In Consumed, Aja Barber recounts her own journey from fast-fashion buyer to fashion activist, highlighting her discovery process of fashion, consumption and the personal changes she made to live a more sustainable and less consumerist life.
Always a fashion lover, Barber followed her passion, but soon discovered how inequitable the fashion industry is, especially for BIPOC (Black and Indigenous people of color) people. She sheds light on the role the textile industry played in colonization, slavery and racism and led to today’s wealth inequalities and environmental crises. Cultural appropriation harms all cultures, she argues, and our current shopping behavior is not far behind.
But Barber also tells us how to combat this great consumerism con, presenting a kind of how-to guide for us to fight the system and take more responsibility for our world and how we engage and consume in it. At its core, Consumed shows us “the need for collective change” and how to go about achieving it.