La place de l'être humain dans l'industrie de la mode

The place of the human being in the fashion industry

Fashion, destroyer of life?

Even today, despite all the reports that have been made on this subject, the production of clothing is increasing, to the detriment of the planet and even human lives. Fast fashion, overconsumption, disposable fashion, globalization; are terms that impact but persist in the consumption habits of Westerners.

How far will this phenomenon go and at what cost can we lose our lives? To what extent can we say that the human body can be used as a tool at work?

These are the questions we decided to look into today and in this article we will try to answer them.

Fashion is today one of the most labor-intensive industries, employing at least 60 million people, the majority of whom are women. The Global Slavery Index currently estimates more than 40 million people working as slaves.

The vast majority are in southern countries and work to supply Western clothing brands. Slavery results in repeated overtime, forced and without pay. It also affects young children, who are sometimes forced under duress to pick cotton in the fields when they should be in school. Women raped and threatened if the work requested does not fulfill the missions assigned within the allotted time. Some of the workers have their passports withdrawn if they do not carry out the requested task correctly, and they must pay for their transport, food and accommodation. Most of them live near toxic waterways, contaminated by the factories in which they work, favoring the development of deadly diseases.

So when we Westerners give in to our little whims to wear trendy clothes, on the other side of the world, we are killing lives. Rethinking our consumption patterns more than ever and becoming truly aware of the situation would make it possible to stop colonialism and environmental racism, to have hope, perhaps to combat inequality between populations, reduce sexual assault and surrounding sexism, environmental degradation and violation of human rights. You can find all the advice and tips in this article to adopt a new mode of consumption favorable to the human condition.

Clothing through the prism of the human body

The catastrophic working conditions observed in the fashion industry do not only stop in southern countries and production factories. What if we told you that much closer to home, in France, people are also leaving their mental and physical health to the detriment of their profession.

Honestly, who has never dreamed of walking the catwalks of great French couturiers? And when some people achieve their biggest dream, it ends up turning into a nightmare. In this environment where the constraints are as costly as they are demanding, the diktats of beauty advocate thinness and an extra kilo can cause you to lose a lot. Indeed, the figures representing the suicide rate, often linked to anorexia among models, alerted us and we came to ask ourselves the following question: to what extent can we say that the human body becomes a tool for work?

To answer this question we interviewed a certain number of people. We asked them what “the human body in fashion” means to them and it is sad to note that the majority of answers turn to: “a body that is too skinny, used as a tool to make money” representation of an unrealistic body used only as a commercial product” “an abused body used here as an object”.

We also asked them if, in their opinion, “is the body valued in fashion?” » Three-quarters of respondents (population between 18 and 60 years old) answered “no” to this question. This clearly shows the fact that despite the generation to which they belong, the main opinion remains the same. We are on the other hand pleasantly surprised to see on the one hand that men and women agree on the answer and on the other hand, that the “older” generations are also trying to answer “no”, while it would seem that they are less exposed to the social issue of body representation in the fashion world. The remaining quarter of people have no opinion on the question asked; according to them it depends in particular on the brands. They also believe that there has been significant development in recent years at this level, but that there is still a long way to go to obtain fashion that represents the majority of individuals.

It is clear, through these two articles, that there is a real problem to be raised within the fashion industry. This is not just reduced to a part of the population, the working conditions in this sector are alarming and it is time to bring this to light and really become aware of it.

Although there seems to be a small evolution in recent years in this area, with the creation of associations, the media coverage which advocates slow fashion and the establishment of standards to be respected in modeling, society still needs to to prove himself.

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