The Incipient Degrowth Movement in the United States

16 Pages Posted: 30 Aug 2018

See all articles by Sam Bliss

Sam Bliss

University of Vermont - Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, Students

Date Written: August 21, 2018

Abstract

Degrowth proposes radically reorganizing societies to equitably downscale the economy. The concept remains relatively unknown in the United States, a country whose oversized production and consumption have ample room to degrow. An informal survey suggests that American degrowth advocates tend to frame degrowth as necessary more than as desirable. But science cannot determine that any course of action is necessary; debating what worlds to create and inhabit is the terrain of politics. To build a political movement, degrowth discourse must illustrate the desirability of its vision to potential allies. Movements that have gained momentum in the U.S. in recent years have focused on social justice issues. A discussion of the state of degrowth in the U.S. concludes by suggesting that its advocates emphasize opposition to oppression and create spaces where degrowth and other social movements can collectively envision desirable futures.

Keywords: Radical Environmental Politics; Social Movements; Steady-State Economy; Voluntary Simplicity; Post-Growth; Ecological Economics

JEL Classification: Q57, Q58, Q01, O44, O43, O51, P30, P40, B50

Suggested Citation

Bliss, Sam, The Incipient Degrowth Movement in the United States (August 21, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3236387 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3236387

Sam Bliss (Contact Author)

University of Vermont - Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, Students ( email )

VT
United States
206.280.3194 (Phone)

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