Oct 122017
 October 12, 2017  Tagged with: ,

Ethical shoppers sipping an Ethos bottle of water support sanitation in Tanzania, buying a pair of TOMS shoes automatically donates a pair of shoes to “a child in need,” and mixing with Belvedere RED vodka contributes to the fight against HIV/AIDS in Africa.  Today’s marketplace is inundated with products supporting humanitarian causes that promise to give aid to beneficiaries, provide “good feelings” to consumers and promote the brands of corporations and humanitarian NGOs. The commodification of humanitarianism (turning people and causes into marketable things) is linked to the privatization of help (replacing public donors with private philanthropy) with significant and as of yet poorly understood consequences. Commodifying Compassion will introduce research exploring how “helping” has become a marketable commodity and how this impacts humanitarianism symbolically and materially.

The Duke Human Rights Center at the Kenan Institute for Ethics invites you to a panel discussion. Panelists include:

Lisa Ann Richey, Duke University and Roskilde University (Denmark), @BrandAid_World, “Implications of Commodifying Compassion on Business, Politics and Social Relations”

Alexandra Cosima Budabin, University of Dayton and Free University of Bolzano (Italy), @ABudabin,“Crafting Humanitarian Imaginaries: The Visual Story-Telling of Buy-One Give-One Marketing Campaigns”

Mie Vestergaard, Roskilde University (Denmark),“Private Business, Partnerships and Humanitarianism in Africa: ‘Win-Win – So Who Loses?’”

The panel will be moderated by

Catherine Mathers, International & Comparative Studies, Duke University

Follow Commodifying Compassion on Twitter  @CocoResearch


The event will be held on Thursday, April 12th from 4:30 – 6:00 pm in Room 101 (Ahmadieh Family Conference Room) West Duke

Please RSVP to sk272@duke.edu by Monday, April 9 at noon.