chapter
Introduction: degrowth
ByGiorgos Kallis, Federico Demaria and Giacomo D’Alisa
Pages 18

The term ‘décroissance’ (French for degrowth) was used for the first time by French intellectual André Gorz in 1972. Gorz posed a question that remains at the centre of today’s degrowth debate: ‘Is the earth’s balance, for which no-growth – or even degrowth - of material production is a necessary condition, compatible with the survival of the capitalist system?’ (Gorz, 1972: iv). Other Francophone authors then used the term in the follow-up to ‘The Limits to Growth’ report (Meadows et al. 1972). Philosopher André Amar (1973) for example, wrote on La croissance et le problème moral1 for an issue on ‘Les objecteurs de croissance’ of the journal NEF Cahiers.