AbstractThe late sociologist Erik Olin Wright’s work on "real utopias" highlights actualized examples of social transformation. In this class activity, the concept of real utopias offers students a way to creatively envision how emancipatory alternatives might abound. This in-class activity introduces the concept of real utopias through a hands-one activity that...
- Subject Area(s):
- Social Welfare/Social Work
- Resource Type(s):
- Class Activity
- Class Level(s):
- Any Level
- Class Size(s):
Usage NotesThe activity was developed for a Social Welfare course, which has 30-40 students. It could also be used in Political Sociology, Social Class & Inequality, Social Movements, and Sociology of Education. Instructors could adapt this activity for larger classes. Allow 1.5-2 hours for this activity. Students read about real utopias (Wright 2011) and/or...
Learning Goals and Assessments
- Create a federal spending plan and guiding vision that explains allocation.
- Reach group consensus to develop a federal spending plan. Communicate their plan and process to the class.
- Compare "real utopia" plans to actual federal spending.
- All students submit their individual work.
- All groups share visions and develop consensus to craft a collective vision and spending plan.Most groups effectively communicate their plan, vision, and decision-making process.
- Many students identify differences between the actual spending and the groups’ plans, noting consequences.