News From Nowhere


Read by Elizabeth Klett

(4.1 stars; 41 reviews)

News from Nowhere (1890) is a classic work combining utopian socialism and soft science fiction written by the artist, designer and socialist pioneer William Morris. In the book, the narrator, William Guest, falls asleep after returning from a meeting of the Socialist League and awakes to find himself in a future society based on common ownership and democratic control of the means of production. In this society there is no private property, no big cities, no authority, no monetary system, no divorce, no courts, no prisons, and no class systems. This agrarian society functions simply because the people find pleasure in nature, and therefore they find pleasure in their work. In the novel, Morris tackles one of the most common criticisms of socialism; the supposed lack of incentive to work in a communistic society. Morris' response is that all work should be creative and pleasurable. (Summary by Wikipedia) (7 hr 24 min)

Chapters

Chapter 1, Discussion and Bed 6:14 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 2, A Morning Bath 16:53 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 3, The Guest House and Breakfast Therein 19:20 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 4, A Market By the Way 6:37 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 5, Children on the Road 14:04 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 6, A Little Shopping 14:55 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 7, Trafalgar Square 15:21 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 8, An Old Friend 7:32 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 9, Concerning Love 24:03 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 10, Questions and Answers 24:02 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 11, Concerning Government 8:40 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 12, Concerning the Arrangement of Life 11:23 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 13, Concerning Politics and Chapter 14, How Matters Are Arranged 12:00 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 15, On the Lack of Incentive to Labour in a Communist Society 18:03 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 16, Dinner in the Hall of Bloomsbury Market 8:36 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 17, Part 1, How the Change Came 31:11 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 17, Part 2, How the Change Came 27:38 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 18, The Beginning of the New Life 11:08 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 19, The Drive Back to Hammersmith 11:00 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 20, The Hammersmith Guest House Again, and Chapter 21, Going Up the Riv… 9:13 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 22, Hampton Court and a Praiser of Past Times 20:46 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 23, An Early Morning By Runnymede 11:57 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 24, Up the Thames: The Second Day 18:31 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 25, The Third Day on the Thames 8:59 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 26, The Obstinate Refusers 9:08 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 27, The Upper Waters 22:33 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 28, The Little River 8:22 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 29, A Resting-Place on the Upper Thames 10:06 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 30, The Journey's End 12:04 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 31, An Old House Amongst New Folk 10:50 Read by Elizabeth Klett
Chapter 32, The Feast's Beginning - The End 13:15 Read by Elizabeth Klett

Reviews

News From Nowhere


(5 stars)

The political roots of the Arts and Crafts movement are clearly shown in Morris' utopian vision of a society that has left commercialism and private property behind and in which art is embodied in craftsmanship. Although I have always admired Morris' design work, I had found his stylised romances a bit of a slog. So I was happily suprised to find that NFN (1890) is lively and well executed. It's a far easier read than Bellamy's famous 1887 yawner "Looking Backward." As usual, Elizabeth Klett does an outstanding job of interpreting the written word with perfect enunciation and 99% accuracy in pronouncing those arcane English place names. Many thanks for your work, Gloriana. It kept me sane last whilst burning the remains of many dinosaurs (i.e., driving) the damned M1 between here and Luton last week. TheBookworm (Manchester, UK)


(4 stars)

Very well read. A very intelligent and pleasant vision. While this almost isn't a novel in the traditional sense, the prose is very vivid and it feels sincere. Unlike some other reviewers, I don't think that the world this book describes is impossible, merely unlikely. It would require a shift in humans rather than government, though Morris describes the change of government as the catalyst for this change in humanity. And why not? Human nature has shifted before. All that aside, I believe this book is best described as an anti-industrial revolution work, rather than a utopian one. I enjoyed it.

tangled_tingle


(5 stars)

A hopeful vision of the past, refreshingly brought to life in today's world. Evoking a more beautiful Earth our hearts know *is* possible. The reader too is wonderful. And I, being quite particular in the reader.

Required reading for anyone with a social conscience


(4.5 stars)

Naive in places & clearly of its time but nevertheless an important critique of capitalism and an elegant vision of a socialist society. Elizabeth Klett’s narration is flawless.


(4 stars)

Wonderful depiction of what life could be. We could all use a ray of hope like that given to Guest.

love it. I always gave though for years. This was a re-read.


(5 stars)


(2 stars)

Pretty boring in the middle. Poor character development.


(5 stars)

only a pitiful person would find this unrealistic.