I define globalization as the occurrence of interconnectivity and interdependence between countries, which has gone through several stages of advancement especially after the invention of advanced technology. With the increasing usage of advanced technology that allows us to communicate and travel across borders at a speed that has never been imagined before, the world in some way is becoming standardized. It is difficult to attach a specific date to the occurrence of globalization because it is very subjective and depends on the opinion of each individual. Globalization is a very controversial concept because its effects are widely debatable. While some might say that the Colombian Exchange sparked globalization or the fall of the Berlin Wall, I argue that while the beginning may be highly debatable, there are various stages of globalization as it advances.
In my analysis of the term globalization, I find that globalization began with the Columbian Exchange and has progressed ever since with the invention of mass transportation, technology, and education around the world. The Columbian Exchange was one of the first widespread exchanges of plants, animals, diseases and technology between the Americas and Europe. The Columbian Exchange seems to embody the term globalization because even just that one event highlights the effects of globalization as a whole. It demonstrates that while there are many rewards to reap from this interconnectivity between countries, there are also many negative effects as a result. One cannot simply say that globalization is inherently bad or good without taking a look at the arguments on both sides.
The film “The World According to Sesame Street” shines an optimistic light on globalization by describing the rewards of interconnecting countries. This film depicts the cultural impact and the complexities of creating international adaptations of the children’s television show Sesame Street. Throughout the film, the producers demonstrate how each country’s own adaption of Sesame Street is not just a standardized version of the American show, but is actually fit to meet the needs and traditions of the country at hand. For example, in the case of the South African version of the show named Takalani Sesame, the puppets helped to controversially address the real challenges of the millions of children living in a country with one of the world’s most quickly growing HIV infection rates. Also, just in general the world is now able to quickly find out about an epidemic, disaster, or other occurrence that is taking place in another country with virtually the click of a button. Therefore, this interconnectivity is able to bring about a global awareness due to the influx of information between various countries.
Bangladesh’s co-producer says it best when he says that internationalism doesn’t mean you have to copy the richest country, it means that you have to offer the best you have. One essential part of globalization is that it takes the best of what different cultures have to offer and allows different parts of the world to reap from the finest things that civilizations have given. For instance, Sesame Street was a powerful and educational children’s television show in America before it was adapted to meet the needs of other countries. The producers diligently chose to have puppets with abstract colors in an effort to emphasize multi-cultures and the tolerance of them. Globalization itself brings about a sense of cultural toleration, as the connection between countries remains steadily increasing. To understand globalization, we must first ponder on the thought that America itself is nothing more than a globalized people. To be honest, America itself could be described as a positive effect of globalization since it is filled with various different cultures, ideas, crops, animals, etc that are a direct result of the interconnectivity and interdependence of the world.
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