Globalization and Culture

By Girish Mishra
April 18, 2008

The ongoing globalization, based on the Washington Consensus, is aimed at bringing in cultural uniformity throughout the world without leaving any scope for diversities. It wants to impose American culture and way of life everywhere. The champions of America-led globalization have declared this in most candid terms. Let us give just two examples. First, Dr. Henry Kissinger, a former Secretary of State, in the course of a lecture at the Trinity College in Dublin on 12 October 1999, said:

“The basic challenge is that what is called ‘globalization’ is really another name for the dominant role of the United States. During the past decade, the United States has created unprecedented wealth, broadened and deepened the availability of capital; funded the creation, development and broad distribution of a wide variety of new technologies, created markets for an endless array of goods and services… in economic terms it can get no better: full employment, rising real wages, increasing productivity, low inflation, increasing wealth and nonstop growth. … For America, these are the good old days…

“Success of this magnitude inevitably inspires imitation….” [1]

Then he went on to add that, just as the previous phase of globalization was under the British hegemony, the current phase had to be under US domination. The world had no alternative but to accept American ideas, values and way of life.

Second, Thomas L. Friedman, a foreign affairs columnist of The New York Times declares, without any fudging or hedging,

“We Americans are apostles of the Fast World, the prophets of the free market and high priests of high tech. We want ‘enlargement’ of both our values and Pizza Huts. We want the world to follow our lead and become democratic and capitalistic, with a Web site in every pot, a Pepsi on every lip, Microsoft Windows in every computer and with everyone, everywhere, pumping their own gas.” [2]

Elsewhere, he says: “…globalization has its own dominant culture, which is why it tends to be homogenizing. Culturally speaking, globalization is largely, though not entirely, the spread of Americanization – from Big Macs to Mickey Mouse – on a global scale.” [3]

American coffeehouse chain Starbucks has begun selling its espresso and food items to ever-increasing number of countries and this way spreading American food habits. It is the first time in human history that virtually every individual at every level of society consciously or unconsciously feels the impact of globalization. He finds it in the media, tastes it in his food and senses it in the goods that he buys. At the same time, it generates resentment and fear that his traditional culture and identity are in danger.

Before we proceed further, we must keep in mind that “Culture is not static; it grows out of a systematically encouraged reverence for selected customs and habits”. Indeed, Webster’s Third New International Dictionary defines culture as the

“total pattern of human behavior and its products embodied in speech, action, and artifacts and dependent upon man’s capacity for learning and transmitting knowledge to succeeding generations.” Language, religion, political and legal systems, and social customs are the legacies of victors and marketers and reflect the judgment of the marketplace of ideas throughout popular history. They might also rightly be seen as living artifacts, bits and pieces carried forward through the years on currents of indoctrination, popular acceptance, and unthinking adherence to old ways. Culture is used by the organizers of society – politicians, theologians, academics, and families – to impose and ensure order, the rudiments of which change over time as need dictates.” [4]

Cultural differences are often utilized either to justify imperialist aims or resist foreign forces and influence.

Francis Fukuyama, when asked whether globalization was really a euphemism for Americanization, said:

“I think that it is, and that’s why some people do not like it. I think it has to be Americanization because, in some respects, America is the most advanced capitalist society in the world today, and so its institutions represent the logical development of market forces. Therefore, if market forces are what drive globalization, it is inevitable that Americanization will accompany globalization.” [5]

Fukuyama rejects the view that globalization is leading to cultural homogeneity. There may be homogenization of certain aspects of the economy and the society, but, at the same time, there will be an affirmation of distinctive cultural identities. If the process of cultural homogenization takes place, it will be too slow to discern. “Many people think that because we have advanced communications technology, and are able to project global television culture worldwide, this will lead to homogenization on a deeper cultural level. I think that, in a way, it’s done just the opposite.

“For example, there is probably less mutual liking, more distrust and greater emphasis on the difference between the cultures of the United States and Asia today than there was 40 years ago. In the 1950s and ’60s, Asia looked up to the United States as a model of modernization. Now, Asians look at American urban decay and the decline of the family and they feel that America is not a very attractive model. Communications technology has allowed both Asians and Americans to see each other more clearly, and it turns out they have very different value systems.” [6]

Malcolm Waters thinks that, if people view the concept of present-day globalization as homogenization, they are not wrong. This is because

“like modernization, a predecessor and related concept, it appears to justify the spread of Western culture and capitalist society by suggesting that there are forces operating beyond human control that are transforming the world…. Globalization is the direct consequence of European culture across the planet….” [7]

Cultural imperialism, for quite some time, has been a topic of discussion. Weckert and Adeney have defined it as “the use of political and economic power to exalt and spread the values and habits of a foreign culture at the expense of native culture” [8] Herbert I. Schiller thinks cultural imperialism arises in the world economic system, with the terms and nature of production settled at one location and nurtured elsewhere. Goods bought in the world market bring with them certain ideology and values of the world capitalist system. [9]

“Cultural imperialism is used to (1) increase demand for foreign goods; (2) depress growth within local industry; and, (3) foster a consumerist mentality where the need to save is overcome by the desire to emulate the foreign rich. Once such a desire is instilled in this market, corporations (4) widen and consolidate their market by investing in merchandising facilities and sales promotion. Their goal of establishing of preference for their goods in the local economy means that they are involved in the international transmission of values.” [10]

The new global culture signifies deterritorialisation and the emergence of a borderless world. Globalization has greatly increased the means through which nationals of one country actively take part in another country’s cultural, economic and political life. [11]

Some hold that this leads to ‘consumer culture,’ which does not mean plain and simple consumption. Throughout human history people of one society have been influenced by consumption habits of other societies. With increasing mobility these influences have become more and more powerful. When one speaks of a consumer culture, the bundle of goods and services consumed, and its composition are not determined mainly on the basis of real needs and the capacity of individual consumer to pay. In fact, the bundle consists of such goods and services that justify in the eyes of his peers his social status. At times, what one calls ‘bandwagon’ and ‘snob’ effects determine them. The former stands for the effort of an individual to ape the consumption pattern of his or her ‘superiors’ while the latter underlines the determination of the superiors to give up the present pattern of consumption and move on to a higher one.

