The world changes every moment, becoming more interrelated, and one day, in future, it may become the interdependent general civilization without borders and diversity. People used to call this phenomenon globalization. It is a global modification in culture, which leads to standardization. This process changes the activity system of people. It encloses all spheres of life and the world becomes unified and interdependent. However, the level of world development is different, thus globalization has different influences. Participants of the standardization processes are also different, that is why some have an advantage from it when others get only disadvantages. The source of globalization is the western world, and the new changes predict a creation of global civilization. The most serious problems are caused by its connection with the cultural diversity. Although this process does not cause the civilizations’ conflicts, but the international elements of culture can supplant national peculiarities or transform them into the international thing.
Globalization of the culture moves in the direction of westernization, which appears as the result of international relations. Thus, some elements of culture become popular in the world. Of course, it is a serious danger to lose the peculiarities of the nation. Although it leads to the standardization of the culture in the world, but globalization can deprive the separate civilizations of their cultural inheritance. “Cultural globalization refers to the intensification and expansion of cultural flows across the globe” (Steger 85). The cultural diversity is a source of humanity’s general development. It is a great value of the world. It is essential to find a golden middle between the variety’s unification and preservation. However, the culture also influences the processes of integration. It is the most widespread and popular sphere of human life. That is why, the contribution of culture to the process of standardization is the most substantial. There are many different sources through which the world inheritance transfers to the globalization processes. For example, the film studio Hollywood is the most authoritative studio in the world. It spreads the American culture in the entire world, leading to Americanization. The high development of media causes the transference of international information. It provokes the need of international languages, which increases the contribution of the culture into globalization. It raises the question if this process leads to sameness or differences in the emergence of the global culture.
There is no accurate answer for the question: does globalization make people more alike or different. It causes a lot of arguments, because some pessimists are sure that such unification leads to alikeness, while optimists do not support this idea. However, it is obvious that standardization of cultural processes makes people alike, though this phenomenon is invisible. People even do not understand that they become the part of globalization. The best example of the sameness is different social services. The society of certain civilizations leaves the national peculiarities, imitating and adopting the cultural elements of other civilizations. For example, the McDonald’s restaurants are the best way to demonstrate the alikeness in culture. It is a widespread service in the world, and it produces a similarity in food, though some national elements are present too. It is popular now to use the word “McDonaldization” as a term, which reflects the spreading of international culture of the fast-food nourishment that caused the global homogenization (Ritzer 264). There are also many other examples of the unification. George Ritzer considers that such proliferation: “destroys the unique character of many neighborhoods and generally produce a boring sameness in the city” (240). Thus, the standardization is the reason of not only the indifferences among people, but also the alikeness of the whole cities. However, it is essential to stress the role of media services in this phenomenon.
The transnational media corporations are the main source of spreading the popular culture. It is not a secret that the TV set is the common thing in every house. Moreover, this device is essential in the lives of majority of people. It is the element of joy, entertainment and information. The present society does not even realize its life without it. It is an era of global distribution of the necessary information, through which the popular culture spreads. Some media corporations become international or, at least, they are accepted internationally (CNN, BBC). In addition, these corporations create the portals between geographically dispersed cultures (Sua??rez-Orozco and Qin-Hilliard 115). This is a representative example of the globalization through media, and it is closely connected with economic dimensions. “Clearly, cultural citizenship can not be easily separated from the legal, politic and economic citizenship” (Sua??rez-Orozco and Qin-Hilliard 220). The information can control economic processes in the world. If the media may change the cultural peculiarities of people, it may change the views on their activity, as well. Thus, economy and media systems are related. People try to use the experiences of other people and civilizations, being informed. That is why, Arjun Appadurai explains the process of the globalization as the “culturalization of the economic life” (285). However, if the media is the source of globalization, then the language is its method.
The process of language globalization accelerates the general unification phenomena. The need of international communication causes some changes in the speaking process. The world becomes highly interrelated, and it provokes the standardization of communicative methods. Thus, some languages become popular, achieving a lot of speakers, while others can even disappear because of the lack of communicators. The most influential element in the language integration is the migration processes in the world and tourism. The need of the international language knowledge causes some changes in education. It is normal to know a couple of languages at present time. The educational establishments demand the bilingual knowledge together with the native language improvement. In addition, the appearance of the internet increases the necessity of international languages. The most popular one is English. “Today, more than 80 percent of the content posted on the Internet is in English. Almost half of the world’s growing population of foreign students is enrolled at institutions in Anglo-American countries” (Steger 94). Besides, spreading the international media corporations causes the spreading of international languages. “Linguists estimate that of the world’s remaining 6,500 languages, up to half will no longer be in regular use by the end of this century” (Turin). The native old speakers die and students use the languages, which are popular on the internet and media. These standardizations create mixed cultural forms.
