Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Power of Consumerism

Mai Moua Vang
Blog #4

Inside source:
Parminder Bhachu. "It's Hip to be Asian."

In this week's reading, people from the U.K., white and Indian people, commodified the Indian culture and how it is seen through the eyes of globalism. While I was reading this piece, I thought about the film we watched in class. I don't remember the name of the film, but it was about Hispanic people in Los Angeles pasting Aztec symbols onto shirts and selling them to mainly white people from the U.S. and several European countries (and some Asian countries as well). Since there are so many diasporas located around the world, especially in big fashion-driven cities, it is very appealing to sell to people things that are different and exotic. The author, Bhachu, points out that the consumers are middle-class, regardless if they are white and Indian. Since many of the salwaar-kameezes, or traditional garments worn by Indian people, are authentically made by Indian people, it shows how much power the Indian diaspora in the U.K. has because they are the ones who are determining what is in fashion in the U.K. and those in India make what British people (affluent white and Indians) demand for. 

Outside Source:

In the Internet world, Black Friday, November 23, is the highest profiting day in the year. It rose 26% from last year ($1.04 billion this year from $816), also breaking the billion dollar mark. The top five companies (in order) that profited from that day is Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, Target, and Apple. 

I thought that it was interesting how Walmart employees are on a national strike, yet they are were the second highest profiter of Black Friday--how do people and those who bought stuff there feel about this? Walmart employees are on a strike! They are people just like you!?  I just don't know how to feel about this. This speaks loudly the strength of consumerism and it makes me quite sad. Humanity, what's wrong with you?!

Update on the compact challenge:

The challenge is going ok. This weekend was Hmong New Years in Sacramento and I really wanted to buy some Hmong-inspired clothing from the vendors, but since this challenge is still happening, I just have to wait until the New Years in Fresno. It's not that long of a wait since it's during Christmas break. I'm still spending money but all of it goes to food. I'm running low on my foundation and it's a shade that doesn't match my skin tone so I don't feel that great wearing it in public. The expiration is coming soon too and I hate wearing bacteria-infested products on my face. So glad this challenge is ending soon!

I didn't go to Black Friday but it had me thinking about all the laborers from developing countries. They must hate and love this time of the year since they have to work A LOT to meet the extra demand from the holiday season. I hope they get to buy nice things for their families too. 

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