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Frank Herbert: Dune Universe and other texts

William Touponce writes very aptly about one of the central conceptual core aspects of the texts of Frank Herbert's Dune Universe:

»Thus it was no accident that his [scil. Frank Herbert’s] masterwork, the six volumes of the Dune series, is one great orchestrated conversation. Critics who complain about the increasing number, length, and enigmatic quality of conversations in the series are really exposing their own desires for a closed universe, for absolutes that Herbert was unwilling to provide. Indeed, he did not see his own work in Dune as a closed ideological system to be contemplated, but rather as something to be acively interpreted, transformed, parodied, exceeded, undermined, and subverted by later volumes in an open-ended dialogue. Closed systems of all kinds were anathema to him.«1

Not only this openness in principle, but also the fundamental complexity with its numerous insinuations and allusions often prevents clarity while reading Herbert’s texts. The following schemes are designed to help readers find their way better between and within the texts. Further diagrams are being planned.

  1. Touponce: Frank Herbert (1988), 3.