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The Elements From More’s Utopia That Should Be Implemented In Our Society

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Thomas More, politician, who was born on February 7, 1478 and died in July 6, 1535, was a politician, lawyer, and the author. In this essay, I will examine what elements should be applied in our society in Thomas More’s Utopia.

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To begin with, Utopia is a word used to describe a perfect imaginary world in which everybody lives perfectly happy and everything is planned and implemented for the sake of social unity and equality, as well as the peace of the society. Thomas More is an utopian and a utopian is before anything else a social critic who is uncomfortable with the society he lived in. Therefore, his work contains a rebellion against the injustice of his time. In Utopia, he criticizes the class discrimination, greed, intolerance, theft and religious hypocrisy of the time he lived in using the word utopia in a way that today we are still able to analyze it in many ways. Well, can we still apply these ideas to our society today? I believe the ideas in More’s Utopia about collective ownership, education system, political administration and urban planning can be adapted to today’s society.

Firstly, I would like to mention Utopia’s education system. In Utopia, although the one and only step of compulsory education is agricultural education, it is given everyone equally and in the same way. In addition, education in Utopia is based on the objective of raising individuals who are confident enough to manage themselves, can question, reason, take responsibility and have strong personalities. The success of the education in Utopia is because of the fact that it enables most of the Utopians to become intellectuals.Utopians, without considering any class discrimination, take cultural and art classes. Unfortunately, today in our country our education system is still not equitable and it became a commercial thing. Everybody does not receive education on the same terms and generally it focuses on making people just to obtain a job. Nevertheless, Turkey Statistical Institute (TUIK) announced announce unemployment figures for September, according to data on the number 15 and unemployed persons above the age of those children in Turkey on September 2018 as compared to the same period last year was 3 million 749 thousand 330 rose thousand people. By adapting Utopia’s education system to present day, we can education and thereby an opportunity for every individual to improve themselves which may result in for our society to prosper. Because of “there is no chance to loaf or to kill time, no pretext for evading work; no taverns, or alehouses, or brothels; no chances for corruption, no hiding places, no spots for secret meetings” and in the utopia everyone believes that education is necessary from birth to death. As the character in Utopya says:”The pleasures of the mind lie in knowledge, and in … the contemplation of truth.” Unfortunately, this is a difficult situation to be encouraged in every part of our country. For instance, a child studying in the narrow city like Hakkari can also want to play the piano, but may not be able to apply it because lower income level. Income level should not be effective in education and art.This should be supported by various government policies, as in Utopia.The following words by Thomas More summarize my perspective on my 21th century education system:’ ‘One of the greatest problems of our time is that many are schooled but few are educated.”

Secondly, in More’s Utopia households are divided into groups of thirty and these groups choose an administrator called phylarch who works under someone called senior phylarch in order to represent the people of the cities by meeting in a committee chaired by the chief executive. And issues of the cities are discussed outside of the committee in order to avoid the possible problems will come from the society which is similar to today’s society because the politicians don’t really share all the information discussed in the government with the citizens. To avoid possible problems, the country’s problems are discussed outside the committee.

In Utopia, virtue, morality, and equality were the most important rules for a society to be fair and a government’s development. These thoughts still exist in today’s political structures. 

Turkey is a country democratic as in More’s Utopia. In other words, it is normal for the state administration system to have some problems, as in many countries, but I think these problems are similar to those of More. I think that More Utopia not only offers theoretical solutions to problems, but also suggests practical reasons for changing the disturbances of the political structure. With the following words, we can see the subject more clearly: ”I would uphold the law if for no other reason but to protect myself”.

Lastly, I would like to mention urban planning in More’s Utopia. Here, similar to the first two, we see an idea based upon equality because in the island state of More’s Utopia there are 54 cities with the same plan whose borders are surrounded by thick walls and only the plan of the capital is different. Width of all the streets, styles of the houses and the streets on the island are the same. There is a garden with beautifully designed flowers and trees in front of each house. The reason here is again avoiding class discrimination and making everybody feel like they live on island on equal terms with everybody else. People who live in such an order trust each other such that houses have no lock and everybody can walk in any house they want, however; since everybody has equal standards so nobody has the motive to steal. Looking at today’s standards, it can be seen that we are quite far away from these ideas and structures because considering our way of living, first thing that comes to our minds is mistrust. Our people do not trust each other, because of hardship, theft is a common thing nowadays and therefore living in a society in which people trust each other and do not lock their doors is out of question. That’s why in my opinion, a society that is planned such that people trust each other since everybody has the same kind of houses and lifestyles and nobody is in the need of another person can be adapted to our society today. In addition, when we adapt this beautiful island planning to a little bit of our country and when we work for it, the problems arising from irregularity and unplanned settlement can be eliminated.

In summary, Utopia is an imaginary world created by Thomas More that have perfect rules, order, safety, equality and happiness. By adapting the education system, political management system and urban planning system of this world to today’s society we might be able to provide order, safety, equality and happiness. 

10 Jun 2021

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