George Ritzer and Benjamin Barber have both argued that the globalization of our economic system, through the rise of multinational corporations and the expansion of capitalist systems, has led to a homogenization of local culture. Virtually everywhere you go in the world people eat pizza, drink soda, wear blue jeans, listen to rock and roll music, and watch movies about superheroes. Ritzer and Barber assume this is bad, because globalization represents a loss of cultural diversity and heritage.
For the Final Paper, you will write a six-page essay evaluating the effect of globalization on local communities and their unique cultural heritages. The thesis of your paper should answer the following question: Is globalization good for local communities? Why or why not?
To answer this question, you may need to consider some of the following questions:
Remember that globalization has economic, political, and environmental aspects that effect local cultures in different ways. For example, issues of economic development, human rights, demographic shifts, and political stability might be relevant to your analysis.
You must use at least six scholarly sources. While you may wish to do additional outside research for this project, you should first refer to the required resources for this class. Obviously, the Ritzer and Barber readings are relevant here, but so are others. For example, the Allison Jaggar article, “Is Globalization Good for Women?” (see Week One), provides a template for this assignment. Jaggar does a good job of showing how to start with a clear definition of globalization before moving to an analysis of globalization’s effect on a specific category of people. Additionally, Kwame Anthony Appiah’s essay, “The Case for Contamination” (Week Two); Thomas Friedman’s column, “Big Mac II” (Week Three); and Zygmunt Bauman’s article, “Glocalization and Hybridity” (Week 4), each provide a different analysis of how local communities can respond to the threat of cultural homogenization posed by globalization.
Writing the Final Paper
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