Utopia Is My Peace Project
Like Big Brother, Utopia follows the interaction between strangers as they’re thrust together, this time to form a new society. “The series offers people from all walks of life the chance to start all over again and re-write the rules of civilization as we know it. It addresses fascinating and fundamental questions about human law, morality and social structures, wrapped in an irresistible and truly forward-thinking television format,” says Simon Andreae.
When I first saw the ads for Utopia all I could think of was that I came up with the idea first back in 1991. And I came up with the idea way before Big Brother and Survivor were on TV. But back then I called it my Peace Project. I wanted to show that people of all walks of life, cultures and religions could get along just fine in their own society. I felt that a lot of conflicts were due to social constructs and could be overcome. I wanted to gather everyone in an isolated camp in the mountains—possibly Colorado because Outward Bound is out of Colorado–and then I wanted to study how they interacted.
The problem was I was only 14 years old at the time and I didn’t have the resources to make such an ambitious project happen. I told a lot of people about my idea and did research on getting funding, but I just couldn’t do it all by myself at the time. No one else that I knew had the resources either and without the internet, it was difficult to find help in a small Midwestern town.
The one thing I was able to do was go to my library and do some research. My local library didn’t have any books on the topic, so I resorted to traveling to the Ohio State University at Mansfield Library. All I needed was a driver’s license to get books out of their library, which I didn’t have. So Mom had to get them out for me.
Books I Read To Research:
The Great Peace March by Holly Near
For Peace And Justice: Pacifism In America 1914 to 1941 by by Charles Chatfield
The Hard Way To Peace by Amitai Etzioni
The Peace Reform In American History by Charles DeBenedetti
The Peace Reader by Joseph J. Fahey (Author), Richard Armstrong
War and Peace In The Global Village by Marshall McLuhan and Quentin Fiore
Celebrities I wanted like to contact and ask to participate:
Richard Dean Anderson
I would also like to put out a Soundtrack to the Peace Movement: