A Commodified World critiques the notion that in Late Capitalism all economic relations become always ever more commodified, while 'non-capitalist' activities disappear. It demonstrates that a combination of new 'cultures of resistance' all constrain this tendency or even threaten to reverse it. Colin Williams finds that, even in the advanced economies, a non-commodified realm persists that is as large as the commodified sphere and growing relative to it. He draws on extensive empirical evidence of trends and new patterns of economic activity - including changes in women's participation, differences between wealthy and poor urban areas, and between urban and rural sectors. He explores non-commodified practices of resistance. And he concludes that governments and communities, by de-coupling production and consumption from the commodified realm, could open up alternative development paths.
Colin Williams is professor of work organization and director of the Collective for Alternative Organization Studies (CAOS) at the University of Leicester Management Centre (ULMC).
1. Introduction Part 1: The Penetration of Commodification: A Critical Evaluation 2. The Commodification Thesis 3. Subsistence Work 4. Non-Monetised Exchange 5. Not-for-Profit Monetised Exchange Part 2: The Uneven Contours of Commodification 6. Socio-Economic Disparities 7. The Uneven Geographies of Commodification 8. Gender and Commodification 9. Beyond the Advanced Economies Part 3: Future Options and their Implications 10. Towards a Commodified World 11. Doing Nothing 12. Fostering Plural Economies Part 4: Beyond a Commodified World 13. Cultivating Work beyond the Commodity Economy 14. Conclusions