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Impact of Modern Globalization on Indigenous Life Sociology Discussion Impact of Modern Globalization on Indigenous Life Sociology Discussion Impact of Modern Globalization on Indigenous Life Sociology Discussion https://www.onlinenursingessays.com/impact-of-modern-globalization-on-indigenous-life-sociology-discussion/ 2 These pictures are of the Mopan Mayan village of San Benito Poite in southern Belize where I lived for 4 summers while doing archaeological research in the area. When I was there, from 2003 until 2006, there was no electricity in the village, no running water, and no outhouses even (I won’t go into that one in detail…). We used candles or flashlights in the evening and bathed in the river. And then I found the picture on the right on line a couple of years ago. I don’t know if there is electricity yet – this Internet Café seems to run on solar power, so maybe not. Nor do I know where they moved the school to since this used to be the schoolhouse. But apparently they are now on‐line! – something that is happening in many places through the use of solar panels and satellite dishes. 3 I think these are quotes but can’t find from where (very bad, Cassandra!). Anyway – I wanted a definitions of globalization that went beyond the purely economic, which is what the focus tends to be. And the processes of economic globalization – as described in the second paragraph re: Latin America – is a significant issue. But the ramifications – far‐reaching effects – of economic globalization are equally significant and are usually not addressed as completely. So we are going to look at what kinds of economic situations – stemming from globalization ‐‐ are happening in Latin America and then also at what the impact of these have been in indigenous communities. 4 OK – as noted in the previous slide, outsourcing of labor needs is a common practice today. Major manufacturers (in places like the US) set up operations in other countries where wages are lower and where the “cost of doing business” is cheaper or easier in other ways as well – and such places include countries in Latin America. And while some of these economic interest factors may provide additional employment opportunities for the people of Latin America – the benefits accruing from these operations are almost all on the side of the U.S. and other multi‐national companies that set up shop in Latin American countries – who pay pitiful wages and often maintain working standards that are not only lower than they are in the U.S., but also lower than those practiced by the local businesses in these countries. And then there are the additional effects on traditional Latin American society. And – as an example of all of this – I want to look at what are called maquiladoras or maquilas in Latin America. 5 6 7 The majority of people who work in these maquiladoras are young women who are preferred by employers because they say they have finer hands and are more dexterous and so better at the fine work that goes into assembling some kinds of products. They also say, however, that women are more docile and easier to manage than male employees and that they are less likely to complain about poor wages and working conditions because they have fewer options for paid employment. Women are also discriminated against by employers, however – in the sense that younger, unmarried women are preferred because they don’t (and won’t) have children to contend with or pregnancies which will keep them from work. In some places they are even required to take a pregnancy test before they are hired and if they do become pregnant, they can be fired. And, in fact, the working conditions for all employees are bad – they aren’t supposed to drink water or anything else on the job so they won’t have to take extra bathroom breaks (only 2 a day are allowed), their wages are unregulated and often lower than the Mexican minimum wage, and if they try to organize or unionize they can be fired or, more commonly, the plant will simply close down and start up somewhere else. And so, these are often last chance or no other option types of jobs that people take. The people that move up to northern Mexico to try and find work at the maquiladoras are usually unskilled, uneducated people from rural areas of Mexico that come to the border as a last hope. 8 And given the poor wages they make, they can’t afford much in the way of housing and in many places, the maquiladora workers live in make‐shift shanty towns that they have established near the manufacturing plants. 