We have always dreamed of better societies. Philosophers, poets, reformers, architects and artists have imagined them in intricate detail, from Asia to the Americas, across Europe, Africa and the Arab world. Here, Gregory Claeys explores the origins, evolution and influence of utopian thinking, taking in creation myths and religious archetypes, voyages of discovery and new worlds, revolutions social and technological, model communities and dystopian regimes, science fiction and space travel.
From classical times to the future, he traces the enduring human need to imagine and construct ideal worlds.
BBC History Magazine
'Full and fast-moving'
'Well-informed and penetrating'
'This excellent survey of the utopian impulse … has one obvious lesson, dreaming of a better world is one thing, putting it into practice, quite another'