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The Found & the Lost discussion > "Another Story Or A Fisherman Of The Inland Sea" by Ursula K. Le Guin

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

This is our discussion of the short story....

" Another Story Or A Fisherman Of The Inland Sea " by Ursula K. Le Guin

(Originally published 1994. A Fisherman of the Inland Sea)

From the anthology The Found and the Lost: The Collected Novellas of Ursula K. Le Guin by Ursula K. Le Guin. See The Found and the Lost anthology discussion hub for more info on the anthology and pointers to discussion of its other stories.


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

Another planet in the Hainish universe: Interesting culture in which marriage is a foursome of two women and two men, largely bisexual, though Le Guin doesn't make much use of that in the story..

A young man decides to go off to the great university at Hain to pursue a career in science, leaving his childhood sweetheart behind. His studies in "transilience" give him a second chance to make that choice.

SPOILERS

I thought it was interesting that Le Guin created a story that used all the usual elements of time travel stories, including the inevitable facing of paradoxes, and yet the story isn't really about time travel at all.

It did seem to me that the protagonist-narrator, Hideo, got to at his cake and have it too. It's not like in his second time around through time he abandoned his first choice; he already lived a decade following that path, and then he got to go back and follow the alternate path.


message 3: by Andrea (new)

Andrea | 2668 comments G33z3r wrote: "Another planet in the Hainish universe: Interesting culture in which marriage is a foursome of two women and two men, largely bisexual, though Le Guin doesn't make much use of that in the story..
..."


The paradox issue wasn't really covered at all. At the moment he went through time, he had in his past already seen the alternate timeline. But then he changed that, so that timeline never happened, but then how is it in his past (and the current timeline's future, which was the trigger for the time travel event in the first place)? Maybe it's one of those timeline theories where at every moment you spawn off another parallel universe that continues along on it's own, thus you can never have a paradox.

I liked how it tied in with the Dispossessed though (which was the only Hain story I'd read up till now)


message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

Andrea wrote: "The paradox issue wasn't really covered at all..."

i thought she gave a cursory treatment to most of the usual angles. She seeds a foreshadowing early with the garbled ansible message, which we may later presume is the universes way of avoiding a paradox, but then the story seems to settle into branching timelines.
A paradox?
A paradox,
A most ingenious paradox!
We’ve quips and quibbles heard in flocks,
But none to beat this paradox!
See, it even ties into our On Stranger Tides discussion! :)


message 5: by Brendan (new)

Brendan (mistershine) | 743 comments I thought it was an "infinite parallel universes" situation.


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