What is the Radical Imagination? Consider the two quotes below: “Normally, when

What is the Radical Imagination?
Consider the two quotes below:
“Normally, when you challenge the conventional wisdom — that the current economic and political system
is the only possible one — the first reaction you are likely to get is a demand for a detailed architectural
blueprint of how an alternative system would work, down to the nature of its financial instruments, energy
supplies, and policies of sewer maintenance. Next, you are likely to be asked for a detailed program of how
this system will be brought into existence. Historically, this is ridiculous. When has social change ever
happened according to someone’s blueprint? It’s not as if a small circle of visionaries in Renaissance Florence
conceived of something they called ‘capitalism,’ figured out the details of how the stock exchange and
factories would someday work, and then put in place a program to bring their visions into reality. In fact, the
idea is so absurd we might well ask ourselves how it ever occurred to us to imagine this is how change
happens to begin.”
– David Graeber
“On the surface level, the radical imagination is the ability to imagine the world, life and social institutions
not as they are but as they might otherwise be…But the radical imagination is not just about dreaming of
different futures. Its about bringing those possible futures ‘back’ to work on the present, to inspire action
and new forms of solidarity today. Likewise, the radical imagination is about drawing on the past, telling
different stories about how the world came to be the way it is, and remembering the power and importance
of past struggles…Without the radical imagination, we are left only with the residual dreams of the powerful,
and for the vast majority they are not experienced as dreams but as nightmares of insecurity, precarity,
violence and hopelessness. Without the radical imagination, we are lost.”
– Excerpt from The Radical Imagination (2014)
by Alex Kobayashi and Max Haiven
For many, it is a difficult task to imagine a future that differs from the present. Having yet to experience the
future, our visions of the future are shaped by the present, our understanding of the past and by our dreams
and fears. From literature to film, cultural depictions of the future are saturated by visions dominated by our
fears of the future. Examples of these include: Blade Runner, 1984, The Hunger Games, Elysium, and more…
Now, as Graeber argues, it is a much more difficult task to try and think about what a more just and
egalitarian society looks like. And as he notes, the challenges to thinking through what
exactly a better world looks like is often used to dismiss efforts at advancing social justice.
Despite what Graeber sees as the absurdity of developing a blueprint for social change, movements for social
justice are always engaged in imagining more just futures. When people come together to resist climate
change, when they come together to unionize gig workers, when they come together to organize against
evictions, they are part of a process of envisioning a better world.
The Radical Imagination Essay
The Future of Work – SOSC 1510 A & B
Assignment Objectives:
 To learn how to do scholarly research and referencing
 To develop critical reading skills
 To practice constructing strong arguments
 To explore how people envision justice, social change, and strategies to make change
Essay Guidelines:
In this essay you will be analysing an organization or movement that fights for what they believe is a
more just and egalitarian future. You will first choose a movement or organization to focus on.
Some of the options listed below relate to struggles against workplace injustices, while others deal
with broader issues of social, political, and economic justice. What is important is you chose one that
interests you. They each feature different visions of a just future and how we might fight to build a
more just future.
Step 1
Choose a Topic:
Choose a social or workers’ justice movement or organization from the following list:
Wages for Students The Industrial Workers of the World
Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee The League of Revolutionary Black Workers
Global Women’s Strike Movement of Worker Recuperated Enterprises
Alternatively, you can choose an organization or movement featured in one of the following films:
A Time to Rise Vanguard of the Revolution
How to Survive a Plague The Ninth Floor
Bread and Roses Kanehsatake 270 Years of Resistance
This is What Democracy Looks Like Maquilapolis
Status Quo? The Unfinished Business of Feminism in Canada A Place Called Chiapas
Disobedience Harlan County USA
Please note that these are mainly historical movements because there is a lot more written on them. If there
is an organization or movement you are interested in that is not listed here, you can email me
with the name of the movement or organization, how it fits with the course
themes and assignment objectives and why you would like to write about it. You may only write on this topic
if it is approved by your Prof. and TA.
Step 2
Start your Research:
Visit the York University library website or google scholar. Find at least five academic sources on the
movement or organization you chose. Please note that if you chose a film, the film counts as one of your five
The Radical Imagination Essay
The Future of Work – SOSC 1510 A & B
Read and take notes of the articles and book chapters you found with the following questions in
 What organization did you choose? Why did they come together?
 What is their vision for a more just future and how does it relate to course themes and
 What do they identify as the root causes of the injustices they confront?
 How do they organize for change?
 Do you think their strategies and tactics for making change match their goals?
Why or why not?
 What obstacles do you think they would face in realizing their vision of the future?
Step 3
Putting the Essay Together:
Develop a simple structure for the essay based on answering the above questions. Think of this as a short
report on how and why your movement or organization fights for a more just future. If you find it useful to
organize the paper using the questions as subtitles for each section, go ahead and do so, just remember to
include an introduction, thesis, and conclusion. *Draft a one page outline of your paper before you begin
writing (point form is fine) and please include the outline with your paper.
Step 4
Review your Work:
Essay Checklist
1. First, did you do the basics?
Check to make sure you have:
 an appropriate topic and thesis
 drawn from at least five scholarly sources
 used an accepted citation style
 provided in text citations where necessary
 included your one page essay outline
2. Did your analysis address the theme of radical imagination and other course themes?
3. Did your analysis go beyond summary?
4. Were you able to support your arguments?
5. Were you able to develop a strong analysis about the way the movement envisions change?
Evaluation Criteria: How does my essay hold up to the evaluation criteria?
You will be evaluated on the following:
 Your ability to do appropriate research
 Your comprehension of the research you did
 The depth of your analysis i.e. do you develop an analysis or simply provide description?
 Your ability to answer the questions posed accurately and with appropriate evidence
 The structure of the paper, the clarity of your writing and use of proper citations

