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THE PURSUIT OF THE PUBLIC HEALTH MILLENNIUM
In this issue, one of the foremost current commentators on inequalities in health, Johan Mackenbach, invokes Thomas More’s Utopia to discuss the issue of radical aspiration for health improvement today in comparison with the nineteenth century.1 He draws on the metaphor of the “Land of Cockaigne”, a legendary land of milk and honey, to explore how in high-income countries' health problems associated with obesity now continue to be socially patterned, with inequality bearing down most on poorer people. Since the demise of communism, millennial movements have tended to focus on the globalisation of capitalism and the aspirations of fundamentalist Muslims. John Gray, in his recent book Black mass: apocalyptic religion and the death of utopia, draws on the recently deceased Norman Cohn’s magnum opus to argue the case for the problematic status of those caught up with millennium-type ambitions.2 3 If nothing else, those of us who entered public health to change the world need …