This talk by Dr Gregory Claeys is third in the series Writing Wrongs, curated by Deborah Lavin as part of the Heritage Lottery funded project Victorian Blogging.
This talk considers whether, despite Marxism’s well know rejection of earlier Utopian socialism, Karl Marx might be termed a Utopian thinker, and how some of his ideas were adapted but also built upon by the English socialist William Morris in the 1880s and early 1890s. A special focus is Morris’s democratic thought, as expressed in his “Utopian romance”, News from Nowhere (1890).
Dr Gregory Claeys received his PhD from the University of Cambridge in 1983. He has taught in Canada, Germany and the U.S. and since 1992 has been Professor of the History of Political Thought at Royal Holloway, University of London. He is the author of Citizens and Saints: Politics and Anti-Politics in Early British Socialism, Thomas Paine: Social and Political Thought,The French Revolution Debate in Britain, Searching for Utopia: the History of an Idea, and Dystopia: A Natural History. His Marx and Marxism will appear in March 2018. He has edited The Cambridge Companion to Utopian Literature and, with Gareth Stedman Jones, The Cambridge History of Nineteenth Century Political Thought. In 2015 Claeys was elected to the Academia Europaea/The Academy of Europe, History Section and in 2016 he was elected Chair of the Utopian Studies Society (Europe).
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