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Slow Knowledge

slow fashion 

The slow fashion movement tries to reduce industrial production and its environmental damage through rethinking consumption habits. As true for all products, manufacturing fashion garments needs an enormous apparatus and cheap labourforce. The fast-paced fashion industry uses up the natural resources of the planet on a large scale, and dominantly manufactures in the developing countries of the Third World – often under substandard and demeaning working conditions. The other factor of burdening the environment is the afterlife of clothes. The fashion business invites us to be frequent shoppers, accumulating unused items that – when turned into waste – will generate additional problems. 

On the contrary, slow fashion places emphasis on conscious consuming and natural materials, thus we may make deliberate decisions to protect our environment. For a sustainable wardrobe choose pieces that you really need, and may wear for many years to come. Offer clothes that are not loved anymore but are still in good condition for swapping or donation. Today more and more sewing workshops may help you transform old clothes into new favourites, or upcycle them as textile bags. 

 

 

 

 

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Slow Knowledge

slow food

Slow food, the international movement that started in Italy in the late 1980’s, may be recognised as the starting point of all slow movements. It was a civilian initiative that aimed at preserving and protecting traditional and regional cuisine, local diversity, and also rehabilitating eating together as an important social experience – as opposed to consuming fast food. Slow food appears on multiple levels: from small farming communities and products made of locally produced goods to relaxed meals enjoying the smell, texture and taste of food in good company. Eating locally produced goods benefits both the environment and our health, since product does not need to be chemically processed to survive lengthy transport times that cause pollution. As a basic rule, the further the food comes from, the more health and environment damaging the process it went through is. This needs to be remembered when looking at trendy, proclaimed superfoods that arrive from distant countries, and are produced causing tremendous environmental damage due to increased market needs. The slow food movement has now grown into a global network, focusing on preserving local gastro-cultural values and supporting local producers and tourism. 

 

 

 

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Slow Knowledge

zero waste

Zero waste is a self-imposed activity that aims at minimising waste production through the individual’s change of purchasing and consumption habits. As a result, producing waste  especially non-reusable waste  should be avoided to ease the burdens of recycling. The latter is essential, since the resources required for recycling are tremendous – it is easier to avoid waste generation in the first place. 

Conscious consuming reconsiders the need of purchasing a certain product. Overcoming the effects of advertising or the joy of gaining something is challenging; however, current overproduction causes ecological problems, and environmental stress can be decreased through moderate consumption. Package free shops aim at helping this problem, and besides, reusable textile bags and boxes can replace disposable, single-use ones. There is no need to throw away items we already own  numerous organisations and forums help us pass on or repurpose them. Raw kitchen waste may also be of use after composting. Another important aspect of the zero waste approach is breaking the habit of using single-use, disposable products and switching to their reusable versions. Examples include textile bags (mentioned earlier), textile handkerchiefs, napkins and refillable water bottles instead of plastic ones. 

sustainability, voluntary simplicity, climate crisis, ecological crisis, anti-consumerism, critique of consumerism 

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Slow Knowledge

civil disobedience

The concept of civil disobedience was concieved by American writer Henry David Thoreau (18171862). According to him, it is the individual’s right and duty to resist – if a government deviates morally, and alters laws in its own favour or becomes socially unjust –, and to guide the way using non-violent tools, in case the authority does not take acts of legal protest (such as petitions and legal procedures) into account. 

Indian politician Mahatma Gandhi (18691948) shared similar thoughts, referring to passive resistance as our innate right. The tools of civil disobedience  such as unauthorised protests, sit-down strikes, roadblocks, squatting buildings and areas, or disruption of events at administrative or governmental institutions  are also used by numerous activist groups that aim at lessening the ecological crisis. These groups include: Extinction Rebellion, Greenpeace, Fridays for Future and the Sunrise Movement among others.