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Scientific paper


Degrowth Equals Regrowth: A Discussion of Eduardo Galeano's W ork

Anitra Nelson

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Scientific paper

Year of publication:

Degrowth Conference Montreal 2012


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degrowth, Eduardo Galeano, exchange value, non-market socialism, use value

Abstract: In contrast to general economic and technological discussions of what degrowth is and how it might be constituted, this paper offers a brief political and literary appreciation of the Uruguayan author Eduardo Galeano’s work to reveal rich and strongly cultural dimensions of degrowth. Drawing on the critical distinction between use values and exchange values, Galeano’s work reveals the absurdity of capitalist growth characterised by both over-consumption and under-consumption. His narrative analysis implies the necessity for over-consumers to degrow and stresses the diversity that a degrowth strategy for achieving fair and sustainable economies embodies. Galeano’s point of view is replete with degrowth values, celebrating hidden, destroyed and marginal community modes of production that seek to balance social and ecological relationships, such as non-monetary Indigenous people’s practices.

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