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On-line version ISSN 1679-3951


FERNANDES, Valdir. The rationalization of life as historic process: a critique of economic rationality and industrialization. Cad. EBAPE.BR [online]. 2008, vol.6, n.3, pp.01-20. ISSN 1679-3951.

This article analyzes theoretical studies about the concept of rationality and criticizes economic rationality. It discusses the rationalization of life as a historic process, guided by the principal of rationality based on the Aristotelian notion of reason and extending through analyses by Max Weber, Karl Mannheim, the Frankfurt School, Ivan Illich, André Gorz, Karl Polanyi and Guerreiro Ramos. Based on this theoretical framework, it constructs a criticism of economic rationality upon which is based the current process of development and its difficulties, and the very notion of progress.

Keywords : instrumental and economic rationality; capitalism; industrialization; socio-environmental issues.

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