Publication State / Democracy - Social Movements / Organizing A Post-capitalist Paradigm

The Common Good of Humanity





Birgit Daiber, François Houtard,


January 2012

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Rethinking the reproduction of life and the continuity of life on our planet from the perspective of the paradigm of the Common Good of Humanity is an urgent necessity in the current situation.

There is need to analyze in depth both the concept at the basis of the paradigm and its implications, to increase the range of its applications, to enable various social actors to strategize around it, and to reflect on the transition from a logic based on capital accumulation to a post-capitalist society based on the acknowledgement of the Common Good of Humanity, seen as the realization of a socialism with the fullness of meaning this word conveys.

This book presents analytical and theoretical reflections and comments on the various aspects of the notion of Common Good of Humanity and its social and political functions which can be useful to find a sense of direction in the collective action of social movements.


Birgit Daiber | François Houtart

Chapter I

From ‘common goods’ to the ‘Common Good of Humanity’
François Houtart

  • Why associate the notion of ‘common goods’ with the concept of ‘Common Good of Humanity’?
  • What solutions?
  • The multiple facets of the crisis
  • The new paradigm
  • The Common Good of Humanity as a global objective
  • Towards a Universal Declaration on the Common Good of Humanity

Chapter II

Building axes of the Common Good of Humanity:
additional reflections

1. The relationship with nature
Commons goods, socio-ecological metabolism and the Common
Future of Humanity: a North/South analysis
Gian Carlo Delgado Ramos 57

2. The production of life (economy)
Reflections on the crisis and its effects
Rémy Herrera

Prioritizing use value over exchange value
Marc Vandepitte

Making the Common Good of Humanity concrete:
Free Public Transport – for a Life in Solidarity
Michael Brie

The Commons, the Public and the Left
Rainer Rilling

On Common Good, Money and Credit
Pedro Páez Pérez

3. Social and political collective organization
Some memories of the future
Birgit Daiber

Commons: social justice by sharing
Tommaso Fattori

4. Culture
The concept of Sumak Kawsay (Living Well) and how it relates
to the Common Good of Humanity
François Houtart

What modernity, what interculturality?
Reflections from South America
Gabriela Bernal Carrera

Chapter III

The Common Good of Humanity seen from different perspectives

1. The Workers’ Movement.
A comment from the viewpoint of workers
Eduardo Estevez Marin

2. The Farmers’ Movements.
The Common Good of Humanity, Good Living and the
Peasants Movements
Ivo Poletto

3. Afro-descendants Women.
The Women of African Descent
Gabriela Viveros Padilla and Marisol Cárdenas Oñate

4. Indigenous peoples of the Americas.
The poetics of Sumak Kawsay on a global Horizon
Armando Muyolema

5. The People’s Science Movement, India.
People’s Science for the Common Good of Humanity
Vinod Raina

6. The Arab Awakening.
From “Common Goods” to the “Common Good” of all living species on the Planet Earth
Hassan Abdou Bakr

7. Asia-Europe Peoples’ Forum.
Restoring the Right to Life and a Life of Diginity for All – The Campaign for Transformative Social Protection in Asia
Tina Ebro

8. Today’s World and the Winding.
Search for the Common Good
Aurelio Alonso

Chapter IV

Conclusions and Transitions
François Houtart

  • Regulations versus alternatives
  • The transition


The Authors

Spanish Version

More in the PDF.