Talk:Ursula K. Le Guin

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Le Guin and anarchism[edit]

There is some controversy among editors of the Anarchism page about whether UKL is an anarchist. In attempting to discover an answer I have found the following three sources:

  • [Michael Krasny] set out to ask a broad range of thinkers what they had read that had provided moral insight or served as a catalyst or paradigm of virtue, ethical behavior, or simply living the kind of life that makes a difference. What texts do they look to when they want moral guideposts or standards for ethical action?
Ursula K. Le Guin, Novelist
I read Lao-tzu and the Tao Te Ching at 14. My father had it around the house in the old edition with the Chinese text. I sneaked a peek and was and remain fascinated. Taoism is still an underlayer in my work. It begins talking about what we can't talk about--an old mysticism that intertwines with Buddhism and is practical and not theistic. Before and beyond God. There's a humorous and easygoing aspect to it that I like temperamentally and that fits in with anarchism. Pacifist anarchism and Lao-tzu have a lot of connection with each other, especially in the 20th century.[1]
  • Q: How did you become a Taoist, if you would consider yourself one?
UKL: By reading Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu, mostly. I don't have my library here so I don't dare try to give you any names of scholars and popularisers who helped me understand Taoism - I would forget most of them. I don't really know how one "is" a Taoist. I do know that Taoist ideas inform a great deal of my writing.[2]
  • ELM: You have talked about dry times in writing, and how sometimes one must wait for the writing tank to fill. How do you deal with such fluctuations in your writing life? Have you noticed consistent cycles? What helps you get through the dry times and refill your writer’s tank?
UKL: You sit and wait and wait and wait and wait. And fret. And consult the I Ching, which tells you to wait. So you wait and wait . . .
Traveling is bad for fiction but good for poetry. That's the only cycle I have noticed.
Work always leads to work, so it's good in a dry time to have some interest to pursue, something I want to learn about (because I'm a head-worker). Like the Revolution of 1830, say. I read about it for years. Just because I liked it. I was very interested for years in sleep and dream research. In other years I read a lot of utopias, and about utopias, and about Gandhi, and about Anarchism. All those learnings, which I pursued purely because I was interested in the subject, turned into novels in the end.[3]

These statements hardly clear up the ambiguity, other than to illustrate that she claims pacifism as much as anarchism, and Taoism more often. She may "be" a Taoist, and maybe an anarchist and a pacifist as well -- note her disavowal and use of quotes around "is" -- or she may just be "interested in subjects" that "turn into novels." 20:24, 25 July 2006 (UTC)

See her introduction to The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas. And the "is" is a quite sensible caveat about Taoism. Septentrionalis 01:06, 7 August 2006 (UTC)

This section should cite Samuel R. Delany: " To Read the Dispossessed," in The Jewel-Hinged Jaw. N.Y.: Dragon Press, 1977, pp. 239-308. Briankharvey 23:53, 3 December 2007 (UTC)

She is interviewed on the DVD "Anarchism in America" (FISCHLER, Steven & SUCHER, Joel - AK Press), does anyone have a transcript of this interview? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:21, 11 October 2008 (UTC)

Ekumen and Hainish Cycle[edit]

The first three novels do not speak of the Ekumen and are republished as Three complete novels of the Hainish series. Also Le Guin speaks just of a 'League of Worlds' in The Dispossessed and The Word for World is Forest, writer later but set before the first three novels.--GwydionM 17:06, 1 July 2007 (UTC)


I modified the text , ansible only works up to 120 light yrs , also FTL is possible for unmaned crafts such as monitors and bombers (major plot in some novels). — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:17, September 6, 2009 (UTC)

Recent deletions[edit]

"" must have thought they were being helpful by removing links that are in red, i.e. no article. But Wikipedia is growing all the time. I've added items and then found there was an existing link I never knew about. Links in red - or however they show up on your PC - are a pointer to what needs to be added next.--GwydionM (talk) 11:14, 17 November 2007 (UTC)

Writers-influenced-by section?[edit]

The one that leaps to (my) mind is Orson Scott Card, who refers to the ansible in "Ender's Game." Briankharvey 23:53, 3 December 2007 (UTC)

I disagree; I think that makes the article lose focus. I would say, if you can think of writers who specifically say that they've been influenced by her work or find research that discusses her influence on the genre, that's OK. --Mistsrider (talk) 02:42, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

