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The Left Hand of Darkness (1969)

de Ursula K. Le Guin

Outros autores: Veja a seção outros autores.

Séries: Hainish Cycle (4), Hainish Cycle, Chronological (6)

MembrosResenhasPopularidadeAvaliação médiaMenções
15,742378328 (4.05)842
Fiction. Science Fiction. Winner of the Hugo and Nebula Awards A groundbreaking work of science fiction, The Left Hand of Darkness tells the story of a lone human emissary to Winter, an alien world whose inhabitants can change their gender. His goal is to facilitate Winter's inclusion in a growing intergalactic civilization. But to do so he must bridge the gulf between his own views and those of the completely dissimilar culture that he encounters. Embracing the aspects of psychology, society, and human emotion on an alien world, The Left Hand of Darkness stands as a landmark achievement in the annals of intellectual science fiction.… (mais)
  1. 71
    Ancillary Justice de Ann Leckie (lquilter)
    lquilter: Fans of either Le Guin's Left Hand of Darkness or Leckie's Ancillary Justice should enjoy the other. In common, the pacing, character-centered perspective obscuring aspects of the universe, political machinations, far-future setting, and treatment of ethics; also interesting for its simultaneous foregrounding and backgrounding of gender.… (mais)
  2. 71
    Ammonite de Nicola Griffith (mambo_taxi, mollishka, LamontCranston)
    mambo_taxi: Recommended if the whole "what if we think about gender differently" genre of science fiction appeals to you. Ammonite is much more interesting and better written as well.
    mollishka: Offworlder treks through snow and ice on planet where all of the natives have the same gender.
  3. 40
    The Dispossessed de Ursula K. Le Guin (andomck)
  4. 20
    Shadow Man de Melissa Scott (sandstone78)
    sandstone78: Explorations of gender beyond the gender binary
  5. 10
    Commitment Hour de James Alan Gardner (MyriadBooks)
  6. 10
    Ōoku: The Inner Chambers, Vol. 1 de Fumi Yoshinaga (electronicmemory)
    electronicmemory: Ooku: The Inner Chambers explores a feudal Japan where women rule the country after a devastating plague kills the majority of the male population. Gender roles are inverted, and Ooku: The Inner Chambers follows the story of a young man who becomes a concubine to the Shogun of Japan shortly after she comes to power.… (mais)
  7. 10
    A Door Into Ocean de Joan Slonczewski (Konran)
  8. 10
    A Time of Changes de Robert Silverberg (LamontCranston)
  9. 32
    Embassytown de China Miéville (santhony)
    santhony: Science fiction as seen through the prism of anthropology and sociology.
  10. 10
    Aniquilação (Comando Sul Livro 1) de Jeff VanderMeer (andomck)
    andomck: Scientists exploring an alien environment
  11. 10
    Four Ways to Forgiveness de Ursula K. Le Guin (sturlington)
  12. 00
    Dark Water's Embrace de Stephen Leigh (MyriadBooks)
  13. 11
    Lord of Light de Roger Zelazny (WildMaggie)
  14. 00
    Glory Season de David Brin (ultimatebookwyrm)
    ultimatebookwyrm: Two books in the nature of a thought experiment with regard to gender and social construction. Slow, methodical reads that aren't afraid to say a few things that won't be popular.
  15. 11
    The Godmakers de Frank Herbert (themulhern)
    themulhern: Two radically different novels about the business of reclaiming/rediscovering/reuniting with planets that were lost during a great stellar war.
  16. 35
    Brave New World de Aldous Huxley (andomck)
    andomck: Science Fiction involving "unorthodox" procreation
1960s (32)
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Mostrando 1-5 de 378 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS is my first experience with Ursula K. Le Guin. She is my son's favorite author, and he presented me with this particular novel for Christmas. He felt it was the one that was closest to reflecting some of my values. Now that I've finished at least one Le Guin novel, I am not sure she is the author for me.

THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS starts slowly. While the intention is for it to sound like a travel brochure, it doesn't make for the most engaging of reads. Our main narrator, Genly Ai, is self-centered, misogynistic, and pompous. As his eyes provide our only look at the perpetually frozen planet Gethen and its inhabitants, his biases have a way of sneaking into your subconscious, as do his deliberate or unintentional cultural misunderstandings.

The first half of the novel contains nothing but his commentary on Winter's population and is told in such dry language that it took all my effort to stay awake while reading. Plus, for someone who was sent to the planet as an observer and to entice the natives to join the planetary collective, Ai proves to be less observant and a lot more judgemental than he should be. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Ai's refusal to accept the ambisexuality and complete lack of gender roles that are the hallmark of Gethenians.

While THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS is somewhat of a philosophical experiment regarding gender roles' impact on society, the experiment suffers specifically because of Ai's biases affecting his observations. Ai does not attempt to understand a society without gender norms. He continues to categorize those Gethenians he meets as either female or male. And because he has such a rigid, archaic idea of female gender roles, those categorizations immediately impact how he interacts with others. We can only surmise that the Gethenians' lack of war or sex crimes is a direct result of their gender fluidity. There is not enough concrete evidence to support this hypothesis, and all Ai provides is a continued opinion that becoming war-like would promote the Gethenians to a more advanced race.

Once the story becomes less a travelogue and more an actual story, complete with action and adventure, THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS improves in readability and enjoyment. I particularly enjoyed those few chapters told through Estravan's point of view. Not only did it give me a break from Ai's one-sidedness, but those chapters also helped solidify some of the cultural differences Ai was trying to explain.

I can't say that I enjoyed THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS, but I can appreciate what Ms. Le Guin was trying to accomplish with it. In many ways, the novel feels prescient as discussions of gender fluidity and transgender continue to dominate politics today. For me, however, the novel is too philosophical, too esoteric for my tastes. I like escapist fiction, and at least half of THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS is not escapist at all. It demands your undivided attention while reading and dedicated analysis after reading. My son loves that sort of thing. I prefer to read something a lot less intellectual. ( )
  jmchshannon | Feb 13, 2024 |
This was such a fantastic book. Powerfully relevant today regarding gender.

It's about an envoy to a planet where gender changes for people continuously throughout their lives. The book explores this in such a beautiful way... And by the end, when other humans like the envoy, (and us) arrive on the planet, they have been there so long that these arrivals feel alien. A profound comment about how we can normalise something new and different, given engagement and a curious mind. ( )
  JasonMehmel | Feb 9, 2024 |
What a weekend, getting to storm through this. I think the blurb doesn't really do it justice. Yes, this is a book about a planet where people are ambisexual, becoming male or female during each mating cycle. But I think, perhaps primed by Ursula's introduction, that it's much more an exploration about how we view each other and how we interact, not just on a gendered or sexed basis but in our whole beings. I'll pick out a few moments that grabbed me:

p75 - "The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty". Gethen is home to a cult/non-religion of the Handdara, who prize ignorance, to "ignore the abstraction, to hold fast to the thing" (p 228). This is shocking in part because of anxieties of the unknown (both my own and our societal); I think we trade on certainty a lot and the Handdarata are pushing a view that says uncertainty is actually the root of all our thought and action. Focus on uncertainty isn't new, but I'd kinda felt that it was mostly limited to recognising that some amount of it must be dealt with healthily, not actually fundamental or desired. The second line, which is referring to Estraven's desire not to accept the concept of nationhood, I take as a commitment to the real, whatever that might be, but also a focus on feeling over ideology, a . Not a philosopher, don't know who's already trodden this path, but it feels scary and also reassuring to consider what it would mean to take your actions, like Estraven, almost entirely from what you feel rather than what you think.

