Synopses & Reviews
Reminiscent of Gulliver"s Travelsand Sophie"s Worldin turn, this delightful satirical comedy is a whirlwind tour through the utopias of our modernity. Along the way, Lukes both pays homage to and reveals the tragic failure of each utopia in achieving the perfect world.
Nicholas Caritat, a modern-day professor and scholar of the Enlightenment, takes a journey through the fictional world of western political philosophy. Conversing mentally with Voltaire and Condorcet, he seeks to avoid the political struggle in Militaria, the police state where he lives, and though he is arrested by the police, he is liberated by guerrillas who dub him Pangloss because they want him to find the best of all possible worlds. Traveling through Utilitaria, Libertaria, Communitaria, and Egalitaria, his misadventures reveal to him and us that none of them is ideal because, alone, each lacks the strengths of the others.
A whirlwind fictional tour through the utopias of our modernity.
The Curious Enlightenment of Professor Caritat is a brilliant fictional journey through Western political philosophy by one of our most original thinkers. Professor Caritat, a middle-aged Candide, walks naively through the neighbouring countries of Utilitaria, Communitaria and Libertaria, in his quest to find the best of all possible worlds. Cut loose from the confines of his ivory tower, this wandering professor is made to confront the perplexed state of modern thinking in this dazzling comedy of ideas.
About the Author
Steven Lukes is Professor of Sociology at NYU. He has previously taught at the London School of Economics and the University of Siena, and is the author of numerous works including Emile Durkheim: His Life and Work, Power: A Radical View and What is Left?