Another has been leaping into my mind on and off since I read the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling. It seems more than just co-incidental that each main character travels to his respective "school of wizardry" by way of ancient forms of transportation emphasizing times long past. Their respective studies seem so similar in terms of "learning the true names of things as a means of "mastering" them" and the substance of the shadow world again seems so similar. Does anyone else think that some form of acknowledgement seems appropriate?Riktaylr (talk) 05:59, 6 November 2013 (UTC)

Annals of the Western Shore[edit]

I am currently plowing through her (excellent) Annals novels, and I have to say they are no more or less "young adult" books than the Earthsea Cycle. I think they should be categorized as a third Le Guin universe, alongside Earthsea and the Hainish novels. 17:07, 9 January 2008 (UTC)

A Major Minor Edit, plus notice at the top of the page[edit]

I've gone through her list of fictive works and formatted them pretty thoroughly, based on what I've seen to be common in listings on other author pages, using the principles of consistency and readability. The format I have used is:

  • Title, Year of Publication (Alternative names is was published under; Anthology it is included in; Awards received)

With these parameters:

  • Short stories should be indicated by double quotations; novels by italics (e.g., "Short Story", Novel).
  • Dates should not be used when commenting on which anthology a work belongs in (see above; The Wind's Twelve Quarters is not followed by its year of publication. I find this makes everything look less confusing.
  • All text with awards and fiction works should have internal links if they have Wiki articles.
  • Comments on the plot, themes, or critical reviews of a work should NOT be listed there. Save it for the elsewhere in the article or put it separately in the work's article page.

What I'm not sure about is whether other people think that it's appropriate to list the ISBN numbers here? Personally I would vote no given Le Guins' large body of work, much of which requires award/anthology commentary. Comments? Criticisms? Suggestions? --Mistsrider (talk) 02:42, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

EDIT: Also, I think that this discussion page is WAY TOO CONFUSING and so I've added the notice at the top and will start deleting unsigned comments within a few days. --Mistsrider (talk) 02:45, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
What you've done so far looks really good. As well, i'm pretty sure there's a template that would do the same as the text you added to the top of this page, but I'm not sure exactly where it is, i'll look around. Murderbike (talk) 03:51, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
Found it, and now that I think about it, I'm pretty sure it's not a good idea to delete comments from talk pages, even if they are unsigned. Murderbike (talk) 03:53, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
Don't delete valid old comments, archive them. See WP:ARCHIVE. But do delete irrelevant nonsense or vandalism. -- Quiddity (talk) 05:00, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
Thanks Murderbike for the template! I remembered seeing one also but I couldn't find one for the life of me. Quiddity, thanks for the guideline link. Archival it is! Anyone have a preference for permalink vs. subpage? --Mistsrider (talk) 08:41, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
I've archived up to around 2007. Feel free to unarchive any threads that hadn't been answered, and to add any more threads to that first archive page until it is quite large (120kb or so) before starting a second page. :) -- Quiddity (talk) 20:07, 10 February 2008 (UTC)
The cleanup looks great. Only problem is the repeated links, in sections like "The Hainish Cycle short stories", things like The Birthday of the World only need to be linked in the initial instance.
ISBN is optional, but some people like them (I do. My monobook.js rewrites the links to point straight to amazon, which is occasionally handy). Use the first edition and/or the most recently available edition (and label it as such). If the work has its own article, just including the isbn there is fine too. See Wikipedia:Manual of Style (lists of works) for details. If in doubt, copy the style of any recently featured article on an author :) -- Quiddity (talk) 05:38, 10 February 2008 (UTC)

Editing the "themes" section[edit]

I just posted an edit to the "Themes" section. I think I managed to address a lot of the "Peacock" word issues, though it's far from fixed, please let me know what you think. As I got to the last couple of paragraphs, I realized I was having a hard time dealing with all the material on the Ekumen that has been added here. It seems to me that this should be a section primarily discussion themes across UKL's work, including the Ekumen novels, but isn't exactly the place for a detailed discussion of her approach to faster-than-light travel technology in these books. The page on the Hainish Cycle might be a better place for this information. I've left most of it, I'm too tired to figure it out now. please let me know what you think. Conurbation (talk) 10:19, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

