chapter
13 Pages

Introduction

This book deals with the relationship between culture, society and globalization, using Laos as a case study. More specifically, it asks how globalization affects culture and social structure in Laos. It argues that social structure can only be understood in relation to the division of work. For reasons explained in the first chapter, I subsume the concept of labour under the wider concept of work. This term is basically equivalent to Hannah Arendt’s (1958) concept of ‘activity’. Social structure and the division of work are interrelated and form varying but not arbitrary configurations, which persist in later historical times. I call these persisting configurations of social structure and the division of work sociocultures. Subsequent chapters investigate present-day Laos by examining the evolution of sociocultures and the contemporary relationship between social structure and the division of work.