and authority despite accepting the risks and limitations of this society.
She is also a mother… Then, a tendency you can see in a lot of other fantasies is to kill the mother or to get her off the stage. She’s usually dead before the story opens… Nobody wants to hear about King Arthur’s mother and what she thought or what she was doing, so they get her off the stage and I wanted it too. And that’s Catelyn.—
- George RR Martin on Catelyn Stark (via fatpinkcast)
Not that I think that being a mother is a lesser role than anything else, but notice how Martin mentions the whole Eleanor of Aquitaine thing BEFORE being a mother? And when he DOES mention Cat’s motherhood it’s about how he wanted to treat it DIFFERENTLY than how it’s usually treated?
There are many more interesting and important things to Cat’s character besides “she really loves her kids.”
(And if someone takes that statement to mean that I’m dissing moms who love their kids a lot, I’m going to explode.)
Michelle Fairley when asked about Richard Madden
Sydney Game of Thrones Q&A 2013