Who makes the products we buy? How ethical are their work enviorments?
Join Green Initiatives' 82nd film screening, Machines, a visually compelling look behind the doors of a textile industry in one part of the world, and which is true on a global context, exploring the meaning of modern day labor, exploitation, and the human cost of mass production in our globalized world.
Directed by Rahul Jain in 2016, the film follows several workers in their everyday jobs at this textile factory, working in shocking conditions next to heavy machinery for more than 12 hours a day.
About the Film
Moving through the corridors and bowels of an enormous and disorienting structure, the camera takes the viewer on a descent down to a dehumanized place of physical labor and intense hardship; a gigantic textile factory in a particular state in India. In his mind-provoking yet intimate portrayal, director Rahul Jain observes the life of the workers, the suffering and the environment they can hardly escape from. With strong visual language, memorable images and carefully selected interviews of the workers themselves, Jain tells a story of inequality, oppression and the huge divide between rich, poor and the perspectives of both
"....My only satisfaction is that everyone dies. Even when the rich go, they leave the world with nothing....."
Since the 1960s the area of Sachin in western India has undergone unprecedented, unregulated industri- alization, exemplified in its numerous textile factories. MACHINES portrays one of these factories, provoking cause for thought about persistent pre-industrial working conditions and the huge divide between first world and developing countries.
About the Moderator - Knut Wimberger
Knut helps executive management with organizational development challenges in a Far East Asian context and supports key individuals to unfold their potential. He believes in the healing force of finding one’s vocation and is driven by giving others deeper meaning in their work. He founded the Hong Kong incorporated consultancy Telos Pi in 2016 and acts as its managing partner.
Prior to finding his own vocation, he served as managing director of Fronius China, a European headquartered technology leader in robotics welding, battery charging and photovoltaics, which he helped to build into a CNY 200 million revenue business as of 2015. Earlier stations in his career include a stint as technology attaché at the Austrian Consulate General Shanghai, and two assignments in the technology law industry with a Vienna based technology transfer agency and an international law firm. Knut holds a Masters of Law and specialized in technology transfer and intellectual propery, as well as a Bachelors in Far East Asian Studies. He is fluent in German, English and Chinese and lives since 2009 with his wife and two children in Shanghai.
The textile and garment industry in India: facts and figures
The $40 billion Indian textile and garment industry, much of which operates in the informal sector and is poorly regulated, employs an estimated 45 million workers. 12,6 million children are engaged in child labor in India. More than 95% of the factories have no trade unions on their premises. Overtime practice reaches about 70 to 80 working hours a week and is mostly not or underpaid. With an average daily wage from $2 to $5, the workers take home between $90 and $150 per month.
Estimates of the number of people trapped in forced labour vary. The International Labour Organisation says 21 million people are victims of forced labour globally, while the Global Slavery Index says there are 36 million slaves in the world, half of them in India.