Although the old meaning of colonization perhaps does not exist in the modern world, a contemporary definition of this word might be linked with “soft power” or “corporate colonialism”. Because today, colonialism is more likely to be interpreted with the above-mentioned expressions. In looking at Friedmann’s and Myrdal’s theories, this essay will explore whether the USA is executing neocolonialism considering arguments that include globalization and Americanization. On the one hand, the US perhaps is not executing kind of neocolonialism.
America might not push other nations to buy items from the US as well as promote their “Americanization” in order to become a country with an uneven economy in relation to other regions. It is suggested that Hollywood became the cultural center of the world (Daghrir 2013, 22). According to Daghrir (2013, 22), however, Hollywood was never identified as the completely American inheritance. There is another good point which supports the view that America might not influence people to act in a way which is profitable for the country. Even though America could have huge impact on the whole world, some social patterns such as indigenous tongues, traditional foods, education and others probably can not be affected by the States’ clout. For example, as Daghrir (2013, 23) mentioned British people are likely to eat curry rather than burgers. He also reported that proportion of Indian restaurants and McDonald’s there is six to one, respectively. According to him, pizzas are more favored than American fast food in the world.
Hence, there is some confusion whether America is practising “corporate colonialism” or not. It might be slightly hard to assure that American companies are influencing nations to buy only their products, because it was mentioned that globalization probably does not make the world everywhere the same. People could falsely label the products they consume as “Made in America”. This can be seen in the case with movies that are officially franchises of an American company called Time Warner: Harry Potter and The Lord of the Rings. They both are written on basis of British books and the vast majority of casts were British people (Daghrir 2013, 22). Despite the fact that global mass culture was likely to be linked with America (Pell 2002, 14), it presumably could be the false evidence. On the other hand, it could be suggested that America probably is influencing global market and creating uneven economy. People link the US with “corporate colonialism” in different fields (Nye 2004). Daghrir (2013, 19) stated that the United States has a domination in data and ideas. Its impact on global economy might be strong as there are even phrases as “Coca-colonization” or “McDonaldization”. In more cases, “corporate colonialism” is more likely to be related to globalization. They both perhaps can be used in slightly similar contexts. Held et al. (1999, 327) affirmed: Few expressions of globalization are so visible, widespread and pervasive as the worldwide proliferation of internationally traded consumer brands [such as Coca- Cola], the global ascendancy of popular cultural icons [such as Madonna] and artifacts [such as Harry Potter books].
People assume that American companies such as Nike, Coca–Cola, McDonald’s, Disneyland and giants of information technology industry like Microsoft and Google are abolishing local peculiarities (Daghrir 2013, 19). Even the US television industry could have a huge influence on many countries. For example, more than 70 countries over the world use TV services of HBO (Home Box Office), American television cable and satellite network (Lavery et al. 14). Another relevant instance might be the fact that some countries which do not have enough finances to create their own news networks depend on the USA’s companies like CNN (World Regional Geography… 2016). For instance, even in Mongolia people tend to use American channels including National Geographic, CNN and Bloomberg TV as well as The Voice of America radio broadcasts (Telecom Mongolia 2016 quoted in Zhuravleva 2018). Such impact might refer to “corporate colonialism” as above-mentioned examples indicated that American companies probably can have significant contribution to the world’s economy overall. Thus, the States would have unequal economy relatively to other countries of the planet. The cases that were mentioned as the instances can be clarified by the spread effect of Gunnar Myrdal’s Cumulative Causation theory: such effect is caused by demand in less growth regions and it arises from developed areas. Furthermore, the US corporations can probably shift their offices to different regions in order to be able to run businesses in other parts of the world. For instance, according to the research of Šimelytė, Korsakienė and Ščeulovs (2017, 7), huge global companies such as IBM, Microsoft, Coca-Cola, Google, Western Union and others provide their services in Lithuanian market, and they have significant impact of Lithuania’s market. American products are being delivered all through the globe (World Regional Geography… 2016).
For example, the largest fast food company McDonald’s provides its service in more than one hundred countries (World Regional Geography… 2016). Possibly, its secret of success is that it offers their clients menus that consider people’s preferences such as no beef foods in India or meals with hare meat in France (Daghrir 2013, 21). Another corporation that could be called as the “corporate colonialist” is Walmart. Company’s low-cost strategy afforded them to become one of the largest brands in the planet (Spicer and Hyatt 2017, 132). All given statements and arguments are presumably true that America is practising “corporate colonialism”.
Today’s colonialists are more likely to use “soft power” or colonize “corporately”. An acceptable example of neocolonialist might be the US. There is no doubt that American corporations are distributing their products around the world. States’ TV networks, fast food companies or global brands such as Walmart and Coca-Cola provide services in many different countries where their products are in demand. Therefore, the enterprises rapidly start their businesses in the regions that are considerably cost-effective, where local people are willing to buy US items. Using a variety of business and marketing techniques, they easily attract consumers. Considering the arguments in this paper, I think that America is executing “corporate colonialism” to make its economy even stronger. Cases that people over the world drink Coca-Cola, eat at Kentucky Fried Chicken and wear Levi’s jeans support the claim that the United States is the country which is practicing “corporate colonialism”.
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