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WORKING UTOPIAS AND SOCIAL MOVEMENTS: AN INVESTIGATION USING CASE STUDY MATERIALS FROM RADICAL MENTAL HEALTH MOVEMENTS IN BRITAIN

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 November 1999

NICK CROSSLEY
Affiliation:
Department of Sociology, University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PL, England
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Abstract

This paper introduces the concept of ‘working utopias’ (WUs) and explores their relation to social movements. WUs are used in a variety of ways by social movements, it is argued, and they play a central role in the reproduction and advancement of movements. They reproduce the movement habitus and illusio, extend and reproduce networks, generate new forms of knowledge and practice, and serve, to some extent at least, as ‘proof’ of the validity of movement claims. Two utopias from within radical mental health movements are focused upon in the paper: the Kingsley Hall therapeutic community and the ‘Trieste experiment’. The significance of these working utopias is explored by way of interviews with movement activists who have been involved with them in various ways.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© 1999 BSA Publications Ltd

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WORKING UTOPIAS AND SOCIAL MOVEMENTS: AN INVESTIGATION USING CASE STUDY MATERIALS FROM RADICAL MENTAL HEALTH MOVEMENTS IN BRITAIN
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WORKING UTOPIAS AND SOCIAL MOVEMENTS: AN INVESTIGATION USING CASE STUDY MATERIALS FROM RADICAL MENTAL HEALTH MOVEMENTS IN BRITAIN
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