NEW BOOK: “Pluriverse: A Post-Development Dictionary”

NEW BOOK: “Pluriverse: A Post-Development Dictionary” Edited by

Ashish Kothari, Ariel Salleh, Arturo Escobar, Federico Demaria, Alberto Acosta

(Here below more details about the Editors, How to get the book, Table of contents and Endorsements)

“Pluriverse: A Post-Development Dictionary” is a stimulating collection of over 100 essays on transformative alternatives to the currently dominant processes of globalized development, including its structural roots in modernity, capitalism, state domination, and masculinist values. In the post-development imagination, ‘development’ would no longer be the organizing principle of social life. The book presents worldviews and practices from around the world in a collective search for an ecologically wise and socially just world. It also offers critical essays on a number of false solutions that those in power are proposing in an attempt to ‘greenwash’ development. The 120+ contributors to the volume include activists, academics, and practitioners, with a wealth of experience in their respective fields of engagement.

What has been missing is a broad transcultural compilation of concrete concepts, worldviews and practices from around the world, challenging the modernist ontology of universalism in favour of a multiplicity of possible worlds. This is what it means to call for a pluriverse. 

The book follows the structure of an encyclopedia, with short 1000-word entries for each of the key terms. The entries are written by invited authors. In the list of authors you might recognize Vandana Shiva, Serge Latouche, Wolfgang Sachs, Silvia Federici, Nnimmo Bassey, Gustavo Esteva, Katherine Gibson, Maristella Svampa and many more. 


Ashish Kothari is with Kalpavriksh and Vikalp Sangam in India, and co-editor of Alternative Futures: India Unshackled.

Ariel Salleh is an Australian scholar-activist, author of ‘Ecofeminism as Politics’ and editor of ‘Eco-Sufficiency and Global Justice’.

Arturo Escobar teaches at the University of North Carolina and is the author of Encountering Development.

Federico Demaria is a researchers in ecological economics and political ecology at the Autonomous University of Barcelona, and co-editor of ‘Degrowth: A Vocabulary for a New Era.

Alberto Acosta is an Ecuadorian economist and activist, and former President of the Constituent Assembly of Ecuador.


Buy the book for 15 dollars at AbeBooks here

You can find the cheapest for buying the book in your region at BookFinder here

Download the Cover and Table of contents here

Download the PDF here

Download the flyer here

Read here a short article by the editors presenting the book, published at Open Democracy with the title “Development is colonialism in disguise: Other worlds are possible – the Pluriverse is breathing”.


Editors’ Preface
Editors’ Introduction
Development and its Crises: Global Experiences
North America
South America
Universalizing the Earth
Circular Economy
Climate-Smart Agriculture
Development Aid
Digital Tools
Earth System Governance
Ecosystem Services Trading
Green Economy
Lifeboat Ethics
Reproductive Engineering
Smart Cities
Sustainable Development
Transformative Initiatives
Alter-Globalisation   Movement
Alternative Currencies
Arbitration for Sovereign Debt
Body Politics 
Transformative Initiatives
Buddhism and Wisdom-based Compassion
Buen Vivir
Chinese Religions
Christian Eco-Theology
Civilizational Transitions
Community Economies
Cooperative Ecosystems
Deep Ecology
Democratic Economy in Kurdistan
Direct Democracy
Earth Spirituality
Ecology of Culture
Eco-Positive Design
Energy Sovereignty
Environmental Justice
Food Sovereignty
Free Software
Gift Economy
Gross National Happiness
Hinduism and Social Transformation
Human Rights
Ibadism and Community
Islamic Ethics
Jain Ecology
Judaic Tikkun Olam
Kametsa Asaike
Kawsak Sacha

Transformative Initiatives
Latin American and Caribbean Feminisms
Liberation Theology
Life Projects
Nature Rights
Nayakrishi Andolan
Negentropic Production
New Matriarchies
New Water Paradigm
Open Localization
Pacific Feminisms
 Popular Solidary Economy
Prakritik Swaraj
Queer Love
Radical Ecological Democracy
Rural Reconstruction
Sea Ontologies
Slow Movement
Social Ecology
Social Solidarity Economy
Tao Worldview
Transition Movement
Tribunal on Rights of Nature
Undeveloping the North
Wages for Housework
Worker-Led Production
Zapatista Autonomy

Postscript: A Global Tapestry of Alternatives


Opening this volume, my heartbeat quickened. Here, at last, is a way to understand the alternative future that is being created around the world.                                                                                                                                                                                   Juliet Schor, Sociology, Boston College

This is a book of dazzling breadth, provocative and persuasive scholarship.                                                                                    Sylvia Marcos, Mexican feminist activist and scholar

For too long the global North has imposed its one-size-fits-all agenda on the global South. 

Dan O’Neill, economist, University of Leeds

This Dictionary charts pathways for transition to an ecologically sane, politically more egalitarian, and socially more inclusive world.                                                                                                                                                                               Erik Swyngedouw, geographer, University of Manchester 

A real break-through in post-development thinking.                                                                                                                      Gilbert Rist, Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva

The book is about time. In one sense, it is about a future that died long ago and the crisis in colonial projects. In another sense, it is about the urgency of nurturing the manifold worlds that breathe seditiously.                                                                                                                                                                                                Bayo Akomolafe, author of These Wilds Beyond our Fences

A delight: stimulating, important.

