Week 4 Short Answer

I’ve learned throughout my time as history major at MSU and in the readings and lectures for this class, that globalization is the spread of trade, economic, and government ideas across the globe. It was considered in lecture whether globalization was really Americanization because we have the most powerful military and seem to be the face of the media that is seen around the world because of the spread of technology. I agree and think this is a better word to describe the trade and government principles that are being encouraged because it seems like they are mostly capitalist ideas like America prefers.

The spread of another country’s ideas and influence in other countries can bee seen as both a good and bad thing. It can be a good thing because it can bring things like food and clean drinking water to areas that once were without. Globalization can also decrease poverty and increase education and healthcare in countries that could not provide those things before. While these are all great things, globalization is seen by many as a negative event.

Globalization is known as a bad concept for a number of reasons. In our readings by Appadurai he explains how he believes globalization causes violence against minorities that threaten cultural purity in a globalizing world and that these minorities are in danger of genocide at the hands of the predatory identities who feel threatened by them (pg. 84). He used Nazi, Germany as an example of a predatory identity who used cultural purity as a reason for the extermination of millions of people considered to be a minority and culturally impure (pg. 53-57). The process of globalization also has the power to change cultures in a way that decreases diversity throughout the world. As countries increasingly adopt the ideas and policies of the U.S. the ideas and concepts behind their own culture fade away with each generation until they are no longer existent. If this were to continue, as mentioned in lecture, there may come a time when the world is occupied by one mass culture that is similar in all parts of the globe. I agree that it would be a terrible and tragic thing if the cultural diversity of the world were to be wiped out by the process of globalization.

After the lectures and readings for this unit we have been asked to consider what we think the best unit for measuring humanity in the 21st century is. I think that the best way to measure humanity in today’s world is by social groups. I believe that social groups are the best measurement because everyone can identify with one social group or another and social groups themselves help strengthen people’s identity and make them the person they are in the world. Social groups also construct the communities within countries that act against one another in the fight for and against globalization.

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