Ursula Le Guin's short story "The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas," subtitled "Variations on a Theme by William James," is a critique of American moral life. At least that is what Ms. Le Guin tells us in the introduction she added when the story was collected in The Wind's Twelve Quarters (1975). First she quotes the passage from James's "The Moral Philosopher and the Moral Life" to which the subtitle refers:
[I]f the hypothesis were offered us of a world in which Messrs Fourier's and Bellamy's and Morris's Utopias should all be outdone, and millions kept...
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