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Lecture 7

ANTB20H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Network Society, Neoliberalism, Global City

Course Code
Girish Daswani

of 3
Lec 7 Monday February 25th, 2013
ANTB20- Global capitalism
Call centers, capital flows from developed country to poor country, thus profits are
maximized because labor is cheaper
New thing, because use to have to ship people from place to place to work, but now
have individuals that want to work in the place and you just ship your money
-with money, you transform the place
Apart from tech that is advancing and changing, the social theory around that is how
we try to understand and conceptualize ourselves as people around these new
How do we think of our future now, vs the people that use to look at the future 40
yrs ago.
How we transform our identity based on our perceptive on the technology
(revolutionized on how we communicate and have contact)
-less face to face contact, no need for hand shake for business deals
Thus, time no longer an issue, can simultaneously be in contact with someone in a
different place and time zone
Time space sociality come into play here
Call centers
phone calls to help with problems
could be for selling stuff,
help fix something
-problem with time zones, accent barrier
time space compression- no need for intimate face to face contact anymore
Avatar: real life and virtual life are close, but different, yet real.
Global capitalism what is it?
Capitalism has taken on new forms since 70’s
The new period we live in has been labeled as ‘post-fordist’, informational and
networked or as disorganized capitalism
-we are currently in post-fordistism
-information is networked
-labour is outsourced- products not in same place it was produced
These models have led to important debates about the new experience of space,
time and identity emergent from these technological and social changes
Neo-liberalism- shift in ways we speak about the open market
assumes that the borders aren’t relevant that capital flows
-states will invite certain investments overseas
-privatization of companies and social welfare commodified
post-fordist you can make money if you have the networks.
The network society
Castells- argues that the main mode of social organization in politics, the economy
and civil society is shifting from the relatively stable hierarchy to a more FLUID
network form
-allows to connect and flow,
These networks are interpersonal, transnational and transitory and associated with
Recent developments generate the basic materials of the informational economy
that is replacing the industrial economy
-think of info and networking as more important
-ex. Role of the spider the most resourceful person is spider because he can link up
parts of the web
Computers VCR, DVD artificial systems, word, excel
-allow us to make these network societies
Global cities: cities and regions are being profoundly modified in their structure and
condition in their growth dynamics (salt lake a city within)
Call centers Bombay calling
What are they?
What do they do and for whom?
How do they fit into the readings on globalization?
How culture and politics linked to them?
-it’s their livelihood
-on avg 1000 people join Bombay- developing place
-accent training
-monthly income 50$US
these individuals have degrees etc, and what they want in life is mirrored by how they live
their life
-h/e they are making more money then the individuals that actually live there
-problematic b/c, these ppl have degrees lawyer, drs etc that can be good for the society,
but they are working at call center
-skills put somewhere else knowledge not being put to use
-earn more money you spend more money
-not just a copy of the western society
-generational tension
-where is the money going?
-IMF only later in the country of India 1990’s
*new experiences of space, time and identity emergent from these technological and
social changes
-internet transfer have become dominant metaphors, shaping our conceptions of
What is usually omitted from such sociological analysis?
Three scales of making sense of diff:
1. national aspirations
2. regional identity
3. individual perceptions and subjectivities
cultural meanings
how are emotion, affect, touch, pleasure, factored into the changes taking place
as long as they are working in the call center- that they are part of the world,
environment they work are very different then the outside, not just time and space
-you’re in British world/culture- by language and accents you use
-form of exploitation
-beyond that, they aren’t just victims they are also agents to better themselves, to
get what they want
-what’s changings? The way we see ourselves and futures, national identity,- were
brought into their daily chit chat
model of consumption neo-liberalism
marry one that is not my culture, interact with others ideas of Freedom
takes place in very specific place
not how the individual perceives it
moral narrative
about movement, changing desires of the future
question you should be asking: how do ppl experience these changing
anthropologist ask this question
how do they repropriate this
not just westernized but Indians that are trying to take something from world and
make it their own
becoming global? America?
When they are there in india and we are here in America
Do we have to look at things from binary oppositions?