media sustainability

The E F Schumacher legacy

Catch it while you can – there’s a great radio piece up on the BBC’s website, exploring E F Schumacher’ ideas. In particular, the programme investigates the influence of his thought on David Cameron’s ‘Big Society’ idea, but it ranges across the limits to growth, materialism and wellbeing. Family and friends contribute, and so do critics. Interesting stuff, and worth a listen. This particular quote caught my eye:

The party is over. During the party we allowed ourselves to be entertained by at least three magicians, illusionists. The first one managed to convince most of us that although this is a finite planet the resources are infinite. The second one managed to persuade many of us that there will always be plenty of people who will do dirty and mindless work for a pittance. And the third one is probably the most dangerous illusionist. He told us that nevermind what you do, whatever trouble you get into it, science will bail you out. Now these three illusionists have disappeared, the party is over, and we’re left with the washing up.

The 100th anniversary of E F Schumacher’s birth is this year, and there’s a site dedicated to his legacy. His thinking was one of the inspirations for this site in the first place, and here are a few relevant posts:

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