Elora Herberick:

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As our studying continues in Kerala, I have learned a great deal of the problems caused by globalization. I have been lucky enough to be working with the labor project group the past two days of our trip. During that time I was exposed more to these economical and employment issues.  This first-hand account has made me realize that India and Kerala state are losing their traditional way of life because the younger generations are looking for more profitable white-collar opportunities.

I have studied the traditional weavers and rope makers of Kerala within the past two days of field research. Both were suffering a great deal from lack of willing laborers and a very low salary rate, thus leading to the decline of such traditional and beautiful arts.

I have always known that globalization, westernization, and modernization of cultures have led to the decline of traditional ways of life but being from a Western nation I always assumed that Western life was the way of the future. Although, as I have gone through my anthropology degree and seen first-hand accounts of the negative implications of globalization in several different countries, I realize it’s true destruction. In my last blog, I briefly discussed the port issue and the battle between development and corporate influence, and traditional ways of life. The effects of globalization is not limited to the change of clothing fashions and corporate brand intrusion, but also changes an entire culture and their future…mostly negatively.

Speaking of gender differences for example, the introduction of British ideals at the turn of the century changed Kerala society from that of matrilineal to patrilineal descent. Now women are struggling for their rights and lives, but if their country and people were left alone in the first place, that would most likely not be a current issue.

As I continue my journey in Kerala for the next week, I will search for more examples of globalization and the effects of such influence. I want to bring back my new knowledge to the United States and share the idea that globalization and the push of one’s culture on another is not all it is thought to be. Globalization, for any personal or governmental benefit, whether it be profits or merely Eurocentric ideals, is not the way our world should continue. We need to be accepting and respectful of others livelihood, culture and values. That is the only way our societies and our world will move forward.

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