Goreans (pronounced Gore-ee-en) are the natives of Gor and related biologically to Earthians. A humanoid species that was created by the Priest Kings and has since been supplemented through Journies of Acquisition with Earthians, they are considered to be the epitome of human-based genetic manipulation and specimens of perfection. The Goreans follow a mixture of various Earth-inspired cultures and societies, but one that is unique to them: slavery is not only an accepted fact of existence, it is welcomed and it is the only thing known by Goreans to be utter truth. They believe in a similar code of honour to Chivalry and Bushido.
Etymology & DefinitionEdit
The term 'Gorean' is a generalized term for any humanoid being living on Gor, but most often is the term utilized for its directly human inhabitants.
It is unknown what the specific Gorean scientific term is for Goreans, though it is assumed to simply be 'Gorean'. Biology is a topic that is generally not an umbrella scientific term in Gor and often is mostly about fauna and flora on the planet rather than about any humanoid species.
The term 'Gor' is known as an Indo-European term that has been used for the last 2,000 years, mostly in Eastern european countries to identify the internal organs of herbivores. Obviously, that was not the intent of the author of the Chronicles of Gor and should not be construed as an insult.
To the sentient, sapient natives of the planet of Gor, the world Gor means homeland or home. In fact, their planet in their native tongue is Sar-Tar-Gor, otherwise known as the Home of the Gods. There is some debate on the validity of this statement as there is no official information specifically dictating what the term means, thus this is merely speculation based on extensive research through the novels.
The history of Gor and Goreans are considered muttled and fractured by too many opinions and not enough information directly from the novels. What is known is that around 10,000 Gorean years ago, which might be more likely to be around 100 or so Earth years due to the time dilation field surrounding Gor implemented by the Priest Kings, Goreans developed from a tribal society and culture where their technology and culture were extremely primitive, more akin to ancient Ice Age Earth humans then anything else, into an agriculturally strong, unified nation.
There are many stories concerning the validity of how the Gorean nation was founded, but most agree that the city of Ar was the specific location where a massive treaty was signed between all of the warring tribal nations into a singular cosmopolitan nation.
The invention of modern Gorean slavery came about at this time and has stayed within Gorean society ever since.
Between 10,500 Gorean years ago and the current time period of Gor, Goreans developed into an advanced society that is very similar to the Renaissance era.
Evolution and range Edit
It is very well known and specifically stated within the novels that Goreans are direct genetic descendants of Earth humans, modified and brought to Gor by the Priest Kings. They are physiologically more capable, more intellectually capable, utilizing more of their cerebral capacity, and significantly modified from the original Homo sapiens genome.
Goreans are not the primary apex predators, though they are certainly one of the many apex predators on the planet, and there are several other animal species on the planet that constantly threaten the peaceful existence of the species. Tarns, tharlarions, and other animals are massive predators that can inflict lethal and fatal damage to Goreans. Tarns are massive semi-sentient birds of prey, easily 30 feet or more in size, and capable of killing several Gorean warriors easily if those Gorean warriors are not respectful and competently trained. Tarns are also used for transportation, war, and companionship similar to canines, felines, bovines, and horses on Earth.
Anatomical adaptation Edit
Gorean evolution is categorized by several morphological, developmental, physiological, and behavioral changes from their Homo sapiens ancestors.
The most powerful changes from their human ancestors is the behavioral adaptation to perceiving and understanding slavery as a natural course of existence. Their dependency and respect for slavery is not just a psychological and behavioral change, but also a physiological one. They physically require the need to experience slavery, particularly the females.
A major physiological change is the vastly superior immune systems of Goreans. They are capable of defending against some of Earth's most voracious bacterial infections, viral infections, diseases, and rarely suffer from any chronic conditions. Cancer is extremely rare, the common cold is uncommon, and mental disorders are almost unheard of. They are capable of withstanding most toxins and rarely are incapable of handling many poisons. Their superior immune system is a result of the inclusion of extremely advanced medical technologies that have inevitably created a naturally strong immune system further enhanced by their own medicines.
Gor itself does have a slightly lower planetary gravity, approximately 0.95 Earth gravity, which does give the species a naturally increased physiological strength, agility, and capable of moving much more swiftly than humans. However, they have been genetically altered and have evolved a natural physical capability that would still be far superior on Earth. It is unknown, currently, exactly how the Goreans became more advanced.
Their cerebral capabilities have evolved to perceive their reality and intellectual pursuits much more effectively than in humans. Their sensory perception is enhanced, allowing every sense they possess to be heightened, providing a more intense experience. As such, they could be considered 'sensitive' by Earth humans. They are capable of sight that is on a broader spectrum of electromagnetic radiation, affording them, effectively, vision similar to a feline, though they see in color and can distinguish shapes clearly. Their hearing is slightly better, allowing to hear broadly more advanced frequencies, though still nothing like most animals. Perhaps their most advanced senses are their olfactory, gustatory, and tactile senses as they feel, smell, and taste more intimately than humans. They can sense greater details about textures, perceive objects on a smaller scale, and separate ingredients and elements of things they eat more effectively.
