A clarification on what I asked you to do at the end of the lecture, apart from the two questions I posed during the lecture itself (you will have to listen to the lecture to make sure you get those questions):
Go back to your answers from Tuesday, March 24. Try (the emphasis is on trying) to do an analysis of the "utopian impulse" in the work that you selected as a dystopian/utopian favorite, or in another book/movie/show that you think has a hidden "utopian impulse." And use Fredric Jameson's allegorical interpretative key to analyze that work. How does the text represent the body, time, and the collective? What do you think that tells you about its utopian wish? Then you should review your peers' responses, and comment on one of them at least. Do you agree with their analysis. Is there anything they are missing? To provide an example. I talked in the lecture about how Hamlet has a hidden Utopian impulse, which is about reconciling the actions of the individual with the order of the political community. The problem in Hamlet, as I interpret it (and I could be wrong) is that the feudal political community, which demands from the individual clan allegiance, is in contradiction to a more modern notion of individuality which is about moral accountability. This is why Hamlet seems to be in a state of stasis: between avenging his father and ensuring that he does not commit a sin. If we assume that this is the contradiction that drives the action in Hamlet, then we can perhaps begin to interpret how Hamlet as a piece of literature resolves this contradiction in the text, or attempts to resolve this contradiction. So, if we use Jameson's key, how is the body, time, and the collective depicted in the play? The body is that of Hamlet, as someone whose action is blocked since he doesn't know what the right way to act is. Time is that of the feudal and aristocratic passage of dynasties, which is also "out of joint" according to Horatio: it is out of joint because Hamlet's father has been murdered, therefore short-circuiting the passage from one generation to another, and steeping Denmark in sin. And the collective, is the body politic, which is in a state of sin given the act of murder committed by Claudius. What then is the "utopian impulse" Of this piece? This is the harder question to answer. Perhaps we could say that the "utopian impulse" lies in the idea of the theatre as a space where one can reconcile action and time, or action and the collective? Try to be creative and speculate openly about what could be the "utopian impulse" of any given piece of literature, tv, or cinema that you enjoy. Be daring!