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There Is No Universal Utopia Essay

1601 words - 6 pages

The idea of a utopia is one which has spanned many millennia. The first example of a utopia was the Garden of Eden, and since then mankind has endeavored to reach this perfect existence, a world without problems, where everyone can abide in peace. Just the word ‘Utopia’ summons up a whole assemblage of images, images which differ from person to person. This is why the concept of a utopia has been so tossed around, because no one can truly say what a utopia is. From Plato's republic in 380BC right up to the modern day, literally hundreds of books have been written, and movies made, all which give differing opinions on what is the perfect world. It is impossible for one person to try to comprehend what would be the perfect utopia in which every person would be happy, so we must consider that perhaps the utopias written about are not meant for the multitudes, but are only supposed to exist in the minds of those who create them. This means that what might be a utopia for one person, may be a dystopia for another, this is because the laws, policies religious beliefs and social issues within any given utopia, whilst they seem fair to the creator, may be completely intolerable to everyone else.

Firstly though, we must actually consider what a utopia actually is. Thomas more describes his utopia as being an ordinary place, with normal lands and creatures. But his utopia was created by people, and the laws by which they live, which provide everything that people need to survive, as long as they abide by the laws which are plentiful and strict. This type of utopia is basically communist, where everyone is equal. In this utopian society, there is no money, this means that no one person can feel superior because of wealth, and no one will be without the basic fundamentals of life because of poverty, which is non-existent. The laws, as I said, are very restrictive, and a person basically needs a passport to go anywhere, and any anger or expression of strong emotion is punishable. This is one of the places where many utopian concepts fail, because they rely on taking away the freedom of people so that they may not question their ‘perfect’ world. Another example of this is in “Brave New World” in which the people are subjected to subliminal messages, which make them think that they are happy. If such places existed, and functioned properly, people within them would think themselves in a utopia, but someone not bought up there would probably think the opposite was true.

This brings me to my next point. “An acre in Middlesex is better than a principality in Utopia” on the surface, it seems like a fairly basic statement, said by some English patriot who loved his country, but there is more meaning to it. Lord Bacon, the man who said this quote was a well noted philosopher, one who was actually responsible for writing his own version of a Utopia, in the fanciful “New Atlantis”. His meaning was that to rule in Utopia would not only mean the...

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