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With its growing and frequent usage the word ‘Globalization’ has now become quite a buzzword in our contemporary socio-political and academic debate. But this word was not familiar two or three decades ago as it is now. Although the process of globalization can be traced back to many centuries but the speed at which it started to spread can be attributed to advancement in global economy and interconnectivity across and within countries: which is very recent. The boom of the financial institutions (IMF, World Bank etc.) and monetary and market system together with technological rise (internet, cell phones etc.) has created a paradigm shift throughout the course of every individual’s life. It has affected almost every realm of human understanding of the world. Furthermore, transnational social-activisms have taken a new turn conceiving the contemporary world view. Collective actions have now become more systematic than ever before. Keeping the affects of globalization in mind, this discussion mainly focuses on the transformation of contemporary social movements to new dimensions and to give a possible explanation for this shift. It proceeds with giving a general overview of major theories of globalization in order to fully grasp the very commonly used word ‘globalization’ and later on its relation with social movements.

  1. Globalization theories:

            Globalization is the growth and enactment of world culture. Since at least the middle of the nineteenth century, a rationalized world institutional and cultural order has crystallized that consists of universally applicable models that shape states, organizations, and individual identities (J. Meyer. 1997)1.  The twentieth century has unfolded the new version of human society which has neither existed nor perceived before. Technological advancement and industrial revolution has created opportunities to rethink old and traditional approaches of domination.   A huge growth in different disciplines of knowledge together with the population and systems of control have brought human beings very close together and created an urge for a new holistic understanding of the human society at macro level. This accumulated understanding then manifested different possible scopes for social well being each in its own peculiar aspect. Four of which are discussed below

1.1        the world economy theory:
            This theory explains the proliferation of capitalist’s way of economical up-gradation of human society by ensuring competitive environment to enable economic efficiency. In which human beings are viewed as economically rational individuals who make cost-benefit analysis and make rational decisions. The power of the state over the economic institution is rather diluted by the global economy. There is one huge global economy where the core countries have higher skills and capital intensive mood of production to enjoy high standard of lives and then there are these periphery countries which are labor intensive and have to depend on international financial institutions for their development.

1.2  the regional bloc theory:
Again this theory tries to explain economical well being of individuals by eliminating regional barriers. Unions are the end product of this type of understanding (European Union, etc.).

1.3  The third way theory :
It tries to reconcile the two major sociological approaches of human understanding by presenting a third way of mutual non-competitive environment for the two schools of thoughts which are capitalism and socialism.

1.4  the world culture theory:
Different from the above mentioned theories it talks about cultural homogeneity as a desirable product of recent massive interconnectivity.
‘The claims of the theory of globalization centre on the relationship between social and cultural organization and territoriality’ (Malcolm waters.2001: p18)2. Keeping in mind all the above mentioned theoretical explanation it is now quite reasonable to draw an association between social movements and globalization.

2. SMs and globalization:

Social movements can be viewed as collective enterprises seeking to establish a new order of life. They have their inception in a condition of unrest, and derive their motive power on one hand from dissatisfaction with the current form of life, and on the other hand, from wishes and hopes for a new system of living. The career of a social movement depicts the emergence of a new order of life. (Blumer. 1969: 99)3. Emergence of social activism clearly depicts the demand for an environment where the actors can enjoy their well being without interfering or devastating powerless fellow human beings. And with the growing tools of interconnectivity social movements have taken rather an organized form which were absent in pre-industrialized times. Easiness to communicate with the outside world and to draw world’s attention is now fairly achievable. We have seen such demonstration in recent Tunisian and Egyptian up rise. Furthermore, the time span for the success of social movements has declined. Movements which took decades and even centuries, such movements are now taking days and months to color their successes. Technological advancement and mass-media have clearly served social movements in this respect. Although, a lot of social movements have taken advantage of globalization phenomena in terms of mass-gathering to protest and to convey their messages abroad but at the same time many social movements have arisen in response to globalization. Movements like anti-globalization movement and zeitgeist movement are some of the social activisms that arose in reaction to global mood of economic domination in order to preserve the very nature and essence of human expression that we call culture. It is quite ironic that the means of protest and social mobilization that these movements use are the benefits of massive technological advancement brought about by globalization.

2.1 anti-globalization movement:
‘The anti-globalization movement is not primarily composed of Luddites who would take away telephone and e-mail, and in fact many of these groups make use of this technology themselves.’ (David barbers.)4 Resource mobilization theory (RMT) explains this kind of organization very well. Unlike NSM theory, Resource mobilization theory explains anti-globalization movement in a more sophisticated manner. This movement circles around the problem faced by the developing countries and even the developed countries due to economic proliferation. To accomplish its goals and to gather mob behind its cause it is well organized and structured and has activists all around the world who manage and organize seminars, sponsor movies, write columns and speak in public to create awareness about their cause. One of its decisive resources is intellectual circle of people who are continuously indulged in bringing an order in this order-less world.

2.3 zeitgeist movement:
This movement is explained quite deliberately by RMT and POS theory. Just like anti-globalization movement, this movement too is well organized and its activists include majority of students from all over the world. On the other hand unlike anti-globalization movement this movement is more into solutions then problems. ‘Although many people, publications, and multi-media presentations portray various aspects of the future and paint spectacular pictures of the developments to come in such areas as transportation, housing, and medicine, they ignore the fact that in a monetary-based economy the full benefits of these developments continue to be available to a relative few’5 (Jacque Fresco.p1) It argues that the current Monetary and Market system are obsolete forms of control which needs to be upgraded by introducing resource system (replacing monetary and banking system) by a system of control called Venus project. As POS suggests that the success and failure of a system is quantified by its relation with the political agents. Zeitgeist movement is traced back to 1974 when Jacque Fresco (the initiator of this movement) openly criticized the monetary system as flawed and needed correction live on national TV of the USA. But his voice was kept suppressed for decades and now this movement has again gained momentum after being affiliated to different political circle of intellectuals.

In short, although the universality of the scientific and technological development together with the financial expansion have brought humanity very close to each other but this repertoire of neo-liberalization is still facing a rather growing upheaval of masses who ask for a more flexible but sustainable system of control, a system that can ensure the dignity of self identity and release humanity from the diverging and alluding gigantism of current world order.

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