Perfect Worlds
Perfect Worlds
Utopian Fiction in China and the West
€ 68,95
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16 x 24 cm
Table of Contents
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Preface - 6 Acknowledgements - 10 Contents - 12 Introduction - 16 The Utopia of Thomas More - 32 From Rational Eutopia to Grotesque Dystopia - 50 Interlude: The Island Syndrome from Atlantis to Lanzarote and Penglai - 84 Enlightenment Utopias - 96 Orientalism: European Writers Searching for Utopia in China - 136 Chinese Philosophers and Writers Constructing Their Own Utopias - 166 Small-Scale Socialist Experiments, or “The New Jerusalem in Duodecimo” - 196 Chernyshevsky’s What Is to Be Done? and Dostoevsky’s Dystopian Foresight - 212 When Socialist Utopianism Meets Politics … - 234 Bellamy’s Solidarity and Its Feminist Mirror Image in Herland - 256 Chinese Occidentalism: The Nostalgia for a Utopian Past Gives Way to the Idea of Progress - 272 H. G. Wells and the Modern Utopia - 290 Dystopian Fiction in the Soviet Union, Proletkult, and Socialist-Realist Utopianism - 302 Mao Zedong’s Utopian Thought and the Post-Mao Imaginative Response - 322 Utopias, Dystopias, and Their Hybrid Variants in Europe and America since World War I - 346 Concluding Observations - 400 References - 412 Subject Index - 432 Index of Names - 442

Reviews and Features

"This is the first attempt by a major European scholar to include rich Chinese materials in a remarkably innovative study of utopia as a literary genre. Well-informed, theoretically sophisticated, and beautifully written, this book will appeal to anyone interested in history of ideas, comparative literature, and East-West cross-cultural studies." Zhang Longxi, author of Allegoresis: Reading Canonical Literature East and West. Zhang Longxi is Chair Professor of Comparative Literature and Translation City University of Hong Kong Foreign Member The Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, History and Antiquities. |"Perfect Worlds is a scholarly tour de force, splendidly accomplished by one of the great comparatists of our time. With his customary clarity, deploying his profound expertise in both European and Chinese writing, Douwe Fokkema champions the significance of utopian fiction as a major genre of world literature." Michel Hockx (SOAS, University of London)

D.W. Fokkema

Perfect Worlds

Utopian Fiction in China and the West

Perfect Worlds offers an extensive historical analysis of utopian narratives in the Chinese and Euro-American traditions. This comparative study discusses, among other things, More’s criticism of Plato, the European orientalist search for utopia in China, Wells’s Modern Utopia and his talk with Stalin, Chinese writers constructing their Confucianist utopia, traces of Daoism in Mao Zedong’s utopianism and politics and finally the rise of dystopian writing – a negative expression of the utopian impulse – in Europe and America as well as in China.