Utopias, Political Imagination and Modernity

Course Information
TitleΟυτοπίες και Πολιτική Φαντασία στη Νεωτερικότητα / Utopias, Political Imagination and Modernity
FacultySocial and Economic Sciences
SchoolPolitical Sciences
Cycle / Level1st / Undergraduate, 2nd / Postgraduate
Teaching PeriodSpring
CoordinatorNikolaos Sevastakis
Course ID100001327

Class Information
Academic Year2018 – 2019
Class PeriodSpring
Faculty Instructors
Weekly Hours3
Class ID
Course Type 2016-2020
  • Scientific Area
Course Type 2011-2015
Specific Foundation / Core
Mode of Delivery
  • Face to face
Digital Course Content
Language of Instruction
  • Greek (Instruction, Examination)
Learning Outcomes
The course will give you understanding of the genre of social utopias and how utopian thinking can be relevant to the critical political theory. You will acquire knowledge of the most important utopian visions and debates of contemporary utopian scholarship.
General Competences
  • Work autonomously
  • Generate new research ideas
Course Content (Syllabus)
The course offers an examination of the critical relations between utopian constructions and modern political forms. The purpose of this course is to reevaluate the significance of utopian thinking for the study of political modernity. The utopian texts but also the basic theoretical interpretations of utopian thinking (from sociologists and moral-political philosophers like Karl Mannheim, Ernst Bloch, Paul Ricoeur, Miguel Abensour) will be analyzed as sources of political thought. The students are invited to discussion of primary utopian texts with emphasis on the critical problems of utopianism engaging the formation of democratic imagination, tensions between authoritarian and emancipatory dynamics and the 20th century’s dystopian inversions of radical utopian imagery. Week 1. Introduction to the module, readings, assignments. Week 2. Meanings of Utopia. Definitions and examples of utopian thinking and practise. Week 3. Utopia and ideology. From Karl Mannheim to Paul Ricouer. Week 4. Utopia and political threats. The problem of utopian authoritarianism. Week 5. Reconstructive and Escapist utopian traditions. Week 6. Utopian Litterature and prominent figures. Thomas More, Charles Fourier. Week 7. Read and discuss utopian thinkers and writers. Week 8. Read and discuss utopian thinkers and writers. Week 9. The crisis of utopian imagination and holistic social desing. Positive and negative consequences. Week 10. "Concrete Utopia'' and contemporary democratic invention. Week 11. Egalitarian and Libertarian Utopistics. Week 12. Democratic theory and utopian experimentation. Problems and paradigms. Week 13. Final recapitulation. Chosen topics for discussion.
utopias, totalitarianism, political imagination, alterbative social projects
Educational Material Types
  • Notes
  • Book
Use of Information and Communication Technologies
Use of ICT
  • Use of ICT in Communication with Students
Course Organization
Reading Assigment431.6
Written assigments27.51
Student Assessment
Student Assessment methods
  • Written Exam with Extended Answer Questions (Summative)
  • Written Assignment (Formative)
  • Performance / Staging (Formative)
Course Bibliography (Eudoxus)
Λιούις Μάμφορντ, Η ιστορία των ουτοπιών, Νησίδες.
Additional bibliography for study
Μανχάιμ, Καρλ, Ιδεολογία και Ουτοπία, Αθήνα, Γνώση, 1997. Thomas More, Francis Bacon, Henry Leville, Τρία κείμενα για την ουτοπία, (επιμέλεια: Στέφανος Ροζάνης), Αθήνα, Μεταίχμιο, 1997. Λιάκος, Αντώνης, Αποκάλυψη, ουτοπία και Ιστορία, Πόλις, 2011. Κονδύλης, Παναγιώτης, Η ηδονή, η ισχύς, η ουτοπία, Αθήνα, Στιγμή, 1992. Paquot, Thierry, Η ουτοπία ή το παγιδευμένο ιδεώδες, Αθήνα, Scripta, 1998. Lowey, Mickael, Λύτρωση και Ουτοπία, Αθήνα, Ψυχογιός, 2002. Μπούμπερ, Μάρτιν, Μονοπάτια στην Ουτοπία, Θεσσαλονίκη, Νησίδες,2000. Wellmer, Albrecht, Λόγος, ουτοπία και διαλεκτική του διαφωτισμού, Αθήνα, Έρασμος, 1990. Bloch, Ernst, Ουτοπία και Επανάσταση, Αθήνα, Έρασμος, 2007. Μπερνέρι, Μαρία-Λουίζα, Περιήγηση στην Ουτοπία, Θεσσαλονίκη, Νησίδες, 1990. *Συλλογικό έργο, Πλάτων, ουτοπία, ολοκληρωτισμός, Αθήνα, Futura, 2011. Μαρκούζε, Χέρμπερτ, Το τέλος της ουτοπίας, Αθήνα, Ύψιλον, 1985. Μπερλίν, Ισάια, Το στρεβλό υλικό της ανθρωπότητας, Αθήνα, Κριτική, 2004. Αbensour, Miguel, “Persistent Utopia”, Constellations, 15 (3), 2008, σ. 408-421 Riot-Sarcey, Michèlle (επιμέλεια, συλλογικός τόμος), L’utopie en questions, Presses universitaires de Vincennes, 2001. internet sites for research and bibliographies on social utopias: http://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/rws1001/utopia/bibliog.htm http://utopian-studies.org/utopian-resources.
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