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Reflecting on the philosophical assumptions that sustain the development debate, Rabbani analyzes how the modern project of development and the antidevelopment discourse reduce the human condition to a struggle for self-preservation and, likewise, social and international cooperation to a strategic and self-defeating process. The book centers on core inconsistencies in the rationale of both discourses as they stand for individual autonomy, collective self-determination and mutual respect. Building these social goals around the requirement of ‘non-interference’ in individual or collective affairs, neither discourse can practically enhance nor coherently sustain respect to people’s freedom and diversity. The author argues that any real alternative to the normative reductions and actual destructions carried on by international development theory and practice would have to recover the non-contingent solidarity implied in people’s search for self-understanding. Awareness of this human condition, in its turn, actively fosters relations of universal inclusion and global friendship.

Instructors and graduate and undergraduate students in the fields of peace studies, development studies, political sciences and political philosophy; professionals and volunteers working in governmental and non-governmental organizations and development agencies will find this volume ideally fit for purpose.

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