Globalization through the lens of The Walt Disney Company
2. Using a single case study (for example select one of these: transnational
corporations – Microsoft, McDonald’s, cultural products – film, I-pods, international
financial institutions and policies – World Bank, Structural Adjustment Policies) indicate
what reasons might there be for supporting and rejecting the idea of globalization as
‘Westernization’, Americanization’, and/or ‘McDonaldization’? Which arguments are
more persuasive and why?
Name: Amy Christofferson
Student #: C05694091
Due: Tuesday, November 23, 2010
"Unfortunately, all this success creates the ever-greater demand ...view middle of the document...
Family is a renewable resource."
The success and uniqueness of Disney makes it a good case study for globalization. It is such a good representation of globalization that it has been used to exemplify different theories of globalization (Siklos).
Globalization is defined in the Merriam-Webster dictionary as “the act or process of globalizing: the state of being globalized; especially: the development of an inverasingly integrated global economy marker especially by free trade, free flow of capital, and the tapping of cheaper foreign labor markets” (Globalization). Globalization could mean the process of globalizing or the end result of being globalized. Because it could mean either there are many debates as to whether or not the world is experiencing globalization. Globalization includes researching similarity and homogenization as well as assertion and imposition of difference and uniqueness, basically heterogenization. Understanding the different sides requires narrowing down exactly what globalization really is, and that is very difficult (Bryman 162). Is it currently occurring? Has it happened already and now we are globalized? Or has it yet to occur and is still a long way off? Also, is it the spread of capitalism or democracy? Or the spread of Western values and society? Or is globalization perhaps the spread of specific corporations like Disney and McDonalds or at the very least the spread of the principles exemplified by those corporations. The existence of all these different options means anyone wanting to study globalization must make educated and logical decisions to decide what globalization really is and to do that one often finds specializing in a specific aspect of globalization is necessary or helpful.
The distinction between Disneyization or Disneyfication, essentially globalization through the lens of Disney, and McDonaldization is an important one although they do overlap in many ways. Still they are not the same. Disneyization and McDonaldization both have an affinity with consumption and are a large scale social process that is made up of a number of analytically separate components (Bryman 157). McDonalization also shares the same core as Disneyization because it exemplifies the principles of the fast food restaurant and how they are spreading. George Ritzer defines McDonaldization as “the process by which the principles of the fast food restaurant are coming to dominate more and more sectors of American society as well as of the rest of the world“ (Ritzer 1). These similarities are not enough to counteract the differences they have because both are theories of globalization and even the smallest change in a theory constitutes it being a complete different theory. Disneyization is not a branch of McDonaldization; they are both equally significant. Two separate theories are required because McDonaldization “does not fully capture some of the changes [of globalization] that are occurring in the service and...