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Re: Friedman's world system
by Luke Rondinaro
22 September 2002 20:36 UTC
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I found the following links using "world system" via a Yahoo! search.  Thought they may be of interest to look at and analyse.  It looks like the term is bc more widespread. There's actually a bunch of material out there besides just this; but an advanced search on any of the search engines (Yahoo, Google, etc.) & using other terms in conjunction with "world system" ends up with more results than just using just the two words themselves; it's neat to see where the term pops up. (Note that the Mises article uses the hyphen.)






 Boris Stremlin wrote:

There is nothing particularly interesting about the Friedman Op/Ed piece
cited below - it is the typically insipid message one has come to expect
from him. If interested, the link is provided below.

I bring it up here only to focus attention on the last paragraph, where
Friedman refers to the "world system". I wonder what inspired him to use
such terminology. Actually, it is interesting that he brings it up in the
context of defending globalization. I do not mean to raise a debate as to
whether Friedman's point about globalization continuing post 9/11 is
correct; what seems less doubtful is that the term "globalization" itself
is likely to decline in the post 9/11 era, because there is now so little
agreement about what it actually refers to. And it is precisely in this
context that the appearance of "world system" in a New York Times Op/Ed
piece is interesting. Does it entering the lexicon of the mass media?

A few years ago, on a bus ride from Binghamton to New York, I heard the
driver discussing "God's world system" with one of the passengers. I
won't hazard a guess as to where he may have heard this term, but there is
every indication that it is well suited for popular usage.

At last year's 25th anniversary conference at the Braudel Center,
Wallerstein delivered a paper in which he argued that social-scientific
terms tend to have a shelf-life of around 30 years. He singled out
"globalization" for particular attention. If "world system" (hyphenated
or not) succeeds in emerging into the mainstream, it may be wise to
remember when its was first articulated as a concept.

The quote from Friedman's article follows:

"But the point is this: The debate about globalization
before 9/11 got really stupid. Two simple truths got
lost: One, globalization has its upsides and
downsides, but countries that come at it with the
right institutions and governance can get the best out
of it and cushion the worst. Two, countries that are
globalizing sensibly but steadily are also the ones
that are becoming politically more open, with more
opportunities for their people, and with a young
generation more interested in joining the world system
than blowing it up."



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