Response to Pacific Edge

Response to Pacific Edge

I like Pacific Edge for the fact that, for a utopian tale, it is so ordinary. As a tool for envisioning the future, the novel works well because the society and the lifestyles of the characters in the book are realistic and feasible– the way that they live is, for the most part, the way that we could live now if we chose to.

In some ways they have reverted back to previous times when communities were small and close-knit, physical activity was the main method of labor and entertainment, and long distance travel was limited. The technology that they do employ is used mostly for purposes of function and communication– they use telephones to call people but computers only seem to be used to operate the eco-homes and connect the residents to families in other eco-homes. There also seems to be no central government; each town/city and other organizations are lead by councils/committees.

I could see communities like this one occurring in the future, though not universally. I envision this type of community as the parallel of a suburbs but I still think that in the sustainable future there would be major cities that are technological hubs and encompass different lifestyles than the one presented in the novel.

In regards to the idea of envisioning, the only critique of the story that I have is that they don’t tell us much about how they got to where they are– how government transformed or even how El Modena came to be as a modern community. Nevertheless, it was a good story and KSR was definitely ahead of his time in writing it.

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