The West is living in a triumphant euphoria. The collapse of the East provides it with a perfect alibi: in the East it was worse. One should, instead, wonder whether is was fundamentally different. In the West, justice is sacrificed on the altar of the goddess Productivity in the name of liberty. In the East, liberty was sacrificed on the altar of the goddess Productivity in the name of justice. In the South we can still ask ourselves if this goddess is worth our lives.

-Eduardo Galeano, “To Be Like Them” in the Post-Development Reader

This magnificently sums up my experiences in Tajikistan, and my hopes for traveling across the South to learn about other ways of thinking about the world and “productivity.”

“On the Altar of Productivity”

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