I made some corrections. The ansible was invented just before the formation of the League of Worlds, used by them and also by the later Ekumen. As far as I recall, we are not told whether or not the original Hainish expansion had it. My reading - though it's a point of view - is that we are to see the original expansion as being too dependent on technology and not respectful of human values.
I think that Rocannon's World and The Word for World is Forest are the only novels in which the ansible is seen to have a direct role in anything. In the first of these it is used to draw down lethal military force, rather different from the later themes. --GwydionM (talk) 18:25, 6 March 2008 (UTC)
Cornubation, just followed the edits you did in the article history, really good job cleaning up the peacock word issues. I remember looking at that section myself a couple years back and being at a total loss where to start. I'm going to see if I can improve the flow of the Themes section and introduce some reliable sources. --Mistsrider (talk) 05:11, 22 April 2010 (UTC)

I just updated the Themes section, I didn't deleate anything, just moved two paragraphs around and added information about the underlying themes of anarchism and environmentalism in her works. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Eliza Pearce (talkcontribs) 18:33, 13 December 2013 (UTC)

I suggest deleting or strengthening the first paragraph of the environmentalism subsection of the 'Themes' section which currently reads "Le Guin is a long-time resident of Portland, OR, the heart of the US environmental movement. This may be one reason that environmental themes often appear in her work." The first problem is that the Wikipedia article on Portland does not substantiate the claim that the city is the heart of the US environmental movement; that article states that "Portland has been recognized as one of the most environmentally conscious cities in the world" - being a green city is not the same as being a center or the center of a movement. Furthermore, it's more likely that her formative years in the environmentally and socially conscious city of Berkeley influenced her writing - but without sources neither city should be cited as an influence... particularly given that Berkeley in the '40s and Portland in the '60s should not be assumed to have the same level of concern for the environmental awareness (and therefore influence on Le Guin) as they have today.Penelope Gordon (talk) 08:51, 1 May 2014 (UTC)

Worldcon GoH Note[edit]

I disagree with the notion that 1) Le Guin's GoH appearance at Aussiecon in 1975 was an "award"; it is actually no such thing. It honors a body of work and it is possible for the Worldcon GoH to have never won a Hugo or Nebula - I'd need to check but I think Bert Chandler falls into this category. To many in the sf community this honor ranks above any yearly offerings; 2) if the SFWA Grand Master and Gandalf Awards are in the intro paragraph, and they honor a lifetime's work, then surely the Worldcon GoH status should be as well; and 3) why are the National Book Awards in the intro paragraphs if they are just awards?

I am not attempting to denigrate any of the awards this author has received. On the contrary, they need to be up front to indicate her standing in the literary community of which she is a major part. The Aussiecon GoH certainly fits that bill. And we need to get a level of consistency here. --Perry Middlemiss (talk) 23:58, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

