As you began working on your projects on dystopia/utopia, we thought it important to highlight how these ideas play out in the real world, how ideologues in the political and social fields–social strata which can be far removed from art making–try to shape our lives to their vision. I want to be clear the the individuals highlighted in this post DO NOT necessarily reflect the beliefs or judgments of either myself, Angela, or WUSTL. These are in fact examples taken from the world to illustrate a point about the nature of utopian vision. People are constantly looking for ways to improve or idealize their lives, yet, utopia implies a singular vision for a multiplicity–many people with different wants and needs. How is that possible? What happens when disaster strikes, or when people oppose such views? Is the opposition of utopia automatically dystopian, as the dialectical seems to imply? Or must something more sinister happen for a dystopian vision to take hold?
Here are some people and ideas that are making the news. Don’t forget to take it all with a grain of salt.
Facebook, privacy, and connecting the masses:
Financial Crisis in Greece and Italy: How does the situation effect social programs, people?
The right to choose.
Are we educating the creativity out?