Saturday, January 3, 2009
New Book: Media and Glocal Change: Rethinking Communication for Development
The word “glocal” is hype in social sciences literature; it attempts to include the contradictory and at the same time the symbiotic between “local” and “global” in the context of globalisation that does not recognise cultural borders and has changed our perception of those spaces where human activity takes place. In fact, if we applied a criteria of proximity, we wouldn’t know for certain if what is physically closer to us, the “local”, is truly nearer than what technology so overbearingly brings by: the “global”. The term “glocal” thus encapsulates the tw! o sides of the coin.
From the perspective of media and communication, globalisation has introduced new challenges and complexities that alter the approaches and perceptions we had a few years back. The virtual relationships that are now built at the global level, including for those locally based media outlets, bring in new forms of participation and information dissemination, thus affecting the traditional ways of analysing the public space.
Precisely, about globalisation, culture and communication is what this important book is about: “Media & Glocal Change” edited by Oscar Hemer and Thomass Tufte, from Malmo University in Sweden and Roskilde University in Denmark, respectively. Both are members of the University Network facilitated by the Communication for Social Change Consortium since 2005.
Separated by a long bridge that links Copenhagen and Malmo, Thomas and Oscar have been united through many years of joint work and projects such as this one that has prompted them to gather in 494 pages 38 authors from Europe, Latin America, North America, Africa and Asia.
The book is structured in three parts: the first one covers globalisation, media and culture; the second attempts to draw the map of this field of study, and the third compiles ten case studies on concrete experiences in Bolivia, Namibia, Bosnia, Afghanistan, Nicaragua, Bangladesh and several African countries.
The first part -perhaps the most innovative- analyses the paradigms and models of communication for development and social change under the light of globalisation. Chapters by Oscar and Thomas, and other colleagues such as Silvio Waisbord, Cel Cadiz, Jan Servaes, or Nancy Morris, are contributions complemented by the views of James Deane, Karin Wilkins among other authors that have participated in seminars organized by the Consortium