Ted Trainer is an Australian scholar-activist who for decades has been defending and practising an ‘eco-anarchist’ perspective he describes as the Simpler Way. His vision is of a world where self-governing communities live materially simple but sufficient lives, in harmony with ecological limits.
This anthology contains some of Trainer’s most insightful and provocative essays, covering all aspects of his challenging but inspiring vision of a just and sustainable society. Topics include a radical critique of consumer-capitalism, the need for fundamental system change, and a transition theory based on building a new society within the shell of the old. Trainer also presents detailed descriptions of the Simpler Way society based on low energy requirements; explains why frugal but sufficient material living standards are necessary to live within planetary limits; and shows why technology alone is unable to resolve environmental problems. He also shares strategic advice on how to contribute positively to societal change, while also critically engaging some green and left strategies. Far from involving deprivation and hardship, Trainer argues that a Simpler Way society would enable liberation to a much higher quality of life for all.
As the first collection of Trainer’s work, this book gives due attention to one of Australia’s most insightful, but under-appreciated, thinkers.