The Dispossessed


Ursula K. Le Guin

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The Dispossessed Terms


The people of the planet Urras, a paradise-like world of plenty which is marred by deep social and economic inequality. The Urrasti upper classes enjoy lives of wealth and privilege, while the lower classes, brimming… (read full term analysis)


The people of the planet Anarres, the moon of Urras. Anarresti defected to the desert-climate moon almost two centuries ago, shepherded there by their leader Odo, who envisioned an anarcho-syndicalist s society free of the… (read full term analysis)


The language spoken on Anarres, which is free of any possessive language. For instance, an Anarresti would never say “my head hurts”; they would say “the head hurts.” (read full term analysis)


The language spoken on Urras. (read full term analysis)


Odonians, an anarchist group originally from Urras, formed over one hundred and fifty years under their compassionate and idealistic leader, Odo. Eventually the Odonians defected to Anarres, where they were able to develop and put… (read full term analysis)
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The Anarresti refer to the moneyed, land-owning inhabitants of their twin planet Urras as “propertarians,” and often use the word to speak derogatively or accusatorily about someone who has displayed an egoistic or selfish thought… (read full term analysis)


A member of an Anarresti syndicate. In place of a government or specialized professions, Anarres is organized into syndicates which each are responsible for a different aspect of supporting Anarresti life. Anarresti rotate through many… (read full term analysis)


An Anarresti unit of time measurement consisting of a period of ten days. (read full term analysis)


A kind of tree which grows on the desert planet of Anarres. Holum trees provide grain, wood, food, alcohol, and fibers for making clothing and paper. (read full term analysis)


The race of the Urrasti and Anarresti people. Cetians are, from Le Guin’s descriptions, humanoid, but are hairier and taller than Terrans or Hainish. (read full term analysis)


Terrans are humans from Earth. Their world has been largely decimated and plummeted into crisis, and the population, which peaked at nine billion, has dropped to less than half a billion. (read full term analysis)


Another race within the galaxy of The Dispossessed. The Hainish are known throughout space as altruists, and it is due to their charity that the decimated populations of Earth—or Terra—were able to survive their… (read full term analysis)


The Division of Labor office on Anarres, which assigns individuals to syndicates and oversees rotation of roles. (read full term analysis)


The Production and Distribution Coordination, a coordinating system for all syndicates, federatives, and individuals who do productive work on Anarres. Shevek, Bedap, Takver, and their group of friends slowly begin to realize… (read full term analysis)


The opposite of an anarchist. Shevek refers to many Urrasti as “archists,” who attempt to stamp out revolution and contrarian thought. (read full term analysis)


A-Io is the capitalist state on Urras, and their people are the Ioti. (read full term analysis)


Thu is the socialist state on Urras, and their people are the Thuvians. (read full term analysis)


A device envisioned by an Urrasti engineer which would allow for instantaneous communication throughout the galaxy. The engineer releases the designs for the ansible in an academic paper, but does not yet have the necessary… (read full term analysis)