Travel Log 10 “Encountering Globalization” by Sam McGrath Cork, Ireland

College is a superhighway of national and global encounters. Not only do people come from all parts of the country to the college, but people from other countries also come to study. The people who come are usually young and fresh with new ideas from their different native areas. With so many nationalities in such a small area the college transforms into a stock exchange of ideas and cultures. The students trade ideas on politics, sports, food, and much more over their time together, helping each student become more globally aware in the process.

Although Quinnipiac doesn’t have a noticeable international population, in my experience abroad I have noticed countless examples of this trading of cultures and ideas. As Kevin Robins says in Ch. 20 “With mobility, comes encounter. In many respects, this may be stimulating and productive”(Encountering Globalization pg. 2). One example of these stimulating encounters is in the many research groups I am a part of in Cork, extracurricular and academic. In these research groups I am bringing the knowledge that I have gained from my culture and education system. In return the other people in the group bring their individual perspectives and experiences. In my group there are people from France, China, Italy, Canada, and of course Ireland. This leads to a plethora of information transferred from each of our different countries. Recently in one of my groups we came to a crossroads about how to conduct some of our research. In America I was taught to conduct a lot of secondary data before diving into the data we would conduct ourselves, while a girl from Italy was taught to conduct more data personally, then rely on a lot of secondary data. These are two different ways we were taught and it was great to learn another way of thinking.

Global transfers of knowledge can also be seen in my residence hall. There are a lot of international students in my building and we transfer different types of ideas than people in my research group. In my residence hall we transfer knowledge of foods (although I have little to offer) back and forth, to help expose everybody to different types that they might not see in their native country. We also exchange knowledge of politics and our cultures in general in our smaller dorm community. It is because of these various exchanges that I believe our working definition for global community might need to be added to. Back in the spring we said a global community is comprised of all living things who make up smaller communities that are conjoined by desire to achieve human rights. I believe we need to add on to this because within a global community there are a lot of transfers of knowledge, not just having to do with our search for better human rights. A newer definition should be “A global community is comprise of all living things who make up smaller communities that are conjoined by desire to achieve human rights and gain new knowledge. “

The picture I decided to choose this week has to do with a recent blocking of globalization. This past year the movie “The Interview” was heavily opposed by the North Korea totalitarianism government, due to the premise of the movie being the assassination of their leader Kim Jong-Un. In Encountering Globalization Chapter 20, Kevin Robins talks about how Iran during the 1990s sought to block American satellite broadcasting so to “prevent the ‘Westoxification’ of Iranian society which seems to be very similar to what happens in North Korea. In my opinion this blocking of certain broadcasting is not right and goes against a lot of personal freedoms, but I understand why they do this. It is very important for a nation to keep their personal heritage and grow as a country with a lot of their own products. The blocking of this broadcasting though prohibits the nation from growing as a population and the personal freedoms of the people of the nation. It also stops the world from growing together as a whole, therefore not only blocking the broadcasting but blocking the exchange of different ideas from culture to culture. That is why it’s important to let the people of a country exchange ideas freely with other countries so the whole world can evolve and grow together towards a better future.

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2 thoughts on “Travel Log 10 “Encountering Globalization” by Sam McGrath Cork, Ireland

  1. Sam, I think that it is interesting that you talking about the banning of the “The Interview” in North Korea, and how that related to Robbin’s article and he point about a lot of eastern nations trying to “prevent ‘Westoxification.” I think that North Korea is the perfect modern day example of this and through not allowing ideas and thoughts from other countries to enter their own media, it limits the knowledge base that the people of North Korea have to make informed decisions. In this way, it shows how globalization is a double-edged sword. While there are negative impacts to globalization, countries extreme measures to prevent any globalization/outside influence, like in North Korea, can be just as harmful to its citizens.

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  2. Sam,
    I completely agree that college is the perfect way for people from different places to come together and learn about the world simply through living. It is pretty cool how living here in Ireland we get to experience many different cultures. Personally, I live with a girl from Spain and I know you have two German roommates which is amazing. Not only do we get to talk with them and socialize, but we can get to know them on a deeper level by living with them. We get to see how they were raised to cook or what foods they eat in general. And I’m sure for them, they want to know what we cook, eat, what music we listen to, and so much more. There is so much to learn and this experience has given us way more then we could have ever imagined .

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