Collage of archived images depicting historic utopian societies

“Utopias” are societies, both literary and lived, imaginary and actual, that strive for the creation of a more ideal community and world. While utopias are often built upon problematics, philosophical inconsistencies, and tensions, the study of these attempts causes one to pause and consider how to make our reality a better place for all.

Surveying Utopias: A Critical Exploration” is a special standing and digital exhibition which will be open to the public Feb. 22 through July 26 in the Henry Madden Library Special Collections Research Center.

A series of free events open to the public will celebrate the launch of this unique exhibition.

Feb. 21: Workshop “Inspiring Figures and Your Vision of a Better World
  • Run by the Theatre for Transformation
  • 4 p.m. in Library Room 2206.
  • Parking is $4 in lots P27, P20 or P1.
  • Feature poetry, music, movement and audience participation.
Feb. 22: Opening Reception “Surveying Utopias: A Critical Exploration
  • 6 p.m. in the Woodward Family Special Collections Reading Room.
  • Parking is free in lots P30 or P31.
Feb. 22: Live Performance “What is America to Me: the U.S. at the 400th Anniversary of Slavery; A Performance Project Featuring Poetry, Music, Movement and Audience Participation”
  • 7:30 p.m. in the Leon S. Peters Ellipse Gallery.
  • Parking is free in lots P30 or P31.
  • Featuring the Theatre for Transformation, with composer/saxophonist Francis Wong, classical violinist Dr. Michael Jamanis and poet-performer Dr. Amanda Kemp.
Feb. 23: Screening of “Black Panther”
  • 1 p.m. in Library Room 2206. Parking is free in lots P30 or P31.
  • Screening of Black Panther, with community conversation led by graduate students on how to create a more supportive society.

The words "Surveying Utopias: A Critical Exploration" surrounds a historic image of a utopia, which is surrounded by train tracks

Learn more about the Utopias Exhibition and the English Department graduate students who curated it.

Explore the Henry Madden Library floor maps (pdf) for more information on the event space locations.

ASL interpreters will be present at the Feb. 21 and Feb. 22 events. The “Black Panther” screening will include English subtitles.  Fresno State encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation or have questions about the physical access provided, please contact the Library Administration Office at 559.278.2403 or email libraryevents@mail.fresnostate.edu advance to your participation.