Under capitalism, the aim is to sell as much as possible to maximize profit. In order to do this, advertisement becomes necessary not in order to disseminate knowledge about the produce but to create a demand by underlying the fact that its consumption will enhance the status of the consumer in the eyes of the society. An attempt is made to create product differentiation, in many cases, imaginary. Fashion shows, selection of beauty queens, employment of well-known models, sportsmen, actors and actresses etc. are the ways to attract potential consumers. With the increasing reach of newspapers, films, radios and cable television, the power of advertisement to lure the potential consumers has increased manifold. The easy availability of loans, attractive hire-purchase schemes, and credit card facilities enable people to translate their desires into demand.

Under consumer culture, consumption is regarded as the principal form of self-expression and the major source of demonstrating one’s identity. It implies that both material and non-material items, including kinship, affection, art, and intellect become commodified, that is their value is assessed by the context of their exchange, rather than the context of their production or use. An advanced or post-modernized consumer culture experiences hyper commodification in which minute differences between products or minute improvements in them can determine variations in demand, and in which consumption is differentiated on the basis of the signifiers known as ‘brand names’. This is captured in such terms as ‘taste’, ‘fashion’ and ‘lifestyle’ that become key sources of social differentiation, displacing class and political affiliation. Its original form was probably a deliberate creation but under post modernized conditions it is ‘hyper simulated’, having a life of its own that is beyond the control of any particular group. Since it is symbolically mediated, consumer culture liberates values and preferences from particular social and geographical locations and indeed invalidates the social and political structures of modernity including states. It does so by undermining the cultural classifications of modernity, technically by declassifying or dedifferentiating culture. [12]

There are, broadly speaking, two views about the way consumer culture goes global and is able to influence and dominate an individual. First, individual identity is linked to culture. Capitalism transforms people into consumers by altering their self-images, their structure of wants so that they serve capitalist accumulation. [13]

Second, the phenomenon, known as ‘McDonaldization’, constitutes the other view. This is the process by which the principles of fast food restaurant chain McDonald’s are fast bringing the entire world into their fold. They include efficiency (expressed in the declining gap between placing the order and its execution); calculability (indicated by the calculation by a consumer of costs in terms of money, time and effort rather than quality of the product); predictability (standardizing the products so that the trust of the consumer is won); and control of human beings through the application of material technology. [14] This underlines the growing tendency to the unification of lifestyles, cultural symbols and the modes of behaviour. There is no unanimity on the emergence of a homogeneous global culture; only of the fusion of global and local cultures as the main outcome of globalization. [15]

The application of material technology not only leads to maximum deskilling of workers but also directing consumers “by means of queue control barriers, fixed menu displays, limited options, uncomfortable seats, inaccessible toilets, ‘drive-through’ processing.” [16] Consequently, much talked about ‘sovereign consumers’ are made docile conformists. Thus McDonaldization leads to a reordering of consumption and production and rationalization of previously informal and domestic practices, in order to bring about greater conformity. [17]

In the sphere of consumption, two developments stand out. They are, namely, the mobilization of fashion in mass (as opposed to elite) markets, which helps accelerate the pace of consumption not only in dress, adornment, and decoration but also across a wide spectrum of life-styles and recreational activities (leisure and sporting habits, pop music styles, video and children’s games, and the like). And secondly, in the consumption basket of an individual the importance of services vis-à-vis goods continuously increases. These services have a wide variety, ranging from personal, business, educational, and health services to entertainment. The life span of goods and services is shortened so that the volume of demand does not fall much below that of production. [18]

A number of consequences have followed from the increasing predominance of services. First, they have heightened the ephemeral nature of fashions, products, production techniques, labour process, etc. [19] Second, “In the realm of commodity production, the primary effect has been to emphasize the values and virtues of instantaneity (instant and fast foods, meals, and other satisfactions) and of disposability (cups, plates, cutlery, packaging, napkins, clothing, etc.). The dynamics of a ‘throwaway’ society’ have become quite obvious. It means

“more than just throwing away produced goods (creating a monumental waste-disposal problem), but also being able to throw away values, life-styles, stable relationships, and attachments to things, buildings, places, people, and received ways of doing and being… individuals were forced to cope with disposability, novelty and the prospects for instant obsolescence.” [20]

It follows that a producer of goods or services needs to master the art and science of manipulating the tastes, fashions and attitudes of the potential consumers of his wares. [21]

R. Cronk, writing in 1996, termed globalization as new capitalism and analyzed its impact vis-à-vis consumerism. According to him, the traditional values of Western society were getting corrupted by commercialization of culture and the impact of mass media. [22] The consumer is no longer the mythical sovereign to be obeyed and pleased, but a target.

“Controlling interests commodify culture and sell it to a public weaned on media advertising. Selection is reduced, not to what the public wants, but to what it will accept at a greater profit for the stockholder. This includes the availability and variety of commodities as well as their quality.” [23]

Corporations restrict consumers’ choices and freedoms. As people become acclimatized to television, they are gripped by media-produced images and symbols and they start hankering after brand names. Consumerism establishes a hold over them and they do not bother to verify the properties of goods demanded. They do not care to see whether the goods they are going to buy really satisfy a genuine need. People tend to believe that their being is shaped by what they consume. [24]

An important feature of present-day globalization is the advent of consumer credit society. Till the arrival of credit cards, the cash at his disposal or his ability to raise loans limited a person’s consumption. Credit cards have played a very vital role in tremendously extending this limit. A person can now buy goods and services even if he does not have cash at his disposal or the prospect of immediately securing a loan. Credit cards have given a tremendous boost to consumerism and pushed households into debt. [25]

Globalization is supposed to have ended the period of modernity and ushered the world into the age of post-modernity. Thus “modes of social life or organization which emerged in Europe from about the seventeenth century onwards which subsequently became more or less worldwide in their influence,” [26] popularly referred to as modernity, have come to an end. A new era has begun, which is taking the world beyond modernity. This new era is variously referred to as ‘information society’, ‘consumer society’, ‘post-modernity’, ‘post-modernism’, ‘post-industrial society’, ‘post-capitalism’, and so on. Each of these terms is supposed to convey the idea of the transition from a society based on the predominance of manufacturing to that on services.

One may ask whether globalization has brought in a global culture. If by a global culture is meant something like the culture of the nation-state, extended to cover the entire world, the answer is in the negative. This is for the simple reason that while the culture of a nation-state is homogeneous and integrated, there is no such culture visible on the global level for there is no world-state. In the near future too there is no prospect of a world-state coming into existence, hence there is no possibility of world culture. Thus in Marshall McLuhan’s “global village” there is global culture growing. [27]

Five dimensions of global cultural flows have been discerned. They are ethnoscapes (brought in by flows of people), tecnoscapes (the flows of machinery and industry), finanscapes (the flows of money in the currency and stock markets), mediascapes (images and information disseminated by print and electronic media), and ideoscapes (flows of the elements of ideologies).

