[Feature] The Welfare and the Commons: the Crisis of Care and Reconstructing Publicness

The Quarterly Changbi 177, Autumn 2017

 

Abstract

The feature of this issue, “the commons and publicness“, considers “the commons” or new communities based on common property and publicness as a way to cope with the social polarization and the crisis of care accelerated during neoliberal capitalism. It also tries to examine the theoretical debate and practical issues regarding how to create such a commons in our society. Paik Young-Gyung points out that the serious issues of a chronically low birth rate and ageing society are intrinsically connected with the crisis of care and social reproduction caused by financial capitalism, and that the burden of care labor is shifted onto the lower class, and women in particular. She examines the main arguments on commons as alternative discourses to overcome those crises’ discourses; for the commons can provide crucial clues to solving today’s crisis and welfare problems by letting us imagine new social relations based on ‘care’ and making communal life possible.