Commodifying Rasta

Rastafari is a new religious movement, less than one hundred years old, and yet these days it may be found all around the world. Research indicates that it shows up in some fascinating places, such as Japan and the Slovak Republic, and reggae, the most famous form of Rastafari creativity, serves as the primary mechanism for the transmission of the faith’s message. 

Like most other religions Rastafari has been, and continues to be, commodified. The movement’s insiders and outsiders have merchandized Jah, in other words, and although we might question how, or even if, such “branding” advances Rastafari’s spirituality, we cannot deny that such “products” shape the way we perceive Rasta today. 

A new generation of scholars in Rastafari Studies will need to discuss such matters in time and yet, for now, here are some examples that I have found…

 
  Rastanana   Photo: Darren J. N. Middleton  See Huffington Post  article  about Rastanana sitings.

Rastanana

Photo: Darren J. N. Middleton

See Huffington Post article about Rastanana sitings.

  Rockstar Relax Drink   Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 201

Rockstar Relax Drink

Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 201

  Rum & Reggae Fury Water Adventures T-Shirt   hoto: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 2013

Rum & Reggae Fury Water Adventures T-Shirt

hoto: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 2013

  Snoop Lion "Here Comes the King" Album   Photo: http://pitchfork.com/news/48812-listen-to-snoop-lions-here-comes-the-king-produced-by-major-lazer/  Accessed Spring 2013

Snoop Lion "Here Comes the King" Album

Photo: http://pitchfork.com/news/48812-listen-to-snoop-lions-here-comes-the-king-produced-by-major-lazer/

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Star Energy Drink   Photo: http://nerdathlon.blogspot.com/2011/07/rasta-star-energy-drink.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Star Energy Drink

Photo: http://nerdathlon.blogspot.com/2011/07/rasta-star-energy-drink.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Lion Plush Blanket   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-2315-rasta-lion-plush-blanket.aspx?gclid=CMWryveDnLkCFSpk7AodZm0Adw  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Lion Plush Blanket

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-2315-rasta-lion-plush-blanket.aspx?gclid=CMWryveDnLkCFSpk7AodZm0Adw

Accessed Spring 2013

  King of Kings T-Shirt   Photo: http://www.popscreen.com/tagged/rasta-lion-judah-reggae/images  Accessed Spring 2013

King of Kings T-Shirt

Photo: http://www.popscreen.com/tagged/rasta-lion-judah-reggae/images

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Skullcandy Headphones   Photo: http://ca.skullcandy.com/shop/ink-d-rasta  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Skullcandy Headphones

Photo: http://ca.skullcandy.com/shop/ink-d-rasta

Accessed Spring 2013

  Babylon T-Shirt   Photo: http://xtheedgex.blogspot.com/2011/12/babylon-advisory-revolutionary-content.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Babylon T-Shirt

Photo: http://xtheedgex.blogspot.com/2011/12/babylon-advisory-revolutionary-content.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  Wallet   Photo: http://surfedwave.ebookreaderstore.biz/p/quiksilver-the-cliff-rasta-tri-fold-wallet  Accessed Spring 2013

Wallet

Photo: http://surfedwave.ebookreaderstore.biz/p/quiksilver-the-cliff-rasta-tri-fold-wallet

Accessed Spring 2013

  Soccer Ball   Photo: http://www.footy-boots.com/adidas-wawa-aba/  Accessed Spring 2013

Soccer Ball

Photo: http://www.footy-boots.com/adidas-wawa-aba/

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Frogs   Photo: Darren J. N. Middleton

Rasta Frogs

Photo: Darren J. N. Middleton

  Bob Marley Rasta Smoke Beach Towel   Photo: http://www.electrictshirts.co.uk/bob-marley/bob-marley-rasta-smoke-beach-towel.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Bob Marley Rasta Smoke Beach Towel

Photo: http://www.electrictshirts.co.uk/bob-marley/bob-marley-rasta-smoke-beach-towel.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  Dub Wise Rasta Lion Purse   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-2113-dub-wise-rasta-lion-large-barrel-purse-khaki.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Dub Wise Rasta Lion Purse

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-2113-dub-wise-rasta-lion-large-barrel-purse-khaki.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Lion of Judah Lava Lamp   Photo: http://www.cultureinterieur.com/en/motion-lamp-lava-lamp-reggae-lion-judah-25w-p-6773.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Lion of Judah Lava Lamp

Photo: http://www.cultureinterieur.com/en/motion-lamp-lava-lamp-reggae-lion-judah-25w-p-6773.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rastamouse (2011)   Photo: http://www.locatetv.com/blog/tag/rastamouse/  Accessed Spring 2013

