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Das Gute Leben als Alternative zum Wachstum? : der Fall Ecuador

Good Life as an alternative to growth? : the example of Ecuador
[journal article]

Altmann, Philipp

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Abstract "The 2008 Ecuadorean Constitution introduced with the Good Life - defined as basic principle of state and society - a new political concept that could establish itself as an alternative to visions of development focused on growth. The concept of Good Life (Sumak Kawsay) has been established in the discourse of the indigenous movement in Ecuador since the year 2002 and has been used especially by the Amazonian organizations in order to fight petroleum exploitation in their territory. This activity is defined as an attack on nature and the people living there. The adaptation of the concept by the state during the Constituent Assembly in 2007/2008 lead to the appearance of two different and in part antagonistic interpretations of the Good Life: the indigenous movement integrated the new concept -always in Kichwa as Sumak Kawsay- in their established discourse as a crystallization of their ecological and economical demands; many non-indigenous political intellectuals, on the other hand, understand the Good Life as the culmination of a millennial intercontinental tradition of thought that hardly relates to indigenous peoples. Thus, since some years, there are conflicts between two different definitions of the same concept - the indigenous peoples defend themselves under the slogan of the Good Life against a state politics that endangers their way of life under the same slogan." (author's abstract)
Keywords Ecuador; Central America; constitution; concept; indigenous peoples; conception; life style; sustainability; discourse; self-determination; national state; historical development; political movement; social movement; alternative; Andean Region; developing country; Latin America; South America
Classification Sociology of Developing Countries, Developmental Sociology; Law; Sociology of Economics; Social History, Historical Social Research
Method historical; normative
Document language German
Publication Year 2013
Page/Pages p. 101-111
Journal Sozialwissenschaften und Berufspraxis, 36 (2013) 1
Issue topic Nachhaltiges Wirtschaften in Zeiten von Postwachstum
ISSN 0724-3464
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence Deposit Licence - No Redistribution, No Modifications