[PeDAGoG] CORE (Curriculum Open-access Resources in Economics)

Aram Ziai ziai at uni-kassel.de
Sun Jun 26 10:38:29 CEST 2022

Dear all,

I agree and wanted to point out that Escobar has described already in 95 
economics as a cultural discourse imagining itself to be a science... 
but also that the 'problem' of population growth is usually focusing on 
poor people in the South (who use far far less resources and emit far 
far less CO2 than the global middle class) and of course on women (whose 
right to control their body is compromised) thus has racist and sexist 



On 25.06.22 22:37, Christine Dann wrote:
> Kia ora tatou
> I wonder if it is possible for /any/ economics curriculum to be 
> satisfactory. In Bruno Latour's view (see the quotes from/After 
> Lockdown Metamorphosis/, 2021, below) 'economics'  is an invention 
> which has been and is still imposed with force. It obscures reality at 
> best, and destroys it at worst.
> It was interesting to see in the philanthropy article which Christian 
> provided the link to that 'philanthropy' now includes creating 
> pro-capitalist propaganda. This reinforces Latour's point that a lot 
> of work has gone and continues to go into creating the pseudo-reality 
> of 'economics' and the Economy. It can be 'soft' work, like the 
> creation of 'philanthropic' propaganda; or 'hard' work, like the 
> murder of indigenous people and their supporters trying to prevent 
> further 'economic' extraction of the life of their lands, and the 
> minerals beneath them.
> It is still heretical these days to say that the Economy is not real, 
> and we should focus on what is, and stop aiming to grow the Economy 
> until it has devoured the Earth and all on it. It has been heretical 
> for 50 years now, since the /Limits to Growth/ report was published in 
> 1972, and a very small new party in a very small new-ish state (the 
> New Zealand Values Party) put out an election manifesto with two key 
> policies - Zero Economic Growth and Zero Population Growth. I don't 
> know of any political party which has been so bold since - and you 
> probably all know the connections between economic and population 
> growth and how problematic both are these days. Also the connections 
> with fossil fuel extraction and use.
> If I were a teenager today and had a choice between studying economics 
> in a classroom or learning gardening in a community garden, I know 
> what the smart choice would be.
> Christine
> p 59 “This time round, it’s not just a matter of improving, changing, 
> greening or revolutionising the ‘economic’ system, but of /completely 
> doing without the Economy./”
> p 60 “/Homo oeconomicus /has nothing native, natural or autochthonous 
> about him, as we’ve long known. Strictly speaking, he comes from on 
> high … /from the top down/, and not at all from ordinary practical 
> experience, /from the ground up/, from the relationships that 
> lifeforms maintain with other lifeforms.”
> p 60 “For the Economy to expand … as the bedrock of all possible life 
> on earth, an enormous amount of infrastructure building is required to 
> impose it as an obvious fact against the dogged resistance put up by 
> the most common experience in reaction to such violent colonisation.”
> p 61 [Without this infrastructure] “no one would ever have invented 
> ‘individuals’ capable of a selfishness drastic enough, constant 
> enough, consistent enough to not ‘owe anyone anything’ and to see all 
> others as ‘aliens’ and all life forms as ‘resources’. Beneath the 
> evidence of a native, primal Economy lie three centuries of 
> economisation….” [this preliminary embedding requires extreme violence]
> p 62 [In order not to stay in the economisation trap, the way out 
> proposed by Duzan Kazik] “… consists in /never agreeing/ to say of any 
> subject whatever that ‘it has an economic dimension’! Bowing to that 
> dimension … always boils down to suggesting that, on the one hand, 
> there is a profound, essential, vital reality – the economic situation 
> – but that on the other hand, we could nonetheless, if we had the 
> time, take ‘other dimensions’ into account – social, moral, political 
> dimensions and even, why not, if there’s anything left over, an 
> ‘ecological dimension’… Well, reasoning accordingly means giving the 
> Economy a material reality it doesn’t have, and lending a hand to a 
> power that trickles down from on high.”
> pp 74 - 75 “As soon as you describe a territory the right way round, 
> you feel in your bones why the Economy could not be realistic or 
> materialistic …. Embracing the Economy means interrupting the 
> resumption of interactions by inventing beings who won’t have to 
> account for themselves on the pretext that they’re autonomous 
> individuals whose limits are protected by an exclusive right of 
> ownership.”
> On 25/06/22 06:21, Steven J. Klees wrote:
>> Dear Christian,
>> The CORE curriculum is an improvement over standard approaches in 
>> economics departments but it is fundamentally neoclassical.  It moves 
>> away from neoliberalism but is firmly ensconced in a liberal view of 
>> markets and capitalism.  Putting lipstick on a pig is, to me, an 
>> appropriate characterization.  Check out the attached New Yorker article.
>> Best,
>> Steve
>> On Fri, Jun 24, 2022 at 12:58 PM Christian Stalberg 
>> <cstalberg at mymail.ciis.edu> wrote:
>>     Sharing this resource. Would love to hear reactions. My kneejerk
>>     response was that this is simply putting lipstick on a pig (the
>>     pig being the systemic structural violence of capitalism).
>>     https://www.core-econ.org/
>>     …oh and if you would like to know where this initiative got its
>>     start, read this
>>     https://www.philanthropy.com/article/thinking-anew-about-capitalism
>>     <https://www.philanthropy.com/article/thinking-anew-about-capitalism>
>>     Thank you in advance for your interest and attention!
>>     __
>>     Christian Stalberg
>>     Doctoral Student
>>     Anthropology & Social Change
>>     CIIS, San Francisco, CA
>>     /"I am no longer accepting the things I cannot change. I am
>>     changing the things I cannot accept." - Angela Davis/
>>     /“What is it that we can do that addresses whatever the problem
>>     is, rather than what it is that we’re trying to get somebody else
>>     to do.” – Alice Lynd/
>>     /“//It’s better to die for an idea that is going to live than to
>>     live for an idea that is going to die.” – Steve Biko///
>>     /“We live in capitalism, its power seems inescapable – but so did
>>     the divine right of kings.” - Ursula K. Le Guin/
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Prof. Dr. Aram Ziai
Chair of Development and Postcolonial Studies
Executive Director Global Partnership Network
Faculty of Social Sciences
University of Kassel
Nora-Platiel-Str. 1
34109 Kassel
++49 561 804-3023
ziai at uni-kassel.de

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