47 pages 1 hour read

Ursula K. Le Guin

The Lathe Of Heaven

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 1971

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Character Analysis

George Orr

George Orr is the protagonist of The Lathe of Heaven. George is an ordinary person who, when evaluated with any scientific device or standard unit of measure, invariably comes out right in the middle: George is average in every respect. As such, he initially makes little impact on the other characters. Haber perceives him an innocuous drug user. Heather thinks of him as someone she could squish beneath her shoe, without him making noise or giving resistance. The longer people associate with George, however, the more remarkable he seems. Within two sessions, Haber realizes that George possesses the gift of effective dreaming, making him unique among all humanity. Eventually, Heather recognizes George as a person of great integrity, the “strongest person” she has ever known, someone who refuses to be dissuaded from acknowledging truths that he recognizes.

Le Guin reveals more about George to the reader as the narrative progresses. George explains to Heather that his rare effective dreams change the world backward in time seamlessly, something only the dreamer and those with him in the moment can sense. He had been at peace with this power until April 1998, four years prior to the chronological

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