expanding the scope of imagination

In my twitter feed this morning I came cross the brainpickings of the day, entitled: ‘Ursula K. Le Guin on Power, Oppression, Freedom, and How Imaginative Storytelling Expands our Scope for the Possible.’ No other book has expanded my scope for the possible than her famous ‘The Left Hand of Darkness,’ so I had to read on.

The article examines excerpts from her many magnificent pieces from Le Guin’s work: ‘The Wave of the Mind: Talks and Essays on the Writer, the Reader, and the Imagination.’

Le Guin argues that the most powerful tool for a society to better itself is the imagination- the ability and willingness to imagine alternatives as we know it. She describes storytelling as a powerful use of the imagination in expanding our scope for the possible…

‘To me the most important thing is not to offer any specific hope of betterment by, by offering an imagined but persuasive alternative reality, to dislodge my mind, and so the reader’s mind, from the lazy, amorous habit of thinking that the way we live is the only way people can life. It is the inertia that allows the institutions to continue unquestioned…

The exercise of imagination is dangerous to those who profit from the way things are because it has the power to show that the way things are is not permanent, not universal, not necessary. Having that real though limited power to put established institutions into question, imaginative literature has also the responsibility of power…

The storyteller is the truthteller.’

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s