From the social ecology of capital to a critical political economy of growth
Political Economy Forum
Speaker: Prof. Dr. Éric Pineault, L'Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM), Fellow at DFG-Kolleg Postwachstumsgesellschaften, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena
It could be called the “post-growth” condition. Whether it’s because of climate change, or of secular stagnation, it would seem that advanced capitalist societies cannot have the growth they would need for their continued stability. From the mid 20th century onwards the political conflicts and economic contradictions of advanced capitalism have been mitigated by what Alan Schnaiberg called the “unpolitics of expansion”, the post growth condition refers to an unravelling of this stabilizing mechanism. Distributional conflicts and zero sum international economic relations are once again prominent problems in advanced capitalist societies. In his presentation Eric Pineault moves beyond an analysis of post growth as a conjuncture and explores the nature of growth in advanced capitalist societies using the tools and concepts of social ecology and of critical political economy. If growth has been able to mitigate to some degree the internal contradictions of capitalist accumulation, it is today incapable of surmounting on its own terms its external contradictions - the contradictions of social reproduction, of ecology and of unsustainable global international inequalities.
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