The left hand of darkness
Ursula K. Le Guin

The left hand of darkness

1st ed.

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Published by Harper & Row in New York .
Written in English.

About the Book

Comment by Kim Stanley Robinson, on The Guardian's website:
The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K Le Guin (1969)

One of my favorite novels is The Left Hand of Darkness, by Ursula K Le Guin. For more than 40 years I've been recommending this book to people who want to try science fiction for the first time, and it still serves very well for that. One of the things I like about it is how clearly it demonstrates that science fiction can have not only the usual virtues and pleasures of the novel, but also the startling and transformative power of the thought experiment.

In this case, the thought experiment is quickly revealed: "The king was pregnant," the book tells us early on, and after that we learn more and more about this planet named Winter, stuck in an ice age, where the humans are most of the time neither male nor female, but with the potential to become either. The man from Earth investigating this situation has a lot to learn, and so do we; and we learn it in the course of a thrilling adventure story, including a great "crossing of the ice". Le Guin's language is clear and clean, and has within it both the anthropological mindset of her father Alfred Kroeber, and the poetry of stories as magical things that her mother Theodora Kroeber found in native American tales. This worldly wisdom applied to the romance of other planets, and to human nature at its deepest, is Le Guin's particular gift to us, and something science fiction will always be proud of. Try it and see – you will never think about people in quite the same way again.

Edition Notes

Originally published by Walker, New York.

Classifications

Dewey Decimal Class
813/.54
Library of Congress
PZ4.L518 Le 1980, PS3562.E42 Le 1980

The Physical Object

Pagination
x, 213 p. ;
Number of pages
213

ID Numbers

Open Library
OL4401559M
ISBN 10
0060125748
LC Control Number
79002652
Library Thing
23117
Goodreads
365704

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History

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October 12, 2010 Edited by WorkBot merge works
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October 16, 2009 Edited by WorkBot add edition to work page
April 1, 2008 Created by an anonymous user Initial record created, from Scriblio MARC record.