ABSTRACT

This article contributes to the call for decolonial utopian work by examining one of the earliest utopian texts in the United States, Equality; or, A History of Lithconia. Using a close reading drawing on colonial context, the author argues that Equality criticizes management of the Euro-American settler state. The story's historical and philosophical content overwrites Indigenous bloodshed and critiques instead both Jeffersonian agrarian democracy and urbanized commerce. The junction between reason and religion in this Deist text displays its ideological commitment to terra nullis and a settler autarky that rearranges space for the betterment of a settler populace. Advocating an equal share of land and income among settlers, Lithconia's history praises an intelligent class that deploys reason and crafty social alliance to resolve Old World conflicts. Lithconia's universal income ultimately diverts the spoils of centuries of war against indigenous peoples, suggesting utopia and indigeneity occupy an incongruent relationship.

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