I made the claim that poem uses empathy as a means of altering emtional response by engagment in self reflection. A means of putting a break on the flow of negative responses to the subject under examination.
I got that for the most part from the poem. I will open that up a little and look at the subject (the disruption of local food supply by magical means) in broader perspective.
Also limit the perspective from group response to individual encounter, this alters the situation from rehearsal and play to acting out a role.
Move from empathy to a situation in which anxiety and high degrees of stress become more apparent (such is the nature of performance).
What Makes The Wolf A Terrifying Creature?
Literal translation of Confael (werewolf) in Irish, is ‘to go a howling’, she ravages her imidiate enviroment lifting cattle in an act of theft to stave off her insatiable hunger.
What makes the Confael such a problematic creature is not her otherness or harmfullness, but the consderation that she is engaged in an act of vegance and it is an act of vegance which is justified.
She is an unsettling complexity. A creature of a dispute that demands a settlement. Her howling seems to contain some curious notes that suggest she may be almost capable of reason.
In encountering such hot bloodied creatures, emotion has to be regulated and controled.
Look at one of these ancient entities, which has a close relationship with the confael in later modern clothing, ‘The Good Wife’ then look at its relationship with legal fiction.
These are figures of dispute that demand consideration. It should be noted that while they may demand consideration, the are presented in a feminized form, settlement here may not need to be given on equal terms.
They are seeking to regain what has been lost. The naming convention of Gaelic shows a distinctive gender preference in dealing with loss of status and such non-speaking subjects. ‘ The wild man’ also contains this unusual feminine stemma, in its native form, the confael a very early 6th century example of the convention.
Have a tendancy not to think about some of the issues and questions that surround this subject. I prefer them to remain firmly buried in the grave marked pure speculation. But as the year turns, the nights become filled with darkness and reflection, the dead return to walk among us.
It stems from studying 6th century law codes and raised for me an unaswerable question in this specific example, the potential of a relationship of early Irish law with latin legal concepts.
The frame the confael is placed in within legal texts looks from some angles as if it may have a relationship with language orgin (it looks like short hand for a language orgin myth given as a trinity of three distinct legal entities, one howling, one mute, one speaking) and potentialy with the orgin of law.
I can however engage in some slight of hand and deploy a magical formula here, ‘comparative legal anthropology.’ Just make sure not to mistake the term for the subject itself, which is seriously problematic.
Slight of hand appears to alter the question, I can wonder if the latin legal concepets were in turn developed themsleves by a mixture of inovation’comparative legal anthropology’ and review of traditional and customary legal thought. Evolution rather than revolution.
Again thats somewhat unanswerable.
I will stick to my magical formula and live with the fact its a somewhat toxic brew that leaves you with a condsiderable headache and the distinct desire to forget.
p.s. I managed to arse up the first draft and used the term conrechta rather than confael. I think I have cleaned it up. Conrechta is a close sister of the confael perhaps even more terrfying as she has a capcity for reason, speaks with a human voice or shows a clear potential for language. Con= dog. wolf, rechta = reason, rule, law; the literal translation would be wolf/dog human. I would run with a personal non-literal translation ‘the wolf who speaks with a human voice.’
As she is capable of arriving at truth reason and proper judgement, she is a seriously problematic adversary. She has magical status and the abilty to evaluate past, present and perhaps more pressing in cases of dispute, the future.
The wolf who speaks with a human voice on the field of dispute, has claim to be the most terrfying creature in the whole of Ireland. As her judgement or curse must be heard and may be accurate.