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Sociology   >   Globalisation

What is Globalisation?

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In this course, Professor Rafal Soborski (Richmond, The American International University in London) explores key debates around the concept and characteristics of globalisation. In the first lecture, we consider some notable ways in which globalisation has been defined, and some problems with these definitions. In the second lecture, we look at histories of globalisation, noting especially where different scholars locate the beginnings of the process. In the third lecture, we look at the debate between two camps – the hyperglobalists and the sceptics – regarding the existence and significance of globalisation, often termed the great globalisation debate. Next, we think about whether globalisation is “good” or “bad”, looking at optimistic and pessimistic accounts. In the fifth and final lecture, we examine different perspectives on the cultural impacts of globalisation, focusing particularly on Samuel Huntington’s “clash of civilisations” thesis.

What is Globalisation?

In this lecture, we think about ways of conceptualising globalisation and Jan Aart Scholte’s four types of definition, focusing in particular on: (i) internationalisation – the intensification of interactions between nation states; (ii) liberalisation – the removal of barriers to free global trade; (iii) universalisation – the emergence of shared global cultural practices and commodities; (iv) westernisation – the global spread of western culture and ideas; (v) Scholte’s own preferred definition, centred on the rise of supraterritoriality, or the decreasing importance of territory and spatial distance in social, political and economic interactions.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Soborski, R. (2022, January 20). Globalisation - What is Globalisation? [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Soborski, R. "Globalisation – What is Globalisation?." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 20 Jan 2022,

Image Credits


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Prof. Rafal Soborski

Richmond University, London