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Thinking Globally

Thinking Globally: A Global Studies Reader

EDITED BY Mark Juergensmeyer
Copyright Date: 2014
Edition: 1
Pages: 456
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  • Book Info
    Thinking Globally
    Book Description:

    In this accessible text, Mark Juergensmeyer, a pioneer in global studies, provides a comprehensive overview of the emerging field of global studies from regional, topical, and theoretical perspectives. Each of the twenty compact chapters inThinking Globallyfeatures Juergensmeyer's own lucid introduction to the key topics and offers brief excerpts from major writers in those areas. The chapters explore the history of globalization in each region of the world, from Africa and the Middle East to Asia, Europe, and the Americas, and cover key issues in today's global era, such as:• Challenges of the global economy• Fading of the nation-state• Emerging nationalisms and transnational ideologies• Hidden economies of sex trafficking and the illegal drug trade• New communications media• Environmental crises• Human rights abusesThinking Globallyis the perfect introduction to global studies for students, and an exceptional resource for anyone interested in learning more about this new area of study.

    eISBN: 978-0-520-95801-2
    Subjects: Anthropology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-xii)
  3. PREFACE: A Friendly Introduction to Global Studies
    (pp. xiii-xviii)

      (pp. 3-29)
      Manfred Steger, Thomas Friedman, Paul James and Steven Weber

      Your friends may have peeked over your shoulders at this book and asked why you interested in global studies. And they might have added, just what is that, anyway? what do you tell them? You could say that you are studying what goes on in the world that knits us all together—but that sounds sort of soft and squishy. Or you could them that you are studying the economic and technological networks that interact on global plane. But that’s only part of the story.

      The honest truth is that “global studies” can mean a lot of different things, both...

      (pp. 30-50)
      William McNeill, Jane Burbank, Frederick Cooper, Immanuel Wallerstein and Dominic Sachsenmaier

      When did globalization begin? If you wanted to trace the history of globalization, where would you start? Well, you could begin with the end of the Cold War and the breakup of the Soviet Union. If you get a bit more reflective, you might go back to a period of history several centuries earlier, when ships plied the oceans with cargoes of silver, spices, and sugar, or when the reach of European colonialization extended throughout the world. You might even reach back earlier in time, when great empires dominated huge stretches of land, such as the Mongol empire in Central...


    • 3 AFRICA: The Rise of Ethnic Politics in a Global World
      (pp. 53-73)
      Nayan Chanda, Dilip Hiro, Jeffrey Haynes, Jacob K. Olupona and Okwudiba Nnoli

      In this and the next seven chapters of this book, we will explore the way that global forces have affected different regions of the world and the way that these areas have contributed to global culture, society, economy, and political life. You might call this the “global-in” and “global-out” approach. We are interested in the global currents that have flowed into a particular region at different moments in history (global in) and the way that elements of those societies have gone out into other areas of the world (global out).

      We begin with Africa. It is a logical place to...

    • 4 THE MIDDLE EAST: Religious Politics and Antiglobalization
      (pp. 74-98)
      Mohammed Bamyeh, Said Amir Arjomand, Jonathan Fox and Barah Mikaïl

      The Europeans who gave the Middle East its name thought of it as the crossroads of West and East, at the intersection of the main overland routes between Africa and Asia and Europe. All of these areas influenced the Middle East, of course, but the Middle East has made its own enormous contributions to global culture and the transnational economy as well. Three of the world’s great religious traditions began there—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—and its natural resources, including oil, have made parts of the Middle East prosperous. The world’s tallest building is in Dubai, and one of the...

    • 5 SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIA: Global Labor and Asian Culture
      (pp. 99-113)
      Richard Foltz, Morris Rossabi, Vasudha Narayanan, Barbara D. Metcalf, Thomas R. Metcalf, Carol Upadhya and A.R. Vasavi

      Like the Middle East, South Asia has been at the crossroads of civilizations over the centuries. Outsiders came from the West, transforming Indian culture and bringing Islam, Christianity, and ancient Indo-European cultures and languages to the subcontinent. Some of Asia’s most important cultural traditions have flowed out of South Asia. Buddhism was born in India, and it spread from there around the world. Hinduism and Sikhism, which also had their origins in India, have had a global reach as well. The current interaction of South Asia with the world culturally, economically, and demographically has historical precedents.

      When we talk about...

    • 6 EAST ASIA: Global Economic Empires
      (pp. 114-132)
      Kenneth Pomeranz, Andre Gunder Frank, Steven Radelat, Jeffrey Sachs, Jong-Wha Lee and Ho-Fung Hung

      Whether a region is east or west or at the center depends, of course, on one’s point of view. To whom is “East Asia” east, or even “far east,” and to whom is it “the Orient”? The answer is Europeans, of course. For centuries, they thought of the area at the other end of the Eurasian land mass as mystical and foreboding, as forbidden as the Forbidden City adjacent to Tiananmen Square in Beijing. And yet East Asia has never been that remote. Even though Japan and Korea were sometimes reclusive, China always interacted economically with the rest of the...

    • 7 SOUTHEAST ASIA AND THE PACIFIC: The Edges of Globalization
      (pp. 133-156)
      Georges Coedès, Benedict Anderson, Sucheng Chan, Celeste Lipow MacLeod and Joel Robbins

      Southeast Asia has been on the edges of great civilizations of Asia such as China and India. But also, its strategic geographic location has put the mainland and islands of Southeast Asia at the crossroads of commercial traffic and cultural interaction, leading it to have formidable transnational empires of its own. As a result, Southeast Asia has been a mélange of competing influences from ancient times to the present.

      Southeast Asia consists of the land and islands east of India, south of China, and north of Australia. A distinction is often made between mainland and insular areas. Mainland Southeast Asia...

    • 8 EUROPE AND RUSSIA: Nationalism and Transnationalism
      (pp. 157-174)
      Peter Stearns, Eric Hobsbawm, Seyla Benhabib, Odd Arne Westad and Jürgen Habermas

      During the time of the Mediterranean civilizations some two thousand years ago, Europe was at the margins of the civilized world, However, in the past several centuries it has dominated the global order. European nations reached out to the world seeking resources and trade, and they ended up conquering vast spans of territory. When they receded from their colonial territories, they left behind Europe’s distinctive contribution to global politics, the concept of the nation-state. It is something of a paradox, then, that in the current global age Europe is forming a new transnational political and economic structure, the European Union....

    • 9 THE AMERICAS: Development Strategies
      (pp. 175-194)
      Charles C. Mann, Tzvetan Todorov, Francis Fukuyama and Denis Lynn Daly Heyck

      The rest of the world has been aware of the Western hemisphere for only a little over five hundred years, but in those relatively brief years, the Americas have played a vital role in global development. Initially, the resources of the region were plundered to bring wealth to Europe and other parts of the world. Later, America’s countries—particularly its leading nation, the United States—dominated the rest of the world both economically and in popular culture. But development among countries within the region has never been equal. The same region that produced one of the world’s richest nations also...


      (pp. 197-215)
      Benjamin Barber, Samuel Huntington, Michael Hardt, Antonio Negri and Saskia Sassen

      Beginning with this section of the book, we turn from the regional explorations of globalization to a series of contemporary issues that affect the whole world. Though many of these issues have a historical dimension and have been a feature of all parts of the world from ancient times to the present, we will focus on the contemporary period—the global era of the late twentieth and early twenty-first century.

      By general consensus, something big began to happen at the end of the twentieth century. Part of what happened was obvious: the end of the Cold War. The Berlin wall...

      (pp. 216-233)
      Kenichi Ohmae, Susan Strange, Zygmunt Bauman and William I. Robinson

      Before I traveled to another country, I used to carefully convert my dollars into German deutschmarks, Italian lira, and all the other currency I would need abroad. Today, I never do such a thing. For one thing, the deutschmark and lira no longer exist; they have been replaced by the European euro. For another thing, all I need is the piece of plastic in my pocket—my credit card.

      The disappearance of foreign currency is an eerie symbol of the fading of the idea of the nation-state in the global era. It can be argued that the idea of the...

      (pp. 234-254)
      Monica Duffy Toft, Daniel Philpott, Timothy Samuel Shah, Mark Juergensmeyer, Olivier Roy and Richard Falk

      The horrendous images of the World Trade Center towers crumbling to dust in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, were a shock to people around the world. They were even more surprised to find that these attacks were framed in the language of religion. These acts were not about religion in the narrow sense—they were not efforts to promote a particular set of beliefs—yet religion was part of the language that justified them. One of the remarkable features of political life in the global era is the rise of strident new forms of religious politics. The last...

      (pp. 255-280)
      Richard Appelbaum, Nelson Lichtenstein, Robert B. Reich, Jagdish Bhagwati and Joseph Stiglitz

      When the termglobalizationis used, it often means economic globalization—and not just economic globalization in general. Those who use the term often have a certain kind of globalization in mind—the spread of corporate capitalism around the world. So when people argue about whether globalization is a good thing, often what they’re really talking about is whether global corporate capitalism is a good thing. They are arguing about the way that transnational corporations affect society in different parts of the world. This controversial subject often does not present a very pretty picture, especially if sweatshops and environmental damage...

      (pp. 281-298)
      Benjamin J. Cohen, Stephen J. Kobrin, Glenn Firebaugh and Dani Rodrik

      If someone asked you to name the most widely traded thing in the world, what would your answer be? Would you say oil? Arms? Illegal drugs? If you said any of these, you would be wrong. The most frequently traded thing is money—lots of money. Every day currency of every denomination is traded back and forth, some $4 trillion dollars’ worth daily.

      The value of most currencies fluctuates from day to day according to how much people in other countries are willing to pay to buy them, using their own currency or one that is commonly accepted around the...

      (pp. 299-319)
      Alvin Y. So, Mayra Buvinic, Kum-Kum Bhavnani, John Foran, Priya A. Kurian and Debashish Munshi

      Development sounds like the kind of thing everyone would want. After all, a child is not considered to be grown up until he or she is fully developed. When our bodies are mature, our minds are more alert. So when the term is applied to countries and regions of the world, it sounds like this is the sort of thing to which all countries would aspire. No matter how rugged their roads, how tawdry their houses, how backwards their schools, they want to develop into something better, and be more like the big kids—the developed countries of the world....

      (pp. 320-335)
      David Shirk, Eduardo Porter, Kevin Bales, Barbara Ehrenreich and Arlie Russell Hochschild

      Most of the world’s economic activity is in plain sight. You can go down to the docks at the port of Long Beach near Los Angeles, for instance, and see a line of huge container ships that have arrived from China. From there, the goods they carry are trucked throughout the country, as everyone can see. But other aspects of the global economy are less visible, such as commodities and activities that are slipped across borders in the middle of the night. They are part of the hidden economy, and they are hidden for a reason: They are illegal.


      (pp. 336-351)
      Catherine Gautier, Ron Fujita and Hakan Seckinelgin

      When college students in Santa Barbara toss old plastic chairs off the balconies of their rooms overlooking the Pacific Ocean, they think that the chairs will just disappear. But that’s not what happens; they can stay around for years, and currents in the ocean can carry bits of that plastic debris throughout the oceans’ ecosystem. Some of it may end up in the Pacific trash vortex—also known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch—a swirling gyre of oceanborne trash floating on hundreds of square miles of the ocean’s surface in the northern central Pacific region.

      Perhaps nothing demonstrates the...

      (pp. 352-371)
      Yudhishthir Raj Isar, Michael Curtin, Natana J. DeLong-Bas and Pippa Norris

      I have a friend who likes to play chess on the Internet. He’s not always sure who he is playing with or where they are from. So he started asking, and was surprised to find out that some of his opponents were in Russia. Others were in Hong Kong, Cairo, and Mexico City. On the Internet you can be anywhere and everywhere, or you can be nowhere, if you want to stay anonymous. ANew Yorkercartoon that I like shows a dog at a computer terminal, speaking to another dog.

      “On the Internet,” he says, “no one knows that...

      (pp. 372-388)
      Micheline Ishay, Alison Brysk, Eve Darian-Smith and David Held

      There may be huge cultural differences among societies from urban Manhattan to tribal Papua New Guinea and from the Amazon rain forests to Sahara oases. But one thing that all societies have in common is that they respect human life; they believe people should be treated with respect and dignity. How this respect is interpreted varies, however, and there is a great deal of disagreement over whether all humans are in fact treated fairly.

      Yet there is intuitively a kind of common moral culture—a global ethic—shared by everyone on the planet. This global ethic is the basis for...

      (pp. 389-408)
      Mary Kaldor, Jan Nederveen Pieterse, Giles Gunn and Kwame Anthony Appiah

      Throughout this book we’ve been talking about globalization as if it were about things—the economy, the environment, and political and technological changes. But it’s not just about things. It’s also about people—about us.

      How are people changing in the global era? In this chapter, we will consider some new ways in which people are thinking about themselves. Earlier in history, people identified themselves primarily as members of a particular group—an ethnic, religious, or national community. In the global era, sometimes it appears that these traditional identities have become stronger and even strident, as some people desperately want...

    (pp. 409-410)
  8. INDEX
    (pp. 411-433)