Title

Cosmologies and Regionalisms from "Above' and "Below' in the Post-Cold War Americas: the Relevance of Karl Polanyi for the 21st Century

Publication Date

2013

Journal

Third World Quarterly

Volume

34

Issue

7

First Page

1145

Last Page

1158

Abstract

Drawing on a Polanyian analysis of the land question, this article aims to analyse both Western and Indigenous cosmologies of Abya Yalathe name that indigenous peoples give to the American continentto understand the relationship between human beings and land and nature. These cosmologies are at the heart of the way in which two distinct societies construct their regional space, one from above', the other from below', and they are therefore key to understanding today's climate change problematique. Following this nexus it is argued that, since the end of the Cold War, a new regional double-movement', unleashed by the quest for land and natural resources has been in the making. This is a superstructural or legal battle between Western transnational regime-making and a law that originated at the centre of the Earth'. The article explains both regionalisms and the dialectical interaction between them and demonstrates that Karl Polanyi's legacy remains relevant for the 21st century.

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