Episode Seven - Zinnia Kumar

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In our latest episode of ‘This is a Token’, Alex is joined virtually by the incredible Zinnia Kumar. A Chartered Ecologist, published scientist, sustainability advocate, cultural theorist, AND internationally recognised fashion model, Zinnia talks to Alex about the trinkets and jewellery she has on her person everyday, as a meaningful and grounding reminder of who she is.

Listen in, as Alex and Zinnia discuss working to engineer social and environmental change from inside the fashion industry, the symbolic transformation of a dragonfly into a pair of elephants, and how jewellery can function as a measure and reward, to symbolise how far we’ve come.

“Zinnia was so generous to make time for a good old chat and a look at some of her favourite pieces of jewellery. She’s a busy woman. I was worried I was going to be out of my depth (she’s studying for a MSc along with about a million other things) but she immediately made me feel at ease when (to my relief) she admitted her guilty pleasure was watching Married at First Sight too!

We covered some serious subjects but we also had a lot of laughs. She shared some fascinating pieces of jewellery with us which led to a really interesting discussion. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.”

-Alex Monroe


Here are some useful links for further reading on issues, events and artefacts discussed by Alex and Zinnia.

You can find Zinnia Kumar at http://zinniakumar.com/
and follow her on Instagram and Twitter @zinniakumar

You can find the book Alex is reading, ‘The Way Home’ by Mark Boyle here 

For more information about Social Anxiety, visit www.nhs.uk/conditions/social-anxiety/

To learn more about Australia’s Little Penguins and how to support them, go to https://penguinfoundation.org.au/

For further reading on East India Company and Blackbirding, go to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_India_Company and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blackbirding


Illustration by Connie Bella Monroe
Edited by Emily Sandford
Music by Daniel Patrick Cohen

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