Globalization: The Key Concepts

By Thomas Hylland Eriksen | Go to book overview

5 MOVEMENT

Nowadays we are all on the move.

Zygmunt Bauman


INTRODUCTION

Reminiscing about what became of the people who used to live in his Kumasi neighbourhood when he was a child, the philosopher Kwame Anthony Appiah says:

Eddie, from across the street, who never finished school, called to wish me a
Happy New “Year from Japan; Frankie, my cousin from next door to Eddie, lives
in England; Mrs Effah still lives next door, but visits her children in the United
States; even my mother and sister have moved across the city (Appiah 2003:
195).

As pointed out by Jan Aart Schoke (2005: 65), 'methodological territorialism has had a pervasive and deep hold on the conventions of social research; thus globalization (when understood as the spread of supranationality) implies a major reorientation of approach.'

S cholte, a political scientist, argues that researchers have tended to take territorial units for granted in their studies, seeing the world 'through the lens of territorial geography', assuming that societies take a territorial form. Although Scholte and others (for example, Urry 2000) try to develop methodologies for the study of nonterritorial, or deterritorialized, phenomena — diasporic groups, tourism, the Internet, financial capital — they do not proclaim the end of territoriality. Scholte stresses that 'the end of territorialiy«2 does not mean the 'end of territoriality' (Scholte 2005: 76). However, in an interconnected world, few territories can be merely territories, and few if any territories can be bounded territories. They become territories interlinked with, and responding to, processes taking place far beyond their limits, and therefore reterritorialization, the attempt to fix and stabilize a place, a country or a region, is itself a product of its own dialectical negation, that is deterritorialization.

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Globalization: The Key Concepts
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface ix
  • Introduction 1
  • 1: Disembedding 15
  • 2: Acceleration 33
  • 3: Standardization 51
  • 4: Interconnectedness 69
  • 5: Movement 91
  • 6: Mixing 107
  • 7: Vulnerability 123
  • 8: Re-Embedding 141
  • Questions for Essays and Class Discussion 155
  • Annotated Guide for Further Reading 159
  • General Bibliography 163
  • Index 171
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