During the present era of globalization, the concept of the work place is undergoing a sea change. In developed countries, people work from their homes or while travelling. The old concept of fixed working hours is giving way to working according to convenience and transferring the work through Internet. Employees remain in constant touch with their superiors, thanks to advances in information technology. This development is bound to have enormous impact on the character of cities. They will be transformed from

“concentrations of office employment to centers of entertainment and culture; that is, cities will become places where people go to stay in hotels, visit museums and galleries, dine in restaurants, participate in civic events, and attend live performances of all kinds. In contrast, some poor countries will stem the flight from the countryside to cities by using low-cost communications to provide rural dwellers with better medical services, jobs, education, and entertainment.” [28]

The importance of English as global language has been rapidly increasing, as it has become the most important medium of telecommunication. All over the world people will have to learn English to use computer software. It is not British but American English that is in the ascendancy. Many computers have only American English software and it is the main transnational language used in various fields of scientific, cultural, economic and business activities.

With the help of improved information technology, people can communicate their ideas and views and bypass mass media censorship. Thus, theoretically, they can influence public opinion and build democratic movements, even globally. People’s ability to communicate more freely and easily could foster greater mutual understanding and appreciation of one another’s problems and points of view. [29] New ideas and information will get disseminated, jumping physical and political barriers, in the shortest possible time.

There is, however, no universal agreement on the shape of the world to come. There are people who assert that the process of globalization strengthening commercial and technological interdependence among nations will lead to “a virtual paradise made possible by spreading markets and global technology,” [30] while, on the other hand, a finger is pointed out towards what has happened in recent years in different parts of the world. It is surmised that “all of the horrors of the ancient slaughter [are being] reenacted.” [31]

Benjamin R. Barber discerns two scenarios. One scenario

“holds out the grim prospect of a retribalization of large swaths of humankind by war and bloodshed: a threatened balkanization of nation-states in which culture is pitted against culture, people against people, tribe against tribe, a Jihad in the name of a hundred narrowly conceived faiths against every kind of interdependence, every kind of artificial social cooperation and mutuality: against technology, against pop culture, and against integrated markets; against modernity itself as well as the future in which modernity issues.”

The other scenario

“paints that future in shimmering pastels, a busy portrait of onrushing economic, technological, and ecological forces that demand integration and uniformity that mesmerize peoples everywhere with fast music, fast computers, and fast food – MTV, Macintosh, and McDonald’s – pressing nations into one homogeneous global theme park, one McWorld tied together by communications, information, entertainment, and commerce. Caught between Babel and Disneyland, the planet is falling precipitously apart and coming reluctantly together at the very same moment.” [32]

Thus, the present era of globalization has given rise to two mutually contradictory tendencies, namely, ‘Jihad’ and ‘McWorld’. They are discernible simultaneously in many countries. Barber underlines that “squeezed between their opposing forces, the world has been sent out of control.” Even though they are opposed to each other, they reinforce each other. “Jihad not only revolts but abets McWorld, while McWorld not only imperils but re-creates and reinforces Jihad. They produce their contraries and need one another.” [33]

McWorld, brought in by the present era of globalization, makes countries so interdependent that their sovereignty becomes extremely limited. Economic and commercial forces unleashed by globalization work towards converting the entire world into one unified market and its inhabitants into global consumers. Its aim is to do away with all the barriers and hindrances in the way of unifying the hitherto existing national markets, make trade free, interests private and currencies fully convertible on both current and capital accounts, provide unhindered access to banking and strictly enforce contracts. Laws and needs of production and consumption are given priority over the laws of legislatures and courts. Consequently,

“in the world of McWorld, the alternative to dogmatic traditionalism may turn out to be materialist consumerism or relativistic secularism or merely a profitable corruption. Democracy’s ties to McWorld are at best contingent. Shopping, it is true, has little tolerance for blue laws, whether dictated by pub-closing British paternalism, Sabbath-observing Jewish Orthodoxy, or no-Sunday-liquor-sales condition for constitutional faith or a respect for due process.” [34]

While an integrated global market fails to lead to common interests or common laws, it does work towards bringing in a common currency, a common language and common behaviour.

“Commercial pilots, computer programmers, film directors, international bankers, media specialists, oil riggers, entertainment celebrities, ecology experts, movie producers, demographers, accountants, professors, lawyers, athletes – these compose a new breed of men and women for whom religion, culture, and ethnic nationality are marginal elements in a working identity. Although sociologists of everyday life will continue to distinguish a Japanese from an American mode, shopping has a common signature throughout the world.” [35]

McWorld is a phenomenon of both the post-nation-state and post-industrial era. Maximization of profit rather than social or national welfare is the motto of globalism and its central players – transnational corporations. To achieve business efficiency, a policy of downsizing is pursued. It means capital-intensive production that amounts to labour-minimizing policies. In their place appear machines, robots, and multiplying (so-called) “temporary” jobs, which are actually long-term jobs without long-term contracts, long-term security, or long-term benefits. [36]

The protagonists of McWorld do not relish government intervention, however justified it may be. Market-driven profit-making activities do not go well with calls to protect the environment, increase employment opportunities and bring social justice. [37] Globalization has rendered redundant the age-old aspiration of nations to strive for economic self-sufficiency. India during and after the freedom struggle always emphasized the goal of self-reliant development based on domestic resources, domestic market and domestic manpower. Economic self-reliance was supposed to make the country pursue an independent foreign policy. Economic dependence was said to lead to servitude. Self-reliance did not, however, mean autarky.

Look up any elementary economics textbook and you will come across the term “consumer sovereignty”. Hymns are sung in praise of the consumer and his supremacy. Producers are supposed to be directed by consumers through their behaviour in the market place to decide what to produce. In other words, capitalist folk-lore has it that producers are always at the beck and call of sovereign consumers and their sole aim is to satisfy their needs and in that process to earn profits. Sovereign consumers are supposed to have complete knowledge of various aspects of the market so that they cannot be fooled or cheated. In reality, whatever semblance of this grand idea earlier existed has now completely vanished, “gradually yielding to a postmodern capitalist economy in which needs are manufactured to meet the supply of producers who make their unmediated products marketable through promotion, spin, packaging, and advertising.” [38]

The main constituents of American culture, namely, music, film, fashion, food, and life styles have been establishing their sway all over the globe. They have been promoted with the help of high voltage advertisements. Now goods are not produced to cater to needs. In fact, needs are created to sell goods. Even water can be sold for profit by impressing on the people’s mind that what they are drinking from municipal taps may not be pure and safe. [39]

Technology and goods and services, promoted by the present era of globalization, have deep cultural implications. Beverages like Coke or Pepsi become a substitute for tea or coffee. Also, their consumption is seldom a social activity. The same is the case with fast food, which is grabbed and eaten in a hurry. Furthermore, listening and enjoying music ceases to be a group activity through personal stereos and MP3 players. The same thing may be said of computer technology. One may watch a movie or listen to a song without going to a concert hall or cinema where its enjoyment becomes a social activity.

