Assessing The Theory Of Globalisation Cultural Studies Essay

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Globalism is the establishment of global connections between the world's culture and economy. The term globalisation appeared in the English-language in the 1960's, however this was without the strong connotations that it gained through the 1990's (Beyer, 2007), even though it is suggested to be in its infancy (Adam. 2008). There were other expressions that had been used to identify all people on earth living in a single social space, most notably Marshall McLuhan's notion of a 'Global Village', while some would argue that globalisation can now be discussed within a context of religion (Kessler, 2000); the unity of mankind is what varying religions and anthropologists have imagined, dreamed of, and in some cases, initiated where possible. Kessler (2000) therefore sees globalisation as extremely moral and philosophical, where the economy has replaced God as the external standpoint, and the market and its 'sacred' principles are used to evaluate individuals.

While there is a long lineage of globalisation, it was only recognised as a theoretical position towards the end of the 20th century, and it is argued that it is within the last three decades of the 20th century that the most significant structural changes have occurred (Mittelman, 2000). In the 1970s, the international economy consisted of a handful of industrial countries that exported goods to developing countries, who in turn exported their primary products. In 1971, the Bretton Woods monetary management system [1] collapsed, followed closely by a global recession. By the end of the 1970s, following the Vietnam War, there was an oversupply of primary commodity markets; prices fell, interest rates rose and the debt crisis of the 1980s emerged. The build up of large external debts allowed for international creditors and donors to shape macroeconomic policy; structural adjustment programmes mandated by international financial institutions opened further national economies and oriented/reoriented developmental strategies (Mittelman, 2000). While this series of events initiated the process of globalisation which we now recognise, the emergence of the .com industry in 1985, and the fall of the Berlin Wall and in effect the collapse of communism in 1989 accelerated the process (Wakefield, 2007).

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"[W]ith new technologies that speed transactions and shrink distances, both time barriers and spatial constraints are lessoned" (Mittelman, 2000)

The whole process was centring on a greater integration of the global economy, through the Reaganite-Thatcherite idea of Neoliberalism [2] ; the national boundaries being eroded to allow for the smoother flow of information, goods, and labour (Mittelman, 2000).

The foundations of globalisation are Western based, or Enlightenment principles, and can be traced back to Adam Smith. "Globally enforced individual rights over and above the community or nation state fulfilled Condorcet's aspirations for the equality of man and Immanuel Kant's ideal of a world government" (Adam, 2008). The free market was a north-Atlantic economic system, and can be argued to be a form of American imperialism which has provided a catalyst for north-Atlantic products and corporations (Adam, 2008). It is within the context of the 'global economy' that Paul Hirst, a Professor of Social Theory, and James Mittelman (2000), a University Professor of International Affairs, and the founding Chair of Comparative and Regional Studies at American University argues that globalisation, at least in the form it is being presented, does not exist, as it is 'bloc-centred on the EU, NAFTA, and Japan, leaving developing countries out in the cold' (Melhuish, 1999) and is centred around, and usually conducted, within the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development) countries [3] (Mittelman, 2000). The result, is that globalisation as a subject becomes westernised, inheriting the western traditions and practice.

"[J]ust another ... of the false or compromised universalisms which have emerged within human history" (Kessler, 2000)

It is not so much the name that Kessler (2000) questions, but the theories put forward to characterise and explain the processes of globalisation are seen as insufficient. Kessler suggests that all literature on globalisation falls within two categories; the modernist paradigm and postmodern paradigm. The fist category is oriented around the emergence and consolidation of a single world economy, while the second is discussed as the emergence of technical innovation of a single human community [4] . He sees there to be an insufficiency in addressing the key fundamentals that underlie globalisation, one of which key is that globalisation promotes an entirely new perspective on the question of humankind:

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"[I]f humankind is so diverse, is it and how can it be one; and if it is one, how is its diversity to be understood" (Kessler, 2000)

Hans Ibelings (2009), the Dutch architecture critic, writer and exhibition maker, enforces the homogenous nature of globalism, by comparing it to MacDonalds, a good example of all-encompassing and uniform globalisation; it does not matter where you are in the world, while there are small variations, the core concept is that the products are the same and they are prepared and sold in the same way, and it was not that long ago, when an absence of this restaurant was considered a sign of backwardness.

