Nutopia

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Flag of Nutopia

Nutopia is a conceptual country, sometimes referred to as a micronation,[1] founded by John Lennon and Yoko Ono. One of the reasons that the country was founded was to address Lennon's then-ongoing immigration problems (the previous week he received a deportation order)[2] through satirical means.

There is no leadership and not all citizenships have been recorded. As a result, the population is unknown.

Nutopia is a portmanteau of "new" and "utopia" which suggests Nutopia is a new, utopian society.[citation needed]

History[edit]

On 2 April 1973 (next day after April Fool's Day)[3], Lennon and Ono introduced the conceptual country of Nutopia at a press conference in New York City.[4]

The Lennons were ambassadors of the country and sought (creatively, though unsuccessfully) diplomatic immunity to end Lennon's ongoing immigration troubles, as he and Ono tried to remain in the United States. (Ono already had a Resident Alien "green card" through her previous husband, Tony Cox. Lennon had been denied permanent residence status). Lennon talked about the imaginary country, which would live up to the ideals of his song "Imagine", saying this in the "official" declaration (signed the day before):

We announce the birth of a conceptual country, NUTOPIA. Citizenship of the country can be obtained by declaration of your awareness of NUTOPIA. NUTOPIA has no land, no boundaries, no passports, only people. NUTOPIA has no laws other than cosmic. All people of NUTOPIA are ambassadors of the country. As two ambassadors of NUTOPIA, we ask for diplomatic immunity and recognition in the United Nations of our country and its people.[3][5]

In 2006, a Nutopia website was created that forwarded to a site about the documentary The U.S. vs. John Lennon, distributed by Lions Gate Entertainment.[6][7]

Symbols[edit]

The entrance to the Dakota building, where Lennon and Ono posted a Nutopian Embassy sign on the back door of their apartment

The flag of Nutopia has only one colour: white. At the press conference Lennon, waving a white tissue, stated, "This is the flag of Nutopia—we surrender, to peace and to love". According to a reporter for The New York Times, Lennon blew his nose on the tissue.[8] Some criticised this association with surrender, but Lennon and Ono defended the association, saying that only through surrender and compromise could peace be achieved.[citation needed]

Lennon's album Mind Games (1973) features the "Nutopian International Anthem", which is four seconds of silence.[9]

The hand-drawn Great Seal of Nutopia features a picture of a seal balancing a yin-yang globe on its nose.[10][11]

A plaque engraved with the words "NUTOPIAN EMBASSY" was installed at the back (kitchen) entrance to the Dakota apartment where Lennon and Ono lived. Ono remarked decades later that guests preferred walking into her home through that door instead of the front entrance.[12]

Legacy[edit]

Finnish singer-songwriter Kari Peitsamo, fan of Lennon's work, released a song called "Nutopia" on his album I’m Down.

In 2009 a exhibit in New York displayed the letter that established Nutopia.[13]

References[edit]

  1. ^ John Ryan, George Dunford & Simon Sellars (2006). Micronations. Lonely Planet. p. 127. ISBN 1-74104-730-7.
  2. ^ Swanson, Dave. "When John Lennon Was Ordered to Leave U.S. by Authorities". Ultimate Classic Rock. Retrieved 2020-02-08.
  3. ^ a b "John Lennon and Yoko Ono write the Declaration of Nutopia". The Beatles Bible. 1973-04-01. Retrieved 2020-02-08.
  4. ^ Toy, Vivian S. "A Brush With a Beatle," New York Times. March 7, 2010.
  5. ^ "We announce the birth of a conceptual country, NUTOPIA". Lennon Twitter account. 2018-04-01. Retrieved 2020-02-08.
  6. ^ "NUTOPIA". joinnutopia.com. Archived from the original on 6 February 2008. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  7. ^ Lions Gate tunes in Lennon documentary, Daily Variety, 2 September 2005.
  8. ^ Johnston, Laurie (1973-04-03). "Lennon Sees a Wide Impact in Ouster". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2020-02-08.
  9. ^ Du Noyer, Paul (1999). John Lennon: Whatever Gets You Through the Night. Thunder's Mouth Press. pp. 75–76. ISBN 1560252103.
  10. ^ "Flickr – Photo Sharing!". Flickr – Photo Sharing!. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  11. ^ "Flickr – Photo Sharing!". Flickr – Photo Sharing!. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  12. ^ "On the Day of the Birth of Nutopia – 1 April 2015 by Yoko Ono". IMAGINE PEACE. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  13. ^ Pilkington, Ed (2009-05-12). "John Lennon exhibit opens at the New York annex of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2020-02-08.

External links[edit]