I still don't think it belongs in the lead, but I've changed the heading of the section where it appears from "Additional awards" into "Additional honors".--Noe (talk) 02:32, 10 May 2008 (UTC)
Are you stating then that the Worldcon GoH status is of lesser import than the SFWA Grand Master and Gandalf Awards? It comes down to a different level of interpretation. These two awards are given by Le Guin's contemporaries in the field, the Worldcon GoH is given by the readers and fans. I feel both are of equal importance.--Perry Middlemiss (talk) 04:20, 10 May 2008 (UTC)
I don't mind it being mentioned briefly in the lead, but I don't think it should be an entire paragraph of its own, as it was before I removed it. I suggest you try your hand at it.--Noe (talk) 13:00, 10 May 2008 (UTC)
I'll integrate it into the other honors. --Perry Middlemiss (talk) 11:06, 11 May 2008 (UTC)
In the end I thought it better to move the whole Additional Honors paragraph up to the top. I can't argue for one honor without arguing for all Lifetime Achievement honors. And they are all important as they indicate her standing both within the sf field and outside it. --Perry Middlemiss (talk) 11:12, 11 May 2008 (UTC)
I don't think inclusion of Le Guin's Melbourne Worldcon GoH-ship in the 'Awards' section is outrageously wrong, but you might want to bear in mind that GoH-ships are a rather different sort of Honour (excuse UK spelling) to literary Awards per se.
Firstly, while most Awards are made uniquely in a year, large Cons and especially Worldcons usually have multiple GoHs. Some may be particularised (Artist GoH, Fan GoH etc) and back in 1975 Le Guin was the sole Pro GoH (alongside one 'Australian' and two 'Fan' GoHs), but multiple Pro Author GoH-ships are now not unusual: Boston 2004 had two and Glasgow 2005 had three, for example.
Secondly, candidate GoHs are chosen solely by the Con's organising committee or a sub-committee thereof. The choices may be influenced by various factors - such as striking balances of Media/Writing, male/female or SF/Fantasy on the Guest roster; marking a significant anniversary - aside from considerations of sheer merit.
Thirdly, an invitee may turn down a GoH invitation for various reasons - prior clashing commitments, ill-health, etc. I'd be rather surprised if Le Guin has only ever been invited to be a Worldcon GoH once. She's probably also been GoH at various other non-World but nevertheless worthy Cons.
Can I suggest that the Section be entitled 'Awards and Honours', and be structured to separate the two, thus allowing easier addition of future Awards and of previous Honours such as other GoH-ships? (talk) 12:01, 10 January 2009 (UTC)
Changing the title of the section to 'Awards and Honours' is good. As is the idea of structuring the section to differentiate the two. I'm okay with other GoH-ships being included but you have to be careful which ones you pick. The Worldcon and the World Fantasy Convention are the big two. Any others you're thinking of? By the way, the note about Heinlein's dedication really doesn't belong here.
The last multiple Worldcon GoH was Aldiss back in 1979. I'd be very surprised if there was ever another multiple, so I doubt whether Le Guin was ever asked again. A GoH may be asked more than once if they had previously declined for various reasons. Worldcon committees do not reveal who they have asked if that person declined. So it is possible for a person to be asked multiple times but to continually decline. --Perry Middlemiss (talk) 23:42, 11 January 2009 (UTC)

Canon of Feminist Science Fiction[edit]

"such themes place her work in the canon of feminist science fiction." [4]

I followed the link provided for this statement, and there's nothing that verifies it. However, I realize that this is simply one page from a larger review. The claim might very well be supported later on, however if this is the case, I think the specific page number, etc. should be provided rather than this link. Aurum ore (talk) 02:35, 22 September 2008 (UTC)

Broken Link[edit]

  1. 3 on the references on the bottom of the page leads to a broken link. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:41, 19 February 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for catching this; I fixed it. Questionic (talk) 03:10, 19 February 2009 (UTC)

Should we add a section on the Orsinian stories?[edit]

Although they aren't as extensive as her Hainish and Earthsea cycles, the Orsinian stories form just as coherent a set and, according to Cummins, Understanding Ursula K. Le Guin (1993) represent Le Guin's earliest writings in which she first achieved her maturity as a writer. I think they deserve a separate section here. --SteveMcCluskey (talk) 15:24, 1 April 2009 (UTC)

Unintelligible sentence[edit]

"Such themes can place her work in the category of feminist science fiction,[8] but nescesairily so."

What does "nescesairily" mean? I cannot find a definition in Google Define, Webster's Online Dictionary or Wiktionary. If this word exists, it is very uncommon. It should be replaced with a more common one to make the article more accessible. Pgan002 (talk) 20:02, 25 April 2009 (UTC)

Le Guin's favourite children's books[edit]

According to the Radio Times dated March 14-20 2009, in which Le Guin lists her ten favourite children's books, she puts the book of nursery rhymes edited by Peter Opie and Iona Opie at the top of this list. Perhaps this could go in the article? Other books she includes (apart from her own) include works by Beatrix Potter and J.R.R. Tolkein.ACEOREVIVED (talk) 23:03, 8 June 2009 (UTC)


Aw, she looks SO seriously ill and "bent" on that photo - don't we have any other, which represents her dignity a bit better? Might as well be an older one. -andy (talk) 12:24, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

We can only use what is provided to us under the proper licensing. --Orange Mike | Talk 18:33, 22 December 2009 (UTC)
Isn't it ok to use this photo published in offical web page under Wikipedia licencing rules?--OnurGuvenc (talk) 17:03, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
None of the photos on that page have licenses meeting WP's nonfree content policies, at least as far as they apply to BLPs. Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 17:48, 1 January 2010 (UTC)
I guess you are right after all. All I can think of is adding a proper link to the article.--OnurGuvenc (talk) 15:45, 2 January 2010 (UTC)
In most cases, I would agree, but I think that since on her website she has preferred publicity photos, I think we should use those. Not everyone subscribes to / is familiar with the Creative Commons / GNU etc. license or philosophy, but that doesn't mean that we should punish them by showing them in light that they don't wish to be seen in. Especially since it is a living person. --Mistsrider (talk) 05:51, 22 April 2010 (UTC)

