The responsibility for social hope

Marcus Morgan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
337 Downloads (Pure)


Since representations of social life are rarely separate in their effects from the worlds they aspire to depict, this article argues that as producers of such representations, sociologists are automatically responsible for considering the performative consequences of their work. In particular, it suggests that sociologists have an ongoing normative responsibility to draw out emergent strands of social hope from their empirical analyses. Through a comparison of Rorty, Levitas, and Unger's different theorizations of social hope, the article argues for a pragmatic model of social hope that is rooted in empirical conceptions of the past and present, but, alive to the transcendent possibilities of the emerging future, refuses to be entirely determined by these conceptions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-123
Number of pages17
JournalThesis Eleven
Issue number1
Early online date20 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016


  • Bloch
  • hope
  • humanism
  • Levitas
  • performativity
  • pragmatism
  • Rorty
  • Unger


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