‘Contested versus negotiated perceptions of Globalisation, Sustainability and Culture: Re-examining the Identities of old/new Empires and their colonies.’
The ‘Industrial Revolution’ in Europe has resulted in a radical change in the pattern of global/regional power mechanism, employment, labour, trade and consumption in the late 19th century. The Medieval age founded long standing ‘silk route’ from China to Central Asia got replaced by the trading mercantile sea routes (along with armed boats) from Europe to Asia, Africa and Latin America. The change from agrarian/mercantile economy to factory produced industrial economy along with ‘gun power’ created an unequal world of the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’.
European based Industrial division of labour and consumption pattern became the ‘business norm’ for the rest of the world. However, the internal market economies in many developing countries have not changed much although the in some places politics and cultures underwent radical changes. Even with the late twentieth century’s ‘information revolution’ (and super highways) in the West, which further polarised the division of labour in terms of ‘call centres’ and ‘garment factories’ in the South, there seems to be different kind of ‘localisation’, ‘regionalisation’ and ‘cultures’ of different continents.
With the advent of the 21st century, America post ‘cold war’ becoming the ‘Super power’ only to be confronted by new conflicts from the Islamic world while the European world are facing further inequalities within their own geographies from recession and losing their economies elsewhere. Meanwhile, a few old developing world places (including China, India and the Middle East) seem to provide both niche -market for the West while taking neo-colonial stance towards other weaker countries. As far as the ‘Sustainability’ debate is concerned it is very much like ‘Upping sticks and going on’.