Global Cultural Flows

Topics: Arjun Appadurai, Globalization, Mediascape Pages: 3 (482 words) Published: May 3, 2013
Global Cultural Flows
The international cultural flows that exist today are outlined by the global theorist Arjun Appadurai (1996). He uses the suffix –scape to allow us to understand the fluid, irregular shapes that characterize international capital and indicate that they are not visibly the same from each angle but are influenced by historical, linguistic, and political situations. These landscapes are the building blocks that Appadurai calls “imagined worlds” – the multiple worlds that are constituted by the historically situated imaginations of persons and groups spread around the globe. Tthese terms are also used to stress different streams or flows along which cultural material may be seen to be moving across national boundaries. Appadurai identifies these -scapes as ethnoscape, technoscape, financescape, mediascape, and ideoscape.

Ethnoscape is the landscape that comprises of the shifting of people around the world. This includes immigrants, refugees, guest workers, exiles, tourists. It also includes other moving groups/individuals that form an essential feature to the politics between nations. With the shifting of ethnoscape, geography or country of origin is becoming of a lesser indicator of cultural mark.


By technoscape, Appadurai refers to the “global configuration” of technology and the way technology (both high and low) moves at high speeds across various boundaries and borders that we once considered in the past to be impervious. This is identified by flow of machinery, technology and software produced by trans-national corporations and government agencies.


Financescapes is the dispositon of the global capital which is now a more mysterious, rapid, and a difficult landscape to follow due to changes in currency markets, national stock exchanges, and commodity speculations and the speed at which they move at. Financescape focuses of the flow of currencies, securities, and of capital....
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