Although the association between architecture and utopia (the relationship between imagining a new world and exploring how its new conditions can best be organized) might appear obvious from within the domain of utopian studies, architects have long attempted to dissociate themselves from utopia. Concentrating on the difficulties writers from both perspectives experience with the topic, this collection interrogates the meta-theoretical problematic for ongoing intellectual work on architecture and utopia. The essays explore divergent manifestations of the play of utopia on architectural imagination, situated within specific historical moments, from the early Renaissance to the present day. The volume closes with an exchange between Nathaniel Coleman, Ruth Levitas, and Lyman Tower Sargent, reflecting on the contributions the essays make to situating architecture and utopia historically and theoretically within utopian studies, and to articulating utopia as a method for inventing and producing better places. Intriguing to architects, planners, urban designers, and others who study and make the built environment, this collection will also be of interest to utopian studies scholars, students, and general readers with a concern for the interrelationships between the built environment and social dreaming.
Exploring the Utopian Impulse presents a series of essays by an international and trans-disciplinary group of contributors that explores the nature and extent of the utopian impulse. Working across a range of historical periods and cultures, the essays investigate key aspects of utopian theory, texts, and socio-political practices. Even as some critique Utopia, others extend its reach beyond the limits of the modern western tradition within which utopianism has usually been understood. The explorations offered herein will take readers over familiar ground in new ways as well as carry them into new territories of hope and engagement.
Raymond Williams was an enormously influential figure in late twentieth-century intellectual life as a novelist, playwright and critic, «the British Sartre», as The Times put it. He was a central inspiration for the early British New Left and a close intellectual supporter of Plaid Cymru. He is widely acknowledged as one of the «founding fathers» of cultural studies, who established «cultural materialism» as a new paradigm for work in both literary and cultural studies. There is a substantial secondary literature on Williams, which treats his life and work in each of these respects. But none of it makes much of his enduring contribution to utopian studies and science fiction studies. This volume brings together a complete collection of Williams's critical essays on science fiction and futurology, utopia, and dystopia, in literature, film, television, and politics, and with extracts from his two future novels, The Volunteers (1978) and The Fight for Manod (1979). Both the collection as a whole and the individual readings are accompanied by introductory essays written by Andrew Milner.
Although published in 1986, Demand the Impossible was written from inside the oppositional political culture of the 1970s. Reading works by Joanna Russ, Ursula K. Le Guin, Marge Piercy, and Samuel R. Delany as indicative texts in the intertext of utopian science fiction, Tom Moylan originated the concept of the «critical utopia» as both a periodizing and conceptual tool for capturing the creative and critical capabilities of the utopian imagination and utopian agency. This Ralahine Classics edition includes the original text along with a new essay by Moylan (on Aldous Huxley's Island) and a set of reflections on the book by leading utopian and science fiction scholars.