HOPE Talks is a series of dialogues with people who drive social- and political change. People who inspire us to do better and work harder to create a more inclusive and open (fashion) world. Below, you can find a summary of some of the first talks we organized. Sign up to join our community here to join the next HOPE Talks!Next HOPE TALKS is on May 23rd with Shanga Aziz, Locker Room Talk and Håkan Sjöstrand, Svenska Fotbollsförbundet.
HOPE Talks 1: FASHION AND DIVERSITY
Barakat Ghebrehawariat & Roger Dupé
Barakat Ghebrehawariat is an entrepreneur with communication as his main tool and democracy as a driving force. A lecturer, advisor and educator with a long experience of working with diversity questions and developments on his own and via his communication agency Demokrateam.
Roger Dupé is one of Sweden’s most celebrated models. Having worked with the likes of Vogue and Kenzo, he made history in 2016 when becoming the first black model to ever front a Rolls Royce campaign. Today, he uses his own story to encourage and emancipate others around him, sharing his experiences from a not always so diverse fashion world.
In the first ever HOPE Talks, Barakat and Roger spoke about fashion’s non-inclusive and normative history. Why is fashion – this creative business of global talent – still stuck in such homogeneous and old-time norms? Barakat and Roger spoke about their own experiences and also discussed ways in which the business can develop in order to drive long-term change.
HOPE Talks 2: FASHION, POWER AND CLASS
Seher Yilmaz & Alexandra Pascalidou
Alexandra Pascalidou is a celebrated writer, speaker and TV host. She continuously speaks, comments and writes about social- and political issues with a focus on human rights, in particular women’s empowerment and anti-racism.
Seher Yilmaz has a background in communication, with a long experience in working with equality and social development. She is currently heading the newly formed company Difference, a platform for companies and individuals alike to meet and form new change-driven projects.
In the season’s second Talks, Seher and Alexandra spoke about fashion and clothing in relation to power and class. Who is fashion made for and how does it relate to background, gender and power? Who gets invited to the world of fashion? Is clothes a power tool that can move people in levels of power? If class lies in your clothes – can you choose to dress up or down? During their discussion, Seher and Alexandra shared their own personal stories from childhood up until now and gave us a very important homework: how to create an open and welcoming business for all talents to join.
HOPE Talks 3: ACTIVISM
Saga Becker & Maxida Märak
Saga Becker is an award-winning actress and transgender activist. In 2014, she won a Guldbagge – Sweden’s most prestigious film award – for her leading role in Nånting måste gå sönder (‘Something Must Break’), making history as the first trans person to win the award.
Maxida Märak is a singer, rapper, actress and human rights activist. She merges hiphop with yoik in unique ways, where Sápmi is the norm and her fight for Sami rights and culture in focus.
In their talk, Saga and Maxida shared their experiences as activists within their respective fields. What responsibilities do we as individuals – and communities – carry to activate ourselves in today’s society? What can you do if you want to become active in social- and political questions? And what role does brands and companies play in this development?
HOPE Talks 4: THE RIGHT TO FAIL ON EQUAL TERMS
Suad Ali & Amanda Lundeteg
Suad Al is a political scientist with expertise in migration, working as a resettlement expert for the Swedish Migration Agency. She is a frequently appointed speaker and columnist and listed in Forbes 30 under 30 List (Law & Policy 2018).
Amanda Lundeteg is the CEO and spokesperson for Allbright. By sharing knowledge, statistics and forming opinion, she leads the foundation’s work to create long-term equality and diversity on leading positions in the business world.
In their very well-visited HOPE Talks, Suad and Amanda discussed the right to fail on equal terms, regardless of who you are. Why does a person who differs from the norm become a symbol for an entire group rather than being seen as her own individual? In what ways do the rules vary and how do words and expressions show this injustice?
HOPE TALKS 5: BODY REPRESENTATION IN FASHION
Kakan Hermansson & Cassandra Klatzkow
Karin ’Kakan’ Hermansson is a multi-talent with artist and ceramicist, DJ, writer, host and blogger on her resume. Her feminist agenda influences everything she takes on, including her highly popular beauty podcast Under huden (’Under the Skin’).
Body activist Cassandra Klatzkow runs one of the largest body positive platforms in the country. Working as a marketer, singer and model, she continuously speaks of everyone’s right to feel free and safe in their own bodies.
In their popular HOPE Talks, Kakan and Cassandra spoke of the lack of body representation in fashion and the effects of fashion’s excluding imagery and sizing. A discussion that stirred many thoughts, for both guests and industry.