Mass-Producing Oppression: An Analysis of the Global Apparel Industry

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Crilly, Megan
Garment Industry; Oppression; Global Commodity Chains; Fashion Business; Inequality and Stratification; International Business; International Economics; Labor Economics
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The issues explored in this paper are about power relationships and the physical, mental, and economic oppression inherent in a global economy based on unequal exchange between industrialized and "developing" nations. It is a study of the nature and mechanisms of oppression itself, using global garment industry as a pertinent case study. It looks at how power structures such as a truly global economy do not exist independent of mundane human experience, but rather, how they must be created and re-created through the actions of real people. Implicit in my analysis is the assertion that a global perspective is not sufficient to understand how oppression works, but rather that we must synthesize this top down perspective with bottom up perspective to get the whole picture.