Harvard Book Club

Discuss The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula Le Guin

Date:     Tuesday, January 12th, 2021

Time:     7:30 pm Minneapolis Time

Title:      The Left Hand of Darkness

Author:  Ursula Le Guin

For catalog purposes Left Hand is  classified as Science Fiction (SF), but please read on.  

Originally published in 1969 and with numerous printings, Le Guin wrote in the 1976 edition "..... Left Hand  is a "thought experiment" meaning it is not to predict the future, but to describe a reality, in this case a society without men or women, a world where individuals share the biological and emotional makeup of both sexes ..., and sometimes not....Left Hand   uses imaginary situations to comment on human behaviors and relationships."  Again to quote L Guin upon hearing that the book would be issued in hardcover and questioning that decision......."Left Hand looked to me like a natural flop, its style is not the journalistic one, its structure is complex, it moves slowly, and even if everybody is called he, it is not about men,  .....that's a big dose of hard lit, heresy and chutzpah..."

In that regard Le Guin significantly underestimated the critical reception, 

"Left Hand" has been the recipient of numerous awards  in the SF category as well in general categories recognizing "......aesthetic connoisseurship." 

The critic Professor Harold Bloom included Left Hand in his "Canon of Western Literature"  much can be written about that book as well.

Questions?  marden@umn.edu


Noteworthy, the Classic Fiction Book Club has expanded to include non-classics and non-fiction and is now called the Harvard Book Club.

E-mail admin@harvardmn.org or phone 612-871-2914 to register.  Zoom info will be given when you register.