Rastamouse (2011)

Photo: http://www.locatetv.com/blog/tag/rastamouse/

Accessed Spring 2013

  One Love Bumper Sticker   Photo: http://www.cafepress.com/mf/10650929/rasta-gear-shop-black-one-love_bumper-sticker  Accessed Spring 2013

One Love Bumper Sticker

Photo: http://www.cafepress.com/mf/10650929/rasta-gear-shop-black-one-love_bumper-sticker

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Boardshorts   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/c-157-rasta-boardshorts-for-men.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Boardshorts

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/c-157-rasta-boardshorts-for-men.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Roll Sushi   Photo: http://iloveaustin.tumblr.com/post/40627798780/rasta-roll-from-roll-on-sushi-diner-yelp  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Roll Sushi

Photo: http://iloveaustin.tumblr.com/post/40627798780/rasta-roll-from-roll-on-sushi-diner-yelp

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Skirt   Photo: http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Sexy-Rasta-Lady-Empress-Jamaica-Reggae-Knit-Fitted-Pencil-Mini-Skirt-HRA3003-/271030099021  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Skirt

Photo: http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Sexy-Rasta-Lady-Empress-Jamaica-Reggae-Knit-Fitted-Pencil-Mini-Skirt-HRA3003-/271030099021

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Rockett (Cool Runnings) (1993)   Photo: http://www.mesddl.net/films/rasta-rockett.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Rockett (Cool Runnings) (1993)

Photo: http://www.mesddl.net/films/rasta-rockett.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  Selassie Shoes   Photo: http://flickrhivemind.net/Tags/af1,custom/Interesting  Accessed Spring 2013

Selassie Shoes

Photo: http://flickrhivemind.net/Tags/af1,custom/Interesting

Accessed Spring 2013

  Suspenders   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-2662-rasta-suspenders.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Suspenders

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-2662-rasta-suspenders.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Bob Marley Mellow Mood Incense   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-130-bob-marley-mellow-mood-incense.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Bob Marley Mellow Mood Incense

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-130-bob-marley-mellow-mood-incense.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Jah Bless You Skateboard   Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 2013

Jah Bless You Skateboard

Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 2013

  Rastanana, Jonathan, and Rasta Monkey   Photo: Elizabeth H. Flowers

Rastanana, Jonathan, and Rasta Monkey

Photo: Elizabeth H. Flowers

  Rastanana   Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 201

Rastanana

Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 201

  International Roots Shop Key West, Florida   Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 201

International Roots Shop Key West, Florida

Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 201

  Skullcandy Headphones   Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 2013

Skullcandy Headphones

Photo: Mark & Luke Ehrhardt Summer 2013

  Neff Watch   Photo: http://www.reggaeking.com/Neff_Estate_Watch_p/nf0213-ras.htm  Accessed December 2017

Neff Watch

Photo: http://www.reggaeking.com/Neff_Estate_Watch_p/nf0213-ras.htm

Accessed December 2017

  Marley's Mellow Mood   Photo: http://www.possessedbycaffeine.com/2012/07/marleys-mellow-mood-green-tea.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Marley's Mellow Mood

Photo: http://www.possessedbycaffeine.com/2012/07/marleys-mellow-mood-green-tea.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  Lion of Judah iPhone Case   Photo: http://www.hulumakana.com/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=426  Accessed Spring 2013

Lion of Judah iPhone Case

Photo: http://www.hulumakana.com/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=426

Accessed Spring 2013

  Element Backpack   Photo: http://www.polyvore.com/element_mohave_rasta_backpack_pdp/thing?id=21103686  Accessed Spring 2013

Element Backpack

Photo: http://www.polyvore.com/element_mohave_rasta_backpack_pdp/thing?id=21103686

Accessed Spring 2013

  Adidas Snoop Lion Pro Shell Snooperstar   Photo: http://www.kicksonfire.com/2012/09/17/snoop-lion-x-adidas-originals-pro-shell/#page-1  Accessed Spring 2013

Adidas Snoop Lion Pro Shell Snooperstar

Photo: http://www.kicksonfire.com/2012/09/17/snoop-lion-x-adidas-originals-pro-shell/#page-1

Accessed Spring 2013

  Sunglasses   Photo: http://www.houseofsunglasses.net/index.php/rasta-wayfarer-sunglasses.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Sunglasses

Photo: http://www.houseofsunglasses.net/index.php/rasta-wayfarer-sunglasses.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  Surf Board   Photo: http://www.superstock.com/stock-photos-images/1760-1506  Accessed Spring 2013

