The writer, activist and university lecturer condemns the fact that the dominant economic rationale has silenced alternative approaches and has become a cultural catastrophe made evident through phenomena such as denialism
“We are on the brink of a true ecological and social disaster, and that is a direct consequence of the lack of connection between economic theory and the biophysical realities of the planet.” Writer, activist and university lecturer Jorge Riechmann expressed this warning in his speech, on 24 March, during the Foros 2021 lecture series held at the UIC Barcelona School of Architecture.
In his lecture, entitled “Horizons of Eco-social Collapse. Toward a catastrophic end to Modernity?” Riechmann looked back at the early 70s, when authors like economist Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen and scientist Vladimir Vernadsky laid the foundations “for what could have been a viable and sustainable culture and economy.” But, he pointed out that “the bioeconomic revolution did not take place, and those who deny the climate threat ended up winning the game.” More than fifty years later, “we are immersed in a true imperialism of the dominant economy, which has been reinforced over the years and which has managed to displace alternative approaches.” Jorge Riechmann concluded that our societies must realise that “what is not biophysically possible is never going to be economically viable, and that ignoring that reality will lead us to a planetary catastrophe.”
A lecturer in the Department of Philosophy at the Autonomous University of Madrid, Jorge Riechmann has excelled in recent years through his highly lucid essays for example ¿Derrotó el smartphone al movimiento ecologista? (2016) , ¿Vivir como buenos huérfanos? (2017), Ecosocialismo descalzo (2018) and Otro fin del mundo es posible (2019). He also writes his own blog www.tratarde.org
Entitled “Expectations” the Foros 2021 lecture series will undertake a reflection on the reconstruction scenario as a result of the COVID-19 crisis in all sectors of society, with a special focus on architecture and urban planning.