The Meaning of Globalization: From Ulrich Beck’s Vision to the Rise of Anti-Globalization (2)

Generally speaking, the form of globalization is related to certain historical factor(s): at the beginning it started its elementary development in the Age of Discovery in the fifteenth century. After that, the eighteenth-century Industrial Revolution caused the rise of international commercialism, making the growth of colonialism as well as imperialism on the globe. Then capitalism became more dominant in the human realm that indirectly caused the outbreak of World War I and II. Eventually, the Western colonialism broke down because of the upsurge of the waves of national independent movement and democratization across Asia and Africa. However, world economy was still controlled by the West, especially the United States. Through the propagation of the capitalist ideology: “neo-liberalism”, the dominant powers further concretize the “unavoidability” of the development of economic globalization, which brings us a serious imbalanced distribution of social wealth and natural resources. Although the “developed” have got tremendous interest through economic globalization, the “global market” is continuously developing in accordance with the so-called “principle of profit maximization”. Since then, different nations in the world have been set to play different roles in the single market: the “developed” are responsible for designing the “prototype” of products and for researching on the possibility of “customization”; the “developing” are in charge of selling their labour power and natural resources for goods manufacturing. Globalization, as we can see, lets all people play their “appropriate” roles in serving the market with different levels of development. The question is still here: who makes it “unavoidable”?

(See: The Theory and Practice of Anti-Globalization Movement: Case Studies of the Independent Media in the Chinese Societies – Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bonn: Bonn University. 2014)