Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Parochialism – or a return to small-scale thinking

E.F Schumacher wrote ‘for his different purposes man needs many structures, both small ones and large ones, some exclusive and some comprehensive.’ He was mainly talking in the realm of economics, business and politics but after reading Lewis Munford’s technics and civilisation, I have begun to think that we should begin listening to his advice in the realm of thought and ideology.

I have noticed that people more often than not think of solutions or values in a large thought, say a global scale (we can save the world) or national level, instead of the smaller scale of regional, local or personal level. However, a lot of effective action comes from the smaller level and the changes in peak oil will affect us at every scale. The good news is that parochialism, regionalism and localism are already returning into the realm of thought and a lot of writers on overshoot (Dimitri Orlov, John Michael Greer, Sharon Astyk etc) are already ahead of the curve with responses for individuals or communities and ways of thinking.

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