The Globalization of Culture: Myth or Reality?

By Daniel Robert Morris.

Published by The Diversity Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Globalization scholars frequently debate the impact of globalization on minor or subcultures. Many fear that globalization will lead to the homogenization of culture as the influence of western culture creates what one writer referred to as a sort of cultural imperialism (Veseth 66), pushing less dominant cultures to the brink of extinction. In this paper, the author examines two specific subcultures to determine how they have fared in the face of globalization: the Breton culture of France, and the French Cajun culture of Louisiana in the United States. These two subcultures were selected since one occurs in the United States, commonly recognized as the main perpetrator of cultural homogenization around the world, while the other lies in a country often cited for its resistance to globalization. In recent years, both the Breton culture and the Cajun culture have gained a more favorable image and stronger cultural identity after suffering decline in the mid twentieth century. An analysis of their transformation leads to conclusions about cultural homogenization and the survival of minor cultures that may be applied to other cultures.

Keywords: Globalization, Culture, Homogenization, Identity, France, United States, Breton, Brittany, Cajun, French

International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations, Volume 9, Issue 4, pp.13-22. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.208MB).

Dr. Daniel Robert Morris

Professor of French, Department of Language, Literature, and Philosophy, Southern Oregon University, Ashland, Oregon, USA

Dr. Daniel R. Morris has a Ph.D. in Romance Languages (French) from the University of Oregon and is currently professor of French and Director of Foreign Languages and Literatures in the Department of Language, Literature and Philosophy at Southern Oregon University, where he has taught since 1982. He served as interim Dean of the School of Arts and Letters at Southern Oregon University from 2006-07. In 2005-06 he was a visiting professor in Angers, France. He is the author of From Heaven to Hell: Imagery of Earth, Air, Water, and Fire in the Novels of Georges Bernanos (Peter Lang, 1988) and articles on French literature, culture, language teaching, and globalization. He currently serves as the Director of the Arts and Humanities Council at Southern Oregon University. He is past director of the Oregon University System study abroad programs in Poitiers and Lyon, France, and has received over $500,000 in federal grant support to improve second language teaching. A certified tester/trainer for the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages, he has also served on numerous local, state, and national language organizations, and directs the Southern Oregon Foreign Language Articulation project.

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