ClimateExistence 2021: Samtal mellan Dan Jönsson och Anita Goldman på Sigtunastiftelsen

Foto: Viktor Gårdsater och Harald Carlinger

Utopian dreams, Climate Change, and the Issue of Class

Since the dawn of human civilization, societies have developed different views on the relationship between humanity and the surrounding environment. In the early modern era, previous dreams of a lost paradise – such as Eden or Jannah– were partly replaced by dreams of undiscovered lands. However, ideas concerning what these societies should become ranged from new royal provinces to utopian communities free from oppression. Following the industrial revolution, many also dreamt of sustainable societies that were more in tune with the environment. At the beginning of the 21st century, visions of a new Utopia seem to be conditioned by the dominance of global, neoliberal exploitation. Is it still possible to think outside of a paradigm that has forced people to internalize concepts such as economic rationalization, political pragmatism, and constant growth? Do we need look past »failed« ideas of a better society and develop new ones?

Dan Jönsson, author of the book The Paradise Gene. Four Utopian Horizons, discuss the problems facing the utopian visions of the future with Anita Goldman, author of books such as If the Rocks Could Speak in Palma de Mallorca (2019) and Even If I Have to Travel to Los Alamos (2009).

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