Surf Board

Photo: http://www.superstock.com/stock-photos-images/1760-1506

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta-Ferrari   Photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevindahlgren/7184903225/  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta-Ferrari

Photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/kevindahlgren/7184903225/

Accessed Spring 2013

  Bob Marley Rasta Lion Surf Skirt   Photo: http://www.ebay.com/itm/BOB-MARLEY-Reggae-Rasta-Lion-Dreads-Jamaica-TieDye-Beach-TShirt-Surf-Sweat-Skirt-/350857548894  Accessed Spring 2013

Bob Marley Rasta Lion Surf Skirt

Photo: http://www.ebay.com/itm/BOB-MARLEY-Reggae-Rasta-Lion-Dreads-Jamaica-TieDye-Beach-TShirt-Surf-Sweat-Skirt-/350857548894

Accessed Spring 2013

  ColorVue Contact Lenses   Photo: http://www.beautifeye.co.uk/new-colourvue-rasta-crazy-colour-contact-lenses-1-year-wear-detail  Accessed Spring 2013

ColorVue Contact Lenses

Photo: http://www.beautifeye.co.uk/new-colourvue-rasta-crazy-colour-contact-lenses-1-year-wear-detail

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Jellyfish: Ernie and Bernie, Sharks Tale   Photo: http://www.gazette.uwo.ca/article.cfm?section=arts&articleID=92&month=10&day=5&year=2004  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Jellyfish: Ernie and Bernie, Sharks Tale

Photo: http://www.gazette.uwo.ca/article.cfm?section=arts&articleID=92&month=10&day=5&year=2004

Accessed Spring 2013

  Lion of Judah License Plate Frame   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-1584-i-love-the-lion-of-judah-license-plate-frame.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Lion of Judah License Plate Frame

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-1584-i-love-the-lion-of-judah-license-plate-frame.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Marijuana Dog Leash   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-1923-marijuana-purple-haze-dog-leash.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Marijuana Dog Leash

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-1923-marijuana-purple-haze-dog-leash.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Jamaican Jerk seasoned chicken sautéed with onions, red, green, and yellow bell peppers, with a spicy Caribbean cream sauce over penne pasta.   Photo: Maggie King  Accessed Spring 2013

Jamaican Jerk seasoned chicken sautéed with onions, red, green, and yellow bell peppers, with a spicy Caribbean cream sauce over penne pasta.

Photo: Maggie King

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Swimsuit   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-1890-rasta-jamaica-mon-hollywood-halter-push-up-bikini-top.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Swimsuit

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/p-1890-rasta-jamaica-mon-hollywood-halter-push-up-bikini-top.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Rasta Haile Selassie Coronation Tie   Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/c-97-ties.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Rasta Haile Selassie Coronation Tie

Photo: http://www.rastaempire.com/c-97-ties.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Brine Lacrosse Sticks   Photo: http://www.lacrosseplayground.com/tags/sticks/  Accessed Spring 2013

Brine Lacrosse Sticks

Photo: http://www.lacrosseplayground.com/tags/sticks/

Accessed Spring 2013

  Selassie Boxing Gloves   Photo: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Selassie-Rastafari-Flag-Mini-Boxing-Gloves-/150877925775  Accessed Spring 2013

Selassie Boxing Gloves

Photo: http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Selassie-Rastafari-Flag-Mini-Boxing-Gloves-/150877925775

Accessed Spring 2013

  Weed Leaves Socks   Photo: https://www.rastaempire.com/p-1198-weed-leaves-socks.aspx  Accessed Spring 2013

Weed Leaves Socks

Photo: https://www.rastaempire.com/p-1198-weed-leaves-socks.aspx

Accessed Spring 2013

  Xbox 360   Photo: http://stickers-deco-consoles.fr/skin-stickers-xbox-slim-/58-xbox-360-slim-rasta.html  Accessed Spring 2013

Xbox 360

Photo: http://stickers-deco-consoles.fr/skin-stickers-xbox-slim-/58-xbox-360-slim-rasta.html

Accessed Spring 2013

  B is for Bob Baby   Photo: http://www.instituteofhigherthinking.com/category/the-kid/  Accessed Spring 2013

B is for Bob Baby

Photo: http://www.instituteofhigherthinking.com/category/the-kid/

Accessed Spring 2013

  Bob Marley Profile and Smoking Pint Mug Glass Set   Photo: http://kootation.com/bob-marley-acoustic-coffee-mug/page/2/  Accessed Spring 2013

Bob Marley Profile and Smoking Pint Mug Glass Set

Photo: http://kootation.com/bob-marley-acoustic-coffee-mug/page/2/

Accessed Spring 2013