utopianism


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utopianism

any form of social or political thinking or social theory which presents an ideal form of society as a realizable model of future society (see UTOPIA).

Such thinking has sometimes been criticized as fostering political objectives or political strategies which may have little empirical or theoretical basis (compare Marx's rejection of UTOPIAN SOCIALISM). For MANNHEIM (Ideology and Utopia, 1929), however, utopian ideas can be distinguished from most ideologies in always possessing a potentially ‘transforming effect upon an existing historical social order’. In this sense utopianism may sometimes help to bring about at least some aspects of the ideal model of society which it advances (see also FRANKFURT SCHOOL OF CRITICAL THEORY). At the same time, Mannheim did not fail to notice that utopianism was often rooted in irrationalism. See also MILLENARIANISM, COLLECTIVE BEHAVIOUR.

References in periodicals archive ?
He argues against the generally held idea that utopianism ceased after independence, when postcolonial nations had to deal with depleted resources, colonial structures, and a transformed country.
Virgil and Hesiod also incorporated concepts of 'utopianism' and were highly influential in the Middle Ages.
(13) Cooper, coming from a different perspective, draws together lived practices and utopianism as she says:
The question running through these books is whether there is value in recalling utopianism for the contemporary moment, whether utopianism itself can be rediscovered.
Though Segal does mention late in the book that "utopianism in general has blossomed as a field of serious study and scholarship," there is very little in the way of engagement here with this work (242).
In part III, On Utopianism and Americanism, Levin notes that the architects of America's unmaking are too numerous to list" (p.
Weak utopianism is the experience of the potentiality of utopianism without the command to make this utopianism a determinate, materialized form or shape.
The book's theme is the connection between utopianism and reformist thought in three states, but its depth of analysis and discussion is not equally apportioned or sustained.
Before proceeding to a consideration of exactly how Huysmans and his Irish counterparts undermine aesthetic utopianism, we must pursue a more historicized definition of the utopian vision.
Revel believes that this form of utopianism, which is justified by its benevolent intentions for a perfect world in the future, allows its practitioners to deflect criticism about their real record.
In Architecture and Utopia in the Era of the French Revolution by Anthony Vidler (Basel: Birkhauser, 2006, [pounds sterling]23), Ledoux's influential buildings and designs are presented and interpreted both aesthetically and historically, reflecting their complex character between emblem and instrument, spectacle and shelter, ideal and utopia--revealing the architect's allegiance to the twin principles of classicism and utopianism.
of Maine) remarks that the topic of technological utopianism is even more timely today than it was in 1985.