About this class

Citizens of the affluent world appear to live in political worlds where speculative thought about desirable, life-affirming alternatives to the present has been systematically foreclosed. In our post-utopian era, it seems that science fiction as social distraction is to be welcomed. But in the world of politics, the only vision of the future that can be tolerated by received opinion is the endless continuation of the neo-liberal present, apocalyptic modes of environmentalism or dystopian fears of the return of the caliphate. As Russell Jacoby has observed, it is widely believed that those who engage in utopian speculation in relation to politics are “out to lunch or out to kill” (Jacoby 1999: xi).

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