All that is solid? Movement, repurposed lives and a cardboard citizenry
This article situates cardboard as a material lens through which to trace, and make visible, the flows of capital within a Trans-Pacific circuitry of trade, and to point to the political potentials enabled by the reuse and re-imagining of cardboard by groups of people who have been made invisible within the prevailing regime of labour. I argue that tracing the circulation of cardboard through the Bay Area – with a stop in Hong Kong – can become a laboratory for thinking through how the re-visibilization of capital and material flows can change the way that we think about the political and how the political is constructed or remade. To take this argument further, I posit that we may use this knowledge and project it into the production of a new symbolic and political space, in which cardboard acts as a potentially unifying material of protest for a new global corpus – a cardboard citizenry. Can a ‘cardboard citizenry’ act as a stateless, dynamic body of protest that oozes out from the circuitry of Trans-Pacific trade to create a new global citizenry, one that is able to make any space inhabitable and subsequently privileges creativity over market efficiency, the informal over the formal, the ephemeral over the permanent?
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Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: University of California, Berkeley
Publication date: September 1, 2018
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