"'Western consumer conformity is descending on the less industrialised parts of the world like an avalanche." (Adam, 2008)

2.1.2 The Nature Of Globalism

"By globalisation is meant the cumulative process of worldwide expansion of trade and production, commodity and financial markets, fashions, the media and computer programs, news and communications networks, transportation systems and flows of migration, the risks engendered by large-scale technology, environmental damage and epidemics, as well as organised crime and terrorism" (Habermas, 2006)

Globalisation is not a unified process, but a set of interactions; varying across different regions around the world but tied directly and indirectly to the world economy, having a close relation to capital and the inner workings of competition, and being regarded as an ideology with the belief in free market and beneficial role of competition. Globalisation is an "extensive set of interactions, integrating and disintegrating economies, politics, and societies around the world" (Mittelman, 2000). To enforce this argument, Mittelman establishes a hierarchy within globalisation, through a theory of captor and captive, whereby there a forces at work which are causing the ongoing transformation of globalism. This structure is an "ordering of power and a division of labour" (Mittelman, 2000), whereby the captors are on top trying to maintain their position, and the captives at the bottom trying to ascend the ranks. The upward and downward movement within this structure is based on various social relations (Mittelman, 2000).

Through this model of capture and captive, it shows how markets have become dislodged from social and political control, making note to the fact that "[m]arkets are arenas of buyers and sellers", allowing companies, who are detached from any territorial border to capture political and economic power; there is no central control or authority that can maintain the world market (Mittelman, 2000). While Globalisation as a process depends greatly on national economies to serve it, it does have the ability to discipline a nation. Mittelman acknowledges that some would argue that the large scale historical changes that have occurred over the ages must have been governed by somebody, however if globalisation is governed, or elements are being subject to governance, Mittelman (2000) and Kessler (2000) alike, challenges the idea through a series of thought provoking, and somewhat rhetorical, questions; has there been sufficient management of the process? What strategies have been used to control the process? What criteria of control are being used to govern it? Who is defining and determining which interests are at stake? To whose agenda is it being created and how? In what new social form is it to be institutionalised? These questions are unlikely to receive an answer, because no single person, or country, would want to be held accountable for any reactions from the process of Globalisation.

It is not this alone, that suggests it would be difficult for any single body to control and direct the process of globalisation. Countries and regions are tethered to only parts of the process suggesting that it is a partial phenomenon opposed to a totalising phenomenon; they are all tied directly and indirectly to the global economy, however there are usually chunks that are removed from it. Globalisation is "a dialect of inclusion and exclusion" (Mittelman, 2000).

A by-product of this interconnection, in essence of globalisation, is leading to a twitchy society (Prasad, 2008). This is related to a primarily economic context, where actions one side of the world, can have an effect on the other side of the world. Mittelman (2000) recognises that "one can expect periodic financial crises to be a regular feature of neoliberal globalisation". The integrated relationship of the economy of many nations will result in escalated global instability should one nation experience economic, or even political, turbulence. The general consensus at the RIBA International Conference however, was that globalisation is to be embraced positively, in a context of interconnection of across the world as a singular place, not on the economic system in which international corporations call the shots. There are those that do question whether such a separation can be made of these two very different vectors (Prasad, 2008).

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While diverging from the subject slightly, another by-product of globalisation, where the line of authority is extremely blurred, it has become evident over the years that countries/states are in league with organised crime, and therefore activities such as drug trafficking has also become a globalised business (Mittelman, 2000).

2.1.3 The Role Of The City

"[M]arkets appear to transcend the borders and interests of nation states while the ability of individual countries to direct their internal economies and shape the manner in which they interact with external structures has declined" (Gospodini, 2002)

The process of globalisation, or more precisely economic globalisation, linked with the forces of integration between the European Union in the last decade, has lead to the disappearance of national boundaries, while cities have emerged "as a driving force in the making of a new European society" (Gospodini, 2002). It has become a community of cities, cities to which are in competition to upgrade their status within the hierarchy of a global system; attempting to attract investment and tourism utilising a form of branding and symbolisation to do so.

Through this process, Doel and Hubbard (2002) suggest that the global space of flows have produced world-cities [5] that are part of a networking phenomenon. These cities have become actively marketed and narrated as entrepreneurial, with the view of that city becoming a city of international significance, a place offering transnational business an ideal working environment. An example of the situation can be presented in London's international success, which has revolved around its "density of trading rooms, clubs, bars and offices ... that facilitate face-to-face contacts between knowledge-rich individuals" (Doel and Hubbard, 2002).

