THE WORLD IS SHRINKING! Oh wait, everything is just getting easier

Have you ever actually thought that scientists are wrong and that the world actually isn’t expanding and it is actually shrinking?

Not a bad thought to have. Although, neither true nor proven, it is important to consider why people say that the world is ‘shrinking’ when we talk about globalisation.

Firstly, globalisation is an international community that is influenced by technology development, economic, political and military interests (O’Shaughnessy and Stadler). In other words, the world is better connected due to these things. Globalisation is something worth talking about because of the development and the changes it has provided society with. Lets look at some of the things that globalistation has enabled us to do/have access to:

  • Technology – linking us to the rest of the world
  • Culture – experiencing different cultures through education, travelling and openness
  • Environmental awareness – i.e. climate change, global warming
  • Equality – nations coming together as one to fight for important issues
  • Trade vs Aid – 1st world countries being able to help and aid 3rd world countries out of natural disasters and poverty
  • Outsourcing – the international market of trade has expanded rapidly.

These are only SOME of the things that globalisation has opened us up to. Along with great advantages, such as being able to help 3rd world countries and having the opportunity to travel to the ends of the earth, there has also been some contributing negative factors. For example: Terrorism and Monopoly power within governing countries and it is important not to forget these things as we discuss about globalisation.

From the lecture in week 2, we saw a video, ‘Where is home?’ by Pico Leyer, sponsored by TEDGlobal. It was interesting and capturing as it discussed how many people can define home. Is it:

  • Where you were born?
  • Raised?
  • Where your heart is?
  • Your heritage/your ancestry?
  • Work, health services, fashion?

To see the video; click here: https://www.ted.com/talks/pico_iyer_where_is_home/transcript?language=en

For me, home is where my heart is; no matter where I go, I will always call The Netherlands home. I spent 6 months on Student Exchange there, learning about a culture that I knew hardly anything about. On my exchange trip, I was able to make connections with my heritage as this is where my father’s side of the family is originally from before moving to Australia 60 odd years ago. This was a big turning point for me in my life, as I was literally on the other side of the globe living with a family that I met when I had landed in Amsterdam and I was still able to connect with family and friends back home.

The media has allowed us to view globalisation in whole new perspective due to media saturation and cultural flows. Media saturation is an overload of information which we have access to through a virtual global community. For example: Social Media websites such as Facebook, Instagram, Youtube along with the access to Google. The cultural flows dimensions include the following:

  • Ethnoscapes – Movement of people
  • Technoscapes – Global configuration of technology
  • Financescapes – Movement of money around the globe
  • Mediascapes and Ideoscapes – landscapes of images with the capabilities to produce and spread information

Through these scapes, it is important to recognise that the media and technology plays one of the biggest roles in globalisation. The world is accessing information much quicker than ever before and this speed rate will only continue to fasten. Travelling is becoming quicker, connection is becoming clearer and it feels like we are closer to the other side of the world than ever before.

Maybe the world is shrinking, but our ideas and thoughts are defiantly expanding.