Friday, May 31, 2013

Ten top utopias

The Wu Ming Foundation is a collective of novelists based in Italy. They are the authors of several novels. As of springtime 2013, four of them are available in English: Q, 54, Manituana and Altai.

One of ten top utopias they named for the Guardian:
Mountains of the Mind by Robert Macfarlane

This is one of the best books on mountaineering ever written. It's the book that explicitly deals with the utopian impulse that drives men and women to suffer cold and fatigue, defy altitude sickness, risk death at every moment, only to see the world from the peak of a mountain, little more than a quick glance before going back down. Until the 18th century, no utopian impulse was associated with mountains. People were not interested in climbing them, reaching their peaks was not yet an expression of the primary metaphor up = good/down = bad. Macfarlane tells the story of how humans became interested in mountains, and turned them into a realm of utopia.
Read about another utopia on the list.

Mountains of the Mind is a book that made a difference to Gillian Anderson.

--Marshal Zeringue