Imagining real utopia: An empirical exploration of organizing alternative projects

Activity: Talk or presentationConference PresentationsResearch

Volker Kirchberg - Speaker

Svea Blieffert - Speaker

This presentation explores causes and consequences of real utopias in North Germany. We look at causes for the realization of alternative life realizations on macro, meso and micro levels. Second, we review the applicability of a three category system from desirable via viable towards achievable goals towards real utopias. Third, we compare differences and similarities of real utopias in urban and rural settings, using a spatial perspective on real utopias. Fourth, we survey how much the surveyed real utopias understand their alternative blueprints as an effective part of a broader socio-political transformation, which might happen as a ruptural, an interstitial or a symbiotic conversion of society. The point of departure for these questions is Erik Olin Wright’s longstanding emancipatory social science project on real utopias, culminating in his 2010 book on “envisioning real utopias”. During our empirical research, we also reference other earlier and more recent works and acquire new insights beyond existing findings.


ISA World Congress of Sociology - ISA 2023: Resurgent Authoritarianism: The Sociology of New Entanglements of Religions, Politics, and Economies


Melbourne , New South Wales, Australia

Event: Conference