Friday, May 31, 2013

Top ten utopias

The Wu Ming Foundation is a collective of novelists based in Italy. They are the authors of several novels. As of springtime 2013, four of them are available in English: Q, 54, Manituana and Altai.

One of ten top utopias they named for the Guardian:
Kirinyaga by Mike Resnick

On a terraformed planetoid called Kirinyaga (the Gikuyu name of Mount Kenya), a Gikuyu community tries to live as their ancestors did before Kenya was colonised. For Koriba, the self-appointed mundumugu (witch doctor) of the community, this is a dream come true. It goes without saying that things don't go as he expected, but after the predictable failure of the utopian programme, Kirinyaga becomes a much more intriguing book, a book on Koriba's return to a transfigured, futuristic Nairobi and the unrelenting utopian impulse which makes him a stranger in a strange city. He's got only two friends: an old man and a clone of Ahmed of Marsabit (the most famous elephant in the history of Kenya). When he achieves a creative synthesis between utopian impulse and death drive, he finds a way out.
Read about the other utopias on the list.

--Marshal Zeringue