What can social theory offer to visions of an alternative society? In his new book, Social Theory for Alternative Societies (Palgrave, 2016), Dr Matt...

What can social theory offer to visions of an alternative society? In his new book, Social Theory for Alternative Societies (Palgrave, 2016), Dr Matt Dawson, a Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Glasgow, explores how classical and contemporary social theory has grappled with this question. The book proposes three starting points for a vision of the good society, beginning with the identification of a social problem, through the suggestion of an alternative, to the justification for the alternative’s way of solving the social problem. Drawing on classical social theory from Du Bois, Durkheim and Marx, through to more recent ideas from Feminism, Cosmopolitanism, Neo-Marxism and Public Sociology, the book provides a new take on social theory as well as thinking through the meaning of what a good society might be.


Dave O’Brien is the host of New Books in Critical Theory and is a Senior Lecturer in Cultural Policy at the Institute for Cultural and Creative Entrepreneurship, Goldsmiths College, University of London. His research covers a range of areas between sociology and political science, including work on the British Civil Service, British Cultural Policy, cultural labour, and urban regeneration. His most recent books are Cultural Policy: Management, Value and Modernity in the Creative Industries and After Urban Regeneration (edited with Dr. Peter Matthews). He tweets @Drdaveobrien.

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