1. Although I don’t think anyone would describe their childhood as “perfect,” I do believe every childhood has the potential of being utopian. Childhood is a time of constant learning and growing. It’s a time when curiosity and creativity is encouraged. A time when outside play and adventure is expected. As a child, my daily issues were much smaller and less significant than those that I face today. Troubles I faced then include being late to ballet practice and staying out past curfew. Today, my troubles are broader and more demanding. They include passing my classes to obtain my degree, getting enough hours at work to pay my bills, and now staying safe and healthy amid the COVID-19 pandemic. While considering our current situation, children don’t fully understand what’s going on and how serious it is. All they know is that school is cancelled and mom and dad have to work from home. This, I’m sure, amuses children as they get to sleep in and watch television all day, hence creating a sort of utopian environment. Adults, however, have a vastly different perspective on this situation. Many worry about the health of loved ones, unemployment, working from home, etc. Considering this, I do see childhood as a utopian time because children have yet to be exposed to the real expectations and troubles one faces in the real world.
2. The perfect utopian place for me is the beach. Funny enough, the beach reminds me of a favorite childhood memory of mine. The first time my siblings and I went to the beach was in Florida around 2007. My aunt lives there and wanted us to come down visit her, our uncle, cousins, and her dog, Teddy. I remember just how hot and humid the day was and how the sand burnt the bottoms of our feet with each step. We held our small, plastic baggies close as we filled them up with the seashells we collected along the shore. I remember my sister going knee-deep into the water because our aunt said she would find bigger shells there. She was right and my sister was thrilled. The beach was crowded that day, but still managed to have our fun. That day was nearly perfect and is now a memory I look back on fondly. Now, I find the beach to be the perfect place to unwind and relax. I don’t get to visit often, which makes me appreciate my time there that much more. I love the feeling of the sand beneath my feet, wind in my hair, and sun glistening down on my face. Watching and listening to the waves crash onto shore has always been a pleasure of mine as well. It creates the perfect environment for reading and/or writing as your worries temporarily disappear and nothing else seems to matter.
3. I do believe that the dystopian novel/movie I previously spoke about, "Divergent", does have a utopian impulse. According to Yale University, the utopian impulse is best described as the “desire to imagine or create a perfect society.” In Divergent, all the citizens are divided into five “factions” with the intent of these divisions keeping the peace within their society. When everyone is placed into a faction, everyone has a place where they truly belong, which therefore allows everyone to live in harmony with those of the same personality type. The only flaw with this is that some unique individuals don’t fit into just one faction. This is where our protagonist, Tris, comes into play as she discovers that she is divergent.