Due to the physiological capability of a Gorean brain to power more neurons simultaneously and to retain more details in memory systems, a Gorean is intellectually more superior than a human, though not enough to consider them natural geniuses. They simply have a better method, biologically, to comprehend, retain, and process information.
Another physiological change is the capacity for sexual sensitivity. Almost all the females retain the ability to perceive any sensations caused by sexual contact to be more intense, powerful, and varied from humans. Like humans, Goreans retain their reduced sexual dimorphism, though perhaps more intensely as sex is not quite as controlled as it is on Earth.
Unlike humans, Goreans are not in danger of obliterating their planetary ecosystems and environment. There is no evidence that anything biologically or genetically predisposes the species to being ecocentric.
Habitat & Population Edit
Goreans exhibit the exact same habitats as humans in almost every way. There is very little to distinguish them from humans. Unlike humans, Goreans have never colonized nor explored space and only explore the surface of their water masses.
While there are no exact figures on the current or historical population of the planet, it is estimated that the total population is no more than 20 million at highest and 3 million at lowest. A largely feudal society keeps the population in control and without the ability to create advanced technologies on all levels except medicine, they will likely never develop an industrialized society that could threaten their species or the planet.
Anatomy & Physiology Edit
In almost every way, they are quite similar to humans, save for those evolutionary traits mentioned above.
Unlike Humans who have only recently started to explore heavily in the areas of genetic manipulation, genetics are quite common on Gor. Through specific technologies allowed by the Priest Kings, the Goreans have developed methods for experimenting with genetics, particularly on the few virulent diseases known to plague the Goreans.
The Gorean genome is nearly identical to the human genome save for a different in their chromosomes. Goreans have 24 total chromosomes separated by 23 pairs of autosomes and 1 pair of sex chromosomes. This is inferred by their genetic manipulation due to the Priest Kings and the different environmental and societal conditions of the Goreans on their genetic evolution.
Life Cycle Edit
Goreans have an exactly similar reproductive process, gestation period, and their childbirth is just as dangerous as it is for humans. They have an average life expectancy regardless of other factors of 1,500 years due in a large part to their advanced medicine and genetic propensity to deal with the aging process significantly more effectively. Goreans view aging as a disease, rather than simply an inevitable consequence of life, and have taken extensive steps to prevent aging amongst their population. Women tend to live longer than men by at least a few years, similar to humans, due in no small part to the role that most women play in society. Men are combatants while women pursue much more intellectual, emotional, and creative pursuits.
Goreans are omnivorous, as humans are, but otherwise maintain a healthier diet through their heavy use of holistic medicine and more Eastern styles of thinking concerning their physical health. They tend to eat more vegetables and fruits and do not have any known processes that manufacture any artificial elements into their diet. They also tend to believe in a balanced, strong diet. They are otherwise similar in their diet to humans.
Biological Variation Edit
As humans, no two individual Goreans are alike, however, unlike humans, they rely on the introduction of fresh genetic material from Earth which is why the Journey of Acquisition by the Priest Kings is so important to their existence. No one really knows exactly why they require fresh genetic material most likely in part that the author of the Chronicles of Gor is not a genetic expert and does not fully understand the implications of it.
Because the Earth humans brought to Gor are not naturally Gorean, they possess all the strengths and weaknesses of their Earth brethren, however, in the typical process of delivery from Earth to Gor, they are genetically altered to handle both the environment and the medicine of Gorean technology.
Goreans retain a very similar brain structure to humans, though capable of a deeper understanding, retaining more memory systems, and comprehending sensory information more effectively than humans.
Sleep & dreaming Edit
Goreans are almost exactly the same in terms of their sleeping and dreaming habits. They require between 6 and 8 hours of consistent, uninterrupted sleep to be effective during their daily activities and dream to coherently work through daily issues on their subconscious and conscious minds.
Consciousness & thought Edit
Goreans have the same cognitive processes and thinking apparatus as humans do.
Motivation & emotion Edit
Goreans have the same concepts of motivations and emotions as humans do, however, their experiences have evolved them into more refined emotional processes where crime is rarer and social disorders are extremely rare.
Sexuality & love Edit
Obviously, it goes without saying that sex is not considered as sacred, ritualistic, or private as it does in most human sociocultural avenues. Sex, to Goreans, is so much a part of life that they often see it as a daily habit, something that just happens because it's fun, exciting, bringing health and happiness to their lives, and thus, they do not treat it with any sort of special endearment.