According to Benjamin R. Barber, “Films are central to market ideology. Watching them reveals a sameness pervading McWorld that seems as suffocating as the invisible ‘ether’ that was once thought to have suffused the entire cosmos and to have given it the invisible infrastructure that made Newtonian physics plausible.” [40]

“Films are McWorld’s preferred software, but television rather than the cinema is its preferred medium; for with television, McWorld goes one on one, the solitary individual and cyberspace confronting one another in exquisite immediacy – with the screen as the perfect nonmediated (im-mediate) medium. Where cinema is limited in time and place, television is a permanent ticket to ceaseless film watching anytime, anywhere. It is a private window on McWorld.” [41]

Even the Christian Church in the West and the vendors of spiritualism in India have conceded its power and sweep by seeking new followers and keeping the old ones together through television channels.

A number of channels, most prominent among them Cartoon Network, are devoted to attracting children and grooming them as devoted consumers of the products regularly advertised every fifteen minutes or so during “short commercial breaks”. Habits formed early in life are difficult to shed later on. The proliferation of television and the Internet have adversely affected the reading habits of people. Literacy levels are decreasing.

Tele-marketing or tele-shopping is being vigorously promoted. Buyers can place orders for desired goods, after looking at the relevant details, via telephone or Internet and have them delivered. This underlines “one of McWorld’s simplest and profoundest truths… television is consumption and commercials constitute its most popular programming. Let consumers buy what they watch, and you have united television and mall-dom – McWorld’s two most powerful domains.” [42]

McWorld tries to make consumption the way of life and transform buying and selling of goods and services into rituals. People are made to seek spiritual satisfaction in consumption. It must be remembered that even though productivity may increase enormously, high consumption cannot lead either to full employment or the mass eradication of poverty.

Prof. Immanuel Wallerstein does not seem to be perturbed at this kind of cultural globalization. He does not see anything new in this.

“For several hundred years now we have been talking the language of cultural globalization. Obviously one of the phenomena of the modern world has been the improvement of communication-systems, which means that people can learn faster than they previously learned about things that happened in far points in the world. And it’s particularly fast now with the internet, but you know, 100 years ago we thought it was very fast with radio and 50 years before that we were amazed how fast it was with the telegraphy-system and 100 years before that we were thinking that newspapers were this incredible phenomenon. So I don’t think it’s new. It’s true it’s faster.

“I’m not persuaded that we are in any sense more culturally homogenized today than we were several hundred years ago for the simple reason that we are not economically homogenized and we are not politically homogenized. We are polarized and the polarization is greater than it has ever been. In fact one could make the paradoxical argument that before the modern world – for let’s say – take any arbitrary moment in time, in the 12th century different parts of the world were culturally more similar to each other than they are today. It is perfectly true that they spoke different languages, had different religions, etc., they even had different foods, kept their households in different ways, but if you analyze the structure as comparative social scientist like to do, or anthropologists, etc. we see certain kind of patterns which get repeated in almost all these societies. And today precisely because we are in a single system, which is however an extraordinarily polarized system, one of the modes of resistance is to constantly create new rebellious cultural forms.” [43]

It is quite often asserted that globalization, by strengthening the dominance of world capitalism, has led to the erosion of local cultures and traditions through a global culture. This global culture, in turn, means the Westernization of the world. It is said that globalization is bringing about the destruction of local traditions and their replacement by a homogenized global culture, leaning heavily towards the West. Globalization is viewed as a process of standardization in which a globalized media and consumer culture circulates the globe creating sameness and homogeneity everywhere, thus bringing to light the bland and boring universality, and massification in the modern project.

Global culture entails the promotion of a specific kind of life-style, consumption pattern, products, and identities. High-voltage advertisement campaigns are deployed by TNCs to penetrate local markets in the non-Western world to create an ever-expanding market for their products by crushing local resistance. The growing reach of private cable and satellite television networks has strengthened the grip of commercial culture. Traditionally, culture has been a vital factor in imparting and strengthening identity of groups and peoples. It has protected their traditions and modes of life. It distinguishes one group or people from the other. It provides forms of identities, practices, and modes of everyday life that could serve as a bulwark against the invasion of ideas, identities, and forms of life extraneous to the specific local regions.

Old wants, traditionally satisfied by indigenous goods and services, are being replaced by new wants, requiring goods and services from other lands for their satisfaction. This destroys local self-sufficiency and local jobs and brings in the global dependence of nations. One may look around to see how plastic goods have been pushing out many a traditional product out of fashion. Local potters, rope-makers and blacksmiths have been losing their traditional vocations. The advent of safety razors has rendered local barbers jobless. Western films, audio and videocassettes, and satellite television channels have adversely affected folk singers and performers. Moreover, some kind of hybridization has also been taking place. To give a concrete example, Maori artist Hinewehi Mohi and British post-punk composer Jaz Coleman of Killing Joke have collaborated to produce an album called Oceania. It embodies “tribal techno,” which combines traditional chants with contemporary techno-beat. Similarly, Sheila Chandra has produced “Weaving My Ancestors’ Voices,” which blends styles from the classical Indian and Celtic traditions, creating a sound that reflects her sense of existing “between and between” different national identities. To give one more example, Apache Indian has been expressing trans-racial solidarity through a mix of Reggae, Hip Hop and Bhangra. [44]

Cultures have never remained static or isolated, even in ancient times, war, trade and migration had their impact on them. At present rapid transportation and global communication and commerce accelerate change.

The eradication of cultural diversities and forcing uniformity and homogeneity is supposed to be at the behest of and beneficial to advanced capitalist economies and their multinational corporations. If they succeed in their mission, developing countries’ natural resources and cheap labour will be used to their advantage. [45]

The ownership and control of global media is concentrated in the hands of a small number of corporations, mostly American. Their main aim is to expand and consolidate the market for their products. In the realization of this mission the continuance of cultural diversity is a great obstacle. Unless the tastes and fashions become conducive to the consumption of these products, the expansion of the market for them will be, at best, a slow process.

