A Lecture by


René Boomkens

University of Groningen

The Myth of Globalization

Since 1990 globalization has become the catch phrase used to describe and explain everything new in politics and culture. But what exactly does it describe and explain? The first years it predominantly referred to financial and economic liberalization on a global scale. Afterwards it was identified with the rapid success of electronic communication and the Internet. Nowadays it refers to globalized cultural and political connections and exchanges. Looking back at the debates about the meaning and direction of processes of globalization most of them seem to relate to questions of identity and culture, questions like local culture, denationalization and migration, like homogenization versus differentiation, and like global cultural conflict versus growing hybridity. The crucial problem in all these questions seems to be: who's in control? Better: is there someone in control?

René Boomkens is professor of social and cultural philosophy at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands. From 1998 till 2002 he also was special professor of popular music at the University of Amsterdam. His research concerns the development of popular and mass culture, mass media, urban culture and development, globalization and contemporary philosophy, especially the work of Walter Benjamin, Hannah Arendt, the Frankfurt School, Richard Rorty and Michel Foucault. He published several books on topics like popular music, urban culture and development, fear in public life, and the philosophy of Rorty. He is editor of the Dutch journal of philosophy Krisis and of the monthly magazine on literature and culture De Gids.


Tuesday, March 25, 2003 at 3:30 p.m. in EESAT 130

The lectures are free and open to the public.

 For special accommodation, contact us at 565-2266 or


CEP - PHIL - UNT - March 15, 2003