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Utopia (1516)

by Thomas More

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
10,472103544 (3.52)2 / 188
Utopia, written by Sir Thomas More, depicts a fictional island with its own unique religion and customs. Sir Thomas More's work introduces readers into the concept of a perfect society with utopian, or perfect, ideas and beliefs. This timeless classic, originally written in 1516 and heavily influenced by Plato's Republic, is often read in schools as a required reading.… (more)
  1. 80
    The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli (2below)
    2below: Each one is fascinating in its own right but I think reading both (or reading them concurrently, as I did) provides an interesting perspective on two seemingly opposed extremes.
  2. 61
    The City of the Sun by Tommaso Campanella (paradoxosalpha, Sensei-CRS, Chevalier.dSion)
    paradoxosalpha: Early Modern scenarios for social reform, both set in a fictionalized New World beyond the Atlantic.
  3. 40
    In Praise of Folly by Desiderius Erasmus (caflores)
  4. 30
    Christianopolis by Johann Valentin Andreae (Sensei-CRS, Chevalier.dSion)
  5. 30
    Erewhon by Samuel Butler (KayCliff)
  6. 30
    Island by Aldous Huxley (kxlly)
  7. 20
    New Atlantis by Francis Bacon (Chevalier.dSion, Sensei-CRS)
  8. 10
    A description of the famous kingdome of Macaria by Samuel Hartlib (Sensei-CRS)
  9. 00
    Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift (timoroso)
    timoroso: I see More as a precursor to Swift. Both deal with similar ideas, but Swift’s style is more entertaining.
  10. 12
    Zwischen Utopie und Wirklichkeit: Konstruierte Sprachen für die globalisierte Welt by Jennifer Bretz (gangleri)
  11. 12
    Candide by Voltaire (kxlly)
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English (77)  Spanish (8)  Dutch (4)  Catalan (4)  French (3)  Portuguese (Portugal) (2)  Hungarian (2)  Italian (1)  German (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (103)
Showing 1-5 of 77 (next | show all)
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  societystf | Jun 27, 2022 |
Confusing, not for its content, but for its peculiar mix of satire and genuine suggestion. A strong precursor to 1984. ( )
  et.carole | Jan 21, 2022 |
During his embassy to Flanders in 1515, More wrote Book II of Utopia, describing a pagan and communist city-state in which the institutions and policies were entirely governed by reason. The order and dignity of such a state was intended to provide a notable contrast with the unreasonable polity of Christian Europe, divided by self-interest and greed for power and riches, which More then described in Book I, written in England in 1516. The description of Utopia is put in the mouth of a mysterious traveler, Raphael Hythloday, in support of his argument that communism is the only cure against egoism in private and public life. More, in the dialogue, speaks in favour of mitigation of evil rather than cure, human nature being fallible. The reader is thus left guessing as to which parts of the brilliant jeu d’esprit are seriously intended and which are mere paradox. ( )
  Marcos_Augusto | Jan 20, 2022 |
506
  revirier | Dec 13, 2021 |
A look at what a perfect society might look like as well as discussions of improvements to law and order. Interesting enough i guess but More's Utopia is certainly not somewhere i'd like to live. ( )
  wreade1872 | Nov 28, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 77 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (449 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
More, Thomasprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Black, Walter J.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Collins, J. ChurtonEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Crady, KirkContributorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
del Pozo, Joan ManuelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Deller, JeremyDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Donnelly, John PatrickTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Endres, H.M.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fiore, TommasoEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Itkonen-Kaila, MarjaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jäckel, EberhardAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kan, A.H.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Le Guin, Ursula K.Afterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lumby, J. RawsonEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Marshall, Peter K.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mieville, ChinaForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Muggeridge, FraserDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Prechtl, Michael MathiasIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ritter, GerhardTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rodríguez Santidrián, PedroEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Scott, John AnthonyIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sheehan, John F. X.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Turner, PaulTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Turner, PaulIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
van Cleve, Hendrick, IIICover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wells, H. G.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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There was recently a rather serious difference of opinion between that great expert in the art of government, His Invincible Majesty, King Henry the Eighth of England, and His Serene Highness, Prince Charles of Castile.
Quotations
The moment we showed them [the Utopians] some books that Aldus had printed, and talked a bit about printing and paper-making -- we couldn't explain them properly, as none of us knew much about either process -- they immediately made a shrewd guess how the things were done. Up till then they'd only produced skin, bark, or papyrus manuscripts, but now they instantly started to manufacture paper, and print from type. At first they weren't too successful, but after repeated experiments they soon mastered both techniques so thoroughly that, if it weren't for the shortage of original texts, they could have had all the Greek books they wanted.
Well, that's the most accurate account I can give you of the Utopian Republic. To my mind, it's not only the best country in the world, but the only place that has any right to call itself a republic. Elsewhere, people are always talking about the public interest, but all they really care about is private property. In Utopia, where there's no private property, people take their duty to the public seriously. And both attitudes are perfectly reasonable. In other 'republics' practically everyone knows that, if he doesn't look out for himself, he'll starve to death, however prosperous his country may be. He's therefore compelled to give his own interests priority over those of the public; that is, all the other people. But in Utopia, where everything is under public ownership, no one has any fear of going short, as long as the public storehouses are full. Everyone gets a fair share, so there are never any
poor men or beggars. Nobody owns anything, but everyone is rich – for what greater wealth can there be than cheerfulness, peace of mind, and freedom from anxiety? Instead of being worried about his food supply,
upset by the plaintive demands of his wife, afraid of poverty for his son, and baffled by the problem of finding a dowry for his daughter, the Utopian can feel absolutely sure that he, his wife, his children, his grandchildren, his great-grandchildren, his great-great-grandchildren, and as long a line of descendants as the proudest peer could wish to look forward to, will always have enough to eat and enough to make them happy. There's also the further point that those who are too old to work are just as well provided for as those who are still working.
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Utopia, written by Sir Thomas More, depicts a fictional island with its own unique religion and customs. Sir Thomas More's work introduces readers into the concept of a perfect society with utopian, or perfect, ideas and beliefs. This timeless classic, originally written in 1516 and heavily influenced by Plato's Republic, is often read in schools as a required reading.

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Cover description: Sir Thomas More's entertaining description of Utopia, an island supporting a perfectly organized and happy people, was a best-seller when it first appeared in Latin in 1516. This work of a Catholic martyr has later been seen as the source of Anabaptism, Mormonism, and even Communism. Utopia revolutionized Plato's classical blueprint of the perfect republic, mainly by its realism. Locating his island in the (then) New World, More endowed it with a language and poetry, and detailed the length of the working day and even the divorce laws. Such precision gives a disturbing and exciting impact to Utopia, which still remains a book of the future.
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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141043695, 0141442328

Yale University Press

2 editions of this book were published by Yale University Press.

Editions: 0300002386, 0300084285

Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

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