Social Justice and Civilizational Crisis: Clues for Rethinking Poverty Eradication Based on Sustainability and Interculturality

| November 26, 2019 | Leave a Comment

Department for International Development | Flickr

Department for International Development | Flickr

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Media Type: News / Op - Ed

Publisher: Alternautas

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The most severe migratory crisis in history and profound environmental crisis we are living through are only two dimensions of a wider civilisational crisis. This not only causes us to question the idea of an imitative development, which supposedly traces the path along which the South must ‘progress’ following industrialised nations, but it entails problematising the hegemonic notions of what a good life is and what human needs are, as well as questioning the current international division between work and Nature. In this article, I wish to analyse the challenges that today’s civilisational crisis poses to those concerned with social justice and the plural left, especially those concerned with the desire to build equality and reduce poverty. I discuss the legacy we were left with in regard to 20th century socialism, which for a long time occupied a central space in debates relating to social transformation. I also examine recent Latin American progressivisms, in particular the Ecuadorian experience, analysing the effects of what has been described as its greatest success, poverty reduction, in light of the civilisational crisis. Finally, in a dialogue with Laudato Si, I outline several ideas on how to integrate social justice with environmental justice and rethink such central concepts as wealth and poverty, as well as redistribution and inclusion in the face of the challenges that the 21st century poses.

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