• morality;
  • utopia;
  • post-socialist societies;
  • Europe;
  • Romania

Drawing on recent research in a Transylvanian community characterised by outward labour migration, this article posits a particular situated telos of normality, a ‘utopian object of impossible fullness’ defined subjectively by different social actors, which provides a sharp contrast to the delineated, singular accomplishments that characterised the collective teleological nature of socialist time. Unlike a discourse of progress, the expectation of utopia in the sense of ‘normality’, always deferred, always equally imminent, means that the present comes to be expressed as a void where seemingly contradictory moral vectors concerning practices such as working abroad can exist side by side.