Photographer Interviews

Jošt Franko Captures The Human Cost of Cheap Cotton Clothes

April 3, 2017

By Martha T. Moore

© Jošt Franko/Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting

Jošt Franko documents the global journey of cotton, from a warehouse in Burkina Faso, seen here, to sweatshops in Bangladesh and Romania, to retail stores in London. Click to see more of his images tracing the production and consumption of cotton around the world.

Like many 20-somethings, photographer Jošt Franko shops at cheap-chic clothing retailers like the global chain H&M. Unlike most other shoppers, however, Franko knows the worldwide human cost of the clothes we buy: African children growing and picking cotton, textile workers in substandard conditions earning subsistence wages. Franko’s photo series, “Cotton Black, Cotton Blue,’’ published in December in The Nation, follows...

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