Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Joshua Glenn discusses Utopian and Anti-Utopian Debates in Cold War Science Fiction

Being interested in Utopian and anit-utopian narratives and the theory of Fredric Jameson (after a Marxism class where I read some of his work with Le Guin) I found this article very intriguing. Glenn quotes Jameson as saying that in
books like Dick's ''Dr. Bloodmoney, or How We Got Along After the Bomb" (1965), a pastoral set in a post-apocalyptic Berkeley; Le Guin's ''The Lathe of Heaven" (1971), about an overpopulated Portland, Ore., made livable by a plague; and John Brunner's ''The Sheep Look Up" (1972), about an Earth whose air is unbreathable.

These books are more utopian, in a way, than Bellamy-style idylls, Jameson claims, because the latter offer false hope that ameliorative reforms might transform society. ''What utopian thought wants to make us aware of is the need for complete systemic change, change in the totality of social relations, and not just an improvement in bourgeois culture..."

Read the full article HERE

found via boingboing


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