The Post-Development Reader

The Post-Development Reader

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With the collapse of colonialism, the millions who had joined the struggle accepted their leaders' new call for 'development'. Little today remains of that enthusiasm. The question they now ask is: can anything be done to stop the process and regenerate the forces needed to bring about change more in accordance with their own aspirations?

This reader brings together an exceptionally gifted group of thinkers and activists - from South and North - who have long pondered these questions. Diverse in background and experience, they are all committed, however, to seeing through the rhetoric of development, free from the distorting lenses of ideology and habit. They are also interested in looking at 'the other side of the story', particularly from the perspective of the 'losers'.

It is these orientations which make this reader such an original compilation. The contributors illuminate the wisdom of vernacular society which modern development thinking and practice has done so much to denigrate and destroy. They deliver devastating critiques of the dominant development paradigm and what it has done to the peoples of the world and their richly diverse and sustainable ways of living. Most importantly, in terms of the future, they present some of the experiences and ideals out of which ordinary people are now trying to construct their own more humane and culturally and ecologically respectful alternatives to development, which, in turn, may provide useful signposts for those concerned with the post-development era that is now at hand.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 464 pages
  • 157.48 x 231.14 x 25.4mm | 703.06g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • bibliography, index
  • 1856494748
  • 9781856494748
  • 292,905

Review quote

'A monument to the vigour of commonsense in resisting the belief that progress can be likened to a law of nature. This book is a primer for reflection on the fertile potential of the loss of 20th century certainties.'
Ivan Illich
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Table of contents

Introduction - Majid Rahnema
Part I: The Vernacular World

1. The Original Affluent Society - Marshall Sahlins
2. Learning from Ladakh - Helena Norberg-Hodge
3. The Economy and Symbolic Sites of Africa - Hassan Zaoual
4. Our Responsibility to the Seventh Generation - Linda Clarkson, Vern Morrissette and Gabriel Regallet
5. The Sprial of the Ram's Horn: Boran Concepts of Development - Gudrun Dahl and Gemetchu Megerssa

Part II: The Development Paradigm

6. The Idea of Progress - Teodor Shanin
7. Faust, The First Developer - Marshall Berman
8. The Making and Unmaking of the Third World through Development - Arturo Escobar
9. Development as Planned poverty - Ivan Illich
10. Twenty-six Years Later - Ivan Illich in conversation with Majid Rahnema
11. Development and the People's Immune System: The Story of Another Variety of AIDS - Majid Rahnema

Part III: The Vehicles of Development

12. Paradoxical Growth - Serge Latouche
13. The Agony of the Modern State - Rajni Kothari
14. Education as an Instrument of Cultural Defoliation: A Multi-Voice Report - Joseph Ki-Zerbo, Cheikh Hamidou Kane, Jo-Ann Archibald, Edouard Lizop and Majid Rahnema
15. Western Science and Its Destruction of Local Knowledge - Vandana Shiva
16. Colonization of the Mind - Ashis Nandy
17. The One and Only Way of Thinking - Ignacio Ramonet
18. The New Cultural Domination by the Media - James Petras
19. How the United Nations Promotes Development through Technical Assistance

Part IV: Development in Practice

20. How the Poor Develop the Rich - Susan George
21. To Be Like Them - Eduardo Galeano
22. Development and the Bureaucratic Power in Lesotho - James Ferguson
23. Transmigration in Indonesia: How Millions Are Uprooted - Graham Hancock
24. 'Women in Development': A Threat to Liberation - Pan Simmons
25. Tehri: A Catastrophic Dam inthe Himalayas - Peter Bunyard
26. The Development Game - Leonard Frank

Part V: Towards the Post-Development Age

27. From Global Thinking to Local Thinking - Gustavo Esteva and Madhu Suri Prakash
28. The Need for the Home Perspective - Wolfgang Sachs
29. Basta! Mexican Indians Say 'Enough!' - Gustavo Esteva
30. The Quest for Simplicity - 'My Idea of Swaraj' - Mahatma Gandhi
31. The Searchers after the Simple Life - David E. Shi
32. The infrapolitics of Subordinate Groups - James C. Scott
33. Alternatives from an indian Grassroots Perspective - D. L. Sheth
34. The Power of the Powerless: Citizens against the State in Central Eastern Europe - Vaclac Havel
35. Protecting the Space Within - Karen Lehman
36. Birth of the Inclusion Society - Judith A. Snow
37. Reinventing the Present: The Chodack Experience in Senegal - EmmanuelSeni N'Dione, Philippe de Leener, Jean-Pierre Perier, Mamadou Ndiaye and Pierre Jacolin

Afterword: Towards Post-Development: Searching for Signposts,a New Language and New Paradigms - Majid Rahnema
Suggested Readings
List of Boxes
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About Majid Rahnema

Majid Rahnema (1924 - 14 April 2015) was a diplomat and former government minister in Iran.

Victoria Bawtree is a member of The World is Not for Sale collective.
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Rating details

65 ratings
4.13 out of 5 stars
5 37% (24)
4 42% (27)
3 20% (13)
2 2% (1)
1 0% (0)
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