American Cuture And Globalisation Essay Research Paper

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American Cuture And Globalisation Essay, Research Paper The issue of American culture and its globalisation has raised a lot of controversy. Today we are able to witness an essence of American culture almost everywhere around the world by what we call cultural icons of our times. Sneakers, blue jeans, burgers, Hollywood blockbusters are only a few. To many, globalization is synonymous with Nike, Levi’s and MTV. It crowns the United States the king of pop culture. It lauds Walt Disney the new Goethe of our times. In order to understand the influence of American dominant culture throughout the globalised world, it is important to be able to resolve the difference between culture and ideology. Also, the understanding of culture defers from nation to nation which is of

importance in this field. These are some of the issues we will be discussing throughout this essay. Culture is a complex term which refers to the beliefs, behaviour, language, and entire way of life of a particular time or group of people. Culture includes customs, ceremonies, works of art, inventions, technology, and traditions. This is a general definition of culture, the key word being civilisation. There are although different understandings of this term and how it is used. Our main interest at this point is the American understanding of culture. Americans tend to see culture as the fine arts – art galleries, theatre, ballet, opera. Everything else – television, films, music, magazines – is pop culture. It’s business. It’s entertainment. American officials argue

that these are ”commodities” and can, indeed should, be traded like other commodities in a free and open marketplace where market forces determine who wins, who loses. It is this understanding of pop culture that has opened up a huge industry in the American market. The single biggest export industry of the United States is the entertainment industry, based in California and New York. Not surprisingly the home states of Hollywood Inc., and Madison Ave., are political heavyweights. They drive the export engine that fuels the hot-as-a-piston U.S. economy in the future. In order to make a meaning out of this globalisation process we must define and understand the concept of ideology and its relation to culture. Ideology is defined as, comprehensive system of concepts and

beliefs, often political in nature, held by a group or an individual. So in this case for example it is the concepts and beliefs that are held by American people such as their own culture including lifestyle, political system, economy and social structure that form the American ideology. Now that we have defined culture and ideology we need to find and describe the fine line that exists between the two concepts. This is very difficult to achieve today as these two concepts have started to become the same thing due to globalisation. Although this is the case, it should not be forgotten that ideologies try to hide the contingent nature of thoughts and activities within a culture; that is to say, they try to convince their audiences that certain values, ideas and activities are more

or less natural, and that things have always been this way, or should remain this way. To sum up: ideologies function in an attempt to make the specific or the particular seem generally applicable. All ideologies have some kind of group basis within a culture; in other words, ideologies construct and promote meanings which privilage one culture, or one section of a culture (which can be based on class, occupation, race, skin colour, gender, age, sexual preference, religious affiliation, nationality or general physicality) over another. To give a few examples, in Australia until the last 30 years, woman were excluded from many occupations and nearly all the professions because they were not considered to be capable of carrying out the required work. Also in Australia, until the