In this episode we’re expanding our look at interconnectedness, not just looking at the connections in a value chain from soil to soil but connections between systems, from land access to fair labor to economic and racial justice.
Teju Adisa-Farrar joins us as we talk and learn about how the clothes we wear and textile goods in our life are woven into social and cultural histories, ones that are often based on exploitation, and how making those connections visible allows us to expand the possibilities of what we can create.
Teju is a Jamaican-American writer, geographer and poet. Having lived in five European countries and done projects in several others, for over a decade Teju’s work has centered on political, racial and environmental justice. Her focus is on environmental and cultural equity, climate justice, alternative geographies, urbanism and sustainable futures. Teju uses a diaspora lens that is informed by culturally resonant art and activism. She is interested in mapping and documenting Black (read: resilient / ecological) futures. Teju spends her time consulting with progressive organizations, supporting community initiatives, doing transnational projects, conducting equity trainings and giving talks on alternatives. Teju is based in Oakland, California – but often in other places – because she goes where she is called.
In this episode, we look at historical realities and the very present conditions of inequity in global supply chains. We hear how rethinking how we tell stories about fiber and dye systems can reshape how we view our relationship to the earth, to each other, and to a more just future. Teju rightly points out that none of us can be a neutral observer to our world, and by identifying our lineage and our perspective we can bring ourselves into the fold of the conversation and into community efforts, like strengthening our local fiber system, and so many more examples and visions that Teju shares.
- Teju’s website: www.tejuadisafarrar.com and Instagram account: @misstej
- Invisible Hands by Teju Adisa-Farrar: full text available on the 2019 Fibershed Gala page
- Shaping Alternative Futures workshop series – an archive of past sessions
- The Political Act of Getting Dressed by Teju, published by Prynne Magazine
- #PayUp campaign tracker by Remake
- Land access models: Cooperative Jackson Sustainable Communities Initiative, Shuumi Land Tax by the Sogorea Te Land Trust, Foundation for Common Land (UK), Acres of Ancestry Black Agrarian Fund, Agrarian Trust
- The 2020 Fibershed Wool & Fine Fiber Symposium – reserve your ticket to engage with the panel led by Teju
Thanks for listening to this episode of Soil to Soil, a podcast connecting the dots in the lifecycle of clothing and material culture, brought to you by Fibershed, which is a non-profit organization based in Northern California. Each episode offers a look at how, and why, our community is working to cultivate fiber and dye systems that build soil & protect the health of our biosphere.
Photo credits: by Paige Green Photography.