Rowman and Littlefield International

Towards a Political Economy of Degrowth

Edited by Ekaterina Chertkovskaya, Alexander Paulsson, and Stefania Barca

3 Reviews

Bringing degrowth into dialogue with critical social theories, covering previously unexplored geographical contexts and discussing some of the most contested concepts in degrowth, the book hints at informed paths towards socio-ecological transformation.

Hardback ISBN: 9781786608956 Release date: Oct 2019
£85.00 €119.00 $125.00
Paperback ISBN: 9781786608963 Release date: Oct 2019
£27.95 €39.95 $41.95
Ebook ISBN: 9781786608970 Release date: Oct 2019
£24.95 €34.95 $39.50

Series: Transforming Capitalism

Pages: 280


Since the 1970s, the degrowth idea has been proposed by scholars, public intellectuals and activists as a powerful call to reject the obsession of neoliberal capitalism with economic growth, an obsession which continues apace despite the global ecological crisis and rising inequalities. In the past decade, degrowth has gained momentum and become an umbrella term for various social movements which strive for ecologically sustainable and socially just alternatives that would transform the world we live in.

How to move forward in an informed way, without reproducing the existing hierarchies and injustices? How not to end up in a situation when ecological sustainability is the prerogative of the privileged, direct democracy is ignorant of environmental issues, and localisation of production is xenophobic? These are some of the questions that have inspired this edited collection.

Bringing degrowth into dialogue with critical social theories, covering previously unexplored geographical contexts and discussing some of the most contested concepts in degrowth, the book hints at informed paths towards socio-ecological transformation.

Introduction. The End of Political Economy as We Knew it? From Growth Realism to Nomadic Utopianism
Stefania Barca, Ekaterina Chertkovskaya and Alexander Paulsson

Part 1: Critical Political Economies

Chapter 1. The Limits of Systems: Economics, Management and the Problematization of Growth During the Golden Age of Capitalism
Alexander Paulsson

Chapter 2. Reorienting Comparative Political Economy: From Economic Growth to Sustainable Alternatives
Hubert Buch-Hansen

Chapter 3. The Topicality of André Gorz’s Political Ecology: Rethinking 1977 Écologie Et Libertè to (Re)Connect Marxism and Degrowth
Emanuele Leonardi

Chapter 4. Growth and Degrowth in Marx’s Critique of Political Economy
Max Koch

Chapter 5. The Historical Roots of a Feminist ‘Degrowth’: Maria Mies and Marilyn Waring’s Critiques of Growth
Catia Gregoratti and Riya Raphael

Part Two: Emerging Terrains

Chapter 6. Degrowth in Theory, Pursuit of Growth in Action: Exploring the Russian and Soviet Contexts
Ekaterina Chertkovskaya

Chapter 7. Countering the Order of Progress: Colonialism, Extractivism and Re-Existence in the Brazilian Amazon
Felipe Milanez

Chapter 8. Degrowth, Devaluation and Uneven Development from North to South
Patrick Bond

Chapter 9. Degrowth in Practice? Unraveling the Post-Political Effects of Slow City (Cittaslow) Movement in the Anatolian Town of Halfeti Xalfetî
Mine Islar and Gökhan Gülbandilar

Part Three: Contested Concepts

Chapter 10. “An Alternative Worth Fighting For”: Degrowth and the Liberation of Work
Stefania Barca

Chapter 11. The Imperative of Redesigning Money to Achieve Degrowth
Alf Hornborg

Chapter 12. Problematising Self-Sufficiency: A Historical Exploration of the “Autarky” Concept
Santiago Gorostiza

Chapter 13. Having, Doing, Loving, Being: Sustainable Well-Being for a Post-Growth Society
Tuula Helne and Tuuli Hirvilammi

Chapter 14. The State of Degrowth
Giacomo D’Alisa

Ekaterina Chertkovskaya is a Researcher in Degrowth and Critical Organisation Studies based at Lund University and a member of the editorial collective of ephemera journal.

Alexander Paulsson is a Senior Lecturer at Lund University School of Economics and Management.

Stefania Barca is an environmental historian and Senior Researcher, Center for Social Studies, University of Coimbra.

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3 Reviews

This book is a gem. It is a must read for any political economist who wants to understand what degrowth is all about.

Giorgos Kallis, ICREA Research Professor, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

Confirming the strengths of the degrowth movement (in face of the illusory aspirations of growth economics), while remaining sensitive to its current limitations, this collection provides a valuable addition to the literature of the most important politico-economic development of our times. The reader will here find fresh optics on the formation and differing geographical settings of a degrowth political economy, and on the conceptual shifts around work, money, welfare and state intervention it will demand and provide for.

Kate Soper, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, London Metropolitan University

This vanguard volume provides motives and tools to re-purpose political economy toward sustainable well-being. Nourishing roots of political economic thought and practice (before it became dominated by growth), creative branches seeking other paths (Karl Marx, André Gorz, Marilyn Waring), and comparative cases (Brazil, Russia, ​Turkey), work together to open horizons for action from differing perspectives and positions in our uneven world.

Susan Paulson, Professor of Latin American Studies, University of Florida, USA

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