Doel and Hubbard (2002) makes note to the fact that cities, when marketing, rarely extol the existing virtues of the city, but seek to reinvent the city "as an innovative, international technopole," providing new urban quarters to provide the knowledge-rich elite with living, working, and play space, while star architects, or 'Starchitects' as they have more recently been labelled, are commissioned to design public buildings as a marketing technique (Adam, 2008). These spaces become monumental and the names of these spaces become 'synecdoche's for the cities in which they are located' (Doel and Hubbard, 2002); London's Canary Wharf, Barcelona's Olympic Marina, New York's Battery Park, Sydney's Darling, and so on.

To achieve the iconic status that will form a global product, the local and traditional distinctiveness is being omitted. This style of design posses questions as to its relationship with place identity and culture; the existing urban space and local heritage is destroyed and replaced with a new place identity and public culture. This said, Gospodini (2002) refers to Bilbao, where case studies have shown that while the Museum contradicts the locale, it has generated a sense of belonging to varying social groups.

While the larger cities are trying to maintain their cultural and economical position, the smaller cities are starting to implement strategies to endorse themselves as a place for investment, including the promotion of iconic architecture (Gospodini, 2002 and Sklair, 2005). Again, Bilbao in Spain is a prime example of this, whereby "large-scale interventions combined with avant-garde design of buildings and open spaces, carried out by internationally acclaimed leasing architects" (Gospodini, 2002) have transformed it into an international tourist place. Statistics identified by Gospodini (2002), indicate a 44.6% increase in foreign travellers to the city, and overnight stays has increased by 30.8%. Gospodini (2002) exclaims that "from the opening of the Guggenheim-Bilbao Museum, the city is exercising a great leap forward".

It is through this concept of city promotion that suggests that the geography of globalisation, not only has a dynamic of dispersal, but also one of centralisation, to which Sussan (2000) believes, up until recently, has not been recognised.

"The master images in the currently dominant account about economic globalisation emphasises hypermobiltiy, global communications, the neutralization of place and distance" (Sassen, 2000)

In view of this comment, Sassen (2000) sees the multiplicity of globalisation processes that occur within a city, enforce the city as a localised form; cities have become a terrain of a series of conflicts and contradictions that are concentrated around a disadvantaged population. This standpoint is further justified by the free movement of global corporations and capital restricting the ability of the state; it is unable to deal with global problems, while its size means that it can no longer control local ones (Adam, 2008). This will allow for regional, local, and ethnic identities to re-emerge, the process of localisation to which is the opposite face of globalisation (Adam, 2008).

2.1.4 The Effects On The Built Environment

Historically, urban forms and major urban design schemes have been a result of the economic growth of both cities and countries alike, however Gospodini (2002) highlights that in the era of globalisation, the reverse has occurred - urban design is consciously utilised as a means to guide and develop economic investment within a competitive globe.

"[C]ities have to offer more inducements to capital, whether a refashioning of the city's economic attractiveness ... or alterations to the city's image through manipulation of its physical form and/or its soft infrastructure". (Gospodini, 2002)

Similarly, Sklair (2005) identifies that urban design is regarded by many as being deadly enemies with iconic architecture, but it is by no means coterminous with iconic architecture, and it is through the icon to which is driving the globalising of cities. This is evident even more within the smaller cities that are unable to keep up with the economic shifts; they have to utilise "innovations in design that might generate new trends in the market ... to secure their development and growth" (Gospodini, 2002).

"the local and/or national state is powerless to direct urban planning in any meaningful sense under the conditions of capitalist globalisation." (Sklair, 2006)

This has resulted in an increase in market-led design developments that limits the participation of local authorities, and permits exploitation by private interests. Gospodini (2002) specifies the London Docklands and Canary Wharf as prime example of this, whereby urban design was used to enhance the status of the city, utilising symbolic and prestigious urban landscape, with a vision to expand the city eastwards and doubling the size of the business district. (Other examples include, Paris and Berlin)

"[N]ew uses of urban design fitting into this pattern of development involve the production of prestigious and symbolic urban landscape," (Gospodini, 2002)

Architecture has followed the trend of all other by-products of a globalised world; all children play with the same toys, Hollywood obscuring the well loved cultural icons to Californian suburbanites, and fast food demolishing the radically different cuisines once experiences between varying civilisations (Davey, 2005). Iconic architecture, constructed for the sake of attracting tourism and foreign investment (Salim Atto, 2009), is unsympathetic to the existing local architecture, and where it does, it is only to promote its own status. Salim Atto (2009) considers this as alienating people; architecture that is led by financial powers and consumerism.

