Monday, 23 February 2009

David Lean and Fair Trade Fortnight

I'm so sorry for not posting for such a long time, but I've had a bit of a bad back and sitting at the computer doesn't really help it. I'm feeling much better now, but instead of writing a long post on Fair Trade Fortnight, I though I'd just say a quick hello and post on a few bits and bobs.

First up, are two extracts from David Lean's This Happy Breed. It's one of his first films, and I suppose pretty unknown compared to Brief Encounter, Bridge on the River Kwai and Lawrence of Arabia. However, I do love it, perhaps more than it's sister film, the more famous, In Which We Serve. You can buy the film on DVD.

Also, here's the original trailer.

Next up I thought I'd post a few links on Fairtrade Fortnight. I'm passionate about Fair Trade. I really like food: I like coffee, and chocolate, and sugary treats, and I like mangoes and bananas* and beautiful flowers. But I also really like people. If you like people too, then this fortnight (which always seems to coincide with the first two weeks of Lent), you may want to switch your standard treats to the Fair Trade variety.

Here's some of the reasons why.

1. You cannot guarantee that your favourite chocolate has not been made with child slave labour unless it carries a Fair Trade label. Horrible but true.
2. Cheap supermarket flowers are often grown by women and children in the developing world under terrible conditions. Many women have miscarried or given birth to still born children because the pesticides they use are so very dangerous. This doesn't happen with Fair Trade. It's the same with cotton.
3. Fair Trade coffee and bananas are grown with the people and environment in mind, and not grossly inflated profits. People deserve a decent wage for a decent day's work.

I could go on, but I don't want to seem like a nag, and I'm definitely not "holier than thou", but we homemakers (contrary to popular belief) wield an enormous amount of power. We are the ones who control the spending in our households, we are the ones whom the marketing men have been in love with since the 1900s. We can vote with our purses and make the large multinationals change their policies. Just buy Fair Trade this fortnight and you'll be doing your bit to "stick it to the man" and that would be a very groovy thing indeed for our brothers and sisters in the developing world.

*Edit: I don't actually like bananas, I was simply including them in my list for rhetorical effect, I do buy them for the kiddilumps though!


Erin said...

I'm glad you're feeling better now. . . back pain is no fun at all!

I was just wondering how you were this morning as I was doing morning rounds. . . =)

'Do I want it done, or do I want it perfect?' has helped me a lot in the last couple weeks!

monix said...

Well done for highlighting the benefits of Fair Trade goods to those who produce them. Not so long ago, it was very difficult to find Fair Trade goods in the shops but all the major supermarkets seem to carry a good range now.

I'm so glad you mention the flowers, too. Those cheap roses in the supermarket carry a huge human cost. Our own local growers deserve our support.

Angela said...

Sympathies about the back pain!

I loved the film clips!

Fair Trade is really important, and it is a good thing to highlight it. The more of us who make a point of using FT goods, the better it will be for everyone.
I am glad FT stuff is more available no.

Blessings- Ang xx

Zillah said...

Amen to all that.

Hope your back improves.


Jenny said...

When I bought my Brief encounter DVD I discovered This Happy Breed was on it as well. It's best not to watch them one after the other though because it's difficult to go from the very clipped Celia to her working class accent. It's not that easy to get Fair Trade products in the supermarket here, there is really only coffee available unless I'm not looking properly.

Hope your back is getting better.

Dulce Domum said...

Hi Erin
I'm feeling much better now, but it's left me with a bit of a feaer of bending and twisting. I'm bending from the knees now, and not from my back! I'm glad my motto has helped you.

Hi Monix
I think it's really posisitve that the major supermakets carry a good range of FT stuff, it shows that ourpreferences for ethically sourced goods are haveing an effect on the multinationals, I'd like to see all the major manufactueres take FT on board though. You're right about supporting our local growers, local daffs are dead cheap atm, local flowers are a frugal and ethical choice.

Hi Ang
Yes, the more of us who do it, the greater forec for good FT will be. I can't see why the big three supermarkets can't follow the Co-op's ethical lead...but perhaps they're more concerned with profits than people.

Hi Zillah
The back's improving already. I reckon I'm going to start a Pilates class soon, to improve general strength and posture and get rid of sudden and surprising fatness!

Hi Jenny
You're right about Celia and her accents. I'm not a southerner but I think she's got the accent pretty spot on (we'll have to ask Ang, she's an Essex girl!). John Mills is another one, he's either terribly posh or a bit "gor blimey."

I wonder if lack of FT in Australia is due to the fact that you grow your own tropical fruit? Do you grow sugar in Australia too?

galant said...

Being new to your blog I wasn't sure how often you posted, but had a look each day to see if there was something new ... so sorry you've had backache, it's really vile. Yes, it's good to support Fair Trade goods and thank you for drawing your readers' attention to this.
Margaret Powling

Jenny said...

Yes, I always thought we supplied the world with sugar, that's what they taught at school forty years ago. You are probably right , Australia grows a great variety of fruit, from tropical to temperate and we also grow sugar, coffee, tea, rice etc. We don't grow cocoa beans for chocolate though. The word verification for this comment is unbean. How's that for coincidence.

Dulce Domum said...

Hi Margaret
Thank you for visiting!
I love Fair Trade, I'd love to see it grow, hence my teeny-tiny rant.

Hi Jenny
So are the Aussies responsible for tooth decay or keeping everybody sweet and happy? Wink, wink. I love it when word verification is pertientent to the post.

Nan said...

In Which We Serve is now in my Netflix queue - thank you! This Happy Breed is still unavailable, though.