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Cover I-PEEL: The International Political Economy of Everyday Life

2. Clothes  

This chapter discusses the topic of clothing in everyday international political economy (IPE). It begins by looking at how the garment industry and workers in that industry have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, focusing in particular on the vulnerabilities faced by women workers in Leicester. This analysis introduces the concepts of fast fashion and commodity fetishism, and demonstrates how the globalization of garment production relates to the feminization of low-wage labour. The chapter then considers the broader politics of international trade that have shaped where in the world the production and disposal of clothing has been located. It also reviews efforts to reform the garment industry, including corporate social responsibility initiatives and the use of podcasting to highlight the under-researched topic of clothing disposal.