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An Introduction to A wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin : audio guide

Author: Dan StoneDana GioiaOrson Scott CardMichael ChabonMichael DirdaAll authors
Publisher: [Washington, DC] : National Endowment for the Arts, 2008.
Series: Big read.
Edition/Format:   Audiobook on CD : CD audio : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Ursula K. Le Guin's A Wizard of Earthsea (1968) is arguably the most widely admired American fantasy novel of the past fifty years. The book's elegant diction, geographical sweep, and mounting suspense are quite irresistible. Earthsea, composed of an archipelago of many islands, is a land of the imagination, like Oz, Faerie, or the dream-like realm of our unconscious. Earthsea may not be a "real" world but it is one  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: Compact discs
Named Person: Ursula K Le Guin; Ursula K Le Guin
Material Type: Audio book, etc.
Document Type: Sound Recording
All Authors / Contributors: Dan Stone; Dana Gioia; Orson Scott Card; Michael Chabon; Michael Dirda; Pico Iyer; Ursula K Le Guin; Kelly Link; Walter Mosley; R L Stine; KenYatta Rogers; National Endowment for the Arts.; Institute of Museum and Library Services (U.S.); Arts Midwest (Organization : Minneapolis, Minn.)
OCLC Number: 243699021
Notes: Readings of excerpts and critical analysis.
"The Big Read is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts, developed in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services and in cooperation with Arts Midwest"--Container insert.
Cast: Narrated by Dana Gioia ; Orson Scott Card, Michael Chabon, Michael Dirda, Pico Iyer, Ursula K. Le Guin, Kelly Link, Walter Mosley, R.L. Stine, KenYatta Rogers, contributors.
Description: 1 sound disc (44 min., 58 sec.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
Contents: Radio program (28:54) --
Bonus tracks: Le Guin on the anthropological influences of her childhood ; The importance of the ocean in Earthsea ; How wizardry is akin to artistry ; The influence of Taoism on "A Wizard of Earthsea" and Le Guin's creative naming ; Jung, and the Shadow's mysterious presence in the novel ; Ogion gives Ged advice, an excerpt from the novel ; The broad appeal of fantasy fiction ; Final thoughts on Le Guin's style and power of "A Wizard of Earthsea.
Series Title: Big read.
Other Titles: Wizard of Earthsea
Responsibility: written and produced by Dan Stone at the National Endowment for the Arts.

Abstract:

Ursula K. Le Guin's A Wizard of Earthsea (1968) is arguably the most widely admired American fantasy novel of the past fifty years. The book's elegant diction, geographical sweep, and mounting suspense are quite irresistible. Earthsea, composed of an archipelago of many islands, is a land of the imagination, like Oz, Faerie, or the dream-like realm of our unconscious. Earthsea may not be a "real" world but it is one that our souls recognize as meaningful and "true." Actions there possess an epic grandeur, a mythic resonance that we associate with romance and fairy tale. Songs, poems, runes, spells --- words matter a great deal in Earthsea, especially those in the "Old Speech" now spoken only by dragons and wizards. To work a spell one must know an object or person's "true name," which is nothing less than that object or person's fundamental essence. In Earthsea, to know a person's true name is to gain power over him or her. "A mage," we are told, "can control only what is near him, what he can name exactly and wholly." Understanding the nature of things, not possessing power over them, is the ultimate goal of magic. Indeed, the greatest wizards do all they can to avoid using their skill. They recognize that the cosmos relies on equilibrium, appropriateness, and "balance"--- the very name Earthsea suggests such balance --- and that every action bears consequences. To perform magic, then, is to take on a heavy responsibility: One literally disturbs the balance of the universe. The young Ged is born, a fated seventh son, on the island of Gont and, by accident, discovers that he possesses an innate talent for magic. Even as an untrained boy he is able to use his nascent powers to save his town from marauders. Soon, though, he goes to study with gentle Ogion the Silent, whom he foolishly fails to appreciate. Sent to complete his studies at the Archmage's school for wizards on the island of Roke, Ged grows increasingly proud, over-confident, and competitive. To display his much-vaunted skills, he rashly attempts a dangerous spell --- with dire consequences for Earthsea and himself. Hoping to repair the damage he has caused, the chastened Ged embarks on a series of journeys around Earthsea --- and eventually beyond the known world ...

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