Me at El Jefe Restaurant in Luquillo, Puerto Rico, in front of a mural made by artist Cheri (aka Coco Black).

Hey everyone! I’m Nadia, a media and cultural critic, ethical trade and sustainable fashion activist, instructor of sweet, refreshingly un-jaded college students, unapologetic clotheshorse, apologetic academic (I’m relatable and non-pretentious, promise!), refugee advocate, lover of theater and music, and arbiter of keeping it real.

Currently, I am teaching media literacy and cultural studies at the university level, and I am writing my dissertation on the movement towards ‘democratization’ in the fashion industry, addressing all of its promises and contradictions. Fashion is a platform that I use to consolidate my spectrum of passions and raise awareness about different issues, which include labor exploitation, gender, cultural studies, media criticism, and sustainability. And researching the industry allows me to read my favorite fashion mags, guilt-free. 😉

I have also been working with a refugee non-profit for the last year as an outreach coordinator, and I really love using my French and the little bit of Arabic that I know to work with our Congolese and Iraqi refugees. Both my activist and scholarly work generally attempts to bridge people together in some way, whether that is by engaging in conversations with my students, friends, family, and the postal man, coalition-building across different cultural spaces, or advocating for fair labor practices and transparency in our ever-widening industrial supply chains.

My goal for this blog is simple: to create a space for public dialogue and debate, especially on issues and causes that may not get enough exposure in our mainstream media and culture. Because finding common ground is becoming more and more difficult in our seriously divided, increasingly corporatized culture, I hope that this blog can start conversations, engage with others, and find points of connection where we can all have a civilized dialogue.

My name in Russian means ‘hope,’ and it couldn’t be more fitting!  I always hope for a better world, and the quote that I most relate to is:

“Each of us has been born into this world, and each of us has been provided with a way to help others. A kind attitude of concern for those in our respective field of activity will affect them, even if it is just ten people, bringing them more comfort and less strife. If each of them, in turn, treats their associates in a similar way, then even though the effect will be gradual, it will in time be transformative. This is how we can change the world.” –Dalai Lama

So let’s spread the positive energy! Oh, and a few fun facts: Despite my love of all things sustainable and respect for the Dalai Lama, I’ve never attempted veganism (iron deficiency, girlfriends!).  And despite my feminism, I can’t abandon “The Real Housewives” franchise.  If none of my life goals work out, I would love to play Frank Ocean’s love interest in his next music video. 🙂


5 responses to “About

  1. Dear Nadia,
    I love your blog — and the piece on chocolate is great. I have made a documentary (2012, narrated by Susan Sarandon) called NOTHING LIKE CHOCOLATE (http://nothinglikechocolate.com) in which I not only discuss the horrors of enslaved children harvesting cacao in Ivory Coast, but I also show how Mott Green of the Grenada Chocolate Company and Nelice Stewart (an independent cocoa farmer) produce chocolate sustainably and ethically. It has won a few awards. If you would like a screener (the trailer is on the website), please let me know. Thanks for your terrific piece — so important to showcase these injustices. Cheers, Kum-Kum

  2. Wow, thank you so much for commenting and sharing your wonderful work with me! I would love a screener! Contacting you now 🙂

  3. Hello,

    I’ve had the honour of being awarded the Fashionista Award for blogs with fashion, style and beauty posts blogs, it’s a chain blogger ‘game’ which allows us to get to know other blogs/bloggers and spread the thanks and recognition for work that we’ve appreciated.

    As yours is a blog I’ve enjoyed and admired I’ve put you down as one of my awardees with a shoutout. Whether you join in the game or not is totally upto you but I just wanted to let you know and say thank you for putting together a blog that interests and inspires.

    Full details can be found in my post here:



    (dapperdolly of fashionthatpays.wordpress.com)

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