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About GTA

Earth Vikalp Sangam: proposal for a Global Tapestry of Alternatives

by Ashish Kothari

Abstract: Globally there is a visible counter-trend to the destructive process of ‘development’ that the forces of capitalism, statism, patriarchy have imposed. Though still marginal and not yet able to make significant macro-level transformations, the resistance is growing. As is, often emerging from such resistance, there is a re-assertion of ways of life that respect, nature (including humans), co-existence, and justice. Such radical alternatives can be from ancient cultures, or be very new, but all have a core of ethical values that put life at the centre. One crucial barrier to these becoming a force for macro-level change is that they remain scattered, only sporadically learning from each other and becoming a greater critical mass. With this background, a Global TapestryThe weaving of networks of Alternatives of AlternativesAre activities and initiatives, concepts, worldviews, or action proposals by collectives, groups, organizations, communities, or social movements challenging and replacing the dominant system that perpetuates inequality, exploitation, and unsustainabiity. In the GTA we focus primarily on what we call "radical or transformative alternatives", which we define as initiatives that are attempting to break with the dominant system and take paths towards direct and radical forms of political and economic democracy, localised self-reliance, social justice and equity, cultural and knowledge diversity, and ecological resilience. Their locus is neither the State nor the capitalist economy. They are advancing in the process of dismantling most forms of hierarchies, assuming the principles of sufficiency, autonomy, non-violence, justice and equality, solidarity, and the caring of life and the Earth. They do this in an integral way, not limited to a single aspect of life. Although such initiatives may have some kind of link with capitalist markets and the State, they prioritize their autonomy to avoid significant dependency on them and tend to reduce, as much as possible, any relationship with them. has been initiated in mid-2019, a kind of confluence of ideas and practices towards further collaboration and visioning. The idea has emerged from the Vikalp Sangam (Alternatives Confluence) process running since 2014 in India.

Citation: Ashish Kothari (2020) Earth Vikalp Sangam: proposal for a Global Tapestry of Alternatives, Globalizations, 17:2, 245-249, DOI: 10.1080/14747731.2019.1670955. https://doi.org/10.1080/14747731.2019.1670955

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Pluriverse: a Post-development Dictionary

Edited by Ashish Kothari, Ariel Salleh, Arturo Escobar, Federico Demaria and Alberto Acosta

“Pluriverse: A Post-Development Dictionary” is a stimulating collection of over 100 essays on transformative alternatives to the currently dominant processes of globalized development, including its structural roots in modernity, capitalism, state domination, and masculinist values. In the post-development imagination, ‘development’ would no longer be the organizing principle of social life. The book presents worldviews and practices from around the world in a collective search for an ecologically wise and socially just world.


Alternative Futures: India Unshackled

Edited by KJ Joy and Ashish Kothari

“Alternative Futures: India Unshackled” is a book that brings together scenarios of an India that is politically and socially egalitarian, radically democratic, economically sustainable and equitable, and socio-culturally diverse and harmonious. Covers a wide range of issues, organized under four sections. It explores ecological futures including environmental governance, biodiversity conservation, water and energy. Next, it envisions political futures including those of democracy and power, law, ideology, and India’s role in the globe. A number of essays then look at economic futures, including agriculture, pastoralism, industry, crafts, villages and cities, localization, markets, transportation and technology. Finally, it explores socio-cultural futures, encompassing languages, learning and education, knowledge, health, sexuality and gender, and marginalized sections like dalits, adivasis, and religious minorities.

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Alternatives in a world of crisis

Edited by Miriam Lang, Claus-Dieter König and Ada-Charlotte Regelmann

This book, which is the result of a group effort, intends to contribute to the urgently needed collective inquiries taking into view new theoretical and political paradigms of social transformation. In six case studies from all over the world and one concluding chapter, it seeks to address simultaneously the complex relations between class, race, coloniality, gender, and Nature, as it is precisely their historical entanglements and interdependencies that configure the civilizational bases of the system we face.

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