Utopian Flaw: From Thomas More’s Utopia

“The hospital are furnished and stored with all things that are convenient for the ease and recovery of the sick; and those that are put in them are looked after with such tender and watchful care, and are so constantly attended by their skillful physicians…” (UR, 83)

This type of sincere, serious care can only originate from a genuine, familial love. Because we are first able to experience and understand love within our own family, we are able to then proliferate that love unto others (neighbors, friends, partners, patients). How can this Utopia, which easily ignores the importance of maintaining genetically-linked families, encourage an environment that fosters such a love?

In a household, the number of members must remain between ten and sixteen. Any “extra” member is trafficked into another household– even into another city or town or continent (81). This is clearly a form of human trafficking! If parents are able to send out their own children and receive others, how can love really exist? It may be easy/natural to care for another being as your own (e.g. adoptions), but can you disregard the love for your own at the same time? Can you easily transfer that love around?

Because this Utopia encourages its people to be proficient in specialities that they enjoy doing and/or are talented in, these “skillful physicians” are obviously medical experts. But someone who knows exactly how to treat a virus or disease may not have the same capacity to truly care about their patients. If they are just doing their jobs, why is More describing them as such caring attendees?

Where does this “tender and watchful care” originate from?