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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Maybe We Need More Utopian Literature?

Yesterday, I wrote about the recent popularity of dystopian literature, a genre that often reflects the darkness of today’s world.  But perhaps what we should be reading is more utopian fiction in which the author proposes a better way of life than currently exists. 

The word "utopia" was coined by Sir Thomas More for his 1516 book Utopia, but the genre has roots dating back to antiquity.  Luke Mastin in his website (http://www.utopianfiction.com) has an extensive list of utopian fiction; for each book, he mentions the publication date, the country of the author, and a brief synopsis of the plot and description of the utopian society.  He also indicates which books are, in general, best described as utopias and which dystopias and which have elements of both.  He also notes which books are the classic utopias, which are second-rank in the genre, and which are books where the utopian element is more peripheral.