The Big Read Blog (Archive)

Le Guin and the Reinvention of Fantasy

Ursula K. Le Guin. Image by Marian Wood Kolisch

Ursula K. Le Guin radically transformed the power and integrity of fantasy fiction when she flipped the idea of race on its head in her landmark work, A Wizard of Earthsea. As writer Walter Mosley observes in our Big Read audio documentary about Earthsea, "This is a world filled with real people, and those people are not defined by race. And that’s the important thing. She just gave these people a voice. Some of them are good. Some of them are bad. But it doesn’t matter really who they are or what they look like."

[audio:http://bigreadblog.arts.gov//audio/ReinventionofFantasy.mp3]

[transcript]

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