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The Found and the Lost: The Collected Novellas of Ursula K. Le Guin
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The Found & the Lost discussion > "The Matter Of Seggri" by Ursula K. Le Guin

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message 1: by [deleted user] (last edited Mar 10, 2018 06:55PM) (new)

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

" The Matter Of Seggri " by Ursula K. Le Guin

(Originally published 1994. The Birthday of the World and Other Stories)

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 Le Guin's Hainish universe. This one has a strange, I guess I could call it matriarchy. Women have fairly normal lives, get all the education, do all the work. Men are kept around for breeding, isolated in "castles" where they spend their time bullying each other and playing manly games.

It's an interesting approach to a novella: there's a pair of bracketing stories: the first details a "first contact", in which the male member of the team is lost into the castle. And a second contact team of all females. But the bulk of the storytelling is left to two internal short stories, one a romantic fiction written by a female, and another biographical story written by a "liberated" male. Together those two stories provide some overview of Se-ri culture.


message 3: by Andrea (new) - added it

Andrea | 2663 comments While most of the stories in this anthology (at least to the point I got to) have been about feminist concerns, where women are the downtrodden and how they have to fight for equality, I liked how the tables are turned here. Not because I enjoyed seeing the guys being treated as livestock, but to make the point that equality goes both ways.

I liked how it was a short story that was itself a collection of short stories, covering multiple points of view and across time, and yet remaining in total, only about 50 pages. Unlike the Werel stories, that also achieve the same effect when taking together, but are a few hundred pages long combined, which resulted in it feeling like too much time spent with that society.


message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

Andrea wrote: "I liked how the tables are turned here. Not because I enjoyed seeing the guys being treated as livestock, but to make the point that equality goes both ways...."

As I read it, the guys get to lounge around all day, play sports & games, get all the sex they can handle, and are supported by the workforce. Except for the sex part, it's a lot like retirement :)


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