Middle initial[edit]

Why is the "K." in the article name? All the books on my shelf have it without the middle initial. I would have thought she's known as "Ursula Le Guin", and per Wikipedia:Naming conventions (people), that should be the article title. StAnselm (talk) 06:26, 10 March 2010 (UTC)

If you look at most of the sources/references/further reading in the article it appears the K. is usually used when her full name is given in the titles. Note her website also includes the K. in the URL. And looking at the book covers here it appears like most include the K. Maybe some older books didn't include it or something like that. Aboutmovies (talk) 08:21, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
OK, that sounds like a good enough explanation. Thanks! StAnselm (talk) 21:36, 10 March 2010 (UTC)
2013-03-01 Three years later the page has been moved from Ursula K. to Ursula, purportedly "the name by which she is universally known".
But she is "Ursula K." in WorldCat and in US and DE national libraries (WorldCat, LCCN, and DNB authorities in footer).
The move seems unwarranted.
Note, we have Ursula K. Le Guin bibliography and Template:Ursula K. Le Guin; also Category: Works and Category: Adaptations ...
--P64 (talk) 03:13, 1 March 2013 (UTC)
Obviously, an editor claiming that she's "universally known" as "Ursula Le Guin" is in the wrong. That doesn't logically imply that "Ursula K. Le Guin" is the right name for the article, but I think we should move it back pending someone making a good case for the move. I've never tried moving a page - is it simple, or may one create problems with the edit history or something?-- (talk) 09:01, 1 March 2013 (UTC)

Difference between a pseudonym and a married name[edit]

Authors have the right to choose their pseudonyms and even to give them a whimsical pronunciation (for instance, Pablo Neruda used a Czech surname, but he gave it a Spanish pronunciation). However when a woman get married with a French husband, she accepts his last name with its pronunciation, she cannot modify it. I know Ursula K. Le Guin divorced from her French husband, but she kept her married name. So there is no reason for asking her how to pronounce her last name whether it is clearly French /lǝ gɛ̃/.

Hlnodovic (talk) 15:01, 2 April 2010 (UTC)

The too-short Life ends, "Le Guin has lived in Portland, Oregon since 1958. She has three children." If she and Charles Le Guin divorced, that should be covered. --P64 (talk) 20:51, 12 April 2012 (UTC)

Bibliography split[edit]

There is still a split suggestion on the article but I couldn't find any discussion so it'd be an idea to resolve this one way or the other. I think a split would be a good idea at this point and give the article a bit more space to breath. (Emperor (talk) 22:42, 12 April 2010 (UTC))

Support. --Tesscass (talk) 23:03, 12 April 2010 (UTC)
Support. I did some work on Bibliography of Damon Knight which might be useful as a template. Mike Christie (talk) 23:39, 12 April 2010 (UTC)
Support Seems applicable in this case. Steven Walling 00:38, 13 April 2010 (UTC)
Oppose Don't see why this article needs to be split? Why should it be split? I think it should stay where it is, since there is a lack of critical commentary on Le Guin's writing, the list of works is more descriptive than anything else in the article right now. --Mistsrider (talk) 05:47, 22 April 2010 (UTC)
Support The bibliography makes this page much focus too much on the writings and not the woman herself. I am in favor of a select bibliography that lists out approximately 10-12 of her best known works. There should be a wikilink to her full bibliography page in the section. See Robert Holdstock as an example. I am glad to do the work to create the page, etc. Npd2983 (talk) 13:46, 12 May 2010 (UTC)
Support Agree with above comment. Sunwin1960 (talk) 05:01, 21 June 2010 (UTC)

Done. Separate page has been created with short list on the main page. Now let the debate begin on what is "notable" to be included in the short list! :) Npd2983 (talk) 13:40, 21 June 2010 (UTC)

This list of selected works should include all that are mentioned in the text regarding adaptations. (I haven't checked.) --P64 (talk) 20:51, 12 April 2012 (UTC)