"The once rare and exotic have become common place," (Davey, 2005)

Airports were the first places to show the homogenising effect of the 'global village', a term coined by Marshall McLuhan prophetically almost 50 years ago. All airports look the same and the culture outside the airport is starting to merge between cities (Prasad, 2008). This similarity of design and culture has lead to the proliferation of the high street brands spreading across cities internationally, creating transnational social spaces [6] (Sklair, 2006). Architecture has left the arena that it once stood within; it asserts itself on global ground, letting the global fabric preside over the local cultural influences. Prasad (2008) emphasises that local identity has no longer become about culture or place, but star architects are branding designs through marketing decisions, leave the masses of people at a distance (Salim Atto, 2009). Prasad (2008) questions whether the Western architects respond to a local culture when synthesising designs, in incorporating their own concerns, how can they be sure that their interpretation is "shared by the community and ... [is not] a private, artistic pursuit?"

"Architecture is not, nor ever has been, an autonomous art, as some claim. It is generated by the human need for shelter, for places in which we can engage with others and for places of celebration." (Davey, 2005)

Architecture should lead by example, as it is one of few professions capable of gently suggesting directions for a better future for humans (Davey, 2005). Power and money is residing, public space tend to be an automotive dessert while private space no longer follows the traditional of public realm, but are defined by walls, armed guards, and electronic surveillance. This is eroding individual freedom and enforcing the role of mediocrity; it is working well for the reasonably well off, but providing spaces of exclusion rather than inclusion, offering nothing to society as a whole. They segregate and protect the well off from nature using technology, while the working class are shut out and left to "turn into a separate, savage and violent race" (Davey, 2005).

The integration of technologies is in itself a homogenising impact on the environment (Prasad, 2008); an example being the way in which North Indian cities traditionally had narrow streets for shading and cooling of their courtyard houses, however this was given up to suit the needs for fire engines. Prasad (2008) questions why people are willing to give up the tried and tested forms that provide a very distinct urban and cultural identity, rather than designing a different fire engine?

Contradictory to the belief that globalisation has lead to the disintegration of place and culture, Adam (2008) takes a different approach to analysing architecture within the globalisation context. While he agrees that it does "bring together much that is important for society at large: shelter, social function, technology, art, economics, politics, science and more", Adam (2008) sees this as a reflection or a mirror of the current social, political and economical standing. One interpretation of this could be identified in the way that the production, marketing, and reception of architecture has transformed. A transformation that has been driven by what Slair (2005) identifies as the Transnational Capital Class (TCC), a class of people who have globalising and localising agendas; they operate transnationally as part of the day to day running of the business, yet have more than one place they call home.

2.1.5 Globalisation Or Modernisation

It is appropriate to take a brief look at the link between globalisation and modernisation as there is a conflict of views as to whether they should be discussed as one, or remain as separate identities. The intent is not to draw conclusions as to the relationship, but to provide a background understanding of the situation.

It is true that globalisation has a close relationship to that of Modernism, the modern ideals have always been global in ambition (Adam, 2008), and it has been expressed as the spirit of age which was to be a signal of unity as the architecture evolved with the new technology (Salim Atto, 2009). Modernism was also a north-Atlantic phenomenon, and based around the same western enlightenment ideals as that of globalisation; rationality, scientific innovation, progress and the end of tradition. Through this development, without the reference of signage or vehicle registration plates, it is near impossible to tell the difference between Francisco, Osaka, Sao Paolo, Brussels, Berlin and Shanghai (Adam, 2008).

Beyer (2007), in defining globalisation as having both geographical limits, the earth as a physical place, and to a state of influence, whereby 'social reality' is conditioned or even determined by it, sees it as a contrast to that of modernisation, a term to which globalisation has appeared to have replaced [7] . This view is shared by Mittelman (2000), who suggests that globalisation analysis should remain separate to that of modernity. Modernity has its own laws, and as a subject suggests some form of end-point, however globalisation, he argues, is a political phenomenon that has no predetermined outcome.

Salim Atto (2009) has different perspective to that of the above, a perspective that could interlink the two lines of thinking. Salim Atto identifies modernism and globalism as reactions to an unsatisfactory prior concept. In this analyse, post-modernism, a movement to avoid the rationalisation of modernism and look at multiculturalism, evolved with its openness towards globalism, and the local identify was left behind (Salim Atto, 2009). In identifying these as a set of evolving reactional processes, modernism to post-modernism to globalism, they can be discussed as one, while requiring their own attention.

