Travels of a T-Shirt Book Report Essay

1335 Words Jun 2nd, 2013 6 Pages
Question 1: Write a summary of this book

Often, when we think of a t-shirt, not much consideration goes past throwing it on and walking out the door. We discover in The Travels of a T-Shirt in the Global Economy, author Pietra Rivoli conveys the story of a t-shirt she purchased in Florida for just $5.99. Beginning with core element of the t-shirt, she describes the cotton boom in the United States and why we have reigned supreme as the leading cotton producer. She even meets with a Texan farmer who warms your heart from the very beginning of the chapter. Next, the cotton goes on to textile mills and factories, and Rivoli explains the history of the textile industry. With this lesson, she demonstrates how the textile industry boom was a
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Her writing style takes into consideration those with very little economic awareness and fluidly phrases things into layman's terms. She is able to expand on the most complex ideas, such as quotas and tariffs in the textile industry, and still paint a complete picture in the mind of the reader.

The relevance of this book can be measured by its ability to speak to the everyday individual, who may or may not know anything about economics, and plant the seed toward global economic education. It provides a keen social awareness to people who may or may not ordinarily care about international economics and can have an eye-opening effect toward what really happens in the textile industry.

Rivoli also raises some substantial points about free trade and protectionism. After the facts are presented, she identifies that most of these alleged free markets aren’t actually free at all. She explains that quotas, political relationships, and labor issues make these markets restricted from being completely free. She writes "a story of the wealth enhancing possibilities of globalization in some settings but a ‘can't win' trap in others, a trap where power imbalances and poorly functioning politics and markets seem to doom the economic future."

Question 3: Is the author arguing for free trade or protectionism? Explain.

Rivoli is not making an argument for either side of protectionism or free trade. Of course, as an avid economist, Rivoli advocates free trade, as
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