See also #Worldcon GOH note (above). -P64

The awards section (discussed above in the Worldcon note), which could be the awards & honors section, is a bit dull and dry and doesn't really explain anything about her as an author. I suggest changing it to "Awards and Critical Reception" or maybe simply "Reception of her works" and incorporate actual reviews as well as all the actual awards. --Mistsrider (talk) 06:07, 22 April 2010 (UTC)

I have added the standard external link to her biography at the Science Fiction Hall of Fame.
Our article section SFHOF lists annual classes [2001] with no reference except the official site --which currently gives no induction dates, not even years, for any but the current class.
Yes check.svg Done winter 2013 -P64
My quick google search for her SFHOF induction does not hit any contemporary coverage by professional news or by fans in attendance. Such coverage has been useful for a few other SFHOF members. --P64 (talk) 20:30, 26 December 2011 (UTC)
The list of selected works is cluttered by Awards data. (Maybe that will improve at little no cost if we replace paren with dash or delete all the sameyear/nextyear dates.(done) I haven't tried it.)
Done partly. Today I and cut from Selected works listings many repetitive words and links concerning awards. -P64
The same goes for the complete(?) Ursula K. Le Guin bibliography.
While each one may be notable, I doubt that all the awards for particular works should be noted in the biography of a writer who has won so many. Perhaps a complete list should only be part of the Bibliography and/or some should be listed only in the articles on particular books.
On the other hand, Le Guin placed second and third on the "All-Time Best Novels" polls by Locus magazine in 1987: The Left Hand of Darkness #2 science fiction behind Dune and The Wizard of Earthsea #3 fantasy behind Tolkien's pair.per ISFDB
I have written the latter into The Wizard of Earthsea and i'll write #2 SF into The Left Hand of Darkness now (with references). I'll leave her biography to others because there other Awards issues here (above). --P64 (talk) 20:20, 12 April 2012 (UTC)
Done. Along the way I found a reference at instead of ISFDB.
"Locus Poll Best All-time Novel Results: 1987, sf novels". Locus. Retrieved 2012-04-12. Originally published in the monthly Locus, August 1987. 
• "Locus Poll Best All-time Novel Results" alternately displays the standings generated by three different subscriber polls.
--P64 (talk) 00:01, 13 April 2012 (UTC)
Today I re-organized, re-worded, and expanded the Awards section. My four WP:COMMENTs in that section (copied here) both show the nature of the reorganization and suggest a possible improvement--that the Awards section should be inverted to being with other lifetime honors and end with annual book awards.
  • (1st par) !-- awards for particular works, perhaps should be last in this section -->
  • (2nd par) !-- career recognition, speculative fiction genre -->
  • (3rd par) !-- other lifetime honors, perhaps should lead this section -->
  • (ef Note) !-- strictly regional -->
Probably the Awards section should be relocated downward, perhaps as the last prose section prior to the Selected works.
--P64 (talk) 19:02, 24 April 2013 (UTC)

Category:Libertarian socialists[edit]

I don't think this is well-supported. Citing The Dispossessed is not sufficient. Jean-Paul Sartre wrote a play set in hell. That doesn't mean that he believed in it or was even religious. You need to provide real evidence that Le Guin subscribes to that ideology, not just that she writes about the concept and similar themes in her literature. Henrymrx (t·c) 09:33, 8 July 2010 (UTC)

External links cleanup, Oct. 2010[edit]

It's time for a Fall Cleaning of this External links section. WP:EL asks we winnow this list considerably to include only links that expand on specific sections of the prose. Anyone want to help? The Interior (talk) 21:36, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Not an Ursula K. Le Guin expert (love her books, but never really studied them/her) but I'll do what I can. Some of the ELs looks like they'd be better suited to more specific articles - I've just moved two to Lavinia, for example. TFOWR 21:44, 1 October 2010 (UTC)
Moved a few more - to Earthsea and Lavinia. I guess I've got the "low-hanging fruit": I've not done the difficult task - going through the generic one's and making any kind of editorial decision about which should be kept... TFOWR 21:54, 1 October 2010 (UTC)
Removed these links as they are also bios (redundant here):

