This presentation deals with the question how to distinguish measures and approaches which fundamentally change the current social logic that is based on an instrumentalistic attitude towards the world from those which maintain this logic and only seem to contribute to a social and ecological just society.
For this intent, at first the main characteristics of the instrumentalistic social logic of accumulation and acceleration are defined, i.e. the subordination of ethic values to the necessity of economic growth as well as structural encouragement of efficient thinking and acting. The next step is uncovering this logic of reified relations to the world in approaches which seem to campaign for a social-ecologic society, but do not accomplish (fundamental) changes. Examples that will be presented are green growth, the economisation of nature, and strategies of self-optimisation – measures which not only lead to the depolitisation of structural problems caused by reactive politics and the dominance of economic thinking, but also to mental infrastructures which are characterised by instrumentalistic relationships to oneself and other individuals.
Finally examples of approaches are given which could lead to a fundamental transformation. This presentation suggests the structural facilitation of individual and collective actions which are based on principles such as participation, decelaration and reduction. Also it emphasises the importance of a social debate on a concrete vision about living together in a sustainable way and its positive, tangible communication. In particular, the difference between instrumentalistic and ‘resonant’ relations to the world will be carved out.
This media entry was a contribution to the special session „Is the new 'Different' really different?“ at the 5th International Degrowth Conference in Budapest in 2016.