Political Science

Gauri Wagle

Lecturer, Royal Holloway University of London in the Politics, International Relations, and Philosophy Department
Subfield Political Theory
Dissertation ImaginingTogether: Political Community, Domination, and Freedom
Committee Sharon Krause, Mark Blyth, Juliet Hooker, Matthew Guterl


Job Market Title

Counterimagination and the Imperfect Politics of Freedom


This paper develops the concept of counterimagination as a resource for the pursuit of freedom among marginalized groups. I draw on Arendt's notion of freedom but ultimately depart from Arendt to espouse an understanding of freedom that is more awake to the ways that marginalized groups experience their political worlds. Using the Civil Rights movement as an historical anchor, the paper argues that instances and spaces of counterimagination are important both because in themselves they make possible an experience of freedom, even if an incomplete one, and also because they are vehicles for social change and political transformation.