chapter  2
30 Pages

The Wellsian Utopia and the Discourse of England

WithMaxim Shadurski

Chapter 2 examines the Wellsian utopia, whose conception brings a cosmopolitan intent to bear on national discourse. Wells redeploys English pastoral, Britain’s mercantile and linguistic channels of global outreach, Whig historiography, as well as principles of fair play and incremental liberty. These discursive legacies purport to denationalize the world, while at the same time anchoring England there. Wells expects the best of England to supersede what he deplores in every nation-state: frontiers, propaganda, militarism, and political motley. In defying the reality of the nation-state, the Wellsian utopia reveals alterity neither elsewhere nor elsewhen. Every intersection of space and time becomes fraught with new possibilities, which, if pursued, deliver revolution out of continuity.