Ursula Le Guin: Inner Preacher vs Inner Teacher

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“Art transforms us not with what it contains but with what it creates in us”. Author Ursula La Guin challenges the notion of imbuing her work with meaning, and instead suggests that meaning is created by the reader. Instead of trying to convey a certain message or truth, La Guin argues that such messages are revealed to her only as she writes, but do not drive her to write in the first place. A piece of writing, she believes, can shape its audience in profoundly different ways, and she leaves space for it to do so. Distinguishing between her Inner Teacher and Inner Preacher, La Guin strives to follow her Inner Teacher, who “is subtle and humble because she hopes to be understood”, unlike her Inner Preacher who aims to tell others what to do.