chapter  1
22 Pages

Introduction

Counterworks
WithRichard Fardon

This chapter addresses the status of 'global' and 'local' as organizing terms of social knowledge with imagination and subtlety. If sociology wishes to concede 95 percent of the increment to anthropology, being local may be the only global option. The counterworks ineluctably provoked by the terms 'global' and 'local' demand contests over the scale of units of analysis and the definition of their boundaries symptomatic of our turn-of-the-millennium times. Globalization is transgressive in related senses. Globalization appears as a pervasive condition of transgression not only because it suggests culture to be fluid, but because culture was conceptualized proprietorially. A global perspective suggests that the idea of the world as cultural mosaic arose, not because it was such a glittering fabrication, but because projects to create such a world proliferated. Reification of boundaries and discovery of their transgression, even negation, are dialectically related.