What she does with the mo…

What she does with the money she earns, what she learns in that place, and how it changes her, these are the things that matter. What a factory makes is never the point, and the workers could not care less who buys their products.

Kathleen Wang

Section: Barbara Adams

Headline: Leslie T. Chang: The Voices of China’s Workers

Date: Sep 2012, Filmed June 2012

Source: TED

Abstract: In this talk, the speaker Leslie Chang provides us insight of the worker mentality and experience in the factories of China that she has gathered over the course of 3 years. Chang explained that although the living conditions were not decent; the workers have difficulty explaining their job; the women that she spends time with are very brave and optimistic about their lives and future. This statement sums up the missing voice of workers that she saids people across the global are missing when they think about the harsh work and living conditions in the China factories.

“What she does with the money she earns, what she learns in that place, and how it changes her, these are the things that matter. What a factory makes is never the point, and the workers could not care less who buys their products.”
-Leslie Chang

But what Leslie is telling us is not the opinion of majority factory worker in China. Otherwise there would not riots and suicide over the paid wages and such. She talks about how their living condition is worse back in their rural homes, but it does not mean that they are allowed to be treated or given what little they are given in the factory dormitories. They workers also aspire to be something in their life but they can aspire to even higher if they were given more. Chang asserts that Marx was wrong about people who work in factories become an interchangeable part of what they make because they are alienated from what they make and goes on to explain that these workers are not helpless, there is a humane side of them. I admire that but I don’t think Marx was “wrong”, he was speaking of the oppression that labour faces in our capitalist society. Considering the exploitation of the working/living conditions at Falconn right now, I really wonder what future companies will or will not do.

Link: http://www.ted.com/talks/leslie_t_chang_the_voices_of_china_s_workers.html

Primary Design Lens: Ambition during rough times

Secondary Design Lens: Labour and adequate living

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One Response to What she does with the mo…

  1. Barbara says:

    Think about how this relates to today’s reading. Specifically, how we construct our real and imagined selves in the global context. Let’s discuss this more in our discussion today.

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