2.1.6 The Architect And The Architectural Practice

During the Architects Foundation's discussions on the conditions facing emerging architectural practices marshalled views on globalisation, Deborah Saunt of DSDHA, describes globalisation "as the absolute buzzword in terms of the production of architecture' that brings new clients, new types of works, and scepticism about the validity of consultation. The internet opens up the market even more, as Rob Smith of Davis Langdon and Everest noted, allowing for a hospital project in Manila to be won" (Melhuish, 2001). Globalisation has allowed for the growth of networks practices, practices that have become communities that are more powerful than a single studio or office (Speaks, 2002). The joining of small, innovative studios working in partnership allows geographical divides to be bridged, and the increase in nodes allows the potential of innovation multiplies. This has only come about from the advantages offered by electronic imagining and new communication technologies; large complex projects in distant cities can be managed as a group, where the one would have failed.

An indication of the globalisation of architecture can be speculated by the cumulative number of branch offices opened across the globe in varying regions, however Adam (2008) furthers his own discussion by making reference to the 55 largest practices with offices globally, 80 per cent of their head office are in English-speaking countries.

Salim Atto (2009) questions whether an innovative can truly differentiate between the virtual and the possible. While the nature of the training of an architect allows for a differentiation between the virtual reality and the real world, when it comes to innovation, because designs are merely conceptual, the boundaries are blurred and known. It is after occupation to which the architect then questions the concept actually worked in reality. Salim Atto (2009) identifies that, the case of most architects, the ego inherent in their education, would guide them to the challenge to become global architects if the chance is provided. It is through this, that Salim Atto believes the alienation of both individuals and communities, will occur.

An argument can be made, that some architects have been manipulated by those in power, and architects have apparently been willing to accede to their requests (Sudji, 2006), however McNeill (2006) asks questions in relation to architects; to what degree are architects compromised by the demands of the client, how far ethical considerations permeate architecture as a profession, and are architects compromised in their ability to intervene in broader debates about urbanity and society? He makes note to the fact that architectural practices are one of the few business services that are seen to be facilitating the development of large transnational firma that can operate effectively in more and more locations around the globe. It is through this that the architects have abdicated their own artistic convictions and independence to elite demands and commercial interests. Architects are increasingly happy to make the point that being competitive in various regional and sectoral markets is fundamental to their existence. To fulfil the imperative of firm growth or diversification, then architects are compelled to consider a wide range of proposals by a wide range of clients.

2.2 What Is Regionalism?

2.2.1 The Meaning Of Regionalism

Regionalism, similar to that of identity, is used as a form of short-hand to talk about psychological and sociological phenomena, dealing with the human order in relation to the earth (Curtis, 1985):

"[A] new kind of politics, matters of belief, how religious structures are to be integrated with secular schemes of organisation ... Architecture is in the middle of these." (Curtis, 1985)

Discussions of regionalism, and regional identity, often turn to phrases such as authenticity, sense of place, and genius loci, and Heath (2007) identifies that "it is assumed that an authentic landscape is a fixed entity, a fragment of the past that has endured the ravages of nature and human action. As such, these salvaged settings can become the seat of memories, capable of providing inner richness to later generations through their evocative presences." The problem with this statement is that, on an emotional scale, place is more than a geographical entity enhanced by historical and visual landmarks, but a mental construct different for us all (Heath, 2007). Buildings and setting alone do not create place, people in their relationship with the natural and built environment create place.

Identified by Alex Tzonis and Liliane Lefaivre in 'The Grid and The Pathway' (1981), regionalism, by general definition, upholds both the individual and local architectonic against the universal and abstract ones. Critical Regionalism on the other hand, coined by Tzonis and Lefaivre and made famous by Frampton, is a movement to which mediates the impact of universal civilisation with elements of a particular place; to eschew the placeless homogeneity of much mainstream modernism, while combating the superficial historicism of the postmodern (Eggener, 2002). Frampton (1985) suggests that this strategy is the only way in which a resistance to modernism can be achieved; elements of the context are used in strange rather than familiar ways, with the aim to emphasis the disruption and loss of place that has been achieved through modernism (Tzonis and Lefaivre, 1981).

Frampton's definition of Critical Regionalism is the most well known and often adopted by regionalists (Eggener, 2002). In his three earliest papers, Frampton discusses Paul Ricoeur's, French philosopher famous for his work in phenomenology, 1955 paper which warns of the phenomenon of universalisation causing the destruction of traditional cultures along with the "ethical and mythical nucleus of mankind". Following Ricoeur's lead, Frampton discusses Critical regionalism as a self-conscious reaction to the global modernisation. Eggener (2002) expands the explanation, emphasising that regionalist architecture proceeded from an effort to subvert the effects of global capitalism, international style, and the sense of placelessness that these left in their wake. As such, this was "architecture of resistance" (Eggener, 2002).

