Introduction: “A map of the world that does not include Utopia”
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Beginning with Oscar Wilde’s well-known quip that “[a] map of the world that does not include Utopia is not even worth glancing at,” this introduction examines the premise that the current postmodern, postnational condition seems particularly ill-suited for utopian thought. Utopia has been historically correlated to modernity and the nation-state form. In the age of globalization, utopia can be neither an ideal state elsewhere in world geography nor a realization of some ideal future. Rather, utopia today must function as an imaginative effort to map the world system itself. As a form of literary cartography, utopian theory is a necessary component for critical practices aimed at making sense of the world.
KeywordsWorld System Early Modern Period Critical Practice Evocative Conception Ideal Future
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