The Story of Evolution as a Utopia and the Evolution of the Story of Utopia
In my first semester I had the college seminar that focused on the idea of Utopia in fiction, politics, and philosophy. Our discussions and readings went through a process of evolution that begin as rather simplistic and then followed a steady path to much more involved. Honestly, a reason that I chose the class was because I had done many of the readings before, but once the work began I realized that myself, and all the others in the class, would be looking at works, such as Candide and 1984, in an entirely different fashion. Many of the stories we read were written a substantial amount of time in the past and it was interesting to see how their meaning changed and evolved over different generations. While reading the books on biological evolution I could not help but see aspects of a desired Utopia in the theory of evolution. In this paper I hope to explore the evolution of selected works from my class last semester and address my feelings on the idea that the theory of evolution is a utopian notion.
One of the works we focused on a great deal was George Orwell's 1984. This counted as a utopian and distopian society because the higher powers in the book were able to control the underlings exactly as they wanted to; whereas the underlings who were suffering it all, lived in great fear and unhappiness. Orwell wrote the book in 1948 as a warning to what he felt the world may become. As we well know, his prophecies were not entirely fulfilled but the meaning of the story has evolved over time and still has relevance in today's society. When 1984 was written it was a lightly disguised reflection of the communism and capitalism. It also served as a warning for where the world might become if there came to power only a few dictators to reign over the entire world. My father read the book in 1983 on the suggestion of my mother and he said that, at the time he only felt like it was fiction but in the newspapers everyone was raving about how IBM and other up and coming corporations were turning into exactly what the book made them out to be. He then added that society today is more like the society in the book than ever before, especially with the war going on.