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Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery: self-actualisation, social justice and the politics of career guidanceThis paper is an extended text of Tristram Hooley’s inaugural lecture: Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery: self- actualisation, social justice and the politics of career education. The lecture was given on the 17th September 2015 at the University of Derby. The lecture explores the interrelationship between politics, social justice and career guidance. The paper argues that our careers emerge out of social and economic conditions. In unequal societies our position within the economic and social system is central to our chance of having a successful career and realising our potential (self-actualising). The lecture explores the role that career education and guidance can have in supporting individuals to self-actualise and notes that career education and guidance is in itself embedded in social, economic and political relationships. The ideal of the lifelong guidance system is advanced and it is argued that this could be part of a new kind of society. A society in which a lifelong guidance system was realised could be more socially justand would signal a new kind of relationship between paid work, citizenship and leisure. The lecture concludes with a consideration of the role that career education can play in bringing about a new kind of society. The paper proposes a pedagogic framework for a radical career education and guidance. This framework argues that radical career education and guidance should be seeking tohelp us to: (1) explore ourselves and the world where we live, learn and work; (2) examine how our experience connects to broader historical, political and social systems; (3) develop strategies that allow us individually to make the most of our current situation; (4) develop strategies that allow us collectively to make the most of our current situations; and (5) consider how the current situation and structures should be changed.