Sexuality is a different story. Given the bi-gender existence of Gor, homosexuality, bisexuality, and other forms of sexual identification are extremely rare. Homosexuality tends to be frowned upon mostly due to biological and societal needs for procreation, population control, and rules concerning females versus males, though unlike most sociocultural entities on Earth, Goreans do not act in prejudice against certain types of sexualties, thus there are no laws against alternative sexualties, sexual choices, or parameters of sexual conduct.
Goreans are pretty much the same as humans in terms of their behavior, except that they have many more intentful control over their behavior through the use of unified codes and a sense of deeply held duty and honour.
Unlike Humans, there are not hundreds or thousands of linguistic differences between sociocultural groups on Gor. Instead, there is a singular unified language with several dialects dependent on city or region. Only the peoples of the Wagons and similar cultures have a totally different language. Any Earth humans who are brought to Gor retain their individualized languages due to the cultures they inhabited, but those individual languages almost never break through the Gorean linguistic barriers to enhance, develop, or alter the native languages of Gor.
Gender roles Edit
Gender roles are extremely and clearly defined on Gor, especially considering that there are very few societies and differences in culture in the species. Males are the protectors, organizers, and warriors of Gor while the females are the creative, emotional, passionate, sexual individuals of Gor. They have very European traditional roles for genders and often do not mix gender roles without logical and specific reasoning.
While Goreans retain much of the same ideas of kinship and relationship as humans, they differ widely when it comes to marriage, family, and incest. Family is extremely important to Goreans and considered paramount to a commandment from a religious faction to protect, affluence, and express. Family is often extremely well protected by its members and many Goreans are quite proud of their familial heritage.
Marriage is a bit more complicated due to the fact that marriage as they see it is an expression of love, respect, gratitude, and often political or economically motivated. Their marriages are rarely, if ever, permanent, and they often exchange partners freely, only concerning themselves with the emotional consequences when it becomes pertinent. Their version of marriage is known as Free companionship. A Free Companion is basically their significant other. It is a contract, legal but not financial or any other form, between two individuals that express respect, care, love, and concern for each other. It is annually renewed and can be ended at any time by either companion with very little repercussions for either individual, unless their contracts are specific or the reason for ending the contract is slavery.
Incest is not very common on Gor, though it does happen. However, unlike humans, Goreans do not immediately decide that incest is a completely unacceptable form of behavior. Instead, they see it as a wasted opportunity for experience and often can hinder a family's ability to function within society because it distracts from what is necessary to survive and thrive.
Once more, Goreans differ and they have very few ethnic differences between groups of people. There are many different tonal differences, but little physiological differences of any kind. Most Goreans define themselves by their Home Stone and the city with which they pledge themselves, rather than any specific ethnicity.
Society, government, & politics Edit
Gorean society has developed much like most medieval European societies and is constructed around the feudal system of government. Economics is controlled by general assembly between various elements of commerce and the economy. A unique feature for an entire species is the implementation of a caste system, complete with a top-down hierarchal structure. For more information, see the Castes entry.
Politics is typical of Goreans as much as humans, possibly more so as Goreans enjoy a good conversation that tests and tries their emotional and mental capabilities. They do not have a predefined notion of any sort of political groups because there is no form of democracy, republic, or other form of government or society. There are only feudal and tribal, nothing else. However, many people agree that, in fact, Goreans retain an element of a republican-style feudal system given their penchant for committees, councils, and generally being more content with overall opinions between groups of people rather than a specific, singular individual retaining all elements of political power and control.
Trade & economics Edit
For more information on Gorean economics, please see its entry. In general, Goreans love trading with each other, which is why the concept of material goods is less about personal feeling and more about what can be done. Goreans are very utilitarian, but also extremely creative. They embrace their uniqueness and individuality while celebrating their whole groups such as their city or their caste or their family. Trade is an extremely important part of Gorean society which is why the Merchant caste is considered second only to the High Castes.
War is an element of Gor that is common because of their human passions, their drive for excellence, and emotional tendencies. Goreans consider war to be sacred, important, and vital to the processes of society. Warriors are considered essential elements of Gor and they are placed in the High Castes for that reason. They protect, rule, govern, and perform war. States of conflicts between nations and states occur every day, but usually do not last very long. Feuds, grudges, and elements of factional division do occur for Goreans, in fact, entire cities have been destroyed simply because of a slave, though this is likely not very surprising to most.
Children, slaves, and Free Women are deeply protected during times of war and are not allowed to commit to acts of war. There is very few exceptions to these rules and the only truth is that all citizens must protect their home stone, whether slave or Free.
All war is performed under strict codes of conduct, though their style of combat and tactics is much more similar to modern day guerillas and counterterrorism units then it is like medieval combat. Most war is conducted under the premise and use of information, studying one's enemy, and performing combat within the Rules of Conduct in War.
There has never been a world war since the foundation of the city of Ar, but certain people believe that World Wars may be more common than the novels let on due to the very nature of slavery in Gor.
For more information concerning War, please see the Warrior Caste entry.
Material culture & technology Edit
The level of technology capable for the Goreans is strictly controlled by the Priest Kings. Anyone attempting to develop technology beyond the Renaissance or for use in medicine, is either killed and their technology and its related materials destroyed or they are banished to the Kurii. It is simply not tolerated due to the Priest Kings witnessing much of humanity's own self-destruction with the two World Wars, the invention of the atom bomb and our consistently violent nature as humans.
Gunpowder does not exist on Gor, which means they do not even have fireworks! Anything in military technology that goes beyond the crossbow is strictly prohibited directly by the Priest Kings.
Goreans enjoy material goods, but they are traditionalists and enjoy the comfort and safety of law, tradition, and control. It is highly unheard of for a Gorean to be completely void of individuality or retaining too much individuality to be a productive member of society. Almost all Goreans feel pride for the work that they do.
Body culture Edit
Body modification is a common occurrence in Gor, though ostensibly more controlled than on Earth. Tattoos are allowed, cosmetic surgery is common, piercings are allowed, and other forms of customization are quite common, though subject to strict rules and procedures. For more information on this topic, check the Body Culture entry.
Religion & spirituality Edit
Goreans have a centralized form of religion, similar to the concept of a singular God and faith, however, instead of a single god or a group of differing deities, they believe in the very aliens that created them: the Priest Kings. Considered to be Gods on Gor, they are heavily worshipped by the Initiates Caste and revered for their spectacular power, advanced technology, and mysterious nature. Very few Goreans actually know about the truth behind the Priest Kings, and very few truly hold complete faith in them. Goreans tend to be more skeptical of true devotion or fanaticism outside of Initiates. Goreans are not generally superstitious and often stake more claims on reality and truth than blindly believing in something or someone.
Philosophy & self-reflection Edit
This particular topic is actually something well known amongst the Goreans. Generally, most Goreans are philosophers and constantly debate their own existence, the concept of slavery, and the perception of themselves to each other. Ethics and morals are not varied and most Goreans have the same morals and beliefs almost regardless of their ethnicity. Self-reflection is a constant for Goreans, always seeking answers to their own reality. They do not perform meditation for the same reasons that humans do as they generally accept that their lives simply are the way are.
Similar to technology, science is considered something that must be carefully considered and often debated amongst the peoples of Gor. They have an extremely advanced understanding of medical sciences, biology, geology, geography, architecture, economics, sociology, psychology, and agriculture. Their understanding of physics, astrophysics, chemistry, and mathematics is contested amongst many people, though most Goreans are aware that they live on a planet, orbit a star, are subject to gravity and light, and that they are not alone in the universe. Almost all Goreans are aware of Earth being a source of slaves for them provided by the Priest Kings, though they are unaware of the complexities of how, when, why, and what occurs.
Art, music, and literature Edit
The creative fields of emotional expression are considered sacred amongst the Goreans. Art is often expressed similar to most of the Medieval and Renaissance eras of Earth and music is very similar to most folk music. There is no known popular elements of creative fields. Literature is very important to Goreans and literacy is almost universal amongst its population. Musicians, artists, and others involved in creative fields are considered so sacred that they cannot even be enslaved. Goreans are very expressive beings who enjoy utilizing many methods of creative communication.
Gaming & Goreans Edit
It is well known amongst social games, particularly online message boards, IRC, and platforms such as Second Life and IMVU, that Goreans are generally considered snooty, conceited, rude individuals who force their beliefs upon others and can be considered rapists, committing mental, social, and emotional harassment upon others.
It must be stated that this is due to the fact that a vast majority of individuals who proclaim themselves to be Gorean do not fully understand Gor and are improperly trained. Thus, they project a falsehood onto the remaining Gorean population that understands that Gor is a lot more than sex, fancy clothes, and cool fantasy combat.
It also goes without saying that Goreans do not exist in our reality and thus all of the species specific details written above are pertinent only to RP in gaming or between individuals. Earth has yet to achieve any level of understanding where any of the features described could even be possible. Genetic manipulation, cybernetics, biotechnology, and similar fields of science are still considered in their infancy.
The largest known population, online and in-gaming, of Goreans is Second Life which has provided the best benefits to create a truly realistic Gorean experience. I expect that with Second Life 2 and VR, we will start to see even more developments in this field. However, as the fields of social gaming have shifted, the populations of SL and other similar venues will likely change as well.