Pluriversal learning: pathways toward a world of many worlds
In varied contexts around the world, groups and communities forging different kinds of futures are challenging the universal desirability of development toward ever-greater production, consumption, and ecological footprints. This article is about learning from some of those pathways in order to broaden horizons for conversations about degrowth beyond Europe where they first gained traction. It reviews empirical research on wide-ranging phenomena, and documents processes of mutual learning among researchers from varied cultural, linguistic, and national backgrounds. Affirmative political ecology is appraised as a framework for analyzing relations among differently shaped phenomena operating in different contexts and on various scales, and for supporting life-affirming efforts to co-construct worlds that might be healthier and happier for more people and other nature. Pluriverse is explored as an epistemological stance and a dialogic method to enhance appreciation of multiple ways of knowing and being in the world, and to foster enquiry that decenters models of science and development that have been portrayed as universally true and good. After conceptualizing key ideas and reflecting on learning processes and challenges among a network of 40 collaborators, the text turns to some movements that I have engaged in Latin America in search of insights to support ongoing development of thought and practice with degrowth.