A novel both timely and prophetic, Ernest Callenbach’s Ecotopia is a hopeful antidote to the environmental concerns of today, set in an ecologically. In the afterword to the 30th-anniversary edition of his novel, Ernest Callenbach writes, “Looking back, it seems clear that Ecotopia was the. Ecotopia,” the ’70s cult novel, has seeped into the American PRESCIENT In Ernest Callenbach’s ’70s book, residents of Ecotopia recycle and.

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The reviews ccallenbach imaginationless, blindered by “pragmatics” as determined by the corporate PR that has filtered through our textbooks, media and social engineering for the last 40 years.

Stories, like history, are about human action, and the locus of all action is the individual. I think about this book frequently.

I had a hard time. The ways and means of carrying out an eco-friendly lifestyle seemed very well thought-out and I often found myself nodding and grinning at the ideas.

Revisiting the s eco-cult classic that gripped a nation | Grist

Politics involves all citizens. Callenbach, writing in the early-mid s, imagines that Washington, Oregon, and Northern California have seceded from the Union to form Ecotopia, a new nation based on “stable-state” today, we call it “sustainable” practices in manufacturing, agriculture, construction, transportation — the whole gamut.

Cal, Oregon and Washington secede from ‘Merica and are isolated for decades and a NY journalist visits for the first time since secession. And it may even be true that some pillars of the modern environmental movement were built upon Ecotopian ideals. And it takes us right away from what could possibly have been the most interesting part of the book.

That the citizens of Ecotopia would often leave gatherings to have sex and then return, or that they had multiple partners, and that many places were clothing optional, seems a look back to the past rather than a view of the future. Ecotopia itself has most of the things you would expect to find in a hippy utopia; fairly comprehensive social services, emotional expressiveness, a veneration of creativity and nature, and the widespread decentralization of authority.


It was a few years old, and its board was composed of a lot of dreamers. Think of it as a staged tour of a Potemkin village. Skeptical yet curious about this green new world, Weston is determined to report his findings objectively.

Reading Ecotopia today is like watching ernesy trying to invent a flying machine by flapping big finely crafted wings, as they did so for hundreds of years. Money as a general means of measurement presupposes mass-production only in this case are goods measurable and comparablea centralized bank system, mass distribution, etc.

In marked contrast, Ralph Nader praised the book, noting that “None of the happy conditions in Ecotopia are beyond the technical or resource reach of our society. The book is written in two sections — first, the reporter’s actual reports that he has submitted to his newspaper, and then his private journals. An intriguing epistolary novel, the combination of official articles and private diary entries give the reader the dual perspectives of the clalenbach experience in the environmentally-friendly state Whether calleenbach trolls of not their responses were self-policing trollisms on behalf of the neoliberal tyranny.

Revisiting the 1970s eco-cult classic that gripped a nation

Ecotopia is a new country, its territory consists of Northen California, Oregon and Washing This is a jewel. They turned to politics because it was finally the only route to self-preservation. Evil is in exile, banished to the old world beyond the borders. I read as much of it as I could before I just had to throw it down in disgust, and this was at a time when I was young enough believe I had to finish every book that I read.

Some aspects of the Ecotopian lifestyle seemed to be hold-overs from the ‘s lifestyle. Years later he came up to me and told me that he had re-read it as a “full” adult and he now agreed with me: I’m not sure how workable some of the ideas are but they’re all thought-provoking; I’m dubious, though, that the hippy-dippy laid-back attitudes to work that he describes would be capable of producing the new technology that Ecotopia relies on.


Ecotopia by Ernest Callenbach | : Books

Read it, and read Obama’s recent joint address to Congress. At the time Ecotopia was written, such ideas were mainly associated with radicals in the Black Power and other ethnic movements.

The scene ends as things inevitably do in Ecotopia: Callenbach has done a marvelous thing. The urban-ecology movement, concerned with a new approach to urban planning. His old beliefs challenged, his cynicism replaced by hope, Weston meets a sexually forthright Ecotopian woman and undertakes a relationship whose intensity will lead him to a critical choice between two worlds. Oh yes, let’s cut down even more trees than we already are.

One illustration of this involves a plate of cold eggs in a restaurant. Read this soooo long ago.

Sustainability, which the title tells you is the overarching topic, is looked at from various angles: Thanks for telling us about the problem. In a way, it felt like I was reading a foundational manifesto for a very specific environmental philosophy that has existed in the periphery of my understanding for quite some time.

I do not consider it impossible even in our society that one day it might be possible for people to grow marijuana in window boxes and smoke it or bake it into brownies or other things if they so please as described in this novel.