Globalization : Globalization And Global Dominance Of The English Language

Globalization : Globalization And Global Dominance Of The English Language

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While, in the past, many fundamentally associated globalization with the homogenization of cultures, this theory has been relegated in favor of a concentrated focus on the fragmentation and differentiating effects of globalization. Indeed, this trend towards fragmentation can be seen in diverse arenas, from the spread of Nationalism, to the loss of languages across the world. This essay will examine two cases that exemplify globalization’s role in homogenization vs fragmentation: the rise of Nationalism, and the global dominance of the English language. In this analysis of homogenization vs fragmentation, it becomes apparent that both of these phenomena are occurring rapidly, and simultaneously, under the intensified “overheating” of our globalized world.
Eriksen begins Globalization the metaphor of overheating to capture the dynamic acceleration of globalization. He writes, “An overheated world is one of frictions and tensions, simply because there are more of us, with more activities, projects, opportunities, and technologies than ever before in history” (Eriksen 10). In the hot mass of complex interactions that is globalization, both homogenizing and fragmenting trends are accelerating simultaneously.
According to early concepts of globalization held during the age of Modernization theory, it was assumed that globalization would ultimately lead to the homogenization of global cultures into a single world culture informed by westernization. Ted Lewellen writes, “In some of its early manifestations, globalization was held to be coterminous with homogenization… traditional society would be absorbed by development, so Western cultural hegemony would inevitably overrun non-western cultures” (TL 52). This conception of homogenizati...


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...al phenomenon of fragmentation, it also creates divisions within countries themselves as individuals within these nations feel divisions within the nation deepen, which in the case of Scotland will likely result in the creation of another new country within the next decade (citing class discussion on nationalism and new countries).
Ultimately, it would be a mistake to point towards homogenization (which is clearly evident in the global loss of language diversity) or fragmentation — which is currently of primary interest to anthropologists studying globalization (TL 53) — as the prevailing trend in globalization. Instead, both of these features of globalization are occurring simultaneously as the speed and volume at which people, commodities, ideas, images, culture, and capital flowing across the globe intensifies due to the “overheating” effect of globalization.”

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