A Conversation about Globalization
While there are many leaders in the business and political arenas who regard globalization as conferring enormous benefits on individuals, countries, and the entire world, there are others who believe that there are some significant disadvantages linked to this process. Two views on globalization and its effects will be discussed in this essay. The first view is that of Kwame Anthony Appiah (388) who points out that “cosmopolitans suppose that all cultures have enough overlap in their vocabulary of values to begin a conversation” but maintains that this is not in fact the case and that globalization has the de facto effect of heightening our awareness of the very real differences between cultures. Franklin Foer (239) uses the metaphor of soccer to describe cosmopolitan elites in America who are suspicious of Middle America and who embrace global concepts to the point of rejecting American football in favor of soccer.
Foer (4) says that the major question of his text on how soccer can be used to explain the world is cultural and states that “the innovation of the anti-globalization left is its embrace of traditionalism: its worry that global tastes and brand will steamroll indigenous cultures.” However, he does not feel that globalization has wiped away local institutions or resulted in the complete homogenization of culture, much less values. By looking at soccer around the world, Foer (5) “kept noticing the ways that globalization had failed to diminish the game’s local cultures, local blood feuds, and even local corruption.”
The metaphor of soccer – a game described extensively by Foer (10-12) as representing geographically specific interests and groups – is useful in understanding globalization. While it is certainly true that soccer is being played in more and more countries, including the United States, and that the game has attracted fans from countries where it was once largely ignored, Foer (5) asserts...