9 OK – the establishment of maquiladoras in Mexico and other Latin American countries has also given rise to various social issues – in that the increasing participation of women in these kinds of occupations has had certain consequences for the traditional social roles and positions of men and women in traditional Latin American society. Traditionally – the men have worked and the women have stayed at home and kept the house and raised the children. But because women are the preferred employees in the maquiladoras, they frequently find work more often than do men – which has had two different kinds of effects. The first is that the work in the maquiladoras, although it pays poorly, provides women with an income – sometimes for the first time in their lives – and thus provides them with a greater autonomy. Click here to ORDER an A++ paper from our Verified MASTERS and DOCTORATE WRITERS: Impact of Modern Globalization on Indigenous Life Sociology Discussion They are the wage earners in the family and this makes them less dependent on their husbands or other male family members than they might have been before. But – at the same time, and for the same reasons – this can cause problems (sometimes serious problems) within the family, as the men may begin to feel emasculated by their inability to find work and occupy their traditional roles as providers, while meanwhile their women are out working and earning money – and this can – and has – led to violence against women working in the maquiladoras. 10 One of the major maquila towns in Mexico is Cuidad Juarez – and to be young, female and living in Ciudad Juarez is dangerous. [SLIDE 39] Since 1993, more than 400 young women (most of them maquila workers) have been found raped and murdered, or have simply disappeared and are presumed dead. And those who have studied the situation have attributed this violence to a widespread perception of female maquila workers as “young women gone astray”, no longer under the watchful gaze and control of their fathers and husbands, as they should be, but women whose morals and “traditional values” have been corrupted and are “on the loose. And whether this is the actual perception that is behind the violence – or whether it stems from men’s humiliation and anger at women working when they can’t – or whether it’s the greater autonomy women gain by earning their own money – isn’t really clear, and maybe doesn’t really matter because whichever way you look at it, working at the maquilas has, in one way or another, shifted gender roles in these communities with the result that women are demeaned – demeaned by the plant managers who see them as more pliable and exploitable and demeaned within the society as being “abnormal” in a way that leads to violence against them. The image of the maquila workers being “loose women” is also expressed by the plant managers, who – when asked what they are going to do about this and how they plan to protect the women who work for them – blame the women themselves for the violence. They depict them as “flighty”, unstable and disloyal because – when things at a plant have become unbearable – the women will leave to try and find work someplace else and have to be replaced, so they are looked at by the plant management themselves as disposable and replaceable with “another one”. 11 OK – new topic, also on the subject of economic globalization and its impact on communities in Latin America. OK – another huge impact that the “global economy” is having on Latin America is in the form of resource exploitation – in the form of big oil and big mining companies establishing operations in different countries in Latin America. And here – as in the manufacturing and agribusiness (as in cash‐ cropping plantation operations) sectors – it can bring wage labor opportunities into an area, with the same problems as we’ve already looked at with regard to those industries – rural labor (largely indigenous) being treated effectively as slaves and with even less recourse to solutions than they might have with local businesses because these foreign companies always have (and often take) the option of simply firing people, or they simply “fold up their tents” and move their operations someplace else when they face problems in a particular area, leaving people unemployed. The same kinds of problems for local laborers are also associated with foreign oil and mining companies with the extra added problem of the effect of these kinds of operations on the environment – and in the case of some indigenous groups, the effects of these environmental impacts on their livelihoods and lives. 12 And one of the areas where this has been particularly is when it comes to the impacts from dam‐building (for hydro‐electric power) and prospecting and refining oil in the Amazon. 13 14 15 And many, if not most, of these indigenous groups make their livelihoods from exploiting the plants and animals of the Amazon jungle – and as development projects impact and destroy those environments, so too are they impacting and compromising, if not outright destroying, the livelihoods of the people who depend on those environments. 16 And nowhere has this been as clearly problematic than with the destruction caused by a the by toxic wastes produced by oil extraction operations. Soils saturated with oil, water sources contaminated by waste materials from refineries, the list goes on. 17 And over the years, indigenous groups have clashed with government forces in Peru, Colombia and Ecuador over the issue of oil exploitation in the Amazon and its effects on the environment and lives of the people living there. 