Eggener (2002) identifies that, as an idea, the roots of critical regionalism run deep; Vitruvius, 1st Century B.C.E., discussed regional variations, talking of architectural forms being determined by fixed geography, in a similar way to the physical, intellectual, and behavioural characteristics of the individuals. Most forms of regionalism have descended from this line of thinking, as Eggener (2002) refers to it, it was a form of "blood and soil" regionalism, and it was this line of thinking that the Nazis perverse. In Lewis Mumford's book, 'The South In Architecture' (1941), cautioned the use of such strategies: "Regionalism is not a matter of using the most available local material, or of copying some simple form of construction that our ancestors used, for want of anything better, a century or two ago. Regional forms are those which most closely meet the actual condition's of life and which most fully succeed in making a people feel at home in their environment: they do not merely utilise the soil but they reflect the current conditions of culture in the region."

Regionalism sees the past as a series of superimposed layers, and identifies the most relevant patterns which deal with climate, local materials and geography (Curtis, 1985). This presents a hazy concept, as it may refer to a distribution of factors; ethnic groups, climatic conditions, geographical form, etc (Curtis, 1985). Similarly, Eggener (2002) suggests that the exact conditions of such a movement are hard to define, due to its form as process rather than a product, a process to which varies according to the individual.

As a final note, it is important to understand that, while critical regionalism is a reaction to the global problem, much of the "writings on critical regionalism involve Western European and North American urbanities discussing architecture from developing nations in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, or from the less developed regions of their own countries" (Eggener, 2002).

2.2.2 The Nature Of Regionalism

As evident from the previous section, regionalism is distinctly a movement that questions other movements and the effects of those movements; major targets of critical regionalism's critique are universal modernism, placelessness, reactionary populism, and the capitalist culture of consumerism (Eggener, 2002). As such, discussions of its nature generally originate around the negatives of the movements that it attempts to discipline.

"[R]egionalism penetrates the generating principles and symbolic substructures of the past and then transforms these into forms that are right for the changing social order of the present." (Curtis, 1985)

Curtis (1985) describes 'Authentic Regionalism' as a matter of looking beyond the surface, the memories, the myths and aspirations that gave society coherence, and providing these with authentic expression. He suggests that this will provide an architectural form that has timeless character, fusing old and new, regional and universal; architecture that stands out against the "hackneyed and devalued version of culture" (Curtis, 1985). As such, Critical regionalism is not a style, a form of aesthetic, but a process to which took into account the situation, and was independently realised in varying locations (Frampton, 1981).

On the surface, Ali (1985) identifies that regionalism means not to look in the latest Architectural Journal for inspiration, but to the environment of place, and to find clues within the local culture. Frampton (1981) identifies that the nature of Critical Regionalisation necessitates the need for the culture of the worlds to be deconstructed and the critique of universal civilisation, while Curtis (1985) similarly suggests that "regionalism is committed to finding unique responses to particular places, cultures and climates." Ali (1985) questions whether either can be explained in such an easy mannor. While described in a context of modernisation, Ali (1985) refers to a situation within Pakistani, where families rely on the motorcycle as a means of transport. It was common to hear of accidents due to a ladies' 'dupatta' [8] to get caught in the rear wheels, however as a result of this, they either avoid the garment, or tie it around their waist in a novel manor. Instead of rejecting either tradition or technology, they have adapted to it, and it is on this basis that Ali (1985) questions whether anything has really been lost, but modified it to a more usable and practicable state.

Curtis (1985) also has doubts with regards to the process of regionalisation, but within a different line of thinking. In the context of the oppositions of modernity and tradition, Curtis (1985) argues that the opposition is formed under false understandings of both concepts:

"The best within modernism can be profoundly rooted in tradition; and the best in tradition is to do with a dynamic process of rethinking certain central kernel ideas." (Curtis, 1985)

The international style in essence was a philosophy, "which said that form must follow function, and which took the art of architecture out of the 19th Century aristocracy and brought the science of architecture into the mainstream of 20th century like embracing, accepting and glorifying the powers of the machine" (Ali, 1985). This suggests that the followers of this movement simply used the best materials and structures that technologies and industries could offer them, and use them as they are meant to be, while reacting with the climate conditions of the locale (Ali, 1985).

