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The ‘Global Dimension’ of Contemporary Politics. An Argument for Taking ‘Global’ Seriously
Selchow, Sabine
Institut Barcelona d'Estudis Internacionals
Recent years have seen a striking proliferation of the term ‘global’ in public and political discourse. The popularity of the term is a manifestation of the fact that there is a widespread notion that contemporary social reality is ‘global’. The acknowledgment of this notion has important political implications and raises questions about the role played by the idea of the ‘global’ in policy making. These questions, in turn, expose even more fundamental issues about whether the term ‘global’ indicates a difference in kind, even an ontological shift, and, if so, how to approach it. This paper argues that the notion of ‘global’, in other words the ‘global dimension’, is a significant aspect of contemporary politics that needs to be investigated. The paper argues that in the globalization discourse of International Studies ‘global’ is ‘naturalized’, which means that it is taken for granted and assumed to be self-evident. The term ‘global’ is used mainly in a descriptive way and subsumed under the rubric of ‘globalization’. ‘Global’ tends to be equated with transnational and/or world-wide; hence, it addresses quantitative differences in degree but not (alleged) differences in kind. In order to advance our understanding of contemporary politics, ‘global’ needs to be taken seriously. This means, firstly, to understand and to conceptualize ‘global’ as a social category; and, secondly, to uncover ‘global’ as a ‘naturalized’ concept in the Political and International Studies strand of the globalization discourse in order to rescue it for innovative new approaches in the investigation of contemporary politics. In order to do so, the paper suggests adopting a strong linguistic approach starting with the analysis of the word ‘global’. Based on insights from post-structuralism as well as cognitive and general constructivist perspectives it argues that a frame-based corpus linguistic analysis offers the possibility of investigating the collective/social meaning(s) of global in order to operationalize them for the analysis of the ‘global dimension’ of contemporary politics.
Globalització -- Aspectes polítics
Corpus (Lingüística)
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20 p.
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IBEI Working Papers;2007/8

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