Like vegetation on a burned grassland, Mexico is seeing a growth in community resistance movements in defense of local territories, of life and of Mother Earth.
What is the potential role of degrowth and buen vivir in addressing underdevelopment and conflict in the Global South?
As sumak causay was brought to the awareness of the non-indigenous by Andean social movements a few years ago, now in Chiapas a generation of Indigenous scholars is bringing to light – theorizing, they would say – the local understanding of buen vivir: a concept articulated in Tseltal and Tsotsil as el lek’il kuxlejal.
An implacable and inclusive feminism remains essential for building the larger solidarity politics and economics we need for a Great Transition that eliminates oppression of all kinds.
Buen vivir comes from Indigenous movements in Latin America and implies “right living” or life in balance with communities, natural systems and future generations. Our grassroots partners, financial investors, and adviser allies—all leaders in alternative economic practices—had joined the gathering because of relationships built up over time with my organization, Thousand Currents.
Like the system of world capitalism it challenges, the dynamic process of constructing alternatives is constantly evolving. Correspondingly, searching for complementarity and synergy among VB, ecosocialism, the commons, degrowth, ecofeminism, and other proposals yields multiple and diverse interactions.
This article outlines the scope and limits of Buen Vivir, which can be translated as ‘good life’ or ‘good living’. This ‘good life’ has always been a pluralistic concept, namely ‘buenos convivires’: different ways of ‘living well together’.
What economists call “externalities” are not unusual or a special case, they are ubiquitous. They are rooted in private property and the relationships of market society. The way in which non market societies protect bio-diversity through totem arrangements is described.
Is degrowth only conceivable in the context of “oversaturated” industrial societies while the global “South” remains dependent on growth?
The ancient western idea of the commons is a quite simple idea that forms the basis of an economics run by neither the state or market. It’s also an idea that we’ve never needed so urgently.
I think Buen Vivir is a proposal aimed at making visible and expressible aspects of reality that are ignored by the dominant paradigm.
At the risk of over simplifiying all indigenous people belong to particular places. In contrast non indigenous people belong no where in particular – although places may belong to them…