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MonkeyNotes-Utopia by Sir Thomas More
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PLOT STRUCTURE

The structural composition of Utopia is divided into two books. The first book deals with the shortcomings of contemporary European society. Hythloday, the mariner, impresses his audience with his wisdom and erudition and More and Giles wonder why he is not in the service of a king. Hythloday thereupon assures them that no king would appreciate a councilor who advises him to act against his natural instincts and to tread the narrow righteous path. Most of Book I is a dialogue between the three men who have gathered to discuss Hythloday's travels. Yet instead of discussing his travels, they instead debate what the responsibility of someone like Hythloday, who has knowledge of many cultures and different political systems, is. This spurs a conversation about the wrongdoings and corruption of English rule. In contrast to the lack of just and honest practices of many politicians in Europe is the perfect country - Utopia.


The second book is an explanation of the many laws and customs of Utopian society. Hythloday starts with the physical geography of the island and then moves to more detailed economic and social aspects. By the end of Book II, Hythloday has assessed the country he has described as a great model of a humane and just society, one that many European countries should emulate. Hythloday gives enough details to spur the reader's imagination and convince him or her that not only does this society exist but that it would be a good idea if there were more places like this in the world.

The second book, contrasting Utopia with Europe shows an ideal society whereas the first book reveals the many misdeeds and misappropriations that European rulers use to serve their own needs. The book lays out a moral argument about the responsibilities that politicians have to their constituency and provides a solution of how a more participatory form of government can result in a more satisfied populace for all rather than just a few.

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