Growth Illusion Growth Illusion
How Economic Growth Has Enriched The Few, Impoverished The Many, and Endangered The Planet


Richard Douthwaite
Format: Soft Cover
Length: 400 pages
Publisher: New Society
ISBN: 0865713960
Copyright: 1999

The idea that economic growth is necessary is deeply rooted in western culture and forms the basis of the economic strategies for developed and developing nations around the globe. A finalist in the GPA Book Award when first released in 1993, this fully updated and revised edition of Richard Douthwaite's critically acclaimed The Growth Illusion demonstrates why economic growth is a prescription for disaster and suggests how to redirect our capitalist system toward more positive ends.

Douthwaite examines the history of western economic growth from the birth of capitalism through the industrial revolution and the world wars, drawing a startling link between rising GNP and the erosion of the quality of our health, family and community life, and a sustainable future. This engaging and well-researched work looks at the end of the American dream and why national growth patterns are so difficult to break, and offers radical ideas to steer our economies on a new course.

The Growth Illusion has been substantially updated to reflect the fast moving political, economic, and social changes that have occurred since the book was first released. The author has gone to considerable lengths to update the new edition, including revisiting how unfettered growth has affected each of the case study countries included in the first edition.

Douthwaite's analysis of growth turns economic wisdom on its head - and, as unconventional as his ideas are, a Neighborhood Works reviewer noted that they are almost indisputable.


"A controversial book whose findings will be debated by economists worldwide. Highly recommended." -- Library Journal

"A breakthrough! An honest economist willing to go public on why pursuing economic growth formulas leads societies not toward development, but to disaster." -- Hazel Henderson

About the Author

Richard Douthwaite is a columnist for The Irish Times, New Internationalist, and Earthwatch, and author of the influential book, Short Circuit: Strengthening Local Economies in an Unstable World. He lives in Westport, Ireland.

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