The Subsistence Perspective
Beyond the Globalised Economy
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Subsistence Perspective by Maria Mies
Book DescriptionA product of twenty years of analysis and activism, this unique book poses a radical alternative to the current free-market industrial system. A book of history, theory and polemic, the authors show how, if we are to survive, economies must become needs-based, environmentally sustainable, co-operative and local. They explain how the current capitalist systems is none of these things, is inherently unstable and is dependent on the exploitation of various marginalized groups, particularly women, and of the environment. They call instead for a new politics and economics based on subsistence and present examples of such a perspective in practice. They describe current peasant economies and show how they are not only alive and possible but necessary and sufficient - far from being a brutalizing way of life, it is seen to be an empowering form of work on something - agriculture - which is fundamental for a modern subsistence-oriented society. We see indigenous communities in Guatemala setting up their own village-based subsistence economies as a way of liberating themselves from colonial subjectification via wage labour. With examples from Africa, Latin America and Europe, the book shows how the subsistence principle can and does have a positive effect on market exchange - with exchange oriented towards the social good rather than profit. The book concludes with a call for a new politics based on the view from below, rather than one concerned with power and dominance. The authors' subsistence perspective poses a powerful alternative to the top-down ideology of development politics. The book as a whole brilliantly demonstrates how development only works when it is done from the bottom up.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781856497763
(216mm x 135mm x 21mm)
Imprint: Zed Books Ltd
Publisher: Zed Books Ltd
Publish Date: 27-Nov-1999
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Maria Mies
Patriarchy and Accumulation on a World Scale, Paperback (July 2014)
A ground-breaking theory of capitalist patriarchy explaining women's exploitation from the beginning.
Ecofeminism, Paperback (March 2014)
A powerful searing indictment of development strategies practised by the North on the South.
Lace Makers of Narsapur, Paperback (May 2012)
A graphic illustration of how women bear the impact of development processes in countries where poor peasant and tribal societies are being 'integrated' into an international division of labor under the dictates of capital accumulation.
Village and the World, Paperback (February 2011)» View all books by Maria Mies
Sociologist and women's studies researcher, scholar, ecofeminist, and international activist against violence against women and exploitation through globalisation, Maria Mies is one of the world's original thinkers. This is an autobiography of Maria Mies that packs in seventy-seven years of life.
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Author Biography - Maria Mies
Veronika Bennholdt-Thomsen is an ethnologist and sociologist at the nonprofit Institute for Theory and Practice of Subsistence. Maria Mies is a renowned Marxist-Feminist scholar. Her books include Patriarchy and Accumulation on a World Scale (Zed 1986, reissued 2014) and Ecofeminism (with Vandana Shiva, Zed 1993, reissued 2014).
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