Since the 1980s, their efforts have been yielding impressive results. For example, there has been a big expansion of the pop music industry, including the development of pop videos and the MTV 24-hour music channels in America, Europe and Asia. Communication satellites have succeeded in bringing the entire globe within their orbit and they beam pop music and other products throughout the world. National boundaries seem to have become irrelevant and governments powerless in checking their transmission. It needs to be noted that 70 per cent of all pop music is produced and distributed by a handful of multinational corporations. They see to it that its production, transmission and promotion are so integrated that voices and faces of Michael Jackson and Madonna are available in most places of the world on CDs, in magazines and newspapers, on radio and cassettes and stamped on baseball caps and T-shirts. [46]

U. Beck has underlined the differences among ‘globality,’ ‘globalism’ and ‘globalization.’ According to him, “‘globality’ refers to the fact that we are increasingly living in a ‘world society’ in the sense that ‘the notion of closed spaces has become illusory… from now on nothing which happens on our planet is only a limited local event.'” [47] Meanwhile, “‘globalism’ is the view that the ‘world market’ is now powerful enough to supplant (local and national) political action;” and “‘globalization’ is the blanket term to describe ‘the processes through which sovereign national states are criss-crossed and undermined by transnational actors and varying prospects of power, orientation, identities and networks’.” [48]

Consumerism is an important feature of ongoing globalization. “Lifestyle choices lie at the heart of consumerism as dreams are marketed over genuine needs. Thompson [K. Thompson, “Social pluralism and postmodernity,” in S. Hall and B. Gieben (eds.), Modernity and its Futures, Cambridge, 1992] points out, among those who could afford it, shopping has long been far more than just purchasing goods; rather shoppers feel that through the act of shopping they are buying into (however modestly) a more exciting, sensual world. The opening up of new markets is driven by the mass media (in particular, advertising and television) as the major conveyor of fashion and lifestyle imaginings. …Global consumerism thrives on the promotion of brand names…. Transnational, transcultural aspirational clusters, based on what people would like to be rather than what they are, come into existence as a result of commercial life styling and are more ‘real’ to people today than the surviving vestiges of class solidarity. Indeed, the two great traditional markets of collective identity, nation and class, are seen to be disintegrating under the onslaught of global media, which now has the power, “to move people not just to buy the products of the cultural industries, but to buy into networks that offer forms of community and alliance which can transcend the (old) confines of class, gender, regional and national culture.” [49]

There are three viewpoints on the impact of globalization of Western culture: (a) it is having a homogenizing effect, (b) it is leading to the development of new hybrid cultural forms, and (c) it results in both homogeneity and hybridization.

The supporters of the cultural homogenization thesis maintain that the spread of globalization through global media, information systems and multinational dispensations has led to the erosion of local cultures and traditions. According to Beck, “In the villages of Lower Bavaria, just as in Calcutta, Singapore or the ‘favelas’ of Rio de Janeiro, people watch Dallas on TV, wear blue jeans and smoke Marlboro as a sign of ‘free, untouched nature’.” [50] He then goes on to talk of a “single commodity world” where local identities will give way to “symbols from the publicity and image departments of multinational corporations… satellites make it possible to overcome all national and class boundaries and to plant the carefully devised glitter of white America in the hearts of people all around the world.” [51]

Since the images of American popular culture are everywhere, it may not be wrong to claim that ultimately all cultural differences will vanish and some sort of cultural sameness, promoted by immensely powerful, transnational media establishments, will get superimposed. The impact of globalization of media on local culture has been brought out by Francis de Sales with reference to Indonesia. The Indonesian youth prefers the clothes bearing the brand names of Nike, Adidas, Reeboks, and Filas. It tries to copy the mannerism and lifestyle of its role models like the famous baseball players Michael Jordan or O’ Neal. Young Indonesians prefer to put on shorts or torn jeans to imitate their American counterparts whom they quite often watch on television or in movies. [52]

The potency of Reebok or Nike, Camel or Marlboro, McDonald’s or Kentucky Fried Chicken, Coca Cola or Sprite, Levi-Strauss Or Wrangler’s advertising imagery has made it easy to sell these products everywhere on the planet. These products use the global media that play a central economic role. The global media provide part of the global infrastructure for non-media firms. The global media provide the main vehicle for advertising, and at the same time facilitate corporate expansion into new nations, regions, and markets. As a result, we see how the products of everyday needs and the global media are working together to occupy or to colonize new consumers.

During the on-going globalization two processes are seen at work. They are migration and cosmopolitanism. There is a big rush of both skilled and unskilled people from less developed countries to more developed ones in search of employment opportunism. On the other hand, the cosmopolitans trot the globe in search of more profitable conditions and opportunities for locating their production facilities and marketing their wares. Both are homeless. “The migrant cannot go home, whereas the cosmopolitan has no home to go.” [53]

“If migration is the popular form of multiculturalism, cosmopolitanism is its elitist version. Both are products of the same global economic system, But since transnational capitalism also breeds isolationism and anxiety, uprooting men and women from their traditional attachments and pitching their identity into chronic crisis, it fosters, by way of reaction, cultures of defensive solidarity at the very time that it is busy proliferating this brave new cosmopolitanism. The more avant-garde the world waxes, the more archaic it grows. As hybridity spreads, so do the cries of heresy. For every waft of Parisian perfume in Tokyo, one can find a young Nazi thing or a middle-aged communitarian philosopher. Once the mould of the nation-state is cracked, types of cultural politics which never quite fitted that framework, not cosmopolitanism locks horns with communalism, the one with too little identity and the other with too much, the temporary resolutions of nationalism and aesthetics begin to fall apart into a ‘bad’ universalism on the one hand and a ‘bad’ particularism on the other. At the same time, culture and politics begin to change relation.” [54]

It is claimed that on-going globalization with its attendant revolution in information technology is bound to enrich people culturally by bringing them all the knowledge of which they have been hitherto deprived. A person may read and enjoy the classics and enjoy music and movies without incurring much expenditure of money and time. There are, however, dissenting, nay, alarming voices on this score. One such voice is that of Cass Sunstein in his book (Princeton University Press, 2001).

