Monday, September 28, 2009

Brand India: Globalization and Hegemony: Part I

Since the mid 1990s and through the 21st century, Globalization and western-style capitalism has emerged as a major force in shaping today’s societies: its economic, social, and cultural institutions. One needs look no further than the recent global economic recession to see the impact of globalization on a world economy that is more seamless and tightly integrated than ever before. Over the next few weeks I’ll be putting up a series of blog posts about various topics relating to Globalization, capitalism and its impact on different facets of Indian society.

Everywhere you turn in the TV and print media there is this free-market craze. Economic growth, recession, GDP etc seem to be the main focus. The current administration’s policies aggressively push for globalization and liberalization. In fact, this stance has been pushed so rigorously, that it has moved beyond the arena of politics and economics and seeped into the cultural and social consciousness of our society. Corporations, educational institutions (especially B-schools), and even individual households promote values such as assertiveness, competitiveness, and a hunger to "achieve more and more". On one hand, the liberalization of the Indian economy since 1991 has brought about rapid industrial growth (especially in the IT industry) and allowed multinational companies to enter India, not only bringing in an influx of consumer goods and services, but also providing jobs for many (). As a result, there has emerged an affluent and an upwardly mobile middle class.
However, as much as it is tempting to get caught up in the glitz and glamour of “India Rising” and economic superpower status, one must critically examine the effects of globalization on different facets of Indian society and its implications for our future. Have Globalization and the free market actually helped solve problems such as poverty and inequality? Or has it merely exacerbated it? Whom has economic growth benefited? What is the role that capitalism and liberalization has played in shaping our culture and our perspective? These are some of the issues that these posts will attempt to address.

Next week: SEZs (Special Economic Zones) and global “land grab”


gayatri said...

It is surely something very important to think about...waiting for your posts..

chaanukya said...

Dear Friend,
What we need is alter-globalisation. But are we prepared?