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Globalization: Only Desperation Has Been Globalised

1767 words - 7 pages

"Since 2006, more than 500 Bangladeshi workers have died in factory fires, according to Clean Clothes Campaign, an anti-sweatshop advocacy group in Amsterdam. Experts say many of the fires could have easily been avoided if the factories had taken the right precautions. Many factories are in cramped neighborhoods and have too few fire escapes, and they widely flout safety measures. The industry employs more than three million workers in Bangladesh, most of them women.
Activists say that global clothing brands like Tommy Hilfiger and the Gap and those sold by Walmart need to take responsibility for the working conditions in Bangladeshi factories that produce their clothes."

From article by Vikas Bajaj published in The New York Times, November 25, 2012

Globalization as a continuing and vaguely defined process can have varying degrees of effects dependent upon social, economic and political factors. What shall be discussed is whether globalization restricts or frees “the integration of economic, cultural, political and social systems across geographical boundaries”. (Beardsworth et al. 1997)

A relevant issue to begin with is the origins of the inter-societal stratification. Bolshevik revolutionary, Lenin argues that there is a systematic progression from the beginning of capitalism to the end product of “international capitalist monopolies” (Waters, M. 1995) The first phase shows high competitiveness between nations. Unevenness and finally monopolisation of various sectors eventually follows as unsuccessful companies are forced out by their competitors. From this financial capital and industrial capital combine to provide a mechanism for extension over boundaries, (globalisation). This simplistic view could easily be defined as unbridled capitalism but negative effects like inter-national inequalities may occur.

When considering globalisation in a liberalised fashion, it is defined as “an open, borderless world economy” (Scholte, 2000). This may be the intention but quite often never materialises. The first important question to ask oneself is, if globalisation leads to uneven restrictions around the world then what does this mean for the countries, or on a micro-scale, the people in question? One form of restriction is very prevalent in many Asian and African countries. This is bondage labour and because of this there exists “persistent denials of basic freedom to seek wage employment away from ones traditional bosses”. (Sen. A, 1999) Many of these employees work for transnational corporations and are tied to their job because of financial restrictions imposed by the company. It is then fair to say that transnational corporations are the main faces of globalisation. In this respect economic and social restrictions may ensue. Similar to this is the restrictions placed on women seeking employment in many third world countries. This systematic denial of freedom is a “violation of women’s liberty and gender equity”. (Sen, A. 1999) This...

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