Lives in Paris and directs research on human economy in South Africa. He has taught in a dozen universities around the world, for the longest time in Cambridge, where he was Director of the African Studies Centre. He contributed the concept of the informal economy to development studies and has written especially about money. His website (http://thememorybank.co.uk) contains many of his writings. He founded the Open Anthropology Cooperative network. He is the author, with Chris Hann, of Economic Anthropology: History, ethnography, critique (2011) and co-editor of Market and Society: The Great Transformation today (2009) and of The Human Economy: A citizens guide (2010).
English abstractIn the artcles first part, the global economic crisis that began with the banking collapse of 2008 is attributed to the end of the system of money that dominated the twentieth century, «national capitalism». This entails the break-up of «all-purpose money» or national monopoly currency and its replacement by a distributed global network of financial agencies issuing specialized monetary instruments in multiple forms. The political challenge is to devise forms of government adequate to controlling money in this new form. But the old ideas persist to the detriment of finding effective solutions. The articles second part takes off from the recent publication of The Human Economy: A Citizens Guide, an international collaboration that grew out of the «alter-globalization» movement. A human economy gives priority to what people really do and has the interests of humanity as a whole in mind. A programme for building a human economy in the current historical context is outlined; and the prospects for economic anthropology after the financial crisis considered briefly in conclusion.
Keywords:anthropology,human economy,money,national capitalism,world crisis