18 This a documentary that looks in detail at one particular case that occurred – and in a sense is still going on – in Ecuador. The following slides are a brief synopsis of the case but you can link to full video on Kanopy at Langara: https://langara.kanopy.com/video/crude. 19 One of the best known cases today (thanks to the award‐winning documentary “Crude: The Real Price of Oil”) concerns the toxic waste left behind by Chevron/Texaco oil extraction operations in Ecuador from 1962 through 1992. The lawsuit, the largest of its kind, has lasted almost 20 years, pitting U.S. oil giant Chevron against residents of the Amazon basin in Ecuador. They accuse the company of massive petro‐contamination of their communities in the late 20th century and are seeking $27 billion in damages. 20 The best way for you to fully appreciate this case and the situation behind it is to watch a film on the subject. You can, if you want watch the full documentary Crude (link in a previous slide). Or you can watch one of the following 2 shorter versions. Do watch one of these at least though – there just might be questions on the final exam where you could apply this information… For a brief clip (18 minutes) including scenes from the full documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYege0parw4 For another documentary on the case (28 minutes): Ecuador: The Tribes vs. Chevron‐ Texaco: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xj6xqzNQ_W0 Both are good – but you really just need to watch one to get the full impact of the situation. 21 More detail and continuing court case issues, if you are interested: From the New York Times (March 4, 2014). Since losing a $19 billion judgment in an Ecuadorean court three years ago, Chevron has drawn the condemnation of human rights and environmental activists by refusing to pay anything in fines or accept blame for polluting the Ecuadorean rain forest. The award against Chevron was one of the largest judgments ever imposed by a court for environmental pollution, and it appeared to pit a mighty corporate Goliath against powerless peasants … . But on Tuesday, Chevron won a major victory. A federal judge in Manhattan ruled that a two‐decade legal effort to punish the company was marred by fraud and corruption, making it increasingly likely that the oil company would be ultimately successful in beating back the legal and financial challenge. … Chevron’s star witness was Alberto Guerra, a former Ecuadorean judge who testified that plaintiffs paid him $1,000 a month to ghostwrite [a crucial environmental report that supported Ecuador’s case against Chevron]. He also testified that Judge Zambrano [the presiding judge in Ecuador] told him that [he had been promised] $500,000 out of the eventual damages as long as he agreed to a favorable verdict. Mr. Guerra also acknowledged taking substantial amounts of money from Chevron. The company paid for the relocation of his family from Ecuador to the United States, and paid for his expenses. He was removed from the bench in 2008 on charges of improprieties. But on Tuesday, Chevron declared victory, and lawyers said they believed the ruling would hold great weight in foreign courts. On September 4th, 2015, Canada’s Supreme Court ruled that Ecuadorian villagers can seek to enforce an Ecuadorian legal judgment in Canada for $9.5 billion against Chevron Corporation for polluting the Amazon rainforest. The plaintiffs were successful in arguing that since Chevron owns at least $15 billion worth of assets in Canada – including Newfoundland offshore oil fields, major investment in the Alberta tar sands, an oil refinery in B.C., natural gas holdings, and other assets – they can pursue the case in Ontario courts. In the unanimous 7‐0 ruling, the Canadian Supreme Court sided with the villagers’ lawyers, agreeing that the province of Ontario has jurisdiction to recognize the $9.5 billion judgment obtained in 2011 by the villagers in an Ecuadorean court. The ruling does not mean that the Ecuadorian villagers can now seize Chevron’s Canadian assets. It only means that the case can go forward at a subsequent trial court in Ontario. As Justice Gascon wrote, “A finding of jurisdiction does nothing more than afford the plaintiffs the opportunity to seek recognition and enforcement.” Nonetheless, the villagers and their lawyers believe the decision by the Supreme Court of Canada “has set an important milestone” in a case that has been called “the trial of the century.” More recently: The Canadian subsidiary of U.S.‐based oil giant Chevron Corp. cannot be held liable for a US$9.5‐billion award a court in Ecuador ordered against the parent company in favour of Ecuadorian villagers, Ontario’s top court ruled on Wednesday. Even though the Court of Appeal expressed sympathy for the plight of the Indigenous villagers, it found that ordering Calgary‐based Chevron Canada to pay them in what it called a “tragic case” would amount to twisting current laws out of all recognition. “There can be no denying that, through no fault of their own, the appellants have suffered lasting damages to their lands, their health, and their way of life,” the Appeal Court said in its ruling. “Their frustration in obtaining justice is understandable.” At the same time, the Appeal Court said, Canadian courts must decide cases based on the laws and jurisprudence in place in Canada. What the villagers argued, the panel said, found no support in either legislation or case law. The Canadian action, which began in 2012, aimed to have Chevron Canada pay even though the villagers alleged no wrongdoing against the company. Essentially, they argued Chevron Corp. should not be able to hide behind a subsidiary to avoid its creditors. In an earlier ruling, Superior Court Justice Glenn Hainey found the parent and subsidiary were two distinct entities and the latter could not be held liable for the debts of the former. The Appeal Court agreed. From the Globe and Mail, May 23, 2018. https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/industry‐ news/energy‐and‐resources/article‐court‐rules‐chevron‐canada‐doesnt‐have‐to‐pay‐us95‐billion‐to/ And in case we think it is only the US doing things like this… 23 In fact, as bad as American reputation over oil exploitation in Latin America is, as bad or maybe even worse, is Canada’s reputation when it comes to mining operations in Latin America. In Guatemala, 80% of all metal mining is by Canadian companies. And there are a couple of things that I want to consider about the way that Canadian mining companies are conducting business in Guatemala and other parts of Latin America that are particularly disturbing with regard to the recognition – or actually non‐recognition of human rights – specifically, the rights of the Mayan communities that are being impacted by mining operations in their areas. 24 And – in a way – these Canadian companies have earned this “title” of “colonialism” – because, in a sense, Canadian mining companies and other foreign resource development operations in Latin America are behaving much the same way that the early Spanish colonists did during the Colonial period – in that, they are virtually ignoring the rights (or even the existence) of the indigenous peoples whose lives are being affected by their operations. 25 The people’s concerns just don’t seem to matter – contaminated water has led to health issues, for example, and also threatens local livelihoods. Many of those living close to the mine make their living by selling crops – and there is concern that the processes used in mining, which may involve the use of cyanide and other toxic chemicals, could lead to the pollution of the water they use to water their crops. Residents have told Amnesty International that one company has already expressed concern about continuing to buy their crops if the mining goes ahead at the proposed site. 26 And then there is the matter of informed consent. And this relates to what are called consultas – which, in turn, relates to two things. (Illustrated in the two pictures at the bottom left and center) The first is the traditional process of decision‐making in Mayan communities whereby any issue that will impact a community is discussed and decided upon by the community as a whole. The alcaldes or other community leaders call a community meeting of all of the villagers who then debate the issue and vote on a decision that is then to be respected and followed by everyone in the community. And the second part of this is having enough information to begin with in order to make an informed decision. And in the case of the proposed mining operations in Guatemala – neither the Guatemalan State, nor the mining companies ever respected their obligations to provide proper information to the communities – to consult with them and then get the informed consent from the local populations of San Miguel Ixtahuacán and Sipacapa, before any mining exploration and exploitation licenses were granted. They didn’t do this. And even though these community to community consultations are now taking place, it’s happening four years after Goldcorp’s “Marlin mine” began operations, and at least 14 years after they were improperly given its first exploration licenses, with no informed consultation or consent. 27 And even where sufficient information has been provided – and the communities have been properly consulted – if their (the community’s) decision has been a vote of “no” to the mining companies coming into their areas and starting up operations – it hasn’t really made any difference. The companies have come in and started up anyway. A process that has sometimes involved the forcible removal of populations living in the areas slated for development. And I’ve posted this article on the Moodle site that looks at another example of the kinds of actions mining companies have engaged in Guatemala. 