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Chapter 4

Chapter 4 GS101

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Wilfrid Laurier University
Global Studies
Ali Zaidi

GS101 Chapter 4-The Political Dimension of Globalization Week 2 -Political globalization refers to the intensification and expansion of political interrelations around the globe. -These processes raise an important set of political issues pertaining to the principle of state sovereignty, the growing impact of intergovernmental organizations, and the future prospects for regional and global governance. -The artificial division of planetary social space into ‘domestic’ and ‘foreign’ spheres corresponds to people’s collective identities based on the creation of a common ‘us’ and an unfamiliar ‘them’ -Through the image of The Other, people’s belief in the superiority of their own nation has supplied the mental energy required for large-scale warfare -The period since the late 1960s has been marked by a radical ‘deterritorialization’ of politics, rule, and governance. -As each group presents different assessments of the fate of their modern nation-state they also quarrel over the relative importance of political and economic factors -Is it really true that the power of the nation-state has been curtailed by massive flows of capital, people, and technology across territorial boundaries? -Are the primary causes of these flows to be found in politics or in economics? -Are we witnessing the emergence of global governance? The Modern Nation-state system -The origins of this can be traced back to seventeenth-century political developments in Europe. -In 1648, the Peace of Westphalia concluded a series of religious wars and challenged the medieval mosaic of small politics in which political power tended to be local and personal in focus but still subordinated to a larger authority. -The Westphalian model strengthened a new conception of international law based on the principle that all states had an equal right to self-determination -This model consisted of the following: The world consists of, and is divided into, sovereign territorial states which recognize no superior authority The processes of law-making, the settlement of disputes, and law enforcement are largely in the hands of individual states International Law is oriented to the establishment of minimal rules of co-existence; the creation of enduring relationships is an aim, but only to the extent that it allows state objectives to be met Responsibility for cross-border wrongful acts is a ‘private matter’ concerning only those affected All states are regarded as equal before the law, but legal rules do not take account of asymmetries of power Differences among states are often settled by force; the principle of effective power holds sway. Virtually no legal fetters exist to curb the resort to force; international legal standards afford only minimal protection The collective priority of all states should be to minimize the impediments to state freedom -This led to the further centralization of political power, the expansion of state administration, the development of professional diplomacy, and the successful monopolization of the means of coercion in the hands of the state GS101 Chapter 4-The Political Dimension of Globalization Week 2 -The states then provided military means required for the expansion of commerce which led to the spread of European political rule around the world -The modern nation state system found its mature expression at the end of WWI with President Woodrow Wilson’s 14 points based on the principle of national self-determination -Globalization tendencies grew stronger in the 1970s, and
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