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September 12, 2010

Chapter 6 discussed the postmodern condition of the world, which is inherently global, accelerated technologically, and mobile.  I thought this chapter was a nice summary of many critics’ thinking on neoliberalism and the hyper-capitalist agenda that is being presented as the “New World Order.”  The author focused on the historical (albeit contemporary historical) timeline of the control over audio-visual rights and the competing/conflicting nations that fought over the power of this scape. 

The author also focused on the blurring effect of different -scapes. For example (p.84) “advertorials (information and editorials), infotainment (information and entertainment), and edutainment.”  The author argues that these merging scapes are a reflection of the current structure of globalization, where different levels of political control (i.e., global, national, and local) are envisioned as permeable intrastructures that inform and are shaped by one another. This reminds me of postmodern thinkers who talk about the “implosion” of the Marxist structures (the supra and the base).  This author names it, “glocalization (p. 77)”. However, the implosion does NOT mean that it’s influence is equal in power distribution. The “ruling elite,” who at this time are the corporations, is still the big kahuna, and work to exercise their agenda through hegemonic manipulation. In this hegemonic quest, corporations seek to utilize any and all potential resources, including what Chomsky would agree to be the most powerful form of resource, language and ideology, to serve their very narrow interest, which is hyper-capitalism vis a vie big corps.  The author continues by specifying particular characteristics inherent in hyper-capitalism, which are individualism, hyper-competitiveness, specialization; and if any of these ideas or language manips. don’t work, these groups are ready to use militaristic force, which the author illustrates through particular wars.  It kind of reminds me a show that my daughter watches all the time–Shrek. The particular scene where Shrek holds up his fists and says, “I plan on using reason and persuasion.” He then proceeds to lift up one fist and says, “Here’s reason,” and does the same with the other fist, “and here’s persuasion. Hehehehe.”

I’m not sure what I should add to this chapter. It all seemed on point, but nothing too (and I hate to use this word but I don’t have another word at the moment)… nothing-new?  I am familiar with this macro-critique of anything modern/postmodern, and I realize the necessity of this argument and value it, and at the same time I want more… I guess I want more creativity, or imagination… This didn’t really lend itself for folks who are familiar with this strain of argument. Overall, however, I thought it was a nice summarization, with detailed events that the author believed, to have contributed to this valorization of “globalization” and the problematic nature that has became of consequence.

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