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Other Voices - The Connexions Newsletter - Utopias

December 19, 2015

The December 19 issue of Other Voices, the Connexions newsletter, is now out.

This issue of Other Voices peers into the world of utopian visions, practical or otherwise: our topic of the week is Utopias.

"A map of the world that does not include Utopia," said Oscar Wilde, "is not worth even glancing at, for it leaves out the one country at which Humanity is always landing. And when Humanity lands there, it looks out, and, seeing a better country, sets sail."

Utopian visions, be they practical or not, free our imaginations, if only for a little while, from the daily grind of struggle and worry, and allow us to dream about the kind of world we would hope to live in. Such dreams can inspire us and guide us, even if they are not always quite practical.

Friedrich Engels appreciated this quality in the writings of Charles Fourier (1772-1837), the French utopian socialist who imagined a future in which men and women would be free and fully equal, and in which, so he speculated, there would be six moons orbiting the earth and the salt water of the oceans would be replaced with lemonade. Engels, practical-minded revolutionary though he was – and one who preferred beer to lemonade -- wrote that he would much rather read Fourier's "cheerful fantasies" than the gloomy writings of social critics "where there is no lemonade at all."

The Connexions Library features a kaleidoscopic collection of writings on utopian topics, ranging from speculative fantasies to practical attempts at building alternatives communities, and also including hard-headed anti-utopian critiques and grim dystopias. Explore them at

Other Voices is published every two weeks, and is available free via email or on the Connexions website at

For more information contact:
Ulli Diemer
Connexions Library & Archive
Phone: 416-964-5735

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