University of Oregon

2015 Le Guin Fellow: adrienne maree brown

adrienne maree brown, an independent science fiction scholar and a social justice activist, was chosen as the 2015-16 Le Guin Feminist Science Fiction Fellow. She lives in Detroit, Michigan, and is the co-editor of Octavia’s Brood: Science Fiction from Social Justice Movements, published in March 2015 by AK Press, San Francisco. With the support of the Le Guin Fellowship, brown plans to turn her attention to the work of Ursula K. Le Guin in order to create a “Le Guin Sci Fi and Social Justice Reader,” which she described as a set of guiding questions and responsive essays on Le Guin’s work. “I plan to look at the characters of her stories, many of whom operate in a world of divergent gender and sexual norms, for guidance,” she said. “As we move beyond gay marriage and Caitlyn Jenner, I am particularly curious about the kinds of love and relationships that are strategic for our collective evolution.”

brown explained that one of her areas of independent scholarship is something she calls “Pleasure Activism—the study of how issues of justice intersect with experiences of pleasure. So much of our work for social justice involves uplifting reasons for people to feel fear and guilt as a way to motivate behavioral changes. I have been examining what happens when we instead put forward compelling visions for the future, particularly in the form of visionary fiction. Le Guin does this at a prolific rate, with grace and ease. Her messages don’t feel didactic, but exploratory, invitational. She is one of our tremendous and rare teachers, and I want to produce a literary series that uplifts her as a visionary fiction icon.”

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