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Geography We Carry With Us Essay

794 words - 4 pages

Through our daily lives we believe we have unconstrained consumer choices through what we choose to purchase when we go shopping. The things we buy evoke cultural meanings in our society that can be used to mark our status, identity and belonging. If we stopped and took a look at our tags and labels from our purchases we would realize our products are not far off from one another, no matter what we decided to splurge on our favorite designer.
My choices to purchase the Gap Jacket, Lulu Lemon and H&M pants has repercussions to other parts of the globe as they are connected to rising inequalities in developing countries due to the manufacturing and labor processes involved. The association ...view middle of the document...

The companies manufacturing process is becoming increasingly specialized in generating certain goods as one-country concentrates in producing the raw materials needed to produce the commodity and another country specializers in manufacturing the product. The countries that produce and manufacture our goods are underdeveloped and are frequently located in the poorest regions of developing countries.
In order to increase profits and drive down costs any way feasible, companies in the global north look for places to extract raw materials from where the standard of living in a country is much lower. The companies then approach a broker in China for example to manufacture the product and the contract is subcontracted out to a low cost factory elsewhere free from tax tariffs. To further minimize costs, companies often choose places where there are low wages and have poor human rights laws so they can tighten control over a workforce and cut costs for the cooperation and consumer. The amount of money received by the workers shrinks as the companies produce surplus value over the commodity by locating the cheapest labor conditions possible.
In a capitalist society people have agency over free markets and can use their power through consumption habits and resistance; the problem is conditions of exploitation and alienation through commodity chains remain hidden. In the paper “Broccoli and Desire” the author states, “Comforting images hide the...

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