Iveta Nātriņa

Dr. phil., Jāzepa Mediņa Rīgas Mūzikas vidusskolas pedagoģe.
Pētnieciskās intereses: kultūras filosofija, kultūras vēsture.
Kontakti: iveta_natrina@hotmail.com 

Atslēgvārdi: utopija, telpas utopija, ticamība, viltojums, Atlantīda, Formoza.

https://doi.org/10.22364/ilt.22.06 | 66–75 | PDF

Coordinates of Utopia

The utopia of modern period as a rational construction is characterized by its “inner” architectonics of thought. It was modelled on Plato’s Politeia. For example, both in Thomas More’s Utopia and Francis Bacon’s New Atlantis, the exposition begins with the story told by an experienced sailor about the adventures on a hitherto unknown, distant island. It is depicted as a special place where good virtues prevail, and life has a different, more excellent quality than amongst the society of that time. At the beginning of modernity, these are the so-called utopias of space, which, instead of the future, describe coexisting societies somewhere else on Earth. They have location pointers, although they lack consistently accurate coordinates.

T. More’s remarkable innovation – the concept of utopia – includes two original meanings (a place which does not exist and a good place), which refer directly to a place whose coordinates are not known in a geographical sense. The meaning of utopia includes the always present human dissatisfaction with the current quality of existence, thus looking for alternatives – the places worth searching for.

One of the most striking phenomena of utopian discourse is the island of Atlantis. The search for its geographical location has gained not only theoretical but also practical manifestations.

It is in the discourse of modern period culture that the utopia of space is born as a genre and there is a marked turn towards the active search for various utopian islands, isolated and lost territories. Such a turn is related to significant changes in culture, creating an impulse to discover new worlds, including mythical utopian constructions in the horizon of expectations (R. Koselleck).

George Psalmanazar’s false utopia Formosa (the 18th century), which, according to all fake news criteria, exhausts the spectrum of credibility in the discourse of utopia of space, opening up the scene for the utopia of time, is considered to be the sarcastic end of the era of space utopias.