“We live in a world that is simultaneously shrinking and expanding, growing closer and farther apart…. National borders are increasingly irrelevant. And yet globalism is by no means triumphant. Tribalism of all kinds flourish. Irredentism abounds”. (Attali, 1991: 117) The rate of global change is a remarkably fast process. Even people trained and focused on recording such changes remain at a loss due to the difficult task at hand.
However, trends and patterns are often noted and rapidly transcend to topics of discussion in the media, classrooms, and the corresponding governments. One example of such terms is globalization. Although it is quite vague, the paradox is used to describe widespread diversity. Globalization displays a disposition that carries over to the lives of every person who walks the Earth by pointing out that our lives are progressively influenced by forces which have surpassed borders and are changing, forever life on this planet.
The process of globalization is reshaping all levels of society. From an individual level, a person may experience a threat or boost to their livelihood due to events that are happening far from their region, such as a drought in a distant country where certain vegetables are domestically exported. However, on a larger scale, governments may succumb to threats from other powers and consequently experience a loss in their nations’ freedom. Both are examples of the concept that the world is more interconnected than ever before.
The globe is essentially border-less in the twenty-first century. The origins of global interdependence can be largely contributed to the wars and battles fought throughout history for various reasons. Dating back to the American Revolution, the colonists saw a brighter future for their growing nation and took the necessary steps to ensure their freedom. This desire for freedom ultimately led to the revolution that we now know as the “American Revolution”. Another similarly brutal conflict prior to the 1800s was the French Revolution.
The revolution was set forth to bring an end to the French monarchy, but was unfortunately followed by a comparably bad reign of terror. The reign brought a spell where rival sectors dueled for control of power, resulting in the executions of nearly 40,000 people. However, out of the resulting destruction and rubble emerged the infamous Napoleon. The French and Americans were not singled out in their strive for freedom, power struggles in Latin America erupted into wars for independence as well as the Russian Revolution in 1917.
What we currently brand as globalization can be traced back to the post-Civil War era, when the world was just greeting the dawn of internationalization. Up until 1914 an international economy was in place, under the control of the transatlantic trade. This trade system was managed by Great Britain and relied on open markets and developing lands as resource bases and consumers in underdeveloped nations. It was in the midst of this international industrial economy that the U. S. became a world power due to the potential noticed by the European trading authorities.
This period did not undergo the radical form of globalization that characterized the post-Cold War era, with their highly efficient worldwide communications, means of transportation and technological advancements. Prior to this time, less production was outsourced. The people affected by globalization were most likely the wealthy, rather than the common people, in the early twentieth century.
Likewise, prior to the world wars, it was very distinctively clear which nation was in control of the corresponding aspects of the market (production, marketing, culture, etc. . However, as the turn of the century approached, so too did an upheaval of the old ways in which the world divided its economy. In the pre- World Wars (I and II), there was a much more clear divide on the nations and their role in the world market. But, as the turn of the century approached and soldiers returned home from serving in World War II, there was a paradigm shift and the sense of ownership sort of dissipated. Concurrently, as the market changed so too did the rate of globalization.
The twentieth century brought a new, irrevocable change to this world as it allowed people from every nation to communicate and trade unlike ever before. Another aspect of great importance in the talk on conflict and terrorism in the world is the role of religion. Religious values and views play a prominent role in the lives of people as they deal with issues affecting their communities. It provides its followers’ lives with a core vision, which in turn colors their behaviors, choices, and aspirations. For this exact reason, any large issue must be addressed in a sensitive manner.
The attacks on the world trade centers in 2001 bring to mind this concept of religion and the diverse ways in which it can lead people to respond to a tragedy. Henry Wilson poetically stated his view on the importance of coexistence in, “Whether the future of humanity will be shaped by the ‘clash of civilizations,’ the ‘clash of ignorance,’ the clash of religions and ethnicities, or confrontations between the ‘West and the rest’ is hard to predict. It may be a combination of several of the above as they are all intricately interlinked. It may also be caused by the emergence of hitherto unclear issues of polarization”.
As touched on in the presentation, conflict and terrorism have played a key factor in the revolution of the world. It has ramifications that affect nearly everyone on the planet from the individual level all the way up to entire nation-states. The economy too transforms during times of war and people must compensate for the portion of the population that is off in battle. This adaptation described is a fairly perfect example of globalization. It adequately displays how times of conflict in one region of the world can strongly influence the rest of the world due to the interconnectedness of our planet.