Welcome to the LitCharts study guide on Octavia E. Butler's Speech Sounds. Created by the original team behind SparkNotes, LitCharts are the world's best literature guides.
Speech Sounds: Introduction
Speech Sounds: Plot Summary
Speech Sounds: Detailed Summary & Analysis
Speech Sounds: Themes
Speech Sounds: Quotes
Speech Sounds: Characters
Speech Sounds: Symbols
Speech Sounds: Theme Wheel
Brief Biography of Octavia E. Butler
Historical Context of Speech Sounds
Other Books Related to Speech Sounds
- Full Title: Speech Sounds
- When Written: 1983
- Where Written: Pasadena, CA
- When Published: 1983
- Literary Period: Post-modernism
- Genre: Science fiction, speculative fiction, Afrofuturism
- Setting: Between Los Angeles and Pasadena (California) in an imagined future, sometime in the 1980s
- Climax: Rye discovers two young children who are able to speak
- Antagonist: While the story has no single antagonist, Rye often finds herself struggling against people who have been most impaired by the illness. The illness itself could also be considered the story’s antagonist.
- Point of View: Third-person omniscient
Extra Credit for Speech Sounds
Prizewinner. In 1984, “Speech Sounds” won Octavia Butler her first Hugo Award for Best Short Story. This award helped her rise to prominence as a writer.