Reference : Solidarity economy and its anarchist grammar
E-prints/Working papers : First made available on ORBi
Social & behavioral sciences, psychology : Sociology & social sciences
Solidarity economy and its anarchist grammar
[fr] L'économie solidaire et sa grammaire anarchiste
Frère, Bruno mailto [Université de Liège > Faculté des sciences sociales > Sociologie des identités contemporaines >]
[en] anarchy ; solidarity economy political organization ; conflict
[en] ‘Solidarity economy’, a widely used term for which the most common French equivalent is economie solidaire, is generally thought of as comprising five distinct classes of activity : Micro-finance, Local Exange Trading Systems, proximity services, organic community supported agriculture and fairtrade distributions. Because they try to answer to the Aristotelian theoretical question “what can we do to live harmoniously together?”, these solidarity initiatives are deeply political in the philosophical sense of the term. They galvanize civic commitment at the “micro” level. But today, an important question arises regarding the kind of formal political institution that would speak in the name of all these initiatives. In France, some intellectuals who have an interest in these solidarity initiatives see them as new economic models with the potential to solve the current financial crisis, and they are eager for academic specialists and leaders of the movement to achieve some kind of consensus about the kind of concrete political identity such initiatives may be expected to generate. However this paper studies their way of establishing a basis for moving from micro level initiatives to substantial “macro” polity unity. Using the insights of french pragmatic sociology, and particularly the notion of grammar of justification, it aims to understand what the obstacles to this aim being realised are.

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