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The Politics of Imagination: Keeping Open, Curious and Critical

Skeggs, Bev and Latimer, Joanna. 2011. The Politics of Imagination: Keeping Open, Curious and Critical. The Sociological Review, 59(3), pp. 393-411. ISSN 0038-0261 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

A simple phrase takes its meaning from a given context, and already makes its appeal to another one in which it will be understood; but, of course, to be understood it has to transform the context in which it is inscribed. As a result, this appeal, this promise of the future, will necessarily open up the production of a new context, wherever it may happen. The future is not present, but there is an opening onto it; and because there is a future, a context is always open. What we call opening of the context is another name for what is still to come. (Derrida and Ferraris, 2001: 19–20)
In adopting ‘keeping open’ as our motif for this set of papers, the phrase takes its meaning from the context of the theme of this special issue: ‘The politics of imagination’. This theme already makes its appeal to another theme from The Sociological Review’s 100th Anniversary Conference with which it was placed back to back: ‘Imagining the political’. Our aim is to provide an ‘opening’ to the first context that also transforms this additional context. This is because we think a re-imagining of the political has to go beyond the concerns of class, ethnicity and activism as well as do more than take in a much wider array of topics such as the body, gender, business and religion. We want to show that any re-imagining of the political has to go hand in hand with an exploration of imagination as one of the key sites in which all political and cultural agendas, large and small, are played out.

Item Type: Article

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August 2011Published

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Date Deposited:

14 Jan 2013 10:31

Last Modified:

07 Jul 2017 12:46

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI: http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/7559

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