Academic journal article Global Media Journal

The Role of the Nation-State: Evolution of STAR TV in China and India

Academic journal article Global Media Journal

The Role of the Nation-State: Evolution of STAR TV in China and India

Article excerpt


The purpose of this study is to examine the role of the nation-state by analyzing the evolution of STAR TV's in India and China. STAR TV, the first pan-Asian satellite television, represents the global force; while the governments in India and China represent the local forces faced with challenges brought about by globalization.

This study found that the nation-states in China and India still were forces that had to be dealt with. In China, the state continued to exercise tight control over foreign broadcasters in almost every aspect - be it content or distribution. In India, the global force seemed to have greater leverage in counteracting the state, but only in areas where the state was willing to compromise, such as allowing entertainment channels to be fully owned by foreign broadcasters. In areas where the government thought needed protection to ensure national security and identity, the state still exercised autonomy to formulate and implement policies restricting the global force.

The role of the nation-state: Evolution of STAR TV in China and India

A recent paradox in the field of international communication is the process of globalization. According to scholars, the theoretical paradigm in international communication has shifted from imperialism to globalization with the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union (Sreberny-Mohammadi et al, 1997; Tomlinson, 1991). This paradigm shift of theoretical framework, however, does not render the term globalization a unified meaning.

The traditional conceptualization of globalization denotes a world system that transcends nation-states and propels homogenization of Western culture over local cultures (Hall, 1991; Waters, 1995). In other words, globalization is simply a continuation of cultural imperialism. This traditional theorization of globalization encountered challenges in the early 1990s. Scholars pointed out that as a response to globalization as homogenization, localization has emerged as a primary expression of resistance to globalization and that sweeping globalization has provoked and intensified reactions to rediscover particularity and difference at the local level (Dirlik, 1996; Featherstone, 1996; Wolff, 1991).

One of the most contentious issue in the debate over globalization centers on the role of the nation-state. Nation-states have traditionally taken on the definition provided by Max Weber. He defined states as compulsory associations claiming control over territories and the people within them. The core of any state included administrative, legal, extractive and coercive organizations (Skocpol, 1985).

Scholars adhering to the belief of globalization as a new phase of imperialism maintained that the emergence of a single global market is bringing about a 'denationalization' of economies in which national governments are relegated to little more than transmission belts for global capital (Held et al., 1999). In Ohmae's (1995) terms, the older patterns of nation-to-nation linkage have lost their dominance in economics as in politics. In other words, nation-states have already lost their role as meaningful units of participation in the global economy of today's borderless world.

According to Miyoshi (1996), transnational corporations have replaced nation states to continue colonialism. In the current period of Third Industrial Revolution, even though the nation-state still performs certain functions such as defining citizenship, controlling currency, providing education, and maintaining security, its autonomy has been greatly compromised and thoroughly appropriated by transnational corporations. In the realm of communication, Hamelink (2006) observed that today's global governance system differs from the system operated during the past 100 years in that the old system existed to coordinate national policies that were independently shaped by sovereign governments, while the new system determines supranationally the space that national governments have for independent policy making. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.