Synopses & Reviews
Most people believe that money is organic and inevitable; we forget that money is just a tool created to perform certain functions. But just as computer programmers drop out-of date tools and pick up better ones as soon as they become available, we might switch from bank-financed currency to a more equitable method for transferring goods and services. As an operating system for society, money needs a major upgrade.
What Comes After Money? offers a wealth of alternatives to the current monetary system. In this anthology of essays drawn from the popular web magazine Reality Sandwich, 20 visionary thinkers explore the roots of the modern economic crisis and propose diverse solutions: instituting local currencies; creating reputation or gift economies (based on historical and contemporary); introducing spirituality into the equation; and many more. Contributors include economist Bernard Leitaer, media theorist Douglas Rushkoff, musician Paul D. Miller (a.k.a. DJ Spooky), theoretical physicist Amit Goswami, Larry Harvey (founder of Burning Man), and Peter Lamborn Wilson (a.k.a. Hakim Bey).
"Yoga and Buddhism, mother earth, native American traditions, peak oil, and the exploitation of everything are more likely to be found in this collection of 23 essays than in most books on money....Many of the authors seem to share a view that the present economic crisis is the last act of the capitalist system....So if this group of authors is correct, and the money-based economy is facing collapse, what comes next? Antonio Lopez suggests, 'In the midst of this richly unfolding economic crisis we can discover how the power of flower and song will sustain anyone with an alternate vision of our place in the world.' Anya Kamenetz suggests we humanize the economy. Ellen Pearlman thinks what happens depends on how we perceive it." New York Journal of Books
"In their challenging and innovative essays, these economists, activists, scientists, artists, and philosophers reveal potential paths to a new economy that is biospherically balanced and equitably attuned." Gary Goldberg, "In The Spirit" Radio
"We are in the throes of an economic crisis, but crisis an opportunity are old companions, and, despite the havoc wrought by careless bankers, the recent financial meltdown presents us with an opportunity to reevaluate our relationship with money. What Comes After Money? is an anthology of 23 essays, all of which address our most basic beliefs about wealth. Of course, no simple solution to the problems of corporate greed, labor exploitation, and Wall Street arrogance exists, but Money proffers several strategies: local currencies, gift economies, an ecological model of financial distribution. Its propositions are often radical, but laudable in their scope and sincerity: the essays carry intellectual heft and a palpable earnestness. Not all of the writing is strong or well argued, but even when it isn't, the pervasive tone of righteous intent and revolutionary thinking is a welcome alternative to a broken financial system. In her essay, "Yoga and Money," Sharon Gannon asks, "What would it take to be wild, free, and independently wealthy?" Read What Comes After Money? The answer just may surprise you." Yoga International Magazine
"In this collection, twenty-two contributors to Reality Sandwich concentrate on transforming currency and community as an evolutionary gesture of consciousness." Examiner.com
About the Author
Daniel Pinchbeck is the editorial director of Reality Sandwich,
cofounder of Evolver.net, and founding editor of the literary journal Open City.
Ken Jordan is the publisher and executive producer of Reality Sandwich and Evolver.net; his work has appeared in Wired, Paris Review, and other publications.
Both live in New York City.