Hybridization is a form of globalization that means forming the cultural hybrids. The certain peculiarities of national culture vanish. The forms with mixed culture and traditions appear. This phenomenon is called hybridization. It has several important features. The first feature is mixing cultural systems. For example, the classical work can be performed in the aspect of popular music. The second feature is the usage of certain cultural elements in the foreign context. The last feature is the mixture of several cultural domains (Kraidy n.p.). Although the word “hybridization” is new and modern, the process has appeared many centuries ago. It started when the emigration, colonization and conquerors began. The present society might not understand that many of the cultural elements are results of hybridization. Nevertheless, it is a multidimensional phenomenon. People tried to make their life better, that is why they mixed the way of human activity of one civilization with another. This phenomenon can be seen in economy, culture, policy and other dimensions. However, the uniqueness of cultures vanishes. It is impossible to determine the level of hybridization in every culture, it can be only assumed. The emigrational processes also caused some racial and ethnical conflicts.
Different ethnical groups in the United States had been influenced by the globalization processes. Many races present in America, which came through the painful process of assimilation. For example, Chinese emigrants tried to preserve their ethical peculiarities, but the globalization made them forget about it. They had to speak English, and use the traditions of American life in order to get the job. They were also benefited by the Congress, which promised to give the citizenships to those who served in the American Army. The African-American civil rights movement is one of the best examples of integration. The process of desegregation in America increased the racial discrimination. Chinese people, for example, were absolutely isolated and suffered from the global economic processes, as they could not go back home and could not live in America in such conditions. The African-Americans and the Chinese descendants live due to the American traditions now, having lost their cultural peculiarities during the integration. They live quite comfortably now, but the global processes of culture made them forget about the traditions of their personal civilization. There are many other countries in the world, which came through the globalization. Thus, the cultural variety of the world inheritance will decay soon because of standardization. However, together with racial and ethnical dimensions, the gender is also affected by globalization (Kraidy n.p.).
The gender and globalization are always associated with the discrimination. The influence of globalization on women is a controversial phenomenon. At the ancient time, the role of a woman was obvious. She was a method of reproduction and her influence on the world had no power. However, the general global process changes the position of women. The constant economy growth makes women fight for their appropriate position in all the spheres of life. Men have more possibilities in employment. These processes “limit women’s access resources, increase vulnerability to poverty and subsequently increase the risk associated with globalization” (Thorin 13). Although globalization makes some progressive steps in positive perception of gender, but it also turns to the ancient traditions of gender role, through tourism, books, and media. That is why, the phenomena of feminism appears more frequently now. The current process of globalization illustrates the problem of gender equality the most vividly. However, there is one more important sphere of life which suffers from globalization - education.
The problem concerns the global market of educational services. Many scientists consider that the western country’s expansion transformed into a more humane method - expansion with the help of education. Globalization in this field leads to standardization of learning. The economic and politic relationships between the countries create the premises for students to enter the international universities. The USA is the country where the mobility of students is the biggest in the world. There are many universities and colleges in Southern California, where the amount of emigrants exceeds the amount of native students. In addition to it, some organizations create the Universities for the education of students from other countries. However, France is also one of the most popular countries for international students. Thus, people from states of the low level of life prefer to study in highly developed countries, but they do not understand that it is a destructive element of globalization of their native educational system. The best example of educational standardization is the Bologna process, accepted in Italy. It was an attempt to create a global system of the study. It illustrates the westernization in learning with the purpose to destroy the native elements of the study.
Thus, the globalization is a complex of different processes, which are directed to the unification and standardization of all spheres of life. This phenomenon appeared long time ago, but now, this process is the most noticeable. The media services, trade system and economy increase the influence of globalization in all spheres. However, the culture suffers from it most of all. The humanity looses its diversity and national peculiarities. It is possible, that one day, the world will transform into the single national unit without measures and differences. People can observe this process, though it does not create international conflict, but the western integration can supplant the national culture. That is why, it is important to preserve native culture from this; otherwise globalization creates its own language, education, informative space, and traditions. It can be a result of hybridization of the present cultures.