New Transnational Social Spaces: International Migration and Transnational Companies in the Early Twenty-First Century

New Transnational Social Spaces: International Migration and Transnational Companies in the Early Twenty-First Century

New Transnational Social Spaces: International Migration and Transnational Companies in the Early Twenty-First Century

New Transnational Social Spaces: International Migration and Transnational Companies in the Early Twenty-First Century

Synopsis

Recent terms such as globalisation, virtual reality, and cyberspace indicate that the traditional notion of the geographic and the social space is changing. New Transnational Social Spaces illustrates the contemporary relationship between the social and the spatial which has emerged with new communication and transportation technologies, alongside the massive transnational movement of people.

Excerpt

Moving in small social bands through unmarked geographic spaces is the way of living of less than 0.01 percent of the current world population, but hunting and gathering stands for more than 99 percent of the history of mankind. Thinking social living in terms of nation-state-bounded containers will result as a short episode in the development of the social-spatial practices of humanity—even if we do not know yet the kinds of social bindings that will replace them.

The weakening of nations and the emergence of transnational social spaces

The turn of a century and also of a millennium invites general reflections on long-term social development. One of the more general patterns of social change we are currently witnessing seems to be a fundamental rearrangement of the relation between geographic and social spaces. For centuries the mutual embeddedness of social practices, symbols and artifacts in uni-local geographic “containers” have predominated. Today this complete conjunction of the social and the spatial is questionable in two ways. “Stacked” social spaces could exist in a single geographic space, and social spaces could extend over more than one of the coherent geographic container spaces of different national societies. This volume focuses on the latter possibility: the emergence of pluri-locally spanned transnational social spaces as social realities and entities that grow up either from the grassroots by international migration or through a complex top-down and bottom-up process brought about by international business companies. To understand the ongoing changes in social-spatial relations it is worth looking at the past.

The history of mankind has always been, in addition, the history of emerging and changing combinations of social and geographic space. Geographic or spatial entities with frontiers and borders only exist as human constructs. They are conditions for, and results of, social action and everyday life. the social configuring of geographic space, continuously evolving, is one main reason for conflicts and war. the tendency to perceive social reality in terms of geographically coherent and sovereign politico-cultural entities began on the European continent with the famous Peace of Westphalia of

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