Globalization has become one of the principal symbols of economic, cultural and political life in the 21st century. Although there is no precise definition of globalization, due to the complexity of the term and the varying attitudes towards it, put simply it is the process by which nationality is becoming all the time more irrelevant. International organizations such as Coca Cola, Disney, McDonald's, Sony, Shell Oil and IBM, symbolize such a process. In layman's terms, globalization is basically the means by which people around the globe are now more connected to each other than ever before. Information and money flow more swiftly and goods and services produced in one part of the globe are progressively more obtainable worldwide. International travel is also more frequent and international communication is routine. However globalization as we know it today is vastly different from its humble beginnings. The following essay will look at the effect global institutions have on a national level and whether they challenge or defend the interests of the nation.
Richard Peet's reading deals with the beginning of globalization, brought on by a struggle for dominance and control of the world's resources, through the use of coercion. Globalization was heralded by Columbus's discovery of America in 1492. European capitalists then required labour to develop their new found continent. This came in the form of slavery, "black slavery had an economic rather than merely a racial basis - it was used because it was cheaper."(Peet, R. pg.120) This lead to the demise of Africa's potential for development as millions of slaves were taken from their homeland. This left a void of labour in Africa, therefore inhibiting their ability to develop their own nation. This is still prevalent in today's society as sweatshops in underdeveloped countries with deplorable conditions are used as labour for many of the world's global institutions such as Nike and Polo Ralph Lauren (see attached...
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