Based upon these concepts, Curtis (1985) suggests that the regionalist should go beyond the particular, and attempt to understand the general law and originating principle. The fabric of the city holds many secrets in the way open spaces and transitions are to be handled, and tradition is not utilised for its picturesque scenography, but is penetrated for its lasting humane and artistic value.

Regionalism will always be in the middle of a struggle between rationales; industry and handicraft, city and country, peasant values and the up rootedness of the metropolis (Curtis, 1985):

"[R]egionalism is a restorative philosophy in favour of supposed raw harmony between people, their artifacts and nature" (Curtis, 1985)

It is also true to suggest that regionalism is not likely to appeal to the technocrat, nor the parvenu worker, but to the intellectuals who are troubled by fragmentation brought on by industrialisation, yet wanting for the mobility, complexity and wealth that it offers. Curtis (1985) therefore suggests that the "most beautiful regionalist experiments are undertaken for the rich, cultivated collector of handicrafts".

These debates of interpretation have been maintained for some time, however Heath (2007) pursues a different perspective on the discussion. He suggests that, while at first glance regional identity is being lost via forces of cultural globalisation, cultural tradition should be given more credence for maintaining its vitality. While change may be inevitable, the cultural patterns and preferences will simply remerge in different combinations. An example Heath (2007) provides is the case of the Caribbean Islands: "After World War II, the United States military operations left thousands of empty fifty-five gallon steel drums. What was once an eyesore ... [t]he cans were cut in half, burned to remove paint and oil residue, and the lids were pounded repeatedly until they were concave and produced the desired note when struck. The result was a new regional art form ... [taken from] one aspect of culture and operated under one set of conventions, and modified or altered those conventions and created something distinctive to a particular geographic region".

2.2.3 The Built Environment

Frampton (1985) highlights that the past two decades (at the time of his writing) had seen the metropolitan become overlay by freestanding high-rises and the serpentine freeway. He sees this as a major factor in the victory of the universal over the local culture, where prior to this the city centre was a mix of uses with significant urban fabric, control has been lost and it has become no more than a 'burolandschaft' [9] . Curtis (1985) also identifies the concrete frame and air conditioning as conspiring to demolish local identity from architecture, while from the perspective of post-modernisation, the use of stylistic and ornamental adornment is utilised in an attempt to achieve regionalism. Such buildings, Curtis notes, are the very opposite to the traditional values of any kind, and there is a requirement for the modern building types to be regionalised on a much deeper level. Heath (2007) identifies that, along with historic settings and cultural traditions, there is a necessity to consider the ever evolving human and environmental factors. Frampton (1985) was questioning how, and if it was possible, to become modern, while returning to the sources? The question originates from the belief that the mytho-ethical nucleus of a society was being eroded by the rapacity of development.

Frampton (1981) suggests that critical regionalism should adopt modern architecture critically for its universal progressive qualities but at the same time should value responses particular to the context. Emphasis should be on topography, climate, light, tectonic form rather than scenography and the tactile sense rather than the visual. Exemplifying topography; modernis favours earth-moving equipment inasmuch as a flat datum, demolishing the irregular topography and as such destroying the site, enforcing placelessness; whereas stepping the site is engaging with the parameters and confines of the site, enforcing the place. Two examples given by Frampton are Alvar Alto's Saynatsalo and Jorn Utzon's Bagsvaerd Church.

Curtis (1985) makes reference to Louis Kahn's building in Dhaka as being a translation into a modern building, while achieving timelessness. To Curtis, this building is a significant piece of architecture, whereby the style is forgotten, and it is seen as an addition to the stock of cultural memories. This exemplifies what Curtis refers to as cultural excavation.

"[C]ritical regionalist architecture necessarily, discriminatingly, identified, abstracted, and melded local physical and cultural characteristics with more ubiquitous modern practices, technologies, and economic and material conditions." (Eggener, 2002)

Eggener (2002) identifies that to be regional and modern involves an extremely sensitive balance, however if this relationship has shown to be complex and uneasy, the relationship between critical regionalism and post modern architecture are no less so. While some would argue that, following what Frampton (1985) calls the bankruptcy of the modern project, post-modernism offered the deeper meaning and philosophy expected of regionalism, Frampton (1985) suggests that:

"The so-called post-modern architects are merely feeding the media-society with gratuitious, quitistic images rather proffering, as they claim, to creative rappel a order after the supposedly proven bankruptcy of the liberative modern project." (Frampton, 1985)

He identifies that the post-modern reduces itself to pure scenography, pure commodity. Eggener (2002) argues however, that critical regionalism can only be understood as part of post-modernism; "[o]n the one hand, critical regionalism was reactive, directly rejecting post-modernism's widely perceived banality, superficiality, and cynicism ... [while] on the other, it endorses post-modern pluralism, its recognition of diverse subjectivities".

