Effect of Globalization on Local Cultures

Topics: Culture, The Culture, Introduction Pages: 2 (558 words) Published: November 4, 2010
In one sense people think of globalization as something that will homogenize a local culture so much so that it is unrecognizable, which would be a bad thing. Today globalization frequently applies to "modernization" by means of the introduction of new technology into an existing culture. Here we must be careful because what some might view as culture forms one of the pillars that becomes the basis for legitimacy in a society. Culture is the glue that enables a population to view itself as a cohesive group with a common heritage and value set. Globalization (introduction of new technology) can act to undermine common bonds that tie a people together when there is not clear planning for the way to introduce the technology. Invasive species and their spread has been called the "least reversible of all human impacts” (White, 1997). In the same way that “these invasions threaten biological diversity by causing population declines of native species and by altering key ecosystem processes like hydrology, nitrogen fixation, and fire regime” (White, 1997), the insertion of technology on a people not culturally ready for it will force out the natural cultural timeline. Often this change brings about many more unforeseen and for the most part, harmful changes inside the very fabric of the local culture. A perfect example of this is illustrated when a record player is inserted into the indigenous culture of a local south American culture. In this scenario, this population has existed with no outside contact for centuries and thusly has developed its own unique set of customs and traditions, one of which is a very elaborate dance and song. This all changes when explorers stumble upon this secluded society and in an attempt to save the culture’s practices, record their most important song on a vinyl. Now new generations have no need to learn the song, instead relying on the recording to fulfill the responsibility previously designated to talented native musicians...
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