One Earth, One People

The Mythopoeic Fantasy Series of Ursula K. Le Guin, Lloyd Alexander, Madeleine L’Engle and Orson Scott Card


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About the Book

This work presents the genre of mythopoeic fantasy from a holistic perspective, arguing that this central genre of fantasy literature is largely misunderstood as a result of decades of incomplete and reductionist literary studies. The author asserts that mythopoeic fantasy is not only the most complete literary expression of a worldview based on the existence of supernatural or spiritual powers but that the genre is in a unique position to transform social consciousness with a renewed emphasis on anticipating the future. The author lays out theoretical foundations for his argument in the first four chapters and then demonstrates how the works of fantasy authors Ursula K. LeGuin, Lloyd Alexander, Madeleine L’Engle, and Orson Scott Card exemplify his argument in the remaining four chapters.

About the Author(s)

Marek Oziewicz is the Marguerite Henry Professor of Children’s and Young Adult Literature at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.

Bibliographic Details

Marek Oziewicz

Foreword by Brian Attebery

Series Editors Donald E. Palumbo and C.W. Sullivan III

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 271
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2008
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3135-9
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Critical Explorations in Science Fiction and Fantasy

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments      v
Foreword by Brian Attebery      1
Introduction      3

1. The Confusion over Fantasy and the Confusions of the Theoretical Era      13
2. Reductionist and Holistic Criticisms in a Battle of Worldviews      39
3. Mythopoeic Fantasy as a Modern Genre      65
4. Twentieth-Century Rehabilitation of Myth and the Search for a New Story      91
5. Rediscovering Harmony: Ursula K. Le Guin’s Earthsea Sequence (1964–2001)      118
6. Bridging the Past with the Future: Lloyd Alexander’s Prydain Chronicles (1964–1973)      144
7. Integrating Science and Spirituality: Madeleine L’Engle’s Time Quartet (1962–1986)      171
8. Reconnecting with Nature: Orson Scott Card’s Tales of Alvin Maker (1987–2003)      198

Conclusion      225
Chapter Notes      229
Works Cited      245
Index      259

Book Reviews & Awards

  • Winner, Mythopoeic Scholarship Award in Myth and Fantasy Studies—The Mythopoeic Society
  • “Recommended”—Choice
  • “The greatest strength is the extensive research underlying the work”—Mythlore
  • “Recommend”—SFRA Review
  • “An important contribution…valuable”—Science Fiction Studies