Lavinia has ratings and reviews. Lyn said: Is it possible that Ursula K. LeGuin can write a bad book?I guess anything is possible: I could. In The Aeneid, Vergil’s hero fights to claim the king’s daughter, Lavinia, with whom he is destined to found an empire. Lavinia herself never speaks a word. Now. Lavinia [Ursula K. Le Guin] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers .

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Why do Americans write “Vergil” and the British write “Virgil”?

Lavinia by Ursula le Guin: review

In a richly imagined, beautiful new novel, an acclaimed writer gives an epic heroine her voice. No doubt someone with my name, Lavinia, did exist, but she may have been so different from my own idea of myself, or my poet’s idea of me, that it only confuses me to think about her. Lavinia by Ursula le Guin: I have recently been following a thread of personal interest, reading some books that give a voice to minor female characters from classic literature. It tells of all the life that happens between “the glorious battles”, the farming, the herding, hunting and reading of the auspices, caring for the hearth gods, weaving, songs and observances — the reasons we war in the first place.

This page was last edited on 10 Decemberat Le Guin has a true gift for evoking the mysterious echoes of a far distant mythic past. Jul 25, Laila rated it really liked it. It may actually motivate me to reread the Latin Aeneid sometime soon-ish if I can find my old bookand to not be full of fiery rage when I do.

The lady simply has a way with words.

The princess with flaming hair

Feb 01, Susana rated it really liked it Shelves: Well, it should be taking into account the background of the story and the source of the writing. Her older, wiser, voice as a narrator comes from not from an udsula woman, but from her story. I’m a huge fan of Ursula K. Her interest in non-Western philosophies was reflected in works such as ‘Solitude’ and ‘The Telling’ but even more interesting are her imagined societies, often mixing traits extracted from her profound knowledge of anthropology acquired from growing up with her father, the famous anthropologist, Alfred Kroeber.


Her achievement is to complement the original epic so distinctively, as if in a dialogue or dance with the poet who inspired her. My poor teacher tried again lf again to calm me down, to remind me of the historical context and cultural differences that should have been informing my reading of the poem, to point out the elegance of the scansion or the cleverness of various poetic devices, but I just didn’t buy it. I was wondering how I managed not to have any knowledge of Latium, honestly, I was disappointed in myself, and was relieved to read in the Afterword that there is indeed little to no record of the original Latins.

Her Aeneas is a hero. Le Guin understands the character well enough that nothing of her doings after the cutoff of the first story seem unreal. If you already know your Virgil, you may find Le Guin sending you back for a fresh look. LeGuin claims to have been inspired directly by the Aeneid, rather than making a feminist polemic a la The Penelopiad but Lavinia laments her powerlessness in a Patriarchal society. Le Guin Beauty by Sheri S. Some may find Le Guin’s world a little lavknia In other words, hers was a story that benefited greatly from buin told with care and respect.

Lavinia by Ursula K. Le Guin

This retelling of Virgil’s Aeneid from Lavina’s point of view is blissfully mythic. Told with unassuming but descriptive language, and with her inimitable style, Lavinia was a pleasure to read.


I absorbed enough to ace the AP test, but the Aeneid left a bad taste in my mouth.

Unlike Aeneas or Dido or Virgil, Lavinia does not enter the afterlife; her existence fades into that of an owl. View all 6 comments.

All very low probabilities. It is an autumn day, it is a fine glass of wine. Topics Ursula K Le Guin.

Review: Lavinia by Ursula Le Guin | Books | The Guardian

This appears to be a refutation of Descartes’ famous “cogito ergo sum” as if any more such were required. This is really the element of this story that I will Is it possible that Ursula K.

But it ended up kind of dragging for me. Lavinia emerges from this text with palpable dignity, as a queen, a wife and widow of a king, and a mother of kings and emperors.

Lavinia has a certain self-awareness as a literary creation, a character who owes her existence to the imaginative inner life of Virgil, but also comes and goes in some realm outside his direct grasp. When I got to college and read the Greek epics I was a bit better at detaching myself from the content laviniz the poems so that I could appreciate their language and structure, but I still had to work hard to keep a lid on my roiling feminist ire.

I wanted more balance! I wonder if LeGuin had that in mind? It is a book of bittersweet sorrows, of shared joys.