Commoning is based on a very different ontology from capitalism


Commoning is based on a very different ontology from capitalism.

This is not widely appreciated because many people continue to view the commons through archaic ontological perspectives — which is to say, through the normative lens of modern, Western culture.

Free, Fair and Alive

"The normative lens of modern, Western culture". What is that? It must surely be hard to pin down such a concept as 'Western culture'. I'll take it here as a shorthand for rationalism, individualism, the humanization of nature, etc.

Capitalism's ontology:

They have internalized the language of separation and methodological individualism. They view objects as having fixed, essential attributes and being disconnected from their origins and context.

Free, Fair and Alive

Separation. Individualism. Fixed.

Commoning's ontology:

Commoning has a different orientation to the world because its actions are based on a deep relationality of everything. It is a world of dense interpersonal connections and interdependencies. Actions are not simply matters of direct cause-and-effect between the most proximate, visible actors; they stem from a pulsating web of culture and myriad relationships through which new things emerge.

Free, Fair and Alive

Relationships. Relationality. Connection. Interdependence.

1. Elsewhere

1.1. In my garden

1.3. Mentions

This page last updated: 2023-03-17 Fri 16:15. Map. Recent changes. Source. Peer Production License.