In order to better understand international effects of business involvement, politics, and economic trends in the modern world, I will need to take a variety of courses from several disciplines related to globalization and social dynamics. The Political Science/ Anthropology course titled “Globalization” will be helpful, if not central, to my understanding of the processes surrounding global change.
The Anthropology course “Sustainable development in the Modern World System” will enable me to assess material, cultural, and social impacts on peoples around the world and in the U.S. In this course I will design a program of sustainable development in my area of focus, Latin America. This will give me analytical and problem-solving skills, and further develop my understanding of complex political and socio-economic factors involved in globalization, and specifically in Latin America. This course will build on a course I have already taken, “Principles of Sustainable Development”, which has been central to my understanding of historical, conceptual, and theoretical foundations of sustainability in relation to global issues of equity, wealth and poverty, and environments.
I will also take the Anthropology course “Agrarian Studies and Rural Development” in order to understand and analyze rural populations in the context of global economic and political influence. Because I will be focusing on Latin American populations, I will need a cultural of these populations, and thus and understanding of, and ideally a proficiency in, the Spanish language. I am taking four Spanish language courses to prepare me for studying abroad in Latin America. Spending time abroad will give me a better understanding of the culture, politics, and environment, as well as solidify and put into practice the base of Spanish that I will have accumulated.
While abroad, I specifically intend to take cultural courses, as well as language courses to increase my language proficiency. Hopefully I will be able to become familiar with the social movements resisting globalization while there. The final regionally-specific course I plan to take is the History course “Indigenous Resistance in Modern Latin America.” This course will give me an in-depth look at the social and political movements of indigenous and agrarian populations in response to forces of globalization, from an outside, academic perspective.
The effects of globalization and economic pressures are felt around the world, and resistances and uprisings are happening as a result. Because the other focus of my course of study revolves around issues of equity, democracy, power relations, and the nature of revolutions and social change in general, I will need to take courses addressing each of these topics. One course I will take is the History course “Revolutions in the Modern World.” This will develop analytical skills in comparative history, and aid in my basic understanding of the socio-economic and political forces contributing to modern revolutions and social upheavals. In order to understand the forces that impact society, and the nature of revolutions, I will take the Sociology course “Collective Behavior and Social Change.” This will give me an in-depth look at tactics, strategies, causes, and effects of social changes and upheavals. The questions of when, how, and by whom change is affected will be explored in this class.
In exploring globalization, effects on indigenous and agrarian populations, and collective behaviors of resistance, the issues of equality and power distribution will arise. To address the various problems of inequality and their consequences, I will take the Sociology course “Social Stratification.” In this course I will study the distribution of wealth, power, and privilege, and relate those studies to the current economic and political system in place in the U.S., and its spread to the global scene. Finally, I plan to take the Political Science course “Human Rights” , in order to have a solid basic understanding of what civil and political rights, among other human rights, must be preserved, and the relationship between globalization and preservation/infringement upon these rights.
From these areas of study, each related to my topic, I can gain a better understanding of globalization from various perspectives. I will develop anthropological, cultural, historical, sociological, and political understandings of the issues surrounding my study, and will consequently be equipped with analytical, comparative, and problem-solving skills to address these issues.