Sunday, February 28, 2010

Commodity Culture

“Transnationliam has thus become a ubiquitous term of reference for the multiple ties and interactions linking people or institutions across the borders of nation-states” (439). As our society becomes more transnational, there is an undeniable link between cultures and peoples. Research of identifying transnational migrant and diasporic communities is no longer adequate in defining transnationism.

Cultures are interconnecting. Dwyer et al. provides an analysis on different range of food and fashion on explaining contemporary and spreading across the world. The commodity culture can provide an alternative way of understanding contemporary transnationality. Transnational commodity culture provides an entry point into this “wider conceptualization of transitional space” (Dwyer et al. 446). Thus, the commodity culture is able widen the study of transnational space to encompass individual’s activities, goods, and ideas. Beyond the narrow confines of specific ethnically defined communities, Dwyer et al. encompasses all who inhabit the contemporary commodity culture as a transnational space.

By analyzing British South Asians’ commodity culture in relation to food and fashion, Dwyer et al. states that transnational commodity culture is a “space which is habited by a whole range of differently position actors, including producers, wholesalers, buyers and retailers…” (448). Vertovec provides the example of the Southeast Asian production surrounding the commodity flows between India and Britain in the economy context. Rather than focusing on the narrow defines of transmigrants, it is important to seek other factors that explain and refigure the study of trasnantionalism. By moving beyond the definition of specific ethnically defined communities, we can have a better understanding of commodity and the current fashion for commodifying differences.

As Vertovec in “Conceiving and Researching Transnationalism,” he states that there is in fact a wide variety of descriptions surrounding the meaning of ‘transnationalism’. The broad use of referring to multiple ties of interaction is becoming even more broader. Today, the “system of ties and interaction, exchange and mobility function intensively and in real time while being spread through the world” (1). In referring to global economic networks, transnationalism can represent a theme of study of production and marketing strategies surrounding commodity flows.

Compact Challenge: I was in Oakland over the weekend for Mariah Carey’s concert. If you like her, well… you didn’t miss anything. She was pretty lazy and didn’t do much. The most action was her drinking “apple juice” from a wine glass. I only spent $40 dollars, and surprisingly it was not on clothes, but alcohol. Also been busy working on course papers so I haven’t had time to feed my addiction (online shopping). Though, I'm eying this necklace from Juicy Couture...

Maggie Chui
Blog # 9.... ALREADY?!?!

Works Cited

Dwyer, Claire et al. “Transnationalism and the Spaces of Commodity Culture.” Progress in Human Geography 27.4 (2003): 438-456. Web. 28 Feb. 2010.

Vertovec, Steve. “Conceiving and Researching Trasnationalism.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 22.2 (1999): 1-14. Web. 28 Feb. 2010.


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