“You, you may say
I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the world will live as one.”
from Greek: ou (“not”) + topos (“place”) = no place
A Truly Golden Little Book, No Less Beneficial Than Entertaining,of the Best State of a Republic, and of the New Island Utopia
The first recorded utopian proposal is Plato’s Republic (380BC), the cornerstone of Western philosophy.
Ecological utopian society describes new ways in which society should relate to nature.
Economic utopias are based on economics. Most intentional communities attempting to create an economic utopia were formed in response to the harsh economic conditions of the 19th century.
Politics and history: A global utopia of world peace is often seen as one of the possible endings of history.
Religious utopias can be intra-religious or inter-religious. The inter-religious utopia borders on a concept like Polyculturalism and is not deemed possible in the near future or the near-far future. Intra-Religious utopias are based on religious ideals, and are to date those most commonly found in human society. Their members are usually required to follow and believe in the particular religious tradition that established the utopia. Some permit non-believers or non-adherents to take up residence within them; others (such as the Community at Qumran) do not.
Scientific and technological utopias are set in the future, when it is believed that advanced science and technology will allow utopian living standards; for example, the absence of death and suffering; changes in human nature and the human condition.
Feminism: Utopias have been used to explore the ramification of gender being either a societal construct, or a biologically “hard-wired” imperative.
Utopianism: In many cultures, societies, and religions, there is some myth or memory of a distant past when humankind lived in a primitive and simple state, but at the same time one of perfect happiness and fulfillment. In those days, the various myths tell us, there was an instinctive harmony between humanity and nature. People’s needs were few and their desires limited. Both were easily satisfied by the abundance provided by nature. Accordingly, there were no motives whatsoever for war or oppression. Nor was there any need for hard and painful work. Humans were simple and pious, and felt themselves close to the gods. According to one anthropological theory, hunter-gatherers were the original affluent society.
ATTEMPTED UTOPIAS (some successful, some not):
The Shakers (1747-early 1900s)
Pullman, Illinois (1800’s)
Brook Farm (1841)
Broadacre City (1932)
Nazi Germany (1934-1945)
Minnesota Experimental City (1960s)
Triton City (1960s)
WHAT IS THE OPPOSITE OF UTOPIA? DYSTOPIA!