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    Relying on ‘theory at the margins’, this paper explores alternative forms of social organisation and human relationships.

    The course encourages an understanding of what might become possible if we broaden our conceptual horizons and extend our gaze beyond entrenched, Western ways of thinking. We address thought and action that inspire greater social justice and equality and we also think critically about the conditions under which the impetus for change can have dire (sometimes unintended) consequences. We engage in robust debates about future-oriented alternatives in a range of social arenas with the aim of developing a radical imagination for the twenty-first century.

    About this paper

    Paper title Alternative Futures
    Subject Sociology
    EFTS 0.1667
    Points 20 points
    Teaching period Semester 1 (On campus)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $1,240.75
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    72 300-level SOCI points
    Students should have at least a B+ average for an undergraduate qualification in the social sciences.

    Teaching staff

    Course co-ordinator and lecturer: Associate Professor Marcelle Dawson

    Teaching Arrangements
    One 3-hour seminar per week. Attendance is compulsory.
    Compulsory and recommended reading will be made available via eReserve.
    Graduate Attributes Emphasised
    Scholarship, Interdisciplinary Perspective, Ethics, Self-Motivation, Information Literacy, Global Perspective, Cultural Understanding, Lifelong Learning, Critical Thinking, Communication, Teamwork.
    View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
    Learning Outcomes

    Students who successfully complete the paper will:

    • Understand classic and contemporary debates on alternative social futures
    • Develop a global perspective on the contested nature of alternative futures
    • Undertake an independent research essay that showcases their conceptual, analytical and writing skills
    • Present part of the course content to their peers, thus developing verbal communication skills
    • Actively participate in programme/university/public seminars and engage with senior students and programme staff on a wide range of topics, thereby contributing to the research culture of the programme/school/university.


    Semester 1

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught On Campus
    Learning management system


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    A1 Wednesday 14:00-16:50 9-13, 15-21
    Wednesday 15:00-16:50 22
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