Lost this one - * Interview with Le Guin in "Vice" magazine as it is already in references. The Interior (talk) 22:14, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Took this one out: * Transcript of interview on Australia's ABC Radio National "The Book Show" program - mainly about Lavinia - May 4, 2008 as it also is about "Lavinia". The Interior (talk) 22:23, 1 October 2010 (UTC)
I'm inclined to remove the audio interviews as well, they aren't quickly accessible, although they do represent content that is difficult to integrate into the article. Hmmm. The Interior (talk) 22:30, 1 October 2010 (UTC)
I have added LeGuin biography at the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame. Her induction ceremony, even the fact, is not yet covered in the article. See #Awards for some more info. --P64 (talk) 20:35, 26 December 2011 (UTC)

Ged Senki - Animation by Goro Miyazaki[edit]

I keep seeing the Author had "mixed feeling" about it. However, she's simply negative about it. If one were to read the whole EarthSea series, and saw Ged Senki, one would have a hard time making a connection at all. "she took issue with its moral delivery and plot execution?" There is no similarity in plot. "Taking an issue" is a great euphemism.

Following is what she wrote about the entirely different plot. "Don't ask the book's author 'Why did they . . . ?' She is wondering too."

"I kept trying to find and follow the story of my books while watching an entirely different story, confusingly enacted by people with the same names as in my story, but with entirely different temperaments, histories, and destinies."

Indeed, she did write, "Much of it is beautiful."

But she is an author. She does not draw, paint, or take pictures. She writes plots. She writes stories. Which is what books are for. And this wiki page is about plots she wrote in her books. Adaptation of her books, or anybody's stories, by definition, should have some resemblance of the stories she had written. Goro Miyazaki's work took characters' names and plot departed greatly from the EarthSea, to the level of incoherence. No wonder Ursula Le Guin wrote, "Much of it was, I thought, incoherent." That also is an understatement.

If one were to assign Luke Skywalker, Anakin Skywalker, Princess Leia, Han Solo to the characters of "Desperate Housewives," would that make it an adaptation of Star Wars? If one were to read through Earthsea series word for word, to the very last word, and watched Ged Senki by Goro Miyazaki, she/he would feel as if she had seen an episode of "Desperate Housewives" with Star Wars characters' names attached to characters. "Mixed feelings" about it? Desparate Housewives could win many awards for "beautiful" cinematography, but frankly, who would care when the plot was so vastly different from Star Wars? I would be surprised if anybody could understand it as the author having a "mixed feeling," after reading her response:

She didn't even like her first response of "It is not my book. It is your movie. It is a good movie" being interpreted as her having liked the animated movie at all. Ursula Le Guin's words like "Anger and disappointment attended the making of this film" did not portray anything like "mixed feelings." How could "Anger and disappointment" change into "Mixed feelings?" That is as much mystery as Earthsea turning into Ged Senki. Hans-Vonluck 03:17, 8 December 2010 (UTC)Hans Von Luck

I did some rewriting of this article, drawing on Le Guin's own blog entry on it - and did my best to present a clearer picture of her reaction the the film which was an appreciation for how it looked and how well it was animated, but great dislike for how it had deviated from her own stories. --ScientificBuccaneer (talk) 10:48, 13 September 2011 (UTC)

Secondary sources vs. original sources[edit]

Why does the article reference the Guardian article (which references Le Guin's letter) rather than reference the source document directly? - Amgine (talk) 18:19, 3 May 2011 (UTC)

Two reasons: That's where I found the information to begin with (or at least the most complete writeup of it at the time); more important, secondary source coverage helps demonstrate the encyclopedic significance of the event in question; primary source coverage does not. Not everything a writer posts on her website is important enough to mention in an encyclopedic biography. More appropriate as an external link, perhaps. Hullaballoo Wolfowitz (talk) 18:44, 3 May 2011 (UTC)


This section is short for a writer of her stature. The middle third is narrowly about her authorial career, which would usually be in a separate section (Writer, Career, etc). Anyway we have no specific timeline for her writing career between age 11 and her first published book at age 35. (Ursula K. Le Guin bibliography gives only one not-much-earlier date, 1959 or age 30.) And we have nothing at all about roughly a decade between 1953 marriage and early 1960s focus on writing.

