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#ursula k. le guin

I’ve been reading The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K Le Guin, and so I was inspired to add a word to my conlang:

Kēmira- “to go through puberty” (< *kem- “to mature”)

In the book, the inhabitants of the planet Gethen are biologically genderless until they undergo kemmer, the once a month period when they become outwardly gendered (though they never know beforehand which one they’ll become) in order to reproduce. After that period, they return to their previous lack of gender.

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Finished The Left Hand of Darkness tonight. It was really amazing. I’m still perplexed by the whole story. It’s the kind of fiction that unnerves you with how alien and yet profoundly relatable it is.

I’m still bothered by the male pronouns thing because, like Genly Ai, it kept me from seeing the Gethenians as what they truly were; ambisexual humans. Neither man nor woman.

But the second half of the book is really truly great. An adventure you cant quite enjoy because of it bleak nature, and hoped would end differently despite knowing the dangers.

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“Ged had neither lost nor won but, naming the shadow of his death with his own name, had made himself whole: a man: who, knowing his whole true self, cannot be used or possessed by any power other than himself, and whose life therefore is lived for life’s sake and never in the service of ruin, or pain, or hatred, or the dark.”

- Ursula K. Le Guin, A Wizard of Earthsea

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If someone knows of any novels reminiscent of His Dark Materials [for adults, no percy jackson, Harry Potter, pls I’m almost 30], let me know.

Im planning to read Ursula K Le Guin’s Earthsea and J.V. Jones’s Sword of Shadows, before I move on to the Book of Dust [which I haven’t bought yet, so feel free to send me copies cause I’m poor].

I’m looking for something that feels closer to real world than the lit I’m reading now. Kinda like HDM.

A while ago I started Kushiel’s Dart, which I liked until I got stuck on the sex/s&m parts. But something like that would work too, because it’s essentially an alternative earth.

Essentially, stories about individuals in powerful institutions. Preferably fantasy, science fiction or magical realism but very grounded. Historical would work for me as well. Pls, suggestions 😩… leave me a message or an ask or response…

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Ursula K. Le Guin, Q&A for The Guardian.
Soon after A Wizard of Earthsea came out in England it received a review in a science-fiction periodical which took the book to task for being “consolatory” and “reassuring”. Well, fair enough, I thought, if the consolation is false, if the reassurance is unwarranted; but are consolation and reassurance inherently false, unwarranted - foolish, soft, silly, childish - sentimental? Are we writers only to threaten, terrify, and depress our readers with our ruthless honesty: have we not as good a right to offer them whatever comfort we’ve come by honestly?
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Modernist manuals of writing often conflate story with conflict. This reductionism reflects a culture that inflates aggression and competition while cultivating ignorance of other behavioral options. No narrative of any complexity can be built on or reduced to a single element. Conflict is one kind of behavior. There are others, equally important in any human life, such as relating, finding, losing, bearing, discovering, parting, changing.

Change is the universal aspect of all these sources of story. Story is something moving, something happening, something or somebody changing.

Steering the Craft: A 21st-Century Guide to Sailing the Sea of Story by Ursula K. LeGuin

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Anarres'te hiçbir şey güzel değildir,

yalnız yüzler güzeldir.

Diğer yüzler kadın ve erkek yüzleri.

Bizim onlardan başka hiçbir şeyimiz yok,

birbirimizden başka hiçbir şeyimiz yok.

Ursula K. Le Guin

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Ursula K. Le Guin, The Dispossessed
It is our suffering that brings us together. It is not love. Love does not obey the mind, and turns to hate when forced. The bond that binds us is beyond choice. We are brothers. We are brothers in what we share. In pain, which each of us must suffer alone, in hunger, in poverty, in hope, we know our brotherhood. We know it, because we have had to learn it. We know that there is no help for us but from one another, that no hand will save us if we do not reach out our hand. And the hand that you reach out is empty, as mine is. You have nothing. You possess nothing. You own nothing. You are free. All you have is what you are, and what you give.
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