Utopia, Reports from

I didn’t go to Turner Classic Movies Film Festival 2015, which wrapped up on Sunday, March 29, but I know people who did. Reading their stories  is like vicariously taking a few glasses of good champagne. The bubbles. The sway of happiness. The abandonment of...

Utopia at the movies

If ever there was a medium well suited to portraying utopia, it is film. The visual sweep, the beautiful details, the absence of the minute-to-minute of real life—all come together to create ideal conditions for showing dreams of perfection. It doesn’t often...

Utopia, The Chautauqua Institution

The Chautauqua Institution has been around since 1874, when it was founded as a sort of summer camp for Sunday school teachers by two devout Methodists, one of whom had a lot of money. Its name was the Chautauqua Lake Sunday School Assembly. It has stepped out quite a...

Utopia, Findhorn

The first time I ever heard about Findhorn was in the movie MY DINNER WITH ANDRE. Andre Gregory tells a long, wild story about how one of the founders of Findhorn was a Scottish mathematician who wanted nothing to stand between him and the pursuit of mathematics. He...

Utopia, the Oneida Community

In the depths of winter, outside very deep at the moment with snow blanketing everything, the heart inclines to dreaming of a perfect place. Utopia is easy to imagine: just put in everything you like and leave out everything you don’t. But to realize a utopia?...

Utopia, It’s always over there

The entire history of human civilization is built firmly on the foundation of imagining a better place than the one in which people happen to find themselves. Before there was central heating, a cozy house in the midst of bitter cold must have seemed like a utopian...