Competency Exercise: Website Review on Persuasion Tactics Read the web article “

Competency Exercise: Website Review on Persuasion Tactics
Read the web article “Working Psychology: Introduction to Influence” on the Working Psychology website:
http://www.workingpsychology.com/intro.html (SEE: Internet Research pages 119-125)
WHILE ON THE WEBSITE … View the following pages: “Introduction to Influence,” “Why Influence? Definitions,” “# of Tactics?,” “16 Tactics,” and “53 Tactics.” These page links are listed in a sidebar of the web page. After you have read this article, submit to the newsgroup a 275 word response on how this material will aid your persuasive speech. Give examples and provide quotations from the articles.

This week’s discussion questions will focus on the comprehension and application

This week’s discussion questions will focus on the comprehension and application of the reading material for the week. Respond to both questions based on Chapters 12 and 14. A well-thought-out answer demonstrating interaction with the course material is a must. Citing a reference is preferred.
Speech is on How to say motivated
1. Analyze your informative speech for the dynamics you think it will need to be delivered effectively. Share an example of the various forms of body language you will use with your speech. Explain why you have chosen these particular forms.
2. What did you learn about the difference between informative and persuasive speaking? When do you cross the line between arguing and persuading?

Submit a 500-word minimum referenced reflection on the key items addressed durin

Submit a 500-word minimum referenced reflection on the key items addressed during the week and how they apply to your education, life, or ministry. The written reflection is to address the following questions:
What is the most significant thing you learned this week?
What previous experiences relate to what you read and learned?
How has what you learned changed your thinking about this week’s topic(s)?
How will you use the knowledge gained this week in your life or ministry?

Do the self-awareness inventory in Chapter 3 of your text on page 48. In light o

Do the self-awareness inventory in Chapter 3 of your text on page 48. In light of the information given in chapter three, think of ways you can revise your or a biography. Please choose 1 of the 8 categories (or another of your own choice) to build your revised bio upon. Seek to build your new bio, on one theme only, that describes who you are. along with comments about your decisions for the changes that you have made. NOTE: You should be changing most of the text of your previous biography in this revision. The addition of a paragraph or changing wording here and there does not complete the intent of this assignment. It should be rewritten. (Refer to Speaker’s notes on page 42.
Note: I don’t have this book: Osborn, Michael, Osborn, Susan and Randall Osborn. Public Speaking. 11th ed. Chapters 1-3, 6, and 13.
Don’t forget to explain WHY you made the changes that you made.

Now that you’ve read about press releases and their importance, here’s your oppo

Now that you’ve read about press releases and their importance, here’s your
opportunity to draft your own and start practicing your public relations writing skills.
First, review the attached PDF.
Then, do the following:
1. Draft a news release to accompany Sludge to the Blackrock City Council Meeting on
April 11. Please submit a version of your press release
2. In a separate answer – Tell me which Items you would NOT use in your Press
Release. Why?
3. Taking the lessons from your textbook (Chapter 15) If a reporter came and wanted to
know what happened to the former Blackrock manager Fowler Aire – what would you tell
them? (Remember: lying is not an option.)