28 And this article looks at another example of the kinds of actions mining companies have engaged in Guatemala. Here is the link if you want to read the article: https://digitalcommons.osgoode.yorku.ca/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?referer=https://www. google.com/&httpsredir=1&article=1803&context=scholarly_works 29 Canada also has extensive mining interests in South America, including Peru. 30 This is a documentary from the Nature of Things (with David Suzuki) that looks at the political and economic issues surrounding Canadian mining in South America, and at the impact of these endeavors on the indigenous people in the area. “Under the shadow of the Cordillera del Condor mountains, and near where the mighty Amazon river begins, live the Awajun and Wampis peoples, a proud warrior nation never conquered by the Incas or the Spanish. Today they feel they are being invaded again, as Peruvian and Canadian mining companies aim to set up a gold mine on land these natives say is their traditional territory. In fact, the Awajun had an agreement for the establishment of a National Park along the Cordillera that would protect their land. But the Awajun found their agreement broken, quite literally in two, when Peru’s president gave half the area over to mining interests. Studies indicate that mining here would devastate the area’s water system – water that flows to the downstream Awajun communities. Peru is in the midst of an unprecedented resource “rush” – 72% of the jungle has been zoned for oil development alone. And according to recent studies, in just 10 years nearly half the Peruvian rainforest, one of the most biologically diverse areas on Earth, may be past the point of no return if current rates of deforestation continue. In The Real Avatar, David Suzuki sets off for the Amazon to investigate the effect this rush is having on the native peoples who call this land their home.” 31 There have been attempts at legislation that would control the activities of Canadian companies in foreign countries. Bill C‐300, for example, would make Canadian corporations operating abroad, fully accountable for their actions and the environmental and human impact of their operations. It would impose human rights and other standards on Canadian extractive companies operating in developing countries, and allow the investigation of allegations of non‐compliance. In cases of non‐compliance, it would require the Canada Pension Plan to divest its interest, Export Development Canada to withdraw financial support, and Canadian trade commissions and embassies to cease their support and promotion of the company’s activities. Bill C‐300 was defeated in the House of Commons by a narrow margin. A new bill in the works – Bill C‐323 – is more focused on general human rights issues (vs. big corporations) and may (although who knows) have a better chance because of that. If Bill C‐323 passes it will, among other things, allow a non‐citizen plaintiff to challenge any Canadian body, including a Canadian company, in our federal court system. (See https://openparliament.ca/bills/41‐1/C‐323/ for a full description of the bill) Our current system makes it very difficult for victims of human rights abuses abroad to use our federal courts to obtain justice. As it stands now, Canadian courts can refuse to take jurisdiction over a case if there is a more convenient and appropriate forum for the case to take place. In the mining industry, for example, many injustices occur among impoverished populations whose court systems may not be willing or able to entertain a claim against a multi‐billion dollar company. So, Canadian companies can claim that the case should be held in the country of the alleged abuse, knowing full well that they will escape unpunished in those courts. Something, by the way – if you watched the film clip on Ecuador vs. Chevron, you saw that Chevron tried in Ecuador but which backfired for them there. But Bill C‐323 would allow cases against Canadian corporations to be heard in Canada – where those companies, 32 ideally, would be held to account for their actions. And we’ll just have to wait and see how it plays out. 32 So, as we’ve seen in detail in the previous slides there have been a lot of downsides to economic globalization for the indigenous peoples in Latin America. But – as we touched on the previous PowerPoint this week, there have also been certain kinds of potential upsides as well for turning certain kinds of contact into economic opportunities. 33 From the examples I’ve given you here and many more like them ‐‐ one thing seems clear – and that is, if globalization continues at the pace that it’s going now (and all indications are that it will), stricter formal laws like those proposed by Bill C‐300 are going to become (and already are) necessary to counterbalance the inequalities in power and influence that exists right now with regard to the impact of companies originating the Global North on the people and societies of the Global South. 34 35 And – in a way – “globalization” itself – in terms of the widespread exchange and dissemination of information – may even help with this – in that, foreign companies can no longer carry out questionable practices in some “third world” country in secret. As the films and all of the pictures I’ve been showing you can testify to – the world is always watching. 