WesMaps - Wesleyan University Catalog 2019-2020       Summer Session       Winter Session       Home       Archive       Search
Crafting (Un)Ideal States: Utopias and Games of the Mind, Past and Present (FYS)
Fall 2019
Section: 01  

Utopias are imaginary places that promise freedom, equality, and happiness. In this course, we will look at different visions of utopian living: What kinds of hope, longing, and impulses do these utopias fulfill? What kind of social critique do they imply? How can they offer freedom and happiness while built on strict programs of biological, psychological, and social engineering? When does one's utopia become another's dystopia?

We will start with ancient Greek poetry and philosophy--Homer, tragedy, Aristophanic comedy, and Plato--to trace the beginnings of utopian thinking and the promises that it makes. In the last part of the semester, we will look at how these early seeds of utopia are recast and developed in later and contemporary literature, theory, and television shows, including Thomas More's "Utopia" and Emily St. John Mandel's "Station Eleven"; selections from T. Adorno, E. Bloch, and F. Jameson; and select episodes from "Black Mirror."
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA CLAS
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Student Option
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None
Past Enrollment Probability: Not Available

Last Updated on MAY-22-2024
Contact wesmaps@wesleyan.edu to submit comments or suggestions. Please include a url, course title, faculty name or other page reference in your email ? Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut, 06459