p101 - "One is respected and judged only as a human being. It is an appalling experience." It's interesting reading this 1969 text in a day where nonbinary genders are frequently discussed and gender confirmation is an increasingly recognised treatment. Yet despite our critiques of the gender construct, it still resonates to think about how difficult life can be when you don't have your gendered social personae to fall back on. Genly and the Investigators speculate about the effects that ending the binary has had on Gethenian society, from the level of aggression (no war), the greater focus on matters of import (Oscar Wilde: "Everything in the world is about sex, except sex"), the elimination of rape, the reduction in binary views about anything at all. But Therem notes that the I-you dualism is the older binary by far, and still very much present on Gethen. Instead, I think that the exploratory discussions of nonbinary gender and sexuality (homosexuality is noticeably missing on Gethen, unfortunately) in present society actually make the same metaphorical point that [b:The Left Hand of Darkness|118028|The Left Hand of Darkness (Hainish Cycle #4)|Ursula K. Le Guin|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1519082793s/118028.jpg|817527] is making. For one, they prove that the binary is illusive; in many significant ways and places we were already somewhat androgynous. Taking the next step; it does feel appalling, terrifying, to abandon our gendered crutches. Most can't or don't want to, I certainly can't, at least not completely. But the striking thing about the Gethenians is just how normal they are, how particularly non-alien. They live and love and cry and die, and they show us that humanity is not gender, that being judged only as a human being is something we can actually do. ( )
  Zedseayou | Jan 30, 2024 |
Slow but beautifully written ( )
  mslibrarynerd | Jan 13, 2024 |
Prose and plot were nice.
Overall, the story was unsatisfactory and poorly paced: a third of the book was spent on a boring journey that did not particularly increase any relationships.
Not recommended. ( )
  MXMLLN | Jan 12, 2024 |
Mostrando 1-5 de 378 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Bei dem Roman "Die linke Hand der Dunkelheit" handelt es sich um nicht weniger als die erste Geschlechter-Utopie: Die Menschen auf dem Planeten Winter, die Gethianer, sind vier Fünftel ihres Erwachsenenlebens geschlechtslos, nur während der sogenannten Kemmer entwickeln sie vorübergehend männliche oder weibliche Geschlechtsorgane, wobei sie vorher weder wissen, welches Geschlecht sie annehmen werden, noch Einfluss darauf haben. Auch haben sie keine bestimmte Vorliebe für eines der Geschlechter. Sind sie nach dem Verständnis des auf ihrem Planeten gelandeten männlichen Terraners die meiste Zeit ihres Lebens "hermaphroditische Neutren", so sehen sie sich selbst als "Potentiale" oder "Integrale". Der lebenslänglich auf ein Geschlecht festgelegte und ständig sexualisierte Terraner hingegen ist für sie ein "sexuelles Monstrum". In einer Gesellschaft wie der gethenianischen gibt es keine Vergewaltigung und natürlich keinen Ödipus-Mythos. Da kein Individuum weiß, ob es sich in der nächsten Kemmer-Phase zur Frau oder zum Mann entwickelt, jedeR Mutter des einen und Vater eines anderen Kindes sein kann, ist die gethenianische Gesellschaft "in ihren alltäglichen Funktionen und ihrer Kontinuität frei von Konflikten, die ihren Ursprung in der Sexualität haben", denn "jeder kann alles machen". Überhaupt, so heißt es an einer Stelle, ist "die Tendenz zum Dualismus, die das Denken der Menschen so beherrscht, auf Winter weit weniger stark ausgeprägt". Eine solche Gesellschaft vorzustellen, ist zumindest das Anliegen Le Guins, doch gelingt es ihr nur bedingt. Zwar sind Denken und Gemeinschaft nicht durch die Geschlechterdichotomie bestimmt, doch ist "alles [...] dem Somer-Kemmer-Zyklus unterworfen", einer anderen Dichotomie also.
adicionado por Indy133 | editarliteraturkritik.de, Rolf Löchel (Jul 1, 2000)
 
An instant classic
adicionado por bgibbard | editarMinneapolis Star-Tribune
 

» Adicionar outros autores (4 possíveis)

Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Le Guin, Ursula K.autor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Abelenda, FranciscoTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Altuğ, ÜmitTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Anders, Charlie JanePosfácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Andrade, FátimaTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Aymerich i Lemos, SílviaTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Živković, ZoranTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Bailhache, JeanTraductionautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Baranyi, GyulaTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Chambers, BeckyIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Dillon, DianeArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Dillon, LeoArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Ebel, AlexArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Edwards, LesArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Erőss, LászlóPosfácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
芙佐, 小尾翻訳autor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Franzén, TorkelTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Freas, FrankIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Freas, Laura BrodianIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Gaiman, NeilIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Gaughan, JackIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Gaughan, JackArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Guidall, GeorgeNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Heinecke, JanArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Horne, MatildeTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
서정록,autor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Jęczmyk, LechTł.autor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Jones, TobyNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Kirby, JoshArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Koubová, JanaTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Kuczka, PéterPosfácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Laretei, HeldurIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Lemen, VanessaIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Lueg, Lena FongDesigner da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Lupton, DavidIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Malaguti, U.Traduttoreautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Malaguti, UgoTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
McArdle, JamesNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Miéville, ChinaIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Mitchell, DavidPrefácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Nölle, KarenTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Nyytäjä, KaleviTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Pagetti, CarloPrefácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Palmiste, EndelIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Reinsalu, TiinaIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Stokesberry, RuthNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Stuyter, M.K.Tradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Thole, C. A. M.Artista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Vinge, Joan D.Prefácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
White, TimArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
WoodroffeArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Тогоева, И.пер.autor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Цветаев, Ю.Аил.autor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Гаков, В.сост.autor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado

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From the Archives of Hain. Transcript of Ansible Document 01-01101-934-2-Gethen: To the Stabile on Ollul: Report from Genly Ai, First Mobile on Gethen/Winter, Hainish Cycle 93, Ekumenical Year 1490-97.

I'll make my report as if I told a story, for I was taught as a child on my homeworld that Truth is a matter of the imagination. The soundest fact may fail or prevail in the style of its telling: like that singular organic jewel of our seas, which grows brighter as one woman wears it and, worn by another, dulls and goes to dust. Facts are no more solid, coherent, round, and real than pearls are. But both are sensitive.
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Light is the left hand of darkness
and darkness the right hand of light.
Two are one, life and death, lying together like lovers in kemmer,
like hands joined together,
like the end and the way.
Alone, I cannot change your world. But I can be changed by it. Alone, I must listen, as well as speak. Alone, the relationship I finally make, if I make one, is not impersonal and not only political: it is individual, it is personal, it is both more or less than political. Not We and They; not I and It; but I and Thou.
"Praise then darkness and Creation unfinished,"
A friend. What is a friend in a world where any friend may be a lover at a new phase of the moon? Not I, locked in my virility: no friend to Therem Harth or any other of his race. Neither man nor woman, neither and both, cyclic, lunar, metamorphosing under the hand's touch, changelings in the human cradle, they were no flesh of mine, no friends; no love between us.
The unknown, the unforetold, the unproven, that is what life is based on. Ignorance is the ground of thought. Unproof is the ground of action. If it were proven that there is no God there would be no religion. . . . But also if it were proven that there is a God, there would be no religion. . . . The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty: not knowing what comes next.
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Fiction. Science Fiction. Winner of the Hugo and Nebula Awards A groundbreaking work of science fiction, The Left Hand of Darkness tells the story of a lone human emissary to Winter, an alien world whose inhabitants can change their gender. His goal is to facilitate Winter's inclusion in a growing intergalactic civilization. But to do so he must bridge the gulf between his own views and those of the completely dissimilar culture that he encounters. Embracing the aspects of psychology, society, and human emotion on an alien world, The Left Hand of Darkness stands as a landmark achievement in the annals of intellectual science fiction.

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