GLOBALIZATION: CONSUMPTION AND IDENTITY
DOI link for GLOBALIZATION: CONSUMPTION AND IDENTITY
GLOBALIZATION: CONSUMPTION AND IDENTITY book
The goal of this concluding chapter is to explore aspects of the relation between (a) cultural globalization, (b) consumption and (c) identity, and identify areas of research. In the current age of globalization, consumption is increasingly becoming cross-cultural. All kinds of flows-like those of people and all kinds of productsare increasing in quantity and changing in quality. The more specific question that will be addressed is therefore: “How does this process of changed and changing cross-cultural consumption of products, people, information, knowledge and interpretations relate to culture and local-global identities?” The possible answers to this question seem to be heading in two opposite directions. The first line of answers points us in the direction of cultural homogenization and the emergence of uniform identities. The second line of answers addresses the emergence of hybrid identities and points us in the direction of diversity. The first line of answers builds on dependency thinking and early modernization theories. The second line of answers builds on what we have termed the multiplicity paradigm (Servaes, 1998). In the process of changing from modernizationdependency thinking to thinking in terms of multiplicity, several shifts in emphasis have occurred. The first shift is that the emphasis in communication processes has been changed from the emphasis on the producer/sender to the emphasis on the consumer/receiver. A second shift is towards an emphasis on culture and on cultural identity. People speak of the “cultural turn.” A third shift that can be identified is a shift from an emphasis on similarities (What makes people the same?) towards an emphasis on differences (What makes people different?). These three sub-paradigmatic shifts will be addressed throughout this chapter.