Utopia Essay

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Utopians vs. Europeans: Riches and Gold “Utopia,” written by Sir Thomas More, is a remarkable piece of literature that captures the reader’s attention due to it’s originality and influential ideas. Published in 1516, “Utopia,” sparked new ways of thinking, along with new ideas. Since then, “Utopia” has become one of the most influential works of literature presented in the Renaissance era. Although there are numerous concepts presented throughout the work, one cannot ignore the contrast that is present between the European point of view in regards to money and riches in the sixteenth century, with that of the Utopian point of view. In “Utopia,” Sir Thomas More emphasizes the European point of view in regards to money and riches, that was once existent in the sixteenth century. For example, in the sixteenth century, European rulers based their existence on wealth, gold, and riches, which to many determined one’s power and importance. Sir Thomas More writes, “They are generally more set on acquiring new kingdoms by hook or by crook than on governing well those that they already have,”(Page 8). In the sixteenth century, greed was often a characteristic of European rulers. Although many rulers possessed several kingdoms, the urge to obtain more almost always arose. This is because one’s power was often determined by how much land was owned, and the more land one obtains, the more money and riches one acquires. Furthermore, in the sixteenth century, wealthy Europeans valued money and riches as being greater than the human life. Sir Thomas More writes, “Simple theft is not so great a crime that it ought to cost a man his head, yet no punishment however severe can withhold a man from robbery when he has no other way to eat,”(10). Although the sixteenth century is a time of prosperity for some, there are

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