Shilliam, Robbie et al.: Oceans: The Space of Future Thinking , in Chatterjee, Sukla et al. (Hrsg.): Postcolonial Oceans: Contradictions, Heterogeneities, Knowledges, Materialities, Heidelberg: Heidelberg University Publishing, 2023 (Anglophone Postcolonial Studies, Band 1), S. 107–122. https://doi.org/10.17885/heiup.1046.c17304

Identifier (Buch)

ISBN 978-3-96822-158-8 (PDF)
ISBN 978-3-96822-159-5 (Hardcover)




Bill Ashcroft


The Space of Future Thinking

ABSTRACT Thomas More’s Utopia is located at the beginning of what Henri Lefebvre calls “historical space” in which the ocean had unparalleled signif­icance for imperial expansion. Whether as “free domain” in Hugo Grotius’s terms, or as a space of imagined utopias, or as promise of the coming network of global capitalism, the sea was a powerful space for thinking of the future. Islands, those territories found between the “Old World” and the “New” that were immensely useful in the imperial object of “territorializing the unterritorializable,” became the focus of postcolonial transformation through the agency of the utopian hope. Two regions in particular, Oceania and the Caribbean, stand as the most vibrant and powerful examples of such transformation. The sea, that had seemed to offer free rein to imperial capitalism, became the site of a reimagined future, the open space of the utopian imagination the lies at the core of postcolonial resistance.

KEYWORDS utopia, islands, Caribbean, Oceania, postcolonial transformation