New Amazonia

New Amazonia
New Amazonia  
Author(s) Elizabeth Burgoyne Corbett
("Mrs. George Corbett")
Country United Kingdom
Language English
Genre(s) Utopian fiction Speculative fiction
Publisher Tower Publishing Co.
Publication date 1889
Media type Print (Hardcover)

New Amazonia: A Foretaste of the Future is a feminist utopian novel, written by Elizabeth Burgoyne Corbett and first published in 1889.[1][2] It was one element in the wave of utopian and dystopian literature that marked the later nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.[3][4][5]


The plot

In her novel, Corbett envisions a successful suffragette movement eventually giving rise to a breed of highly-evolved "Amazonians" who turn Ireland into a utopian society. The book's female narrator wakes up in the year 2472, much like Julian West awakens in the year 2000 in Edward Bellamy's Looking Backward (1888). Corbett's heroine, however, is accompanied by a man of her own time, who has similarly awakened from a hashish dream to find himself in New Amazonia.

The Victorian woman and man are given an account of intervening history by one of the Amazonians. In the early twentieth century, war between Britain and Ireland decimated the Irish population; the British repopulated the island with their own surplus women. (After the war, which also involved France on the side of Ireland, British women outnumbered men by three to one.) Women came to dominate all aspects of society on the island.

The history lesson is followed by a tour of the new society, which embodies a version of state socialism. Men are allowed to live on the island, but cannot hold political office: "masculine government has always held openings for the free admission of corruption, injustice, immorality, and narrow-minded, self-glorifying bigotry." The Amazonians are vegetarians; they employ euthanasia, eliminating malformed children — and bastards. They maintain their superiority by practicing "nerve-rejuvenation," in which the life energy of dogs is transferred to humans. The result is that the Amazonians grow to be seven feet tall, and live for hundreds of years but look no older than forty. The narrator tries the procedure herself: "The sensation I experienced was little more than a pin-prick in intensity, but...I felt ten years younger and stronger, and was proportionately elated at my good fortune." (The procedure, though, is fatal to the dogs.)

The narrator reacts very positively to what she sees and learns; but her male companion reacts precisely oppositely and adjusts badly — to the point where the Amazonians judge him to be insane. The narrator nonetheless tries to protect her male counterpart, and in the process is accidentally transported back to the grimmer realities of Victorian England.

Matriarchy resistance

W. H. Hudson's second novel, A Crystal Age (1887), published two years earlier than Corbett's book, also contains the plot element of a nineteenth-century man who cannot adapt to a matriarchal society of the future.

The author

Little is known about Newcastle journalist Elizabeth Corbett, who published as "Mrs. George Corbett." Some of her fifteen novels — mysteries, adventure stories, and mainstream fiction — have clear feminist themes and elements, despite the traditional values of the age in which she lived and worked.[6]


  1. ^ Matthew Beaumont, "'A Little Political World of My Own': the New Woman, the New Life, and New Amazonia," Victorian Literature and Culture, Vol. 35 No. 1 (2007), pp. 215-32.
  2. ^ Darby Lewes, Dream Visionaries: Gender and Genre in Women's Utopian Fiction, 1870–1920, Tuscaloosa, AL, University of Alabama Press, 1995; p. 142.
  3. ^ Jean Pfaelzer, The Utopian Novel in America 1886–1896: The Politics of Form, Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh Press, 1984.
  4. ^ Kenneth Roemer, The Obsolete Necessity, 1888–1900, Kent, OH, Kent State University Press, 1976.
  5. ^ Matthew Beaumont, Utopia Ltd.: Ideologies of Social Dreaming in England 1870–1900, Leiden, Brill Academic Publishers, 2005.
  6. ^ Matthew Beaumont, "The New Woman and Nowhere: Feminism and Utopianism at the Fin de Siécle," in: The New Woman in Fiction and Fact, Angelique Richardson and Chris Willis, eds., New York, Macmillan, 2001; p. 216.

See also

Book collection.jpg Novels portal
  • Arqtiq
  • The Diothas
  • Mizora
  • The Republic of the Future
  • 2894

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Нужно сочинение?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • New Corinthians Stadium — Arena Itaquera Itaquerão Fielzão Arena Corinthians Location São Paulo,  Brazil Coordinates …   Wikipedia

  • Population and energy consumption in Brazilian Amazonia — DeforestationThe Brazilian Amazonia supports the world’s largest contiguous area of untouched tropical forest. However, recent estimates show deforestation rates of 10,000 to 30,000 km²/yr for the period of 1991–1999 and the loss of approximately …   Wikipedia

  • Superintendência de Desenvolvimento da Amazônia — (SUDAM) the Superintendency of Development for the Amazon was a local authority of the federal government of Brazil aiming to promote the development of the Amazon region by creating special financial and tax incentives. It has been defunct since …   Wikipedia

  • Mesker Park Zoo — logo Zoo entrance Date opened 1928 …   Wikipedia

  • Moving the Mountain (novel) — Moving the Mountain   Author(s) Charlotte Perkins Gilman …   Wikipedia

  • Mizora — is an utopian novel by Mary E. Bradley Lane, first published in 1880–81, when it was serialized in the Cincinnati Commercial newspaper. It appeared in book form in 1890.[1] Mizora is the first portrait of an all female, self sufficient society,… …   Wikipedia

  • Amazon rainforest — Amazonia redirects here. For other uses, see Amazonia (disambiguation). Amazon Rainforest Forest …   Wikipedia

  • Darrell A. Posey — Darrell Addison Posey Born March 14, 1947 Henderson, Kentucky Died March 6, 2001 Oxford, UK Natio …   Wikipedia

  • Peru — Peruvian /peuh rooh vee euhn/, adj., n. /peuh rooh /, n. 1. Spanish, Perú /pe rddooh /. a republic in W South America. 24,949,512; 496,222 sq. mi. (1,285,215 sq. km). Cap.: Lima. 2. a city in N central Indiana. 13,764. 3. a city in N Illinois. 10 …   Universalium

  • Amazon Rainforest — Geobox|Forest name = Amazon Rainforest native name = other name = category = image caption = Amazon rainforest, Salinopolis, Para, Brazil. image size = official name = etymology = motto = nickname = symbol = country = Brazil country1 = Peru… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”