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Non-Fiction > The Language of the Night

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

A collection of her essays, notable (to me) for collecting her introductions to many of her early books: Rocannon's World, The Word for World is Forest, etc. These introductions were written for later editions, often after a long passages of time, and they are a really interesting glimpse into the writing process. The introduction to The Word for World is Forest is especially of note.

message 2: by Terence (new)

Terence (spocksbro) Speak of the devil, you saved me the trouble of starting a new thread: While rereading "From Elfland to Poughkeepsie," which is part of this collection, I happened to glance through "The Stalin in the Soul" and came across this passage which hit me as even more important in this era of media concentration and cultural stupidity:

"But our censors are not just the publishers and editors and distributors and publicists and book clubs and syndicated reviewers. They are the writers, and the readers. They are you and me. We censor ourselves. We writers fail to write seriously, because we're afraid - for good cause - that it won't sell. And as readers we fail to discriminate, we accept passively what is for sale in the marketplace; we buy it, read it, and forget it. We are mere 'viewers' and 'consumers,' not readers at all. Reading is not a passive reaction, but an action, involving the mind, the emotions, and the will. To accept trashy books because they are 'best-sellers' is the same thing as accepting adulterated food, ill-made machines, corrupt government, and military and corporative tyranny, and praising them, and calling them the American Way of Life or the American Dream. It is a betrayal of reality. Every betrayal, every lie accepted, leads to the next betrayal and the next lie." (p. 223 of my edition)

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