Thomas More - Utopia

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Thomas More - Utopia by Mind Map: Thomas More - Utopia

1. Overview

1.1. Thomas More's Utopia is a Christian-Humanist view of an ideal society

1.2. More does not simply offer a theoretical view, but provides specifics for how to create this world.

1.3. Utopia offers a Christianized form of Plato's Republic

2. Christian synthesis

2.1. The Christian aspect of the synthesis is Christ's gospel of carrying for the poor, the oppressed and the downtrodden.

2.2. The Platonic, Republic tradition is the Greek aspect of the synthesis

2.3. More wrote Utopia with a comedic tone, allowing him to speak his truth while telling a deeper story

3. Humor and Parody

3.1. Utopia means No where

3.2. The community political system is called a sty.

4. Property Division

4.1. There is no private ownership on Utopia, with goods being stored in warehouses and people requesting what they need. There are also no locks on the doors of the houses, which are rotated between the citizens every ten years.

5. Working Life

5.1. Agriculture is the most important job on the island. Every person is taught it and must live in the countryside, farming, for two years at a time, with women doing the same work as men. Parallel to this, every citizen must learn at least one of the other essential trades: weaving (mainly done by the women), carpentry, metalsmithing and masonry. There is deliberate simplicity about these trades; for instance, all people wear the same types of simple clothes and there are no dressmakers making fine apparel. All able-bodied citizens must work; thus unemployment is eradicated, and the length of the working day can be minimised: the people only have to work six hours a day (although many willingly work for longer).

6. Slavery

6.1. Slavery is a feature of Utopian life and it is reported that every household has two slaves. The slaves are either from other countries or are the Utopian criminals. These criminals are weighed down with chains made out of gold.

7. Government

7.1. a welfare state with free hospitals, euthanasia permissible by the state, priests being allowed to marry, divorce permitted, premarital sex punished by a lifetime of enforced celibacy and adultery being punished by enslavement. Meals are taken in community dining halls and the job of feeding the population is given to a different household in turn.

8. Social Critique of Great Britain

8.1. The concept of religious toleration seems to jar particularly with the information we have about him as Lord Chancellor: that he was a keen opponent of Protestants who would later kill him. Similarly, the criticism of lawyers comes from a writer who, as Lord Chancellor, was arguably the most influential lawyer in England. Also the communistic life style of a Utopian shows the value that More placed on a simpler communal life, reflecting his longing for monastic duties. This in obvious juxtaposition to his city life in London. However some see it as reflecting his pride in public service and working for a common cause.

9. Finding Happiness

9.1. The ethics of Jesus