Version 3.2

Agrarian degrowth and re-ruralization

Pathways for the post-capitalist and post-fossil rural

Fossil fuel enabled industrial capitalism and the resulting processes of urbanization have been coupled with alienation from the land, and the eradication of traditional means of livelihood particularly in the rural. For degrowth to be successful, and sustainable, it is argued that the balance between urban and rural needs to be re-determined. It is shown that the prospering of modern cities can only be sustained due to the plundering of peripheries and rural regions, as there exists a fundamental asymmetry between the acceleration and stock-based urban, and the seasons and flow-based rural. For a more equal exchange in terms of ecology and the social in degrowth, it is argued that urbanized economies need to re-ruralize. Re-ruralization includes the preservation of existing, as well as the establishment of new, smallholder farms, self-provisional communities, and local peasant economies. The focal enactors of ruralization, the peasantry, and various back-to-the-land movements, represent a localized mode of living that is, at least potentially, more sustainable than urban dwelling, and possibly also resilient in the times of crises. The socio-ecological resilience of re-ruralization and rural local dwelling derives from the fact that livelihoods are tied land and to the skills for self-provisioning, but also because the undesired ecological and social impacts of such actions are often limited to the local or regional ecosystems. It is also acknowledged that to be sustainable and just, degrowth re-ruralization must address issues of inequality and violence related to gender, race and class, and the past and present forms of colonization.


Day: 2023-08-31
Start time: 10:00
Duration: 00:15
Room: ZV-8-5
Type: Paper Presentation
Theme: Alternative economies


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