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Utopia: In Search of the Dream

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What makes man strive for a ‘better place’ and why do we rarely find it?

Ever since Thomas More coined the term ‘utopia’ in 1516 - that better place somewhere between fiction and reality - has been constantly re-imagined and re-invented by generations of writers, artists and dreamers. Utopias have inspired major art and design movements, spawned new genres of fiction and forged experimental rural and urban communities. Now, in this major new series, art historian Professor Richard Clay examines what utopian visions say about our hopes, dreams and fears, and how they take us to the heart of what it means to be human. Across three fascinating episodes he investigates the purpose of utopias, why so many fail, and then explores the numerous ways we’ve created to immerse ourselves in perfect moments– or personal utopias - from digital games to music. Ambitious and provocative, with expert commentary and rich location sequences filmed in Britain, Lithuania, Germany and the United States, the series makes bold connections and intriguing comparisons as it ranges across high art and popular culture, from Swift to Star Trek and from Wagner to Wikipedia.

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