Globalization in Terms of Family Term Paper

Pages: 8 (2697 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Family and Marriage  ·  Buy This Paper

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] A description of the observable changes in the children in a costal region of India evidences this reality:

When in 1978 I first came to the coastal village of Poomkara in Kerala, India, to carry out an anthropological inquiry into the work of children as part of a research project on poverty and survival strategies of poor households,[1] I witnessed, not surprisingly, a fair degree of indigence and heavy involvement of children in their families' daily hardships. About half of the village children did not get three meals a day, were scantily dressed, and suffered from a range of poverty-related ailments. Most of the three hundred or so households lived in thatched huts, without piped water or bathrooms; only a handful had electricity or radios, and telephones and TV sets were unknown. Lifestyles were very much imbued by an orthodox interpretation of Islam that justified resistance against both Marxist- inspired militantism and Western ideas and values.

As the fathers of these children left their homes for the Gulf countries and the lure of opportunities for engagement in the wheels of capitalist production, the children and families left behind started receiving money and consumer items from their fathers, introducing them to the "symbols and rituals of the type of modernity that had developed in the Gulf...with some building multistory houses....with piped water, telephones, TVs and VCRs, and bathrooms and modern kitchens; they have bought lorries, cars, and motorcycles, and opened shops that sell a choice of processed food and consumer goods unknown in the locality until then." In the process, as a result of the influences of globalization, these children lost "their feelings of solidarity, care, civil concern, and contentment -- values that are not only crucial in their lives and from which they derive their pride and self-esteem, but that also guide their daily practices of hard work and self-effacing behavior." While the loss of these aspects in the lives of these children may not seem like a major issue in relation to the gains that they have been allowed to experience, the greatest travesty associated with such losses is the fact that assumptions about childhood and what is best for children have been unknowingly transmitted to a people who had lived for centuries with their own assumptions and beliefs about childhood. The children of Poomkara represent only one example of this occurrence. However, it can be assumed that the Western ideal of childhood has been imposed on other families throughout the world as a consequence of globalization, denying the possibility of diversity in models of childhood while condemning other styles of upbringing as being outside the boundaries of what is best for children.

For Westerners, such occurrences may seem too far removed to cause alarm as to the potential influences of globalization. However, issues impacting families in the West are also equally observable. Advances in technology and the demands associated with the global economy have moved American families closer to a 24-hour, 7-day-a-week economy. Consequently, two-fifths of all employed Americans work mostly during the evenings or nights, on rotating shifts, or on weekends, with increasing evidence of the widespread prevalence of nonstandard work schedules. This growing trend represents a significant social phenomenon, with important implications for the health and well-being of individuals and their families. Increasingly, as a consequence of this trend, Americans are raising their children today in ways that are believed to be outside of that which has been representative of the traditional American family. Problems that have been noted most recently include an increase in physical health disturbances (e.g., sleep disturbances, gastrointestinal disorders, and chronic malaise) and alterations in the structure and stability of family life as childcare and the amount of time families spend together is altered.

As the realities and issues addressed within this paper continue to emerge and be further developed, the influence of globalization on families must also become a greater concern of those within the helping professions, including psychology. While individuals and families may be served by helping professionals at the local level, members of these professions must become increasingly aware of the inequalities in resources and power created by globalization as well as the resulting extreme disparities and violent responses experienced by individuals and families across the globe. As has been noted by others, professionals in the helping field can no longer ignore such strong global economic and political forces while remaining hopeful that social as well as interpersonal and familial problems can be resolved by focusing on the local level. Consequently, professionals in psychology as well as social work and other helping fields must begin to consider how their work can be concentrated at the local level while thinking, planning and strategizing as to how to respond to the global problems now facing individuals and families throughout the global community. There is sparse literature currently available in the field of the helping professions to suggest that professionals are attempting to further learn and develop strategies for responding to the problems faced by families within the global community. There is a need for efforts to be directed toward the further study of the impact of globalization on the social and interpersonal lives of individuals and families. Without such information, helping professionals cannot be expected to assume a greater role in attempting to deal with the problems created by globalization. Essentially, the time has come for psychology educators, researchers and practitioners to step to the plate in initiating an increased understanding of the human and familial experience in relation to globalization.

References

Carrington, V. (2001). Globalization, family and nation state: reframing family in new times. Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 22 (2), 185-200.

Cheung, F. & Tsui, M. (2002)A wake-up call to the social work profession. Families in Society, 83 (2), 124-125.

International Labour Organization (2002). ILO tackles social consequences of globalization. Press Release, ILO News, (27 February 2002). Geneva, Switzerland.

Hetata, S. (1998). Dollarization, fragmentation, and God. In S. Fish, & F. Jameson, (eds). The cultures of globalization. NC: Duke University Press, pp. 273-290.

Luttwak, E. (1995). Turbo-charged capitalism is the enemy of family values. New Perspectives Quarterly, 12 (2), 10-13.

Nieuwenhuys, O. (1998). Global childhood and the politics of contempt. Alternatives: Social Transformation and Humane Governance, 23 (3), 267-290.

Presser, H. (1999). Toward a 24-hour economy. Science, 284 (5421), 1778-1781.

Teeple, G. (2000). What is globalization? In S. McBride (ed.). Globalization and Its Discontents. pp. 9-24, UK: Macmillan.

International Labour Organization (2002). ILO tackles social consequences of globalization. Press Release, ILO News, (27 February 2002). Geneva, Switzerland.

Cheung, F. & Tsui, M. (2002)A wake-up call to the social work profession. Families in Society, 83 (2), 124.

Carrington, V. (2001). Globalization, family and nation state: reframing family in new times. Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, 22 (2), 185-200.

Luttwak, E. (1995). Turbo-charged capitalism is the enemy of family values. New Perspectives Quarterly, 12 (2),10-13.

Hetata, S. (1998). Dollarization, fragmentation, and God. In S. Fish, & F. Jameson, (eds). The cultures of globalization. NC:… [END OF PREVIEW]

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