Utopia and dystopia in the age of the Anthropocene

Esboços - Revista do Programa de Pós-Graduação em História da UFSC

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Title Utopia and dystopia in the age of the Anthropocene
Utopia and dystopia in the age of the Anthropocene
 
Creator Vieira, Patrícia
 
Subject Utopia
Distopia
Antropoceno
Utopia
Dystopia
Anthropocene
 
Description A product of Modernity, utopian and dystopian thought has always hinged upon an assessment as to whether humanity would be able to fulfil the promise of socio-economic, political and techno-scientific progress. In this paper, I argue that the predominantly dystopian outlook of the past century or so marked a move away from former views on human progress. Rather than commenting on humanity’s inability to build a better society, current dystopianism betrays the view that the human species as such is an impediment to harmonious life on Earth. I discuss the shift from utopia to dystopia (and back) as a result of regarding humans as a force that does more harm than good, and I consider the possibility of human extinction within the framework of dystopian and utopian visions. The final section of the chapter turns to Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy as a fictional example that plays out the prospect of a world in which humans have all but become extinct.
A product of Modernity, utopian and dystopian thought has always hinged upon an assessment as to whether humanity would be able to fulfil the promise of socio-economic, political and techno-scientific progress. In this paper, I argue that the predominantly dystopian outlook of the past century or so marked a move away from former views on human progress. Rather than commenting on humanity’s inability to build a better society, current dystopianism betrays the view that the human species as such is an impediment to harmonious life on Earth. I discuss the shift from utopia to dystopia (and back) as a result of regarding humans as a force that does more harm than good, and I consider the possibility of human extinction within the framework of dystopian and utopian visions. The final section of the chapter turns to Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy as a fictional example that plays out the prospect of a world in which humans have all but become extinct.
 
Publisher Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina
 
Date 2021-01-15
 
Type info:eu-repo/semantics/article
info:eu-repo/semantics/publishedVersion
 
Format application/pdf
 
Identifier https://periodicos.ufsc.br/index.php/esbocos/article/view/72386
10.5007/2175-7976.2020.e72386
 
Source Esboços: histories in global contexts; Vol. 27 No. 46 (2020); 350-365
Esboços: histórias em contextos globais; v. 27 n. 46 (2020); 350-365
2175-7976
1414-722X
 
Language eng
 
Relation https://periodicos.ufsc.br/index.php/esbocos/article/view/72386/45296
 
Rights Copyright (c) 2021 Patrícia Vieira
 

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