Solidarity EconomicsWhy Mutuality and Movements Matter
Solidarity Economics
Why Mutuality and Movements Matter

Traditional economics is built on the assumption of self-interested individuals seeking to maximize personal gain, but that is far from the whole story. Sharing, caring, and a desire to uphold the collective good are also powerful motives. In a world wracked by inequality, social divisions, and ecological destruction, can we build an alternative economics based on cooperation?

In this book Chris Benner and Manuel Pastor invite us to imagine a new sort of solidarity economics – an approach grounded in our instincts for connection and community – and in so doing, actually build a more robust and sustainable economy. They argue that our current economy is already deeply dependent on mutuality, but that the inequality and fragmentation created by the status quo undermine this mutuality and with it our economic well-being. They outline the theoretical framing, policy agenda, and social movements that we need to revive solidarity and apply it to whole societies.

<i>Solidarity Economics</i> is an essential read for anyone who longs for a fairer economy that can generate prosperity and preserve the planet.

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  • November 2021
  • 208 pages
  • 138 x 216 mm / 5 x 9 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $64.95
  • 9781509544073
  • Paperback $22.95
  • 9781509544080
  • Open eBook $18.00
  • 9781509544097
Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Reimagining Our Economy

Chapter 2. Solidarity and Prosperity

Chapter 3. Solidarity and Innovation

Chapter 4. Solidarity and Social Support

Chapter 5. Solidarity and the Planet

Chapter 6. Solidarity and Social Change

About the Author
Chris Benner is Professor of Environmental Studies and Sociology at University of California, Santa Cruz.
Manuel Pastor is Distinguished Professor of Sociology and American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California.
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Solidarity Economics offers a way out of the zero-sum politics of neoliberalism at a crucial time. It is going to be a classic of our current era.”
Heather C. McGhee, author of The Sum of Us

“Economics makes us forget that solidarity is the glue that holds society together, and the force that can be harnessed for social progress. Solidarity Economics is a fascinating and much needed book to think bigger and act boldly.”
Emmanuel Saez, University of California, Berkeley

“Brilliant and superbly readable.”
James K. Boyce, University of Massachusetts Amherst

“’We got us’ was the powerful refrain heard throughout the Black and Brown communities hit hardest by the COVID-19 crisis. Behind this pithy motto were countless mutual aid networks providing supplies, care, and cash for families left reeling from the pandemic. It's against the backdrop of these inspiring acts of solidarity that Drs. Pastor and Benner put forth their vision for a caring American economy built on mutuality and driven by the social movements that have delivered for our people time and again. Indeed, as we reckon with the moral failings of neoliberalism, Solidarity Economics challenges us to center the unique potential of collectivities in shaping our economic future — one that delivers for us all, not just the wealthiest among us.”
Dorian Warren, co-President of Community Change and co-Chair of the Economic Security Project

“There has never been a more critical moment to shift away from an economic approach that benefits the few to one prioritizing the greater good. We have been sold a false bill of goods over the last four decades of American policy that you cannot have a thriving economy and shared prosperity. With its focus on how we all do better when we all do better, Solidarity Economics: Why Mutuality and Movements Matter, not only smashes that myth –but provides an essential framework for how we finally reimagine and restructure an economy that works for all.”
Anne Price, President, Insight Center for Community Change

“In this powerful blueprint for an equitable future, Manuel Pastor and Chris Benner provide a bold critique of conventional wisdom about who owns the economy. They challenge us to radically imagine how we can design OUR economy to be fully inclusive and guided by the principles of mutuality and solidarity, ensuring that we put people first.”
Angela Glover Blackwell, Founder in Residence, PolicyLink, and host, Radical Imagination podcast

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