Some Thoughts About Star Trek Liberalism [wip]

Like many over-serious young geeks who grew up in the late twentieth century West, Star Trek was a major influence on me and my thinking. At its heart was its inspiring vision of a universalist society, post-scarcity, post-internal conflict. The Federation was a utopia; specifically, a liberal utopia. This was inevitable, because like most good science fiction, Star Trek was as much a reflection of the contemporary world, in particular the USA, as it was a science fictional thought experiment about how people would react in an extreme scenario or a simple gripping human drama. Some episodes were more allegorical, some were more science fictional, some were more narrative, but the allegory of Federation-as-America persisted throughout.

This continued into the later series¹.

The Original Series [TOS]²

“There's another way to survive—mutual trust and help.”
—James T. Kirk, TOS: “Day of the Dove”.

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The Next Generation [TNG]

“I'm with Starfleet: we don't lie.”
—Wesley Crusher, TNG: “Justice”.

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Deep Space Nine [DS9]

Voyager [VOY]

Enterprise [ENT]

Discovery [DIS]

Picard [PIC]

sum θoətiz abaʊt staə trek librəlizəm [blank]


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