Globalisation – otherwise known as the most powerful dynamic that every single country in the world can obtain and utilise, is the foundation of the world as we know it today. For example, in the picture above, Starbucks, a small coffee shop based in Seattle, USA has achieved rampant success that it has even extended as a mainstream fixture halfway across the world; China boasts as many as 823 company operated stores as of 2014.
Defined as “the worldwide movement toward economic, financial, trade, and communications integration”, globalisation is especially relevant on our shores; the main road around where I used to live in Sydney was one big line of restaurants, 4 Thai, 2 Indian, 3 Italian, and I’m sure there was Moroccan there somewhere. While this is just a small sample size, it represents the larger concept of how globalisation affects us here in Australia.
The idea of the global village and “imagined communities” (O’Shaughnessy & Stadler p. 463), which is essentially the connection of beliefs and homely attitudes embedded between your fellow countrymen and women, is particularly tricky in Australia. A country practically run by other countries; the diversity of international cuisines, the widespread surge of European fashion brands opening outlets on our shores, and the ever shifting range of ethnicity concentration in major cities, how can such a melting pot of international content successfully build such a strong identity, bolstered by mateship, a straight-forward attitude, and a multitude of established “Aussie” traditions? One aspect, acceptance of other cultures, both allows for globalisation to take place, while at the same time reinforcing the Australian way of tolerating the influx of cultures that have taken place over the last 100 years.
Screenshot of “Two and a Half Men”, one of the most popular American sitcoms aired in Australia
This is especially true in the “mediascape”, which is the global distribution of images and information. The majority of prime-time television shows that we view here in Australia are sourced from the USA, as well the increased popularity of Japanese anime and European films, not to mention the volume of Australian actors “making it” in the American film industry; Hugh Jackman, Heath Ledger and Nicole Kidman, just to name a few. On top of that, we also broadcast international news coming from Japan, Indonesia, the USA, and the UK along with other prominent European countries. What this media globalisation dynamic achieves is the ability for Australians to gain an extensively wider awareness of cultural trends, political conflicts and everyday events that take place all over the world.
Iggy Azalea, real name Amethyst Kelly – was born and raised in Mullumbimby, NSW
Also a part of the global mediascape, music is a major player within the globalisation dynamic. The US music culture dominates, artists such as Iggy Azalea have crossed the Pacific Ocean and controversially appropriated the african-american rap/hip-hop genre, leading to immense criticism – however at the opposite end of the spectrum, she has become somewhat of an icon of this generation, and at least commercially, incredibly successful.
As the countries of the world continue the trend to expand its business interests, profits and low cost remain at the forefront of the globe. Whether that be culturally, politically, ideologically, or anything else, money makes the world go round; and globalisation is the ideal medium in which in operates.