According to him, new ideas and new knowledge definitely broaden the mental ken. This, however, is not true when people are allowed to access only selective and filtered ideas and knowledge. His basic premise is that new information technologies in general and the Internet in particular dish out filtered and selective ideas and knowledge. It is needless to add that democracy will be jeopardised. It is true that the power of governments to censor news and other pieces of information has been considerably reduced, but the people and organizations that vend them have their power to decide what to disseminate remains intact. Even now the corporations that control media decide what to dish out to readers, viewers and listeners.

In the era of ongoing globalization, the faithful covering and the quality of news and views do not count much in determining the standing of a newspaper or television channel. It is the extent of circulation and the television ratings that count. “The result is a sea-change in priorities and a skewed presentation of what is happening in the country.” [55] To illustrate this, “a simple circular issued by Delhi police commissioner … that the police will no longer harass young couples in public parks – caught the imagination of most editors in the print as well as electronic media and edged out many an important political and economic development. And how can it be otherwise, when editors of not just the Times of India and the Hindustan Times, but even financial papers are reminded by their masters every day, “And don’t forget, you belong to the entertainment industry”?

“No wonder, then, that the preoccupation of the so-called Generation X—the famous three F’s—food, fashion and fornication—are being exploited by the media to boost circulation. This is the age of feel-good news. Bad news has no place, until it has the dramatic potential of a caste war or communal carnage. Four hundred journalists covered Lakme India’s Fashion week recently. Few were sent to cover starvation deaths in Kalahandi in Orissa or farmers committing suicide in India’s most prosperous state, Maharashtra.” [56]

Leading Indian newspapers have more interest in news items from the world of glamour and luxury that interest only the rich. To cite an instance, not long ago, the Times of India ran a front-page story on the launch a luxury car from an international corporation.

Sony’s CEO Nobuyuki Idei is on record as saying: “We don’t place our trust in market surveys. Our goal is to create new markets by discovering hidden, perhaps even unrecognized, needs and wishes. We do not initiate: this is the proudest and the most challenging value in our culture.” [57]

Sultan Shahin comments:

“Is it any wonder that now marketing executives sit in editors’ chairs? A whole new generation of readers has been created . Youngsters who would not look at a newspaper that was meant for their parents, particularly fathers, now avidly go to the color supplements of the same papers that their parents may not relish much. News reports and even editorials appear to be advertising some product or the other, particularly those meant for the youth.” [58]

Obviously, the worlds of news and advertisements have become intermingled.

Youth has become the prime target of the advertisers of consumer goods and services. The philosophy behind this is: “If you get them while they are young, they will be yours for life.” The turnover of global TV advertising is to the tune of $36 billion and its major orientation is towards the males of age group 18 to 34 years. ‘Once a Chevy guy, always a Chevy guy’, the reasoning goes. Apparently, “so prevalent is this paradigm that most network executives find they can rarely afford to worry about nobler motives, such as public service or producing critically acclaimed shows.” [59]

Mario Vargas Llosa, the novelist, opposes the view that globalization poses any serious problem for cultures of developing countries. According to him, cries of Western cultural hegemony are as common as they are misguided. In reality, globalization does not suffocate local cultures but rather liberates them from the ideological conformity of nationalism. But does admit that “the disappearance of national borders and the establishment of a world interconnected by markets will deal a deathblow to regional and national cultures and to the traditions, customs, myths, and mores that determine each country or region’s cultural identity.”

Thus, a number of things follow from what Mario Vargas Llosa has stated. First, globalization does not strangle local cultures; it liberates them. Yet he admits that it does take a toll on traditional life, “The festivals, attire, customs, ceremonies, rites, and beliefs that in the past gave humanity its folkloric and ethnological variety are progressively disappearing or confining themselves to minority sectors.” Second, “When given the option to choose freely, peoples, sometimes counter to what their leaders or intellectual traditionalists would like, opt for modernization without slightest ambiguity.” Third, “the allegations against globalization and in favor of cultural identity reveal a static conception of culture that has no historical basis.” In other words, cultures always change, the only thing to see as to how they do so. Last, he terms dangerous the very notion of cultural identity because “It threatens humanity’s most precious achievement: freedom.” People’s identity, however, is not determined only by cultural factors. “The concept of identity, when not employed on an exclusively individual scale, is inherently reductionist and dehumanizing, a collectivist and ideological abstraction….” [60]

Even though there is profound truth in what Vargas Llosa says, he fails to recognize the extreme distortions and imbalances resulting from the forces of globalization. This, in fact, results from an ‘either-or mindset’. In the words of Steve Talbott,

“It’s obvious enough that globalization won’t buy you much if the societies and places you ‘globalize’ are by that very process denatured, devalued, deprived of their local savor. You end up with global relations that are relations of same to same, in which case there isn’t much reason to relate. When all the emphasis is on universal connectivity and none is on deepening the distinctive contributions of the people and institutions you are connecting, then everything loses its individual character – which is much the same as losing its existence. You perfect a global syntax for interaction, but there’s no one left you’d care to interact with, no one who offers anything different from the homogenized culture that already surrounds you.” [61]

This means that one should not ignore localization; in fact it should be encourageed. Localization does not amount to being closed. By its very nature it is unbounded and outwardly open without any rigid boundaries. Each local settlement or society has relationships with neighbouring settlements. Thus localization implies openness to the rest of the world. People want to preserve their roots while at the same time becoming global citizens. They aim at holding both globalization and local roots together in harmony.

“The person who becomes most truly universal will also be the person who becomes most truly individual, centered and grounded in himself. And what is true of the individual is also true of communities. No community can become meaningfully universal or global except by cultivating its own distinctiveness, its own values. Then, the necessities of its ever-richer life will impel it toward an appropriate global awareness […] So it’s not that we should tell traditional cultures, ‘Stay as you are.’ Rather, it’s that these cultures should be allowed to evolve according to the intrinsic logic of their own traditions, their own wisdom – which of course will lead them beyond themselves, and which of course will be a path influenced by contacts with the rest of the world.” [62]

The on-going process of globalization lays great stress on technology, which implies two things, namely, “machinery and the mental habits conducive to a dead thinking.” “Examples of such thinking are everywhere. We build mechanical connections between people and we call that the “infrastructure of community.” We convert the natural world into massive data sets, and we call that “ecological understanding.” We send trillion-dollar capital flows streaming daily through the world, seeking nothing more than their own mathematical increase, and we call that “social development.” This is machine thinking.” [63]

John Tomlinson has approached the relationship between globalization and culture from a different angle. To him, the relationship between the two is not unilinear. Both of them influence each other. According to him, “Globalization lies at the heart of modern culture; culture practices lie at the heart of globalization. This is the reciprocal relationship.” [64] We must remember that globalization alone does not determine the shape and character of culture nor is culture the only influence on globalization.

