Western influence in Asia

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    Essay Proposal

    Topic 1

    Throughout history, Asia has been a region rich in cultural diversity and values, where

    social order depends on self discipline, hard work, solidarity, family, social harmony and

    political order. However, Asia is being challenged due to an increasingly globalised

    world, through the exchange of goods, people, capital, technologies and ideas. Therefore,

    to what extent can contemporary globalisation influence Asian traditional social and

    religious values?

    Globalisation promotes the notion of a global village with the reduction of cultural

    barriers, however, this stance is more likely to be applicable to western countries where

    cultural barriers are less significant, making this concept more concievable. Therefore,

    this view has no credibility in Asian countries where culture and religion is immensely

    diversified and valued. Hence, globalisation is a procedure that undeniably occurs, for it

    benefits to the economic development. Therefore along with it's occurence for the

    development of the economy, globalisation is inspiring traditional social and religious

    values to shape to new standards. For instance, in Thailand, the national sovreignty, as

    well as bureaucratic and technocratic positions were given high occupational value by

    Thai people but due to influencial forces of globalisation (such as private sectors and

    MNC), this concept underwent changes giving place to democratic institution (although

    limited). Also, organizations such as the WTO or the UN, promted joining countries to

    revise certain preconditions, such as the human rights. However, ASEAN countries

    signed the Declaration of Bangkok which is an actual step towards the integration of a

    global village.

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    Also, younger generations are being increasingly exposed and influenced by other

    cultures as opposed to the generation of the baby boomers, who are considered as

    conservative. As a matter of fact, globalization became more apparent in the 1990's,

    following the massive consumption of goods and services reflecting diverse cultures by

    generation Y and forth. Flow of goods such as Coca-Cola, McDonalds and Starbucks are

    among the emblems asserting the omnipresence of globalisation and widening cultural

    exposure in those countries. Those new trend life and adoption of new way of life are

    seen through the growing number of obesity in Asia (Caballero & Weng, 2007).

    Kim (2008) addresses the forces challenging traditional values, through media and

    communication. Indeed, traditionally, public broadcaster in Asian countries were mainly

    the domestic media controlled by the government. With the lowering of barriers in the

    90's, and the adoption of free trade, borderless media came into the countries and

    started entering the market. Due to curiosity, individuals are proded to consume what

    they have either been deprived of, or simply for the discovery of different cultures.

    Today, transnational television channels, online comunication populace, satellites

    platforms are expanding and becoming part of the Asian lifestyle. Leaders of this fact

    include, Hollywood, Disney, MTV, CNN, and Google internet, which are part of what is

    refered to "banal globalism" (Kim, 2008, p.2) in affluent cities of Asia. Simultaneously,

    this new course of action, has brought in those countries a subtle qualitative change in

    the 'dynamic of socio-political and cultural relations within and between nation states,

    societies and individual.' (Kim, 2008, p.2).

    Incontestably, the preeminent forces of globalisation is apparent in Asia, sometimes

    leading to positive alteration with the amendment of human rights (Declaration of

    Bangkok), or sometimes negatively with obesity being more apparent. Those forces of

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    contemporary globalisation are impacting stringently on traditional social and religious

    values of Asia, however can those altercations cause the loss of Asia's national identity?

    (WORD COUNT: 566)

    Kim, Y (ed.), 2008, Media Consumption and Everyday life in asia, Routledge, New

    York.

    Cabellero, B & Weng, X, 2007, Obesity and it's related diseases in China: The impact

    of Nutrition transition in rural and urban adults, 1st ed., Cambria press, United

    Kingdom