Beyond Western Economics: Remembering Other Economic Cultures

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Nonspecific Binding
  • Copyright: 2009-06-18
  • Publisher: Routledge

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How did we reach the point of accepting western economics as central to our understanding of human nature, history, culture and social policy formation? Answering this question systematically exposes the fallacy of economism and releases many social economic alternatives now eclipsed by market fundamentalism.

Author Biography

Trent Schroyer is currently Professor of Sociology-Philosophy in the School of Social Science and Human Services at Ramapo College in New Jersey, USA.

Table of Contents

Introduction: western certitudes about freedom and economicsp. 1
The fallacy of economismp. 1
Fallacies of western economistic world viewp. 4
Paths beyond western individualismp. 7
Multiple economic cultures-survey of contentsp. 11
Origins of this inquiryp. 13
Critical histories of western economicsp. 15
Origins of idealization of the self-regulating marketp. 17
The emergence of the economic culture of commercial market societyp. 17
The watershed of the Scottish Enlightenmentp. 18
Idealizations of self-preservation versus dedicationp. 19
Idealization of civilizing mission of wealth creating market societyp. 20
Evolutionary empiricism: economic culture as spontaneous coordinationp. 22
Internal colonization of spontaneous orders and the problem of social freedomp. 25
Substantive economics and the abstractions of economismp. 27
Disembedding of the market and the utopian liberal creedp. 27
Polanyi's socio-cultural account of the source of human miseryp. 28
Economism versus substantive social economicsp. 32
Substantive economics and western market industrial formationsp. 35
Economic cultures beyond developmentalismp. 37
On scarcity: the charter myth of modernityp. 38
Idealizations of utopian capitalismp. 40
Idealizations of utopian capitalism and the contemporary worldp. 40
Idealizations of maximizing rationality and entrepreneurial freedomp. 40
Idealization of financial deregulationp. 42
Idealization of scientific certitudes and risk assessments as the basis of economic decisionsp. 44
Idealization of economic development as means of poverty eradicationp. 47
Idealization of globalizing capitalism as civilizing and 'peace-keeping'p. 51
Critical traditionalist cultural visionsp. 55
Illich's genealogy of modern certitudesp. 57
Who was Ivan Illich?p. 57
Ivan Illich's regenerative methodologiesp. 58
Ecclesiology as critical regeneration theoryp. 59
Origins of modernity in perversions of Roman Church 'reforms'p. 60
From Mother Church to Mother Statep. 61
Cultural colonization of vernacular speechp. 62
Perversions of the contingency axiom that 'reformed' the Churchp. 63
New fears and new psycho-spiritual pathologiesp. 64
Disembodiments of modern sensibilityp. 66
Creating vernacular free spacesp. 68
Convivial living as post-industrial society practicep. 69
Loss of vernacular gender as condition for economismp. 71
Truth-seeking presupposes friendship: Illich and Gandhip. 72
Gandhi's truth testing and India todayp. 74
From Ilich to Gandhip. 74
Ongoing internal colonization of Indian governancep. 75
Diverse perspectives on Indian culturep. 77
Gandhi's truth experiments and the harmony of human pursuitsp. 79
Swaraj, or self-rule: the key to the regeneration of India?p. 82
Spiritualizing wealth and economics: on Gandhian economicsp. 84
Testing Gandhianism: romantic idealism or seminal vision?p. 85
Realities of the Indian informal sectorp. 87
An alternative strategy to transform rural communitiesp. 89
Alternative economiesp. 91
Foundations of economic culturesp. 93
Secularization and remembrance of 'the other west'p. 93
Economistic reductions of reciprocity and giftingp. 95
The logic of gifts beyond economismp. 96
From moral economy to a more reflexive individualizationp. 98
Social sharing and commons based peer productionp. 99
Co-operative economies: yesterday and todayp. 101
Sustaining traditional art-craft-body knowledge systemsp. 104
Substantive economic culturesp. 106
Better indicators to the inseparability of ecology and equityp. 106
Customs in common and the wisdom of commonsp. 109
Localizing cultural affirmations in a globalizing worldp. 111
The superiority of peasant, or local agriculture: an ongoing truthp. 114
Capacity building in active communitiesp. 116
Social learning for people's economiesp. 118
Participatory learning for people's economies: the Grameen Bank and legal entitlementsp. 118
City regions and going localp. 121
Strengthening local economies via alternative financial institutionsp. 124
Grass-roots-up participatory financial formsp. 125
Globalizing anti-globalization economies: solidarity economics, economic democracy and fair tradep. 126
Geonomics with earth rights and tax shiftp. 128
Appendix: The medieval origins of instrumental reasonp. 130
Notesp. 133
Bibliographyp. 146
Internet resourcesp. 155
Indexp. 156
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