Wednesday, January 31, 2018

The Subversive Imagination of Ursula K. Le Guin and Why Le Guin Matters

Julie Phillips has written a fine article about the late Ursula K. Le Guin in The New Yorker.
"Le Guin never stopped insisting on the beauty and subversive power of the imagination. Fantasy and speculation weren’t only about invention; they were about challenging the established order. When she accepted the National Book Foundation’s lifetime-achievement award, the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, in 2014, she said, “Resistance and change often begin in art. Very often in our art—the art of words."
Read the full article here.

Michael Dirda has also written a fine piece for The Weekly Standard.
"To the end of her life, Le Guin remained fiercely feminist, anti-capitalist, and forthright in expressing her political views. In the essay “Lying It All Away”—from her last book, the 2017 collection of blog pieces titled No Time to Spare—she writes scathingly of “growth capitalism” returning to its origins and “providing security for none but the strongest profiteers.” She mourns that “I have watched my country accept, mostly quite complacently, along with a lower living standard for more and more people, a lower moral standard. A moral standard based on advertising.” Can America, she wonders, continue “living on spin and illusion, hot air and hogwash, and still be my country? I don’t know.” After all, the country is now run by corporations “of which Congress is an almost wholly owned subsidiary.” "
Read the full article here