John Holloway, author of Change the World Without taking Power 

May the Pluriverse open our minds, so that we may see what we could not see, and choose consciously what serves life.                                                                                                                                                               Frances Moore Lappé, founder of the Small Planet Institute

This Post-Development Dictionary addresses the systemic crisis we are living in by honoring cultural visions from all over the world.                                                                                                                                                                                           Pablo Solon, co-author of Systemic Alternatives 

A wild generosity of ideas marks this book. It is a gift to celebrate and gossip about.                                                                       Shiv Visvanathan, Jindal Global University 

= = =

This book calls out the free market economic delusion that the natural imperative for survival demands possession and use of money, permitting injury to other human beings and the wholeness of nature.                                                                                                                   Mogobe Ramose, author of African Philosophy through Ubuntu

Pluriverse enlightens us about an incredible range of alternatives, and helps us to re-think our societies and the meaning of being human.                                                                                                                                                                             Jingzhong Ye, Humanities, China Agricultural University

A valuable contribution towards building a counter-epistemic community.                                                                                   Debal Deb, author of Beyond Developmentality

Development as a solution to global crises has long been criticised but a plethora of alternatives exist.                                                                                                                                                                                         Saral Sarkar, author of Eco-Socialism or Eco-Capitalism?

As linear ideas of progress become self-defeating, critics are stuck in an ideological crisis. Here is a menu of narratives that supply meaning and nurture hope.                                                                                                                                                        Marina Fischer-Kowalski, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna

Whether you agree with the wisdom of plurality or not, this book will leave you thinking about radical social transformations.                                                                                                                                                                        Lourdes Beneria, Regional Planning, Cornell University

This book’s magnificent content puts forth real possibilities for building a future where we can live in peace with each other and the planet.                                                                                                                                                                                    Medea Benjamin, Co-Director, CODEPINK: Women for Peace

This strategic move towards a pluriverse destabilizes the claim to one universal knowledge as disseminated by modernist development.                                                                                                                                                                                            Susan Paulson, University of Florida

There are many alternatives to the domineering, profiteering, globalizing, disempowering ‘progress’ of the West.                                                                                                                                                                                Richard Norgaard, author of Development Betrayed 

Defining the path forward requires contributions from a multiplicity of thoughtful and creative minds such as those represented in this ambitious anthology.                                                                                                                                                David Korten, author of When Corporations Rule the World 

In this essential compendium, diverse visionaries offer both answers and inspirations.                                                              Paul Raskin, founding President of the Tellus Institute

In a critical time for humanity, when all life hangs in the balance, this volume fills a need in our knowledge.                                                                                                                                                                                            John Foran, climate activist

= = = 

This volume contains an experimental vocabulary in movement about what comes after and beyond the trap of ‘development’.                                                                                                                                        Verónica Gago, sociologist, Universidad Nacional de San Martin, Buenos Aires

This compilation of ideas and practices helps us to rethink development by making visible other ways of organizing  economy and society based on actual experiences rooted in place and difference.                                                                                                                   Diana Gómez, anthropologist, Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá

A much welcome contribution to debates on development and the dangers of its reformist incantations.                                                                                                              Raquel Gutiérrez Aguilar, author of The Rhythm of the Pachakuti

A look at the remarkable spectrum of experiences, proposals and radical knowledges that challenge the contemporary crisis of civilisation.                                                                                                                                                                               Edgardo Lander, Venezuelan Central University, Caracas 

= = =

Homogenization is the name of our civilizational malaise.                                                                                            Antonio Elizalde, Director, Polis: Latin American Journal of Sustainability, Chile 

The time is overdue for all of us to unsettle the cognitive supremacy of the West and enable other possible worlds.                                                                                                                                                                           Nina Pacari, Kechwa indigenous leader, former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Quito, Ecuador 

An integrated complexity makes up the spatial-temporal weaving of the Pluriverse on its various scales – inscribing each of our bodies with unique synchronicities as we participate in the existential cycles of living matter.                                                                                                                                                                            Raúl Prada Alcoreza, Bolivian writer, demographer, member of Comuna 

This search enables us to bring many ‘dispersed strengths’ into a single ray of light illuminating the analysis and processes of change.                                                                                                                                                                              Gioconda Belli, Nicaragua 

A verse is needed to express a wish, to push for change, to eradicate injustices. All of these verses and more are gathered in this book. 

Gustavo Duch, Catalonian writer, food sovereignty activist, and horticulturist apprentice 

Through ‘the cracks’, people been able to build life-alternatives to extractive models and construct new worlds characterized by non-capitalist forms of life.                                                                                                             Raúl Zibechi, Uruguayian writer, popular educator and journalist 

Absolutely thrilling. Despite the limit of 1000 words, each entry in this Dictionary manages to exhibit an amazing capacity for synthesis and creativity on the authors’ part.                                                                                                               Jûrgen Schuldt, economist, Universidad del Pacífico, Lima 

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