Globalization brings about a rapidly developing and ever increasing density of the network of interconnections and interdependencies that characterize present-day social life. Territorial boundaries are becoming less and less barriers to the flows of goods, capital, people, knowledge, images, crimes, pollutants, narcotics, fashions and all sorts of rational and irrational beliefs. Distances have been shrinking owing to a sharp reduction in the time taken by transmission of information and images or physical travel.

It follows that globalization brings about a functional proximity among the people. There is, however, a different world beyond the air terminals and the five-star international hotels. This is the world beyond the reach of connectivity. It is where, in developing countries, most of the population works and has its home. Here local affairs rather than global happenings dominate. Few business travellers stray into this world. The visitors to this world consist mainly of small businessmen, low-budget tourists, migrant workers, etc. Both air travel and the Internet are beyond the reach of most of the lower middle and working people. In countries like India, the poor infrastructural facilities prevent people from having an Internet connection.

Thus forces of globalization have increased the cultural divide. For example, take the case of the Indian State of Andhra Pradesh, which has registered impressive progress in the field of information technology. The following report on its capital, Hyderabad, is very revealing:

“Cyber Tower rises from the campus of a software technology park here, a sleek Internet-connected symbol of the new India that is feverishly courting foreign investment, selling its wares in the global marketplace and creating wealth at an astonishing rate. But less than 50 miles away, in the poverty-stricken village of Sheri Ram Reddy Guda, the old India is alive and unwell. Illiteracy, sickness and hunger are the villagers’ constant companions. Women and children work in the fields for less than 50 cents a day. The sole telephone – an antique contraption of batteries and antennae – almost never works.”

It brings out the contrast between the two:

“The software technology park of Hitec City and the village of Sheri Ram Reddy Guda are separated by only a short distance, yet seem to come from different centuries, and to stand at opposite poles, emblems of the new and the old India” [65]

It notes that the chasm between India’s educated elite and its impoverished multitudes is widening. The near infatuation with information technology and the rush to integrate India with the global economy is leaving the poor and the poorer states further behind.

“This is still a country where half the women and a quarter of the men cannot read or write, where more than half the children 4 and under are stunted by malnutrition, where one-third of the population, or more than 300 million people, live in absolute poverty, unable to afford enough to eat, where more than 30 million children 6 to 10 are not in school.” [66]

Globalization is perceived as more dangerous because its impact cannot be kept out as it overcomes both natural and national barriers with the help of the latest information technologies. Free trade in cultural goods has given rise to “television without borders” and through them American fashions, tastes and values enter without any hindrance.

With the march of the process of globalization, there is a change in the character of various languages; especially those of less developed countries. To bring home this point, one may look at Hindi or the kind of English spoken or written in India; there is a perceptible change. New words have entered the vocabulary of daily usage. The introduction of “SMS” on mobile phones, which has become a rage among the youth, has brought in a new mode of conversation. There is a great deal of hybridization and undigested alien linguistic influences are clearly visible.

The use of English in general and its American variety in particular has received a great boost as a result of globalization and new information technologies. It is now everywhere. It is the language of globalization, of international business, politics and diplomacy. It is the language of computers and the Internet. Around 380 million people speak English as their first language and about 254 million as their second language. As many as a billion people are engaged in learning it. Almost one third of the population of the world is in some way or the other exposed to it. It is estimated that by the mid-21st century half the world will be more or less proficient in it.

While English has been prospering, other languages such as French, German, Russian, Spanish and Arabic have been pushed down in the international arena. According to the new edition of the Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger of Disappearing, published by the UNESCO, half the world’s 6,000 languages are under the threat of extinction. Globalization is an important factor responsible for this. It has led to outside groups interested in extracting minerals, timber and oil and natural gas coming to areas and communities barely exposed to external influences. Wherever they have established a position of dominance, they have seen to it that their own languages are used in schools, administration and the media at the expense of local languages. The Atlas has also underlined that the parents encourage their children to acquire the knowledge of the dominant language in order to further their job prospects. One may recall that almost the same phenomenon was witnessed during the colonial era in India. Parents prompted their children to go in for English language and culture to rise in life. [67]

There is a great deal of apprehension in many developing countries about the increasing invasion by American culture. A symposium organized by the Juma Al Majid Centre for Cultural Heritage brought this out. The topic was “Arab culture in a Globalization Era.” Dr Jassim Mohammed Jirjees, Asstt. Secretary-General of the Centre noted:

“Globalization is a recent and sensitive issue that touches and affects Arabs and Muslims. I wonder whether globalisation is a bridge of brotherhood among superpowers and other small countries, or is it a trap set for nations who don’t understand what globalisation is, or is it a lack of belief in nationalisation, or does it dedicate everything for the good of the U. S.”

Dr Jassim Asfour, General Secretary of the Cultural Council, Egypt said: “Globalisation is another term for capitalism and imperialism and all Arab Muslims need to consider it an imminent danger that is endangering our political, social, cultural and economic stability.

“The stability has become greatly affected by all multinational and transnational companies that have spread all over the world markets. These companies are penetrating any country’s stability without even taking into consideration the political independence, national integration or national identity.”

He went on to emphasise,

“Globalisation contains a lot of aspects that are related to the phenomenon of Americanisation. So in order to fight this phenomenon and protect our national identity and revive our Arabic and Islamic culture, we need to protect our culture by understanding what globalisation is and know how to fight it.” [68]

While protagonists of globalization claim that its great contribution is cultural homogenization through Westernization or Americanization, the champions of multiculturalism maintain that “all cultures are authentic in their own terms and that neither the West at large nor the United States in particular has the right to impose its beliefs and values onto orhers.” [69]

Globalization could have many possibilities for works of music and literature in the future. They, as the available trend indicates, are going to be accessible to a large number of people. However, in the era of present globalization, human culture is being commodified, and takes place very much on the terms of the most powerful.


1. Independent, Dublin, 13 October 1999. Cf. “The United States should not hesitate to promote its values. In an effort to be polite or politic, Americans should not deny the fact that of all the nations in the history of the world, theirs is the most just, the most tolerant, the most willing to constantly reassess and improve itself, and the best model for the future.” David Rothkop, ‘In Praise of Cultural Imperialism? Effects of Globalization on Culture’, Foreign Policy, June 22, 1997. Rothkop is managing director of Kissinger Associates, besides being a professor at Columbia University.

