Assignment On Globalization and International Relations

In social sciences it is often difficult to trace the origin of concepts. Concepts, theories and ideas arc often products of collective endeavors. It would be extremely difficult to identify who used the term "globalization" for the first time. According to Malcolm Waters (1995) whose book titled Globalization is a fine primer, Roland Robertson was one of the early users of the term. More recently, Roland Robertson and Kathleen White edited Globalization: Critical Concepts in 6 volumes is a tour dc force which present some of the most important essays on this subject.


No matter who coined it first, at the dawn of the 21st century globalization as a concept, as a slogan, as a term is used more frequently than any other terms. In Singapore, from the inflow of foreign capital, technology, workers or "foreign talents", music, movies, popular culture, almost everything has resonance with globalization. Globalization is a heroic process, globalization is a sinister process, depending on which side of the debate one stands. Some tend to see globalization as a brakeless train crushing everything in its path, others see benefit in getting on board the train towards economic growth and modernization.


2. Sociology, Globalization and International Relations
Globalization as a concept in social science has a short history. Even in the revised version of Raymond Williams' Key Words (1983) there is no entry on globalization. The Harper Collins Dictionary of Sociology (1991) has an entry on "globalization of production" but no entry on globalization as such. The Oxford Concise Dictionary of Sociology (1994) has an entry on globalization together with, globalization theory. It says "Globalization theory examines the emergence of a global cultural system. It suggests that global culture is brought about by a variety of social and cultural developments.” The entry refers to the book edited by Martin Albrow and Elizabeth King (1990) Globalization, Knowledge and Society. The term globalization was probably first used as a book title in the Albrow and King edited book (1990) which was published drawing on the essays published in. various issues of International Sociology the journal of International Sociological Association (1986-1990) Some of the journal articles contained globalization as a phrase in the titles in the 1980s and even earlier (see Moore, 1966, Meyer, 1980; Robertson, 1983a, 1983b, 1985). One could even claim that the first social science text that dealt with the subject of globalization was The Communist Manifesto (1848). One could even argue that Ibn Khaldun 1332-1406), the author of Prolegomenon to the Universal History was the real claimant of the credit. Globalization as a social process is old and has a much longer history. Many writers have traced the early globalizing processes in the dissemination of religion and culture, interactions of people, groups, communities through trade and commerce from the ancient times.