I’m pleased to report that the English edition of a new anthology of essays, The Wealth of the Commons: A World Beyond Market and State, is now available! I’ve been working on editing the book with my German colleague Silke Helfrich for nearly a year and a half, so it’s wonderfully satisfying to see the book in its final, printed form.
Let me immodestly state: Never before have so many different international voices about the commons been brought together in one volume. The Wealth of the Commons consists of 73 essays by a diverse roster of international activists, academics and project leaders. It consists of descriptions of specific commons innovations, essays on the theory and economics of commons, accounts of different types of enclosures around the world, and much else.
There are accounts of fishing commons off the coast of Chile; fruit sharing from abandoned orchards in Germany; and an overview of subsistence forestry in Nepal. There are many accounts of market enclosures, from dam-building in India to mining in South America to the international land grab now underway in Africa and Asia. The book also features a series of essays on knowledge commons and more than a dozen essays focused on commons-friendly policy innovations.
The soft-bound, 442-page book is published by Levellers Press, a small, innovative publisher here in Massachusetts that is also a worker coop and itself ardently committed to the commons. I love the fact that a book on the commons is being published by a publisher that truly honors the Levellers, one of the great movements of commoners in the seventeenth century. The book can be bought from the Levellers website for US$22.50 plus shipping and handling. More about the book can be found on its website, www.wealthofthecommons.org.