CAFP investigates how, in the context of the Belt and Road Initiative, China’s global power is manifested, negotiated, and resisted in people’s daily life in a South-South setting using fashion as an exemplary case.
This project will theorise how fashion is created, circulated, valuated, and consumed in and through Global Souths Value Chains (Guangdong-Nairobi-Maputo), dissecting complex dynamics and expressions of power.
Picture from editorial feature in i-D Vice - fashion cities Africa: flying the flag for modern african fashion. Photography by Sarah Waiswa.
The surge of China’s global power has caught the interest of the general public, policymakers and scholars alike, often focalized in discussions about the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) – the Chinese government’s ambitious global development strategy.
Picture from V&A’s Landmark ‘Africa Fashion’ Exhibition. Photography by Juergen Teller.
By the full-length research of the GSVC, the China Fashion Power project aims to positively impact economic and cultural development as well as the natural environment in the Global South.
Women and men pass a store in a market in Abidjan. Photography by Andrew Esiebo.
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CAFP’s major contribution is threefold. Theoretically, it will move beyond a Western-centric epistemology to map the chains, restraints and materialities of China’s power expansion through fashion. Methodologically, this project will synergistically collect and triangulate empirical information along complete South-South commodity chains.