Tenses of Imagination

Raymond Williams on Science Fiction, Utopia and Dystopia

by Andrew Milner (Volume editor)
Edited Collection X, 246 Pages
Series: Ralahine Utopian Studies, Volume 7


Raymond Williams was an enormously influential figure in late twentieth-century intellectual life as a novelist, playwright and critic, «the British Sartre», as The Times put it. He was a central inspiration for the early British New Left and a close intellectual supporter of Plaid Cymru. He is widely acknowledged as one of the «founding fathers» of cultural studies, who established «cultural materialism» as a new paradigm for work in both literary and cultural studies. There is a substantial secondary literature on Williams, which treats his life and work in each of these respects. But none of it makes much of his enduring contribution to utopian studies and science fiction studies. This volume brings together a complete collection of Williams’s critical essays on science fiction and futurology, utopia, and dystopia, in literature, film, television, and politics, and with extracts from his two future novels, The Volunteers (1978) and The Fight for Manod (1979).
Both the collection as a whole and the individual readings are accompanied by introductory essays written by Andrew Milner.


X, 246
ISBN (Softcover)
Publication date
2011 (January)
Cultural materialism Terror Science Fiction Nineteen eighty four
Oxford, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Wien, 2010. X, 246 pp.

Biographical notes

Andrew Milner (Volume editor)

The Editor: Andrew Milner is Professor and Deputy Director of the Centre for Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. His previous publications include Postmodern Conditions (1990), Cultural Materialism (1993), Class (1999), Re-Imagining Cultural Studies (2002), Contemporary Cultural Theory (2002), Literature, Culture and Society (2005), Imagining the Future (2006) and Demanding the Impossible (2008).


Title: Tenses of Imagination