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From the Bottom-up: New institutional arrangements in Latin America

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Gustavo Esteva describes new institutional arrangements in Latin America, created from the bottom-up by social movements. He argues that there is an interesting new set of processes emerging as peasants’ struggle for land as territorial defence is generating sovereign practices and autonomous areas. The reclaiming and regenerating of old commons is creating new commons and reorganizing society from the bottom-up. This is leading to a radical pluralism, avoiding both conventional universalism and cultural relativism beyond the political horizon of the nation-state. In this way the struggle to improve representative democracy and promote participatory democracy is shifting to radical democracy and to a redefinition of the good life, the buen vivir, through new institutional arrangements beyond development itself.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: March 1, 2010

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