The system as a whole – economic, political and social – is in a crisis of new proportions. In the U.S., those at the top have worked diligently in the last decades to shore up their resources and power while the overwhelming majority has been increasingly left with less.
Simultaneously however, as more people experience loss of employment, reductions in social services, foreclosures, and increasingly struggle, significant questions have emerged in public discourse about dominant assumptions of how society should be organized. A wide array of global and local movements raised awareness of and interest in considering the structural context for difficulties faced and compelled some to action utilizing a variety of strategies.
This presentation draws from research being conducted exploring the experiences, beliefs and attitudes of people engaged in building structures and communities in response to this historical conjuncture. Interviews have been done with people involved in a successful time bank in Vermont, and reference discussions with those engaged in a cooperatives movement in Mississippi.
Are these efforts part of a systemic transformation or reforms doomed to fail over time? What do those involved want and hope will happen over time? What best practices can be drawn from their experiences?”