America's communal utopias /

Corporate Author: JSTOR books.
Other Authors: Pitzer, Donald E.
Format: Online Book
Language: English
Published: Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c1997.
Online Access: Online version
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Review by Choice Review

Pitzer, one of the nation's foremost students of American utopianism, has assembled a variety of essays on communitarianism, including chapters on such mainstream groups as the Shakers, Rappites, and Oneida Perfectionists. Included, too, are pieces on lesser-known groups; for example, there is an essay on Cyrus Reed Teed's Koreshan Unity movement, which at the turn of the 20th century promoted the "hollow earth" concept. Important additional features of this volume are an appendix providing a listing of American communal utopias divided by types, from Colonial times to 1965, and a major bibliographical essay. The volume also contains a useful and detailed index. Although not the first work of its kind, it is a valuable contribution to the extensive literature of this popular subject. Like all such collections, there are omissions and mistakes. The reference, for example, to the Spirit Fruit Society fails to provide correct dates for this New Thought utopia, troubling because two monographs on this experiment appeared in the 1980s. Upper-division undergraduates and above. H. R. Grant; Clemson University

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.