The key figure of the capitalist utopia is the individual who is ultimately free. The capitalist’s ideal society is designed to protect this freedom. However, within Planet Utopia: Utopia, Dystopia, Globalisation, Featherstone argues that capitalist utopian vision, which is most clearly expressed in theories of global finance, is no longer sustainable today.
This book concerns the status of utopian thinking in contemporary global society and the possibility of imagining alternative ways of living outside of capitalism. Using a range of sociological and philosophical theories to write the first intellectual history of the capitalist utopia in English, Featherstone provokes the reader into thinking about ways of moving beyond this model of organising social life through sociological modes of thought. Indeed, this enlightening volume seeks to show how utopian thinking about the way people should live has been progressively captured by capitalism with the result that it is difficult to imagine alternatives to capitalist society today.
Presenting sociology and sociological thinking as a utopian alternative to the capitalist utopia, Planet Utopia will appeal to postgraduate and postdoctoral students interested in subjects including Sociology, Social Theory, Cultural Studies, Cultural Theory and Continental Philosophy.
Table of Contents
Introduction - On the Seashore: Utopia, Dystopia, and Cultural Politics Chapter 1 - Back to the Future: Utopia and Dystopia in Greece Chapter 2 - The Origins of the Capitalist Utopia Chapter 3 - The Late Capitalist Utopia in Power Chapter 4 - Global Finance, Utopia of Beautiful Numbers Chapter 5 - The Minor Utopia Chapter 6 - The Lost Child of the Dystopian City: Nicolas Winding Refn’s Drive and Only God Forgives Chapter 7 - Dis-United Kingdom: Division, Encounter, and Utopianism in Heterotopic Britain Conclusion - The Spectre of Sociology Index
Mark Featherstone is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Keele University, UK