Copenhagen ADI Conference 2017
9th annual international ADI conference
Asian Dynamics Initiative
University of Copenhagen 26-28 June 2017 

Branded Nation: Image, Commodity, Surplus

Convener: Ravinder Kaur, Dept. of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen

This panel addresses the transformation of the nation-form into commodity-form. Consider the ubiquitous and colorful presence of 'Incredible India', 'Cool Japan', 'Creative Korea', 'Wonderful Indonesia', 'Malaysia Truly Asia', 'Miraculous China, Commercial Yiwu', 'Turkey: Discover the Potential' or simply 'Brand Singapore' to name a few examples. The Asian nations are evidently at the forefront of this phenomenon of rampant commodification. Moving beyond the old hyphenated relationship of nation-state, we consider how national identity is mobilized in the service of global capital by the state. The newly ‘opened up’ nations in the free market economies are increasingly pitched as value-generating branded commodities smartly packaged and mediated via spectacular global publicity campaigns. It is in the brand-making operation that the spectacle of advertising, the aesthetics of image, national identity and global capital come together. The panel welcomes papers, visual documentaries and/or posters that reflect on the question of nation brand making in Asia.