In a somewhat prescient video essay that was first posted in 2016, Sage Hyden of the series Just Write poses the very interesting question as to why the books behind the Game of Thrones series are called a song?
By way of answer, Hayden explains that songs have historically been used to communicate the outcomes of great battles, love stories, and new worlds and are available to anyone of any class at any time. Unfortunately, some of these songs don’t tell the truth about what actually occurred, but rather spin a narrative created by the victor and/or those who are wealthy and powerful to have a say.
There is a huge divide between the chivalrous world of the songs and the cruel random and evil world of Westeros. Songs provide relief from this world but they can also warp our perception of history and it is for that reason that they are vulnerable to manipulation…this is why rulers rightly fear the power of songs and stories songs are a threat to the narrative of the ruling house.
Yet, Hyden further explains that what is being witnessed through the series shows the audience what really happened. The ultimate Song of Ice and Fire will be written by whomever wins the Game of Thrones.
We are not actually witnessing a ‘Song of Ice and Fire’, not yet anyway. We are seeing the real history on which a song will later be sung how accurate the song is will depend entirely on who wins…