2. Thomas L. Friedman, ‘A Manifesto for the Fast World’, The New York Times Magazine, 28 March 1999.

3. Friedman, The Lexus and the Olive Tree (New York, 1999), 8.

4. Rothkop, ‘In Praise of Cultural Imperialism?’.

5. ‘Economic Globalization and Culture: A Discussion with Dr. Francis Fukuyama’.

6. Ibid. Cf. “Critics of globalization argue that the process will lead to a stripping away of identity and a blandly uniform, Orwellian world. On a planet of 6 billion people, this is, of course, an impossibility. More importantly, the decline of cultural distinctions may be a measure of the progress of civilization, a tangible sign of enhanced communications and understanding.” Rothkop, ‘In Praise of Cultural Imperialism?’.

7. Malcolm Waters, Globalization (London, 1995), 3.

8. John Weckert and Douglas Adeney, ‘Cultural Imperialism and the Internet’, Proceedings from 1997 International Symposium on Technology and Society: Technology at a Time of Sweeping Change, New York, 1997.

9. Harold I. Schiller, Communications and Cultural Domination (New York, 1976).

10. Glendal P. Robinson, ‘A Mythic Perspective of Commodification on the World Wide Web’.

11. Moisés Naim, ‘The New Diaspora’, Foreign Policy, July-August 2002.

12. Robinson, ‘A Mythic Perspective’, 140.

13. Robinson, ‘A Mythic Perspective’, 143.

14. G. Ritzer, The McDonaldization of Society (Thousand Oaks, 1993).

15. “Despite a degree of convergence, most fundamental differences in regional tastes, preference, culture and religions have not suddenly disappeared with the invention of the word ‘globalization’ or the internet.” Hugo Ehrnreich, ‘The Globalization Paradox’, The Financial Times, 21 December 2000. Also see, Mike Featherstone, ‘Global and local cultures’, in Jon Bird et al, eds., Mapping the Futures: Local Cultures, Global Change (London, 1993), 169-187.

16. Waters, Globalization, 144.

17. Waters, Globalization.

18. David Harvey, The Condition of Post-modernity: An Enquiry into the Origins of Cultural Change (Oxford, 1989), 285.

19. Harvey, The Condition of Post-modernity.

20. Harvey, The Condition of Post-modernity, 286.

21. Harvey, The Condition of Post-modernity, 287.

22. R. Cronk, ‘Consumerism and the New Capitalism’.

23. Cronk, ‘Consumerism’.

24. Cronk, ‘Consumerism’.

25. Robert D. Manning, Credit Card Nation: The Consequences of America’s Addiction to Credit (New York, 2000).

26. Anthony Giddens, The Consequences of Modernity (Cambridge, 1990), 1.

27. Marshall McLuhan, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man (Toronto, 1994).

28. Frances Cairncross, The Death of Distance (Boston, Mass., 1997), xv.

29. Cairncross, The Death of Distance, 3.

30. Benjamin R. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld (New York, 1996), 3.

31. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld.

32. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 4.

33. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 5. Barber uses the term Jihad “in its militant construction to suggest dogmatic and violent particularism of a kind known to Christians no less than Muslims, to Germans and Hindis as well as to Arabs. The phenomena to which I apply the phrase have innocent enough beginnings: identity politics and multicultural diversity can represent strategies of a free society trying to give expression to its diversity. What ends as Jihad may begin as a simple search for a local identity some set of common personal attributes to hold out against the numbing and neutering uniformities of industrial modernization and the colonizing culture of McWorld.”

34. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 16.

35. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 16-17.

36. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 27.

37. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 31.

38. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 59-60.

39. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld.

40. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 98.

41. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 100.

42. Barber, Jihad vs. McWorld, 146.


44. Henry Jenkins, ‘Digital Renaissance: Culture goes Global’, Technology Review, July-August, 2001; Also see, George Lipsitz, Dangerous Crossroads: Popular Music, Post-modernism, and the Politics of Place (London, 1997).

45. John Beynon and David Dunkerley, eds., Globalization: The Reader (London, 2000), 2.

46. K. Negers, Producing Pop: Culture and Conflict in the Pop Music Industry (London, 1992); Negers, Popular Music in Theory (Cambridge, 1996).

47. U. Beck, What is Globalization? (Cambridge, 2000), 10-11.

48. Beck, What is Globalization?, 11.

49. D. Hebdige, ‘After the masses’, in S. Hall and M. Jacques, eds., New Times, London 1989.

50. Beck, What is Globalization?, 42.

51. Beck, What is Globalization?, 43.


53. Terry Eagelton, The Idea of Culture (Oxford, 2000), 63.

54. Eagelton, The Idea of Culture.

55. Sultan Shahin, ‘Indian Media Laid Bare’, Asia Times, 23 October, 02.

56. Shahin, ‘Indian Media’.

57. Quoted in Shahin, ‘Indian Media’.

58. Shahin, ‘Indian Media’.

59. Gloria Goodale and M. S. Mason, ‘Youth powers TV, but is that smart business?’, Christian Science Monitor, 13 September 2002.

60. Mario Vargas Llosa, ‘The Culture of Liberty’, Foreign Policy, January-February 2001.

61. Steve Talbott, ‘Why Not Globalization?’.

62. Talbott, ‘Why Not Globalization?’.

63. Talbott, ‘Why Not Globalization?’.

64. John Tomlinson, Globalization and Culture (Cambridge, 1999), 1.

65. Celia W. Dugger, ‘India’s Unwired Villages Mired in the Distant Past’, The New York Times, 19 March 2000.

66. Dugger, ‘India’s Unwired Villages’.

67. Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow, ‘World’s Languages Are Fast Disappearing’, Independent, 25 April 2002; Also see, ‘Parlez-Vous Verlan?’.

68. Bassam Zázá, ‘Arab Speakers See Threat to Culture by Globalization’, Gulf News, 21 March 2002.

69. Keith Windschuttle, ‘The Ethnocentrism of Clifford Geertz’, New Criterion, October 2002.

Dr.Girish Mishra has written extensively for all leading Indian dailies and periodicals including The Times Of India, Hindu, Indian Express and Dainik Jagran. He has, in the past, also written for The People's Press. He has written a formidable list of books on topics related to Economy and Economic History. He lives in New Delhi, India. More of his articles can be viewed at