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Illustration of Degrowth

Planned Degrowth: Ecosocialism and Sustainable Human Development

In the introduction to this summer’s special issue on “Planned Degrowth,” John Bellamy Foster outlines the major themes of degrowth thought, including, above all, a recognition of the need to challenge current notions of “growth” and “prosperity” and move toward a more sustainable model of human development, one that meets the needs of individuals and communities. This, Foster writes, requires a massive revolutionary shift in the social relations governing the means production and the prioritization of planning our economy around the survival of the species, rather than the endless drive to accumulation that has devastated the planet. | more…

High-speed train at Taichung Station, China

On Technology and Degrowth

There is a common misconception among critics that degrowth proponents do not engage with the question of technology, instead leaving the implementation of technological solutions to the planetary crisis to green growth advocates. Jason Hickel shows that not only is this narrative false, it obscures the possibilities for technology unfettered by capitalism. | more…

Climate protest of Fridays for Future (FFF) in Heidelberg

Planning Degrowth: The Necessity, History, and Challenges

Kent Klitgaard surveys degrowth thought, starting with the essential contradiction of capitalism presented by Marx, which gives rise to our current planetary crisis. Through an understanding this contradiction and degrowth literature spanning twentieth century, the author presents a plan for a sustainable and planned future socialist society. | more…

Shipping containers in Montreal, Canada (May 16, 2017)

Capitalism, Global Poverty, and the Case for Democratic Socialism

The popular narrative that capitalism has led to a general improvement in human well-being over the last two hundred years is, historical data show, not supported by evidence. Jason Hickel and Dylan Sullivan enumerate the empirical and methodological problems on which this narrative is built and explore the potential benchmarks for truly understanding human welfare. | more…

Ferdinand Smith and Earl Dickerson meeting with Donald Nelson to promote African-American man-power in war production (circa 1945)

Planning an Ecologically Sustainable and Democratic Economy: Challenges and Tasks

As the impending planetary crisis looms ever-closer, Martin Hart-Landsberg proposes a new focus on the Second World War industrial conversion experience, in which production and consumption were guided by central planning agencies. These successes and pitfalls of this period provide many useful lessons for activists and organizers working toward planned degrowth. | more…

Construction workers complete electrical connections on phase 2 of a solar microgrid project at Fort Hunter Liggett, CA (March 12, 2013)

Planning and the Ecosocialist Mode of Cooperation

Economic planning, Nicolas Graham writes, was not, perhaps a major theme in Capital. However, Marx’s understanding of such planning—as yet unrealized societal capability—yields great insight into how we might reorient modes of production toward cooperation and coordination. “Despite bourgeois and neoliberal ideology,” he writes, “planning is both an urgent necessity and a liberatory potentiality.” | more…

Demonstration against the EPR, Lyon, March 17, 2007, Place Bellecour

Democratic Planning for Degrowth

Degrowth promises to liberate society from the imperative of capital accumulation. “So how,” Matthas Schmelzer and Elena Hofferberth wonder, “might planning beyond growth look?” It is not, they write, only a proposal for a postcapitalist society, but for a radical transformation of our institutions and social relations to create a more sustainable and just world. | more…

France: Sorbonne occupied by students

The Myth of 1968 Thought and the French Intelligentsia: Historical Commodity Fetishism and Ideological Rollback

In popular thought, the youth and student movements of France May 1968 have been linked with the thinkers of what is known as French theory. Gabriel Rockhill considers the actual, less-than-revolutionary actions of these popular philosophers in the student revolts, then turns our attention to a deeper question: Who benefits from drawing these tenuous connections? | more…

RTÉ studio in Cork City

The Disinformation Wars: An Epistemological, Political, and Socio-Historical Interrogation

Helena Sheehan turns her incisive eye on the so-called anti-disinformation industry, and wondering whether the mainstream media is using a newfound interest in fact-checking, fake news, and disinformation studies to conceal deeper biases, ones that occlude the hidden ideologies deceiving much of the public. | more…

Essays on The Political Economy of Africa

Essays on The Political Economy of Africa

These essays, by two of the foremost scholars who worked in the Marxist tradition on African economic and social issues, offers an overview of socialism and economic development, and of nationalism and revolution in sub-Saharan Africa; of labor, peasantries, and populism. It includes case studies of Tanzania, Rhodesia, and Mozambique.

Giovanni Arrighi (1937-2009) taught in Europe, Africa, and the United States. He was a member of the Zimbabwe African Peoples Union in 1966, and was deported from Rhodesia for his political activities. In 1979, Arrighi joined Immanuel Wallerstein and Terence Hopkins as a professor of sociology at the Fernand Braudel Center at Binghamton University.