Review: Globalization & Voices from Indian Practitioners

Globalization & Voices from Indian Practitioners
Edited by Dr. Amna Mirza (Shipra Publications, 2013) pp 170.
Reviewed by Divya James

globalization-amna-mirzaThe term “globalization” can be traced back to 1960s, when Marshall McLuhan foresaw that electronic dependence was creating a new form of social life, captured by the term “global village.” With the demise of the Soviet Union and end of  the Cold War, international reality also had a different trajectory of contextual forces.

What has been the driving force for the human history is the ability of the human condition to alter according to suit ones hope. The webs have always channeled and co-ordinated every human action which has changed its nature to a plural tenor in present times.

Contemporary globalization has led to major reconfiguration of social geography which has affected all social structures. It has generated interplay of continuity and change, with change within their continuity and not deeper transformations being the guiding panorama.

It challenges the nation states by its supra-national forces. It is driven by international trade and finance, facilitated by communication and technology, accompanied by de-territorialisation with the space-time compression.

If at one point there are tensions in coping with its adversary effects, there are also new prospects and occasions of growth. Globalization & Voices from Indian Practitioners editor Dr. Amna Mirza presents a view to respond and react to the intellectual earnestness to know where have we come from and where are we heading.

Ashok Tanwar narrates that modern politics has to face various dynamic issues. The focus now has to be diverted towards balanced growth and need to strike equity in policy outlines which requires piecemeal change towards social engineering.

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Contributing authors at book launch, courtesy of Divya James.

From the administrative point of view, S. M. Khan argues that when we perceive of quick communications, better connectivity, faster people to people contact, one can draw an inference that living in isolation today is no longer an option. The era of globalization is changing world politics that even smaller nations can exercise their say in big international matters. The grassroots are no more a passive recipient of policies from above, but have an active say in giving inputs.

Sandeep Jajodia adds that the changing business environment context provides challenges as well as opportunities for the various managerial functions, which asks for changes in the traditional collective approach of human resources. Seema Kaushal elaborates that diversity is becoming the key ingredient of our global lives and workforce, and the education for future has to sensitize us towards this change.

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Rachna Sharma takes the debate forward by arguing for the need for a holistic perspective, where hospitality and tourism is the most dynamic catalyst for tomorrow’s ever-changing lifestyle based on the ethos of demographic changes, climate and sustainability.

Regarding the notion of the withdrawal of the State and rise of non-government agencies, Shilpa Sonal says that  private public partnerships for non-profits is the only way to cross the threshold of red tape and bureaucratic dismissals.

Dr. Sujay Shad points to the irony inherent in this process that we are physically short of hospital beds for the local population. Is it proper for us to pass our healthcare abroad and seek rich dividends? If we are no longer a service and use the euphemism of an industry then profiteering from healthcare globalization is unquestionably acceptable.

Archana Bahl Sapra discusses the global art realm. The opening up of the economy, all pervasive impact of information technology, melting down of barriers and ease of travel have changed the face of the land and its arts scape. It has not only opened up the horizon but also facilitated an interface between the local and global, helping Indian art develop as an eclectic mix of the old and the new with a high level of sophistication.

Vedabhyas Kundu holds that media literacy in the global realm shall bode well for development of creative, communicative, semiotic, cultural and operative skills.

Simar Suri and Supreet Gill Sidhu offer their critical inputs by pointing that as India integrates itself with the global economy, the inadequacy of the legal system has become more glaring in terms of archaic laws prevalent for dynamic times.

Furthermore, as globalization weakens national boundaries and lures humankind with revenue and a development yardstick, Cyriac Kodath gives a first person and real life experience of the movement where the fishing villages of Vizhinjam, Adimalathura and Poovar are in permanent risk of supposed development. He narrates how the local forces have decided to cast a voice against uprooting by global dogmas.

Thus, Globalization & Voices from Indian Practitioners meticulously presents a broad canvas in its writings. It is remarkable to see how a practitioner of a discipline makes an attempt to test its experience against the academic vision. Such a dialogue is essential to comprehend the real test and endurance of an ever-changing, perplexing phenomena & process like globalization.

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Dr. Amna Mirza, courtesy of Divya James

Divya James is a social activist, freelance photgrapher and journalism graduate from New Delhi. Read other articles by Divya.