Ali (1985) identifies a difficulty with regionalism, suggesting that architects have to resolve the issue of what constitutes a valid region, and should a region get to large, its cohesiveness can be lost. Ali (1985) therefore suggests that a region should be used to describe the extension of the context of the locale, the wider or widest contact of the building. It is therefore apparent that regionalist strategies are left to the individual architect to develop.

"[W]here [does] critical regionalism stand with regard to the regions it reference[s]?" (Eggener, 2002)

What Eggener is highlighting here is that critical regionalism designs are to exemplify architecture of resistance, and Frampton's discussions of the movement are that of a process, not a style. It is ironic then, when discussing the subject, writers emphasise one architects interpretation of architecture for that region, they stylise it. Examples include, Tadao Ando for Japan, Oscar Niemeyer for Brazil, Charles Correa for India, and Luis Barragàn for Mexico (Eggener, 2002).

2.3 What Is Glocalisation?

Wakefield (2007) identifies that glocalisation, coined by the Japanese in the 1980s, is a further abbreviation of the far too long and hard to say term 'Think Global, Act Local'. As early as the 1970s, there was an attempt to bridge the extremes of global and local thinking (Wakefield, 2007). The first to suggest this bridge were not business leaders, but environmentalists, with the aim to expand the narrow view of the local to issues on a global scale. The term glocalisation now has roots in many disciplines, including sociology and economics, all revolving around the philosophy of a standardised mindset, while acknowledging the local needs and priorities (Wakefield, 2007). Swyngedouw (2004) suggests that the economic process of glocalisation took form following the collapse of the Bretton Woods monetary system, which was followed by "new global-local arrangements, new money flows, and new geographical configurations emerged".

James (2003) suggests that the concept of glocalisation is instrumental to the adaptation of the local to meet global circumstances, even though in its current form it is purely a process rather than a tool to which can be used to achieve this goal.

"[G]localisation ... refers to (1) the contested restructuring of the institutional level from the national scale both upwards to supra-national or global scales and downwards to the scale of the individual body or the local, urban or regional configurations and (2) the strategies of the global localisation of key forms of the industrial, service and financial capital" (Swyngedouw, 2004)

For this reason, Swyngedouw (2004) argues that the term 'globalisation' should be recasts as a process of glocalisation. The forces of globalisation, along with the demands of global competitiveness, allow the economic elites to shape local conditions in their desired image. This suggests that companies are, or need to be, intensely local and intensely global, a view shared by Maynard (2003). Swyngedouw (2004) furthers the discussion by suggesting that the glocalising nature of these inter-firm networks cannot be separated from glocalising levels of governance; the privatisation of important companies and public services opens them up for international competition, necessitating the need for sensitivity of sub nation conditions.

Matching the thoughts of Swyngedouw, Brenner (1998) identifies that 'glocal' is intended to describe the inter-penetration of global political-economic forces and local-regional responses within the parameters of a "single, re-scaled framework of state territorial organisation".

"Glocalisation means that companies have to deal not only with worldwide considerations, but also, very expressly, with the rules and conditions of each country in which they operate." (Maynard, 2003)

Wakefield (2007) identifies that the term glocalisation "does not always benefit the multinational entities because individuals and groups in each locale can choose to accept or reject not just the multinational's product offerings but the entire corporate presence".

Contrary to the definitions discussed, Beyer (2007) emphasises that globalisation cannot be global except as plural versions of the local, and within this reasoning argues that globalisation is always also glocalisation; "the global is expressed in the local and the local as the particularization of the global". Robertson (1992) enforces the glocal approach with a variation in thinking. He believes that glocalisation will make it possible to identify 'world spaces' where the local will be accommodated as a micro-manifestation of the global. In essence, global and glocal are simultaneous processes that complement each other. Loftus (2007), in his study of Robertson's literature, highlights that this line of thought enforces an idealistic concept, under the belief that there may be situations where the glocal may be incompatible, which furthers the debate about globalisation and its viability; it will never be entirely global if compatibility and suitability becomes restricted.

2.3 Conclusions On Globalisation

The process of globalisation has evidently sparked a reaction of city marketing, whereby cities are now in competition, more than nations or states. To achieve this goal of promoting themselves as a global city, there is a clearl emphasis on iconic architecture in an attempt to be recognised.