Electronic Thesis/Dissertation


Silk Stories Open Access

Silk Stories is a multimedia documentary project exploring the impact of shifting global markets on the daily lives of those entwined in the silk production process in India through the stories of mulberry farmers, reelers, weavers and consumers of this ancient tradition and art form. Themes addressed include declining saree usage, economic pressures associated with weaving, the cultivation of Bombyx mori silkworms and cocoons, increased competition from China and rising suicide rates among farmers. The project unfolds on location in the states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu across several small towns and villages just outside of the cities of Bangalore and Chennai. The narratives are developed combining photography, short-form video documentaries, writing and social media. The project is hosted on an interactive website, encouraging the viewer to learn about the silk production process through an ancient and colorful craft and to consider the impact of rapid change and volatile markets.

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