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Theses

La soutenabilité des économies insulaires coloniales et postcoloniales. Le cas de l’Ile de La Réunion

Abstract : Small, isolated and vulnerable, islands have become symbols in current debates on the sustainability of economic systems. This is no coincidence. For colonial and insular experiences have played a key role in the emergence of political economy, which, initially focused on the creation of wealth as much as on its durability. Conversely, political economy nurtured the development of a new “art of government” which has deeply influenced islands trajectories and engendered new relations of power that persist today. In particular through the concept of (sustainable) development that naturalizes a contingent, utilitarian, view of sustainability. By bringing together the paradigm of complexity, ecological economics and poststructuralist works, this thesis aims to deconstruct this concept and reframe it through an institutionalist and interdisciplinary approach that fully integrates ecological, symbolic and social factors as well as the multiplicity of economies. It then studies the formation and evolution of plantation economies, both in Reunion Island and the Caribbean, to question the paradox of “durable unsustainability”: why and how can an economy grounded on destruction and unable to satisfy the ends it was designed for, maintain itself on the long term? A third part queries the sustainability of the “departementalisation” project, i.e. decreeing development: turning a ruined colony in a modern economy, able to reach European standards through self-sustained growth. It thus emphasizes the retroactions that wiped this utopia out to give birth to an original, yet fragile, model of resilient dependence.
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Philippe Holstein. La soutenabilité des économies insulaires coloniales et postcoloniales. Le cas de l’Ile de La Réunion. Economies et finances. Sciences Po - Institut d'études politiques de Paris, 2014. Français. ⟨tel-03460292⟩

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