Imperialism, Cultural Colonialism, Neocolonialism,
Colonialism, ethnocentrism, acculturation
Cultural imperialism is the practice of systematically
spreading the influence of one culture over others by means of physical and economic
Cultural imperialism usually involves an assumption of
cultural superiority (ethnocentrism). 'Cultural
imperialism' can refer to either the forced acculturation
of a subject population, or to the voluntary embracing of a foreign culture by individuals
who do so of their own free will. The term cultural imperialism is understood differently
in particular discourses as in "media imperialism"
Cultural imperialism is the practice of artificially
injecting the culture or language of one culture into another. It is usually the case that
the former belongs to a large, economically or militarily powerful nation and the latter
belongs to a smaller, less important one. Cultural imperialism can take the form of an
active, formal policy or a general attitude.
The term 'cultural imperialism' is usually used in a
pejorative sense, usually in conjunction with a call to reject foreign influence.
Cultural imperialism and resistance in media
theory and literary theory - Colleen Roach
Media, Culture & Society, Vol. 19, No. 1, 47-66 (1997)
This article places particular emphasis on the criticism of cultural imperialism that
began in the mid-1980s and that is now subsumed under the rubric of 'cultural studies' and
its key concepts: the active audience, audience `resistance' to media messages, and
polysemy. It contrasts the political economy school with cultural studies. The positions
of Herbert Schiller and Armand Mattelart on the 'resistance debate' are outlined, with the
author concluding that while Schiller still asserts the validity of cultural imperialism
thinking, Mattelart has moved in a slightly different direction. The article also
contrasts the way 'resistance' has been used by postmodernists in the field of
communications with its meaning as articulated by two prominent writers in the field of
comparative literature: Edward Said and Ngugi Wa Thiong'o. Both writers still validate the
notion of cultural imperialism and use the term `resistance' to refer to the struggles
against colonialism and imperialism in the countries of the South.
Twenty Years of Cultural Imperialism Research:
Some Conceptual and Methodological Problems. - Burrowes, Carl Patrick
While the notion of "cultural imperialism" has received significant attention in
communication studies since the early 1970s, researchers have ignored analyses of message
systems and audience cultivation in favor of institutional analysis. Likewise, researchers
have concentrated on the technologies, media products and processes of Western exporting
countries with little concomitant concern for importing countries. Cultural imperialism
paradigm presents some serious problems in terms of data measurement and research design
models. The cultural imperialism model, while yielding extensive and often useful
analyses, so far has explicated little on the specifically cultural dimensions of
relations between nations or between media and their audiences.
Beyond Cultural Imperialism: Cultural Theory,
Christian Missions, and Global Modernity
Dunch, Ryan, History and Theory, Volume 41, Number 3, October 2002 , pp. 301-325(25)
Abstract: Cultural imperialism has been an influential concept in the
representation of the modern Christian missionary movement. This essay calls its
usefulness into question and draws on recent work on the cultural dynamics of
globalization to propose alternative ways of looking at the role of missions in modern
history. The first section of the essay surveys the ways in which the term cultural
imperialism has been employed in different disciplines, and some of the criticisms
made of the term within those disciplines. The second section discusses the application of
the cultural imperialism framework to the missionary enterprise, and the related term
colonization of consciousness used by Jean and John Comaroff in their
influential work on British missionaries and the Tswana of southern Africa.
Cultural Imperialism on the Internet -
by Seongcheol Kim
Abstract: The purpose of this article is to review the cultural imperialism argument in
terms of the developments of the Internet through some case studies. In trying to explain
problems of global unequal flow of media including the Internet, the cultural imperialism
argument seems to be uniquely helpful. Because of the structural differences between the
Internet and traditional forms of mass media, it may not be appropriate to apply the
argument to the Internet. Furthermore, it can be said that the cultural imperialism
argument has some limitations in the research of not only the Internet but the other new
interactive electronic media.
The Orientalist Perspective: Cultural Imperialism
in Gaming? - By Elmer Tucker
Abstract: Conceptualization of Orientalism both in the Western consumption of Japanese
games and in Japanese games' depictions of Japanese-ness in the games. Because the
Oriental subject is founded on the exploitation of Otherness, the Oriental subject in turn
allows an auto-exoticizing Japan to use cultural tropes and stereotyped icons to market
themselves to a Western audience and to enforce a culturally imperialistic policy for
Asia. Japan's continuance of the commodification of Japanese icons, specifically seen with
the Samurai and Ninja figures, reveals the use of Orientalist perspective in selling games
such as Onimusha and Tenchu that rely on distinctly Japanese archetypes. The third form of
Orientalism found in gaming relies on both prior forms. This form is the culturally
imperialist and Orientalist stance that Japan takes in regard to other Asian nations.
Cultural imperialism: A critical theory of
interorganizational change - Joseph W. Grubbs
Journal: Journal of Organizational Change Management
Abstract: Current theories of organization tend to discuss the management of change across
networks in a grammar of instrumental reason, thereby offering legitimacy to the cultural
imperialism that emerges when groups come together in a shared-change experience. However,
by adopting principles of critical theory, the social
research project initiated by a group of scholars known as the Frankfurt School, we may challenge this degradation
of knowledge and its companion, human domination. A critical theory of interorganizational
change reveals three forms of organizational imperialism: cultural domination, cultural
imposition, and cultural fragmentation. From this perspective, we may understand the
deleterious human, social and cultural consequences of organizational expansionism, and
thereby initiate a dialogue for cultural emancipation, a more meaningful, culturally
sensitive approach to change.
U.S. Cultural Imperialism: Today Only a Chimera
- Elteren, Mel van.
SAIS Review - Volume 23, Number 2, Summer-Fall 2003, The Johns Hopkins University Press
Abstract: After revisiting the notion of "cultural imperialism" and reclaiming
its valuable components, the article focuses on the most significant aspects of U.S.
cultural imperialism in the current era of globalization.
It goes beyond media imperialism to examine other domains of U.S. cultural influence at
the heart of capitalist globalization, including business culture, management and labor
practices, and cultural and political "development policies." Recognizing two
levels of meaning associated with the ideas and practices distributed from the United
States to the rest to the world, the author posits the sustained dominance of the first
level, that is, the culture of consumerism. U.S. cultural imperialism as understood here
is neither essential for, nor inherent to, globalization, but a contingent form of the
global diffusion of consumerist beliefs and practices. The concept of "cultural
imperialism" has generally been discredited. Primarily, European intellectuals and
politicians warning against the purported threat of the "Americanization."
The Death of Cultural Imperialism, and Power Too?
A Critical Analysis of American Prestige Press Representations of the Hegemony of English
Christof Demont-Heinrich - Mass Communications and Journalism Studies Department,
University of Denver.
This article critically examines selected texts taken from a pool of 275 accounts of the
global rise of English published from 1991 to 2003 in five American-owned prestige press
publications - the Los Angeles Times, the International Herald Tribune, The New York
Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post. In particular, it interrogates
representations that declare the death of cultural imperialism.
In Praise of Cultural Imperialism? Foreign Policy - David Rothkopf
Globalization has economic roots and political consequences, but it also has brought into
focus the power of culture in this global environment-the power to bind and to divide in a
time when the tensions between integration and separation tug at every issue that is
relevant to international relations.
The impact of globalization on culture and the impact of culture on globalization merit
discussion. The homogenizing influences of globalization that are most often condemned by
the new nationalists and by cultural romanticists are actually positive; globalization
promotes integration and the removal not only of cultural barriers but of many of the
negative dimensions of culture. Globalization is a vital step toward both a more stable
world and better lives for the people in it.