Hope movements: naming mobilization in a post-development world

Ana Cecilia Dinerstein, Severine Deneulin

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Social mobilizations that are devoted to contesting development and creating alternative economic arrangements conducive to the pursuit of a dignified life have recently sprung up. Not only do they criticize the current state of affairs but they actively seek and experience new ways of living, inspired by what Bloch calls the anticipatory consciousness of the ‘not-yet-become’, that is, another reality not yet materialized but which can be already experienced. This article argues that these mobilizations are not adequately captured by the term ‘social movements’. The uniqueness of these mobilizations requires a conceptual and epistemological turn that is able to accommodate the post-development critique of development as well as their emancipatory dimension. We propose to name them ‘hope movements’ to account for the collective action directed to anticipate, imperfectly, alternative realities that arise from the openness of the present one. We conclude by discussing the political relevance of hope movements for the pursuit of the good life as an alternative to development.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)585-602
Number of pages18
JournalDevelopment and Change
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012


  • Global political economy


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