In recent decades, grassroots movements around the world have mobilized millions of people against the commodification of land, labor, and money that has been central to the project of “free market” globalization. Efforts to build the solidarity and social economy, to expand and defend the commons, to implement a Basic Income for all citizens, and to resist land grabs by speculators and giant corporations all rest on the recognition that it is inhuman to leave people and their natural surroundings vulnerable to the dictates of impersonal markets. These initiatives have sometimes been inspired by the powerful argument that Karl Polanyi developed in The Great Transformation, where he explained the disastrous consequences of imagining that land, labor and money could and should be treated like any other good or service, to be sold on the market.
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