The Left Hand of Darkness

The Left Hand of Darkness

by

Ursula K. Le Guin

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Estraven’s kemmering, with whom he has two children. They were committed to each other for seven years, although Ashe is now a Foreteller and celibate. He still cares deeply about Estraven, and is willing to “share [his] ruin” after the announcement of his exile. He follows Estraven to the Orgota border, and even though Estraven hurts his feelings in order to protect him, Ashe remains loving and faithful.

Ashe Foreth Quotes in The Left Hand of Darkness

The The Left Hand of Darkness quotes below are all either spoken by Ashe Foreth or refer to Ashe Foreth . For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Truth and Storytelling Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Ace Books edition of The Left Hand of Darkness published in 1987.
Chapter 11 Quotes

He knew I was angry but I am not sure he understood that he was insulted; he seemed to accept my advice despite the manner of its giving; and when my temper cooled I saw this, and was worried by it. Is it possible that all along in Erhenrang he was seeking my advice, not knowing how to tell me that he sought it? If so, then he must have misunderstood half and not understood the rest of what I told him by my fireside in the Palace, the night after the Ceremony of the Keystone. His shifgrethor must be founded, and composed, and sustained, altogether differently from ours; and when I thought myself most blunt and frank with him he may have found me most subtle and unclear.

His obtuseness is ignorance. His arrogance is ignorance. He is ignorant of us: we of him. He is infinitely a stranger, and I a fool, to let my shadow cross the light of hope he brings us.

Related Symbols: Keystone , Shadows
Page Number: 161
Explanation and Analysis:
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Ashe Foreth Character Timeline in The Left Hand of Darkness

The timeline below shows where the character Ashe Foreth appears in The Left Hand of Darkness. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 6
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
Estraven writes to his old kemmering, Ashe, warning him not to contact him, and promising him some of his valuable belongings. (full context)
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
After three days of walking, Estraven arrives at the Gulf. At the gates is Ashe, his former kemmering, with whom he has two children. Although Ashe is now a Celibate... (full context)
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
Estraven wants to protect Ashe by driving him away, so he is purposefully cruel and bitter. Estraven accuses Ashe of... (full context)
Chapter 8
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
Otherness and Connectedness Theme Icon
One evening Ashe comes to visit Ai. He introduces himself as “a friend of one who befriended you.”... (full context)
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
Otherness and Connectedness Theme Icon
Ashe wonders bitterly if Ai feels himself in debt to Estraven, who was exiled partially because... (full context)
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
Otherness and Connectedness Theme Icon
Ashe wants Ai to take money to Estraven, since Ai has no political ties and cannot... (full context)
Sex, Gender, and Behavior Theme Icon
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
Ai agrees to take the money, and Ashe is overcome with emotion, crying easily. He tells Ai he was Estraven’s kemmering, which surprises... (full context)
Duty and Loyalty Theme Icon
Otherness and Connectedness Theme Icon
...he is surprised to see him, and tells Estraven he has money for him from Ashe. Ai has no desire to talk to him further, and feels Estraven doesn’t want to... (full context)
Chapter 10
Otherness and Connectedness Theme Icon
Ai gives Estraven the money Ashe gave him. Ai feels guilty for a moment, but decides to humiliate Estraven so he... (full context)
Chapter 11
Otherness and Connectedness Theme Icon
Estraven is thankful for Ashe’s money, which allows him to live as a “unit” and not a “dependent.” He distances... (full context)