Flip-flop: A Journey Through Globalisation’s Backroads

Caroline Knowles follows the global trail of one of the world’s most unremarkable and ubiquitous objects – flip-flops, providing new insights that challenge contemporary accounts of globalisation.

Caroline writes about migration and circulations of material objects – some of the social forces constituting globalisation. She is interested in cities, having done research in London, Hong Kong, Beijing, Fuzhou, Addis Ababa, Kuwait City and Seoul. She is currently the Director of the British Academy’s Cities and Infrastructure Programme, which comprises a portfolio of 18 multi-disciplinary projects delivering, with local partners, vital improvements in infrastructure in cities in the global south.

Author of many books and papers, she specialises in visual, spatial and biographical methods, often working with photographers and artists, most recently with Michael Tan (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore), and Douglas Harper (Duquesne University, Pittsburg). Caroline is the author of Flip-Flop: a journey through globalisation’s backroads, published by Pluto Press in 2014 and in Brazil in Portuguese in 2018 as Nas Trilhas De Um Chinelo. The accompanying website can be found at www.flipfloptrail.com. She is co-author, with Douglas Harper, of Hong Kong: Migrant Lives, Landscapes and Journeys, published (2009) by the University of Chicago Press.

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Image courtesy of the interviewee


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