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Surviving the Future: Culture, Carnival and Capital in the Aftermath of the Market Economy

David Fleming

60 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1603586466 / ISBN 13: 9781603586467
Published by Chelsea Green Publishing Co
New Condition: New Soft cover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Surviving the Future: Culture, Carnival and ...

Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing Co

Binding: Paperback / softback

Book Condition: New

About this title

Synopsis:

Surviving the Future is a story drawn from the fertile ground of the late David Fleming's extraordinary Lean Logic: A Dictionary for the Future and How to Survive It. That hardback consists of four hundred and four interlinked dictionary entries, inviting readers to choose their own path through its radical vision.

Recognizing that Lean Logic's sheer size and unusual structure can be daunting, Fleming's long-time collaborator Shaun Chamberlin has selected and edited one of these potential narratives to create Surviving the Future. The content, rare insights, and uniquely enjoyably writing style remain Fleming's, but are presented here at a more accessible paperback-length and in conventional read-it-front-to-back format.

The subtitle - Culture, Carnival and Capital in the Aftermath of the Market Economy - hints at Fleming's vision. He believed that the market economy will not survive its inherent flaws beyond the early decades of this century, and that its failure will bring great challenges, but he did not dwell on this: "We know what we need to do. We need to build the sequel, to draw on inspiration which has lain dormant, like the seed beneath the snow."

Surviving the Future lays out a compelling and powerfully different new economics for a post-growth world. One that relies not on taut competitiveness and eternally increasing productivity - "putting the grim into reality" - but on the play, humour, conversation, and reciprocal obligations of a rich culture. Building on a remarkable breadth of intellectual and cultural heritage - from Keynes to Kumar, Homer to Huxley, Mumford to MacIntyre, Scruton to Shiva, Shakespeare to Schumacher - Fleming describes a world in which, as he says, "there will be time for music".

This is the world that many of us want to live in, yet we are told it is idealistic and unrealistic. With an evident mastery of both economic theory and historical precedent, Fleming shows that it is not only desirable, but actually the only system with a realistic claim to longevity. With friendliness, humour, and charm, Surviving the Future plucks this vision out of our daydreams and shows us how to make it real.

Review:

"I can't say enough good things about this book. David Fleming's keen interdisciplinary mind was at home in economics, history, and anthropology, so when he imagines the world beyond fossil fuels, the result is not just a schematic diagram but narrative with bone, sinew, flesh, and blood. This is how real human beings could and hopefully will respond to climate change and resource depletion." --Richard Heinberg, senior fellow, Post Carbon Institute

"Taking off from the most crucial catastrophe we face, the double bind of growth--if no growth the economy fails, if growth the economy fails--David Fleming, one of the founders of the British Transition movement, has laid out a logical, persuasive, and very readable pathway to dealing with that catastrophe, providing the 'transition from the global city' to 'habitats on a human scale' and an economy 'organized around the rediscovery of community.' If there will be any survival following the coming collapse, it will be through following the wisdom provided here."--Kirkpatrick Sale, author of Human Scale

"I would unreservedly go so far as to say that David Fleming was one of the most original, brilliant, urgently-needed, underrated, and ahead-of-his-time thinkers of the last 50 years. History will come to place him alongside Schumacher, Berry, Seymour, Cobbett, and those other brilliant souls who could not just imagine a more resilient world but who could paint a picture of it in such vivid colours. Step into the world of David Fleming; you'll be so glad you did."--Rob Hopkins, cofounder of the Transition Network

"Each time I encountered David Fleming, he left behind something whose value I was a little too slow to recognise. A sketch for Tradable Energy Quotas. A critique of the nuclear fuel cycle. And clearest in my memory: a slim working paper entitled The Lean Economy. It took me nearly a decade to respond properly to its call. In Surviving the Future, Fleming has left behind his greatest gift: a remarkable clarity of vision--a way of seeing the world not just for what it is, but for what it might be. Hopefully, this time I'm ready for it."--Tim Jackson, Professor of Sustainable Development, University of Surrey; author of Prosperity without Growth

"David Fleming was an iconoclast in a time when orthodox thinking reasserted suffocating control. When many major environmental voices had, in effect, decided to 'go with the flow', accept the mainstream economy, and do their best to make it greener, David Fleming went the other way. His analysis told him that nothing short of a paradigm shift could ensure our collective survival, and he said so, loudly, without fear of being marginalised. His courage in saying unpopular things is clear in these writings, and we should all thank him. Without the uncompromising clarity of David's writing, we would delude ourselves as to the scale and the immediacy with which we must reshape the economy and our lifestyles. Thank goodness his analysis can now be shared more widely." -- --Andrew Simms, codirector, New Weather Institute; fellow, New Economics Foundation; author of Cancel the Apocalypse

"David Fleming was an elder of the UK green movement and a key figure in the early Green Party. Drawing on the heritage of Schumacher's Small Is Beautiful, Fleming's beautifully written and nourishing vision of a post-growth economics grounded in human-scale culture and community rather than big finance is both inspiring and ever more topical. -- --Caroline Lucas MP, co-leader, Green Party of England and Wales; former Member of the European Parliament

David Fleming was an elder of the UK green movement and a key figure in the early Green Party. Drawing on the heritage of Schumacher s Small Is Beautiful, Fleming s beautifully written and nourishing vision of a post-growth economics grounded in human-scale culture and community rather than big finance is both inspiring and ever more topical. --Caroline Lucas MP, former leader, Green Party of England and Wales; former Member of the European Parliament"

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