Out of Sight and out of our Minds: What of those Left behind by Globalism?

As was once true of the British Empire, the sun never sets on McDonald's, Microsoft, or Mickey Mouse. And as so many adventure movies set in the colonial era put it, the natives are getting restless. The agitated natives in the current era of global marketing are not only those who have had too much of the neocolonialist exploits of our multinational corporations, but also those who have had too little of the benefits of globalism, both as producers and as consumers. This chapter is about these latter-day left-outs who live in parts of the world or parts of our own cities that are largely undiscovered lands for the current captains of postindustrial industry and other sailors of the seas of globalism. It is true that the globe is shrinking. Faster travel and faster communications make the once distant and mysterious native more and more accessible. Yet there is an asymmetry to this accessibility. For those of us in the more affluent world, it is relatively easy to tap into global flows of finance, ideologies, technology, people, and media (Appadurai 1996) as well as global flows of consumption (Ger and Belk 1996). We can buy Nikes made in Vietnam, hire…

Out of Sight and Out of Our Minds: What of Those Left behind by Globalism?’, RussellBelkJ.N.Sheth and R.Sisodia (eds), Does Marketing Need Reform? Fresh Perspectives on the Future (NY: Armonk, 2006), pp. 209–216. Copyright © 2006 by M.E. Sharpe, Inc. Reprinted with permission.
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