Abstract: The crisis of capitalism affects all spheres of social reproduction; it is an integral crisis of the current “civilization paradigm”. Contemporary anti-capitalist politics must therefore struggle for a thoroughly distinct society and imaginary. In this paper, we critically evaluate two narratives which in recent years have put forward demands for a radically alternative paradigm, namely “degrowth” and Sumak Kawsay or “Buen Vivir” (living well). We explore their proposals for breaking away from both the capitalist “growth imperative” and the promise of “development” as its necessary discursive corollary. Using the Yasuni ITT initiative as an entry point, we look at “post-extractivism” as an exemplary case of such a combined struggle. We find that demands to “leave oil in the soil” dialectically integrate (northern) movements for material degrowth with (southern) struggles for post-extractivist alternatives. We thus claim that, as post-extractivism shows, “degrowth” and “Buen Vivir” must complement each other in an integral critique of capitalism as a civilization paradigm.
There is no paper for this media entry. This was a contribution to a scientific session at the 4th International Degrowth Conference in Leipzig in 2014, which doesn’t exist in written format or is not published under open access.