A Darling® of the beauty trade: race, care, and the imperial debris of synthetic hair

Caroline V. Faria, Hilary Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This article pushes for a postcolonial geography of care, through hair. Working with the ‘imperial debris’ of care as a disciplinary racial logic, we show how it is renewed, remade, and resisted in the present through the travels, narratives, and practices of the African synthetic hair trade. Here we interrogate Lebanese business expansion, entrepreneurialism, manufacture, and styling, tracing in each case how contemporary narratives of care mirror, entrench, and rework colonial ideals and subjectivities of Whiteness. Disrupting these logics, we close by attending to the influences of Ugandan stylists and consumers who draw on Caribbean, US-American, and other diasporic circuits of Blackness, along with locally rooted innovations. Our work demonstrates how racial power travels through time and across space, asserting the important and sustained insights of a postcolonial geography of care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-99
Number of pages15
JournalCultural Geographies
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2019.


  • Africa
  • beauty
  • care
  • feminist postcolonial geography
  • race

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Cultural Studies
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)


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