Idea, Imagination and Invention: The Life and Work of Ursula K. Le Guin

Exhibit in the Special Collections and University Archives

Dec. 2016 - March 2017

The Life and Work of Ursula K. Le Guin exhibit poster

One of Oregon's most celebrated literary figures, Ursula K. Le Guin (1929- ) is a remarkable poet, essayist, critic, translator, and storyteller. In all these forms, she never ceases to challenge our expectations about “words, women, places,” as the subtitle to her essay collection Dancing at the Edge of the World puts it. Her many awards testify to her literary skill and deep humanity, and her work has inspired a generation of writers by showing how the unreal can comment on (and incorporate) the real, and how the future can serve as a powerful metaphor for the present. Her writing combines perspectives from anthropology, feminism, science, history, utopian thought, and Taoist philosophy, all wrapped up in convincing and compelling narratives of exploration and self-discovery.

The University of Oregon Libraries is honored to hold Le Guin's papers in our special collections. This exhibit of collection materials from the Ursula K. Le Guin Papers features original, first-draft manuscripts of such classic works as The Left Hand of DarknessThe Dispossessed, and The Lathe of Heaven. Also on display are a selection of Le Guin's family photographs dating back to her early childhood; letters to and from editors, publishers, and fellow writers; literary awards including Hugo and Nebula trophies; and some of the author's hand-drawn maps and original artwork.

The exhibit is open to the public during Special Collections and University Archives' hours of operation.