CORE 446 - Visions of Utopia: Dreams and Delusions
Prerequisites: Core seminar, required for graduation CORE 101 through CORE 105 and at least sixth semester standing
Literally, the word “utopia” means “no place.” Yet, throughout history, people have imagined they could establish an ideal community in this temporal world of time and space. Often, the societies they envisioned were more just, prosperous, spiritual, beautiful, or compassionate than those that existed; at other times, what they proposed could only be characterized by the greed, cruelty, and ignorance it would engender.
Participants in this course will study “utopia” as a concept and a theme, a theory and a practice. This survey will take us from the pages of Thomas More’s Utopia to the ungoverned virtual space of the Internet. In the process, we will consider the way knowledge of utopias and dystopias shapes our world view and forms our ethos.
Readings include: The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, Looking Backward by Edward Bellamy, Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Utopia by Thomas More, The Republic by Plato, Walden Two by B.F. Skinner, and Night by Elie Wiesel.
Add to Portfolio (opens a new window)