British Utopian Fiction

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Semester

  • WS 17/18

Instructor

Course Description

Utopias and their pessimistic mirror images, the dystopias, continue to challenge and intrigue readers of all ages. The dystopias of today are powerful reflections of 21st. century concerns, such as the role of artificial intelligence in future societies, the abuse of political power, and the position of women. The seminar will explore the some of the most influential classical utopias, but will also sample some of the most frightening modern dystopias. Students will be encouraged to form groups and to give an oral presentation on a utopia or a dystopia. All forms of examinations will be available, including written exams and short papers as well as projects. Students should try to read the primary texts before the start of term.


Course dates

  • Wed 14:15 - 15:45

Room

  • R. 3.205


Credits

All forms of examinations will be available, including written exams and short papers as well as projects.

Texts

  • Thomas More Utopia (1516)
  • Edward Bellamy Looking Backward, 2000-1887 (1888)
  • William Morris News from Nowhere (1890)
  • Aldous Huxley Brave New World (1931)
  • George Orwell Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949 and film, 1984, dir. Michael Radford)
  • Philip K. Dick Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep (1968 and film Blade Runner, 1982, dir. Ridley Scott)
  • Margaret Atwood A Handmaid's Tale (1985 and TV series 2017-)
  • Kazuo Ishiguro Never Let Me Go (2005 and film, 2010, dir. Mark Romanek)
  • Black Mirror (TV series 2015-)
  • Jeff VanderMeer Borne (2017)
  • Olivia Sudjic Sympathy (2017)