She has three children. When were they born? Did she raise three children to school age during that missing decade?
(Compare Anne McCaffrey: born 1926, three children born 1950s, focus on writing 1963 after the third entered school. First novel 1967.) --P64 (talk) 20:51, 12 April 2012 (UTC)


What is the basis for claiming that UKL explores issues of "Queer Theory" and, even if true, why is this in the lede? HedgeFundBob (talk) 15:29, 14 April 2012 (UTC)

No idea. I think it was first introduced in thi edit by an IP user (contributions). Obviously, several of her books and shorts deal with gender and identity, including "deviations" like androgynes in Left Hand of Darkness. Most of these books were written before the term "queer theory" was coined, so I think it would be less objectionable to say she explores issues of queerness (perhaps with a link piped to queer theory).-- (talk) 10:06, 15 April 2012 (UTC)
As noone has defended its inclusion, I have now removed the link/concept from the lead.-- (talk) 19:47, 23 April 2012 (UTC)
All of the themes should be removed from the lead. "Themes" is a silly junior high school way of talking about books. You wan't see "themes" in the Shakespeare lead, or in the articles for any other great authors, except perhaps "feminism" for Virginia Woolf. Le Guin calls herself a feminist, but she would not be comfortable with the assertion that her works "explore feminist themes" or any other themes. It's just not the way good writers talk. Gregcaletta (talk) 19:51, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
Instead, we should talk about influences, style, genre etc. with some detail about the kinds of science fiction worlds she creates. Gregcaletta (talk) 19:53, 24 April 2012 (UTC)
I've had a go. What do you think? Gregcaletta (talk) 20:25, 24 April 2012 (UTC)

a book not listed in biblio[edit]

"Buffalo Gals, and other stories of animal prescence" is a collection of short stories and poems about sentient animals and worlds. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:41, 15 April 2012 (UTC)


I see that the United States has voted with Oregon rather than California in giving this a Start rather than B grade. C would be sensible in my opinion, otherwise I agree and suspect that the Bs predate introduction of class C. May she live to see straight Bs? --P64 (talk) 15:44, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

Template: Ursula K. Le Guin[edit]

See {{Ursula K. Le Guin}}. Because there is template talk, even 2012!, and it is strictly appropriate to proceed there, i will do so. Please visit if you have relevant knowledge and interest ... (i hope within the hour to return, delete this sentence, and call for comment more helpfully) --P64 (talk) 15:44, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

Done. --more than an hour mainly because i worked on the talk page too. Therefore I won't say much here. Le Guin expertise may be valuable on a point or two. Anyone with great knowledge of or interest in Category:UKL and its subcategories should visit.
Template talk: Ursula K. Le Guin (whose previous contributors i have notified, for their comments are relevant) --P64 (talk) 18:14, 2 June 2012 (UTC)

Themes section BLP:CITE tag[edit]

I removed the citation request tag from the Themes section as it was placed there in 2008, almost every statement in the section now has a cite, and there is no statements of fact that could be considered libelous. If anyone thinks there are still problems, I think it is better to add cite tags to individual statements. Ashmoo (talk) 11:08, 18 July 2012 (UTC)

The God Beneath the Sea[edit]

An editor has added the novel The God Beneath the Sea as an influence on Le Guin, but I can't find a reliable source to verify the statement. The book was published in 1971, by which time Le Guin had already published A Wizard of Eathsea and The Left Hand of Darkness, so it wasn't a formative influence on her youthful development as a writer. I have removed the claim pending verification from reliable sources that it influenced her mature writing. --Muchness (talk) 22:52, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Woman categories[edit]

The obvious miscategorization of a major writer in subcategories for women writers should be fixed - but not until general discussions like this: Wikipedia:Categories for discussion/Log/2013 April 24#Category:American women novelists have been wrapped up.-- (talk) 06:20, 30 April 2013 (UTC)


I have removed influences= and influenced= from the infobox as these are no longer supported. This means that the contents of these lists are no longer in the article's source. (They weren't visible in the article anyway.) Nick Levine (talk) 18:28, 10 August 2013 (UTC)


I remember reading a book or story by her of a civilization of Lesbians who lived on floating islands. Can anyone tell me the name of that story? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Skysong263 (talkcontribs) 04:08, 29 November 2013 (UTC)

Influenced by Le Guin's work[edit]

I can think of a science fiction series (V 2009) and a major film (Avatar) that remind me of the story Paradises Lost and The Word for World is Forest, respectively. In the first, a civilisation of spaceship-dwellers who adhere to a religion called Bliss, and in the second, an arboreal society who manage to repel colonists. Has anyone found reliable sources where these influences or inspirations have been noted? Totorotroll (talk) 08:01, 25 June 2014 (UTC)