Yiwu: Arab Supermarket or Global Trading Centre? Perspectives from the Afghan Diaspora – University of Copenhagen

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Yiwu: Arab Supermarket or Global Trading Centre? Perspectives from the Afghan Diaspora

ADI invites you to this public guest lecture by Magnus Marsden, Professor of Social Anthropology, School of Global Studies, University of Sussex

Abstract

Based on ethnographic fieldwork with merchants of Afghan background in various settings across the former Soviet Union and in China, this paper investigates the significance of the Chinese city of Yiwu for the global trade in low-grade commodities. The global trade in such commodities is often understood by anthropologists as a form of bottom-up globalization. While there is a great deal to merit such an approach, anchoring the study of the Afghan trading network in the backgrounds and self-understandings of the individuals who make it up, refuses a stark division between globalization from below and from on top, and brings attention to the ways in which commercial personnel involved in globalizing processes actively conceive of themselves as being a particularly unique type of international actor formed out of a multiplicity of historical trajectories.

Time: 20 November 2014, 13.15-15:00
Place: KUA1, Faculty of Humanities, building 27, room 27.0.17
Organizers: ADI in collaboration with Dept. of Anthropology and Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies