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Globalisa(on,  Sustainability  &   the  media   richard.miles@leeds-­‐  

Defini(ons  of  Globalisa(on   •  Socialist    The  process  of  transforma(on  of  local  or  regional  phenomena   into  global  ones.  It  can  be  described  as  a  process  by  which  the   people  of  the  world  are  unified  into  a  single  society  and   func(on  together.  This  process  is  a  combina(on  of  economic,   technological,  sociocultural  and  poli(cal  forces.   •  Capitalist    The  elimina(on  of  state-­‐enforced  restric(ons  on  exchanges   across  borders  and  the  increasingly  integrated  and  complex   global  system  of  produc(on  and  exchange  that  has  emerged   as  a  result  

Globaliza(on   ‘Covering  a  wide  range  of  dis(nct  poli(cal,  economic,  and  cultural  trends,     the  term  “globaliza(on”  has  quickly  become  one  of  the  most  fashionable     buzzwords  of  contemporary  poli(cal  and  academic  debate.  In  popular     discourse,  globaliza(on  oKen  func(ons  as  liLle  more  than  a  synonym  for     one  or  more  of  the  following  phenomena:  the  pursuit  of  classical  liberal     (or  “free  market”)  policies  in  the  world  economy  (“economic     liberaliza(on”),  the  growing  dominance  of  western  (or  even  American)     forms  of  poli(cal,  economic,  and  cultural  life  (“westerniza(on”  or     “Americaniza(on”),  the  prolifera(on  of  new  informa(on  technologies  (the     “Internet  Revolu(on”),  as  well  as  the  no(on  that  humanity  stands  at  the     threshold  of  realizing  one  single  unified  community  in  which  major     sources  of  social  conflict  have  vanished  (“global  integra(on”)’     Stanford  Encyclopedia  of  Philosophy,  hLp://  

‘If  we  are  talking  about  the  “cultural”,  we  are       concerned  with  the  symbolic  construc(on,     ar(cula(on,  and  dissemina(on  of  meaning.    Given     that  language,  music,  and  images  cons(tute  the     major  forms  of  symbolic  expression,  they  assume     special  significance  in  the  sphere  of  culture  …  Yet     cultural  globaliza(on  did  not  start  with  the     worldwide  dissemina(on  of  rock  ‘n’  roll,  Coca-­‐Cola,     or  football’  


Manfred  B.  Steger,  Globaliza(on:  A  very  Short  Introduc(on,  page  69  

‘American  sociologist  George  Ritzer  coined  the     term  “McDonaldiza(on”  to  describe  the  wide-­‐   ranging  sociocultural  processes  by  which  the     principles  of  the  fast-­‐food  restaurant  are  coming  to     dominate  more  and  more  sectors  of  American     society  as  well  as  the  rest  of  the  world’  


Manfred  B.  Steger,  Globaliza(on:  A  very  Short  Introduc(on,  page  71  

Marshall  McLuhan   ‘Today,  aKer  more  than  a  century  of  electric  technology,  we   have  extended  our  central  nervous  system  in  a  global   embrace,  abolishing  both  space  and  (me  as  far  as  our  planet   is  concerned’  (1964:  p.3)   Rapidity  of  Communica(on  echoes  the  senses   We  can  experience  instantly  the  effects  of  our  ac(ons  on  a   global  scale    

Global  Village  Thesis   •  ‘As  electrically  contracted,  the  globe  is  no   more  than  a  village.  Electric  speed  at  bringing   all  social  and  poli(cal  func(ons  together  in  a   sudden  implosion  has  heightened  human   awareness  of  responsibilty  to  an  intense   degree’  (1964:  p.5).    

The  Internet  

•  We  live  mythically  and  integrally...  In  the  electric  age  ,when  our  central   nervous  system  is  technologically  extended  to  involve  in  the  whole  of   mankind  and  to  incorporate  the  whole  of  mankind  in  us,  we  necessarily   par(cipate...  in  the  consequences  of  our  every  ac(on.  (1964:  p.4)     •  ‘Electric  technology...  would  seem  to  render  individualism  obsolete  and...   corporate  interdependence  mandatory’  (1962:  p.1)  

‘Does  globaliza(on  make  people  around  the  world     more  alike  or  more  different?  …  A  group  of     commentators  we  might  call  “pessimis(c     hyperglobalizers”  argue  in  favour  of  the  former.       They  suggest  that  we  are  not  moving  towards  a     cultural  rainbow  that  reflects  the  diversity  of  the     world’s  exis(ng  cultures.    Rather,  we  are   witnessing  the  rise  of  an  increasingly  homogenized     popular  culture  underwriLen  by  a  Western  “culture     industry”  based  in  New  York,  Hollywood,  London     and  Milan’  


Manfred  B.  Steger,  Globaliza(on:  A  very  Short  Introduc(on,  page  70  

Cultural  imperialism   •  If  the  'global  village'  is  run  with  a  certain  set  of   values  then  it  would  not  be  so  much  an   integrated  community  as  an  assimilated  one.   •  Key  thinkers-­‐     –  Schiller   –  Chomsky  

Rigging  the  ‘Free  Market’   •  MEDIA  CONGLOMERATES  OPERATE  AS   OLIGOPOLIES    

News  corpora8ons  divide  world  into  ‘territories’  of   descending  ‘market  importance’    

•  1.  North  America   •  2.  Western  Europe,  Japan  &  Australia   •  3.  Developing  economies  and  regional  producers  (India,  China,  Brazil,   Eastern  Europe)   •  4.  The  rest  of  the  world    


•  Local  cultures  destroyed  in  this  process  and   new  forms  of  cultural  dependency  shaped,   mirroring  old  school  colonialism.   •  Schiller-­‐  dominance  of  US  driven  commercial   media  forces  US  model  of  broadcas(ng  onto   the  rest  of  world  but  also  inculcates  US  style   consumerism  in  socie(es  that  can  ill  afford  it!    

Chomsky  &  Herman  (1998)     ‘Manufacturing  Consent’    

Chomsky  &  Herman  (1998)     Propaganda  Model-­‐  5  basic  filters       •  •  •  •  • 

Ownership   Funding   Sourcing   Flak   An(  Communist  ideology  

Ownership   –  Rupert  Murdoch,  selected  media  interests  

•  •  •  •  •  •  • 

News  of  The  World   The  Sun   The  Sunday  Times   The  Times   NY  Post   BSkyB   Fox  TV  



Flak   •  US-­‐based  Global  Climate  Coali8on   (GCC)  –     •  comprising  fossil  fuel  and  automobile   companies  such  as  Exxon,  Texaco  and   Ford.  The  GCC  was  started  up  by   Burson-­‐Marsteller,  one  of  the  world's   largest  public  rela(ons  companies,  to   rubbish  the  credibility  of  climate   scien(sts  and  'scare  stories'  about   global  warming.   •  flak  is  characterized  by  concerted  and   inten(onal  efforts  to  manage  public   informa(on.  

An(-­‐  Ideologies  

Al  Gore,  (2006)  ‘An  Inconvenient   Truth’  dir.  Davis  Guggenheim  

Al  Gore,  (2006)  ‘An  Inconvenient   Truth’  dir.  Davis  Guggenheim   •  Retreat  of  Glaciers   •  Since  1880  temp  on  the   rise   •  Keeling  Curve-­‐  CO2  rising  

Flat  earthers   Compe((ve  Enterprise  Ins(tute    

Jim  Inhofe  ‘Global   warming  is  one  of  the   biggest  hoaxes  ever   perpetuated  on  the   American  public.’  

Nigel  Lawson  ‘It  is  a   propagandist’s  term.  It   trips  off  the  tongue   nicely’  

Source:  The  Guardian   Source:  The  Guardian,  30/11/09  

Al  Gore,  (2006)  ‘An  Inconvenient   Truth’  dir.  Davis  Guggenheim   •  •  •  •  •  • 

Release  less  CO2   Plant  more  vegeta(on   Try  to  be  CO2  neutral   Recycle   Buy  a  hybrid  vehicle   Encourage  everyone  you   know  to  watch  this  film!  

Sustainability   •  ‘sustainable  development  is  the  development   that  meets  the  needs  of  the  present  without   compromising  the  ability  of  future  genera(ons   to  meet  their  own  needs’   Brundtland  Commission,  (1987)  ‘Our  Common  Future’    

•  Needs  (par(cularly  of  the  worlds  poor)   •  Limita(ons  of  technology  

•  Sustainable  development,  sustainable  growth,   and  sustainable  use  have  been  used   interchangeably,  as  if  their  meanings  were  the   same.  They  are  not.  Sustainable  growth  is  a   contradic(on  in  terms:  nothing  physical  can   grow  indefinitely.  Sustainable  use,  is  only   applicable  to  renewable  resources.   Sustainable  development  is  used  in  this   context  to  mean:  improving  the  quality  of   human  life  whilst  living  within  the  carrying   capacity  of  the  ecosystems.  

Erin  Balser,  'Capital  Accumula8on,  Sustainability  and   Hamilton,  Ontario:  How  Technology  and  Capitalism   can  Misappropriate  the  Idea  of  Sustainability'    

•  BIOX  Biofuel  plant,   Canada   •  Alterna(ve  ‘clean’   fuel   •  Renewable   •  More  expensive  to   produce  

Erin  Balser,  'Capital  Accumula8on,  Sustainability  and   Hamilton,  Ontario:  How  Technology  and  Capitalism   can  Misappropriate  the  Idea  of  Sustainability'    

•  BIOX-­‐  Largest   produc(on  plant,   2004   •  Situated  in  the   Poorest  area  of   Ontario,  Hamilton   •  Nega(ve  social  &   environmental   consequences  


McDonalds  Europe  

Ford  Taurus  SHO  Ecoboost  

•  Environmentalism   •  Ecologism   •  Socialism  /   Communism  

‘Most  things  are  not  designed  for  the   needs  of  the  people  but  for  the  needs  of   the  manufacturers  to  sell  to  people’    

Papanek.V,  1983,  p46


VICTOR  PAPANEK   (1971)  

‘Most  things  are  designed  not  for  the  needs  of  the   people  but  for  the  needs  of  manufacturers  to  sell  to   people’  (Papanek,  1983:46)  

Shepard  Fairey  

Shepard  Fairey  


Police  in  ac(on  at  protest  against  G20  Summit,  London,  March/April  2009  

Twelfth lecture