Social Imaginaries

Social Imaginaries inquires into complexes of cultural meaning and cultural projects of power. It presupposes an understanding of society as a political institution, which is formed — and forms itself — in historical constellations, on the one hand, and through encounters with other cultures and civilizational worlds, on the other. An emphasis on “imaginaries” points to several interrelated trends: it reveals the modern concern with — and emphasis on — the social imagination as truly creative rather than reproductive; it highlights the phenomenon of collectively instituted meaning and its inter-cultural variations; it provides a corrective to a one-sided focus on ‘reason’ as the central tenet (or promise) of modernity; finally, it underscores the ongoing, albeit incomplete, hermeneutical turn in the human sciences. Social Imaginaries reflects on the human condition in modernity, which, amongst other things, ought to be centrally concerned with theoretical elaborations of and responses to the ecological devastation of the natural world. It pursues intersecting debates on (inter)cultural and historical varieties of meaning, power and socially instituted worlds.