36 And in a growing number of instances, the indigenous groups that are being impacted by these developments – and other injustices – have been using the international media, and even celebrity endorsements (that’s Sting in the top left picture), to make their voices and their concerns heard to the world. And even if these kinds of demonstrations – and images – haven’t yet made that big of a difference in the ultimate outcome, or circumstances, these people are facing – they do represent one significant development – and that is, that people are no longer keeping quiet about the injustices, or their grievances. They are not just “suffering in silence” as they were forced to do during the Colonial period, for example. They are making their grievances – and their existence – known to the world and, in doing so, [possibly] gaining some sense of empowerment that may one day (hopefully sooner than later) translate into some kind of real empowerment and control over the situations affecting their lives. 37 So, as we’ve seen in detail in the previous slides there have been a lot of downsides to economic globalization for the indigenous peoples in Latin America. But – as we touched on the previous PowerPoint this week, there have also been certain kinds of potential upsides as well for turning certain kinds of contact into economic opportunities. 38 We looked at this one already in some detail, so I won’t repeat myself here, except to say what’s in the slide text  39 Participation within larger global economic endeavors is also something being pursued by people in indigenous communities in different parts of Latin America – as illustrated by this film. I know… another film. But also a very good one and one that offers a different perspective perhaps on what economic incentives and “deals” with outsiders can provide for a community – i.e., a more positive perspective (if that wasn’t clear). 40 Returning to the subject of “connectivity” that globalization also brings and the result that “the world is watching”. 41 Films and photographs of protests and demonstrations have both national and international visibility. 42 Through various media outlets, including the Internet, people around the world can be made aware of, and become involved in, the various issues impacting communities. 43 Using various media of mass communication, information of all kinds can be widely distributed. And this doesn’t just include things like giving interviews to foreign correspondents (top and bottom left pictures) over a contentious issue, like oil pollution or dam‐ building, which in and of itself is not insignificant. In various countries in Latin America, there are indigenous‐run radio stations that broadcast to even the remotest parts of the country, in indigenous languages, which helps inform people about what is going on and also makes them feel less isolated. And it also gives them a voice with which to express their own concerns. 44 Increasing internal communication is also being made possible by an exponential spike in cell phone usage in recent years 45 And a growing knowledge of and communication with the “outside world” is also happening through increased access to the Internet. 46 And that Guarani and Quechua speakers in South America today can also use Microsoft operating systems and other software in their native indigenous languages also points to the huge communicative potential of “globalization”. 47 The last one this week, I promise! Also a great film – and honestly if you only have time to watch one, this would be a great choice. “In remote villages in the Amazon Jungle and Andes Mountains, a group of children are about to gain access to computers and the internet for the first time. WEB documents their experience with the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) program, and ponders both the benefits and complications that are arising from our increasing digital interconnectivity. Alongside the poignant and sometimes humorous local stories, WEB includes interviews with leading thinkers on the internet including Foursquare founder Dennis Crowley, Wikipedia’s Jimmy Wales, and OLPC founder Nicholas Negroponte. Winner of an Audience Award at DOC NYC. “A fascinating global odyssey…WEB is both a paean to and critique of burgeoning global media, and extremely entertaining.” ‐ The Village Voice” 48 1 OK – we’re going to look now at some of the some of the situations and issues associated with indigenous economy in Latin America. Beginning (in the following 5 slides) with a brief review of what we already looked at right after the midterm. 2 3 4 During the Colonial period, the Spanish usurped and otherwise acquired vast amounts of land that they used for various kinds of commercial enterprises – like raising cattle and wheat, and raising sugar cane and other crops for export. And as I think I talked about earlier, this kind of “cash‐cropping” is something that was not part of the traditional indigenous use of land before the Conquest. Peoples conquered by the Aztec and Inca states did have to pay tribute – and in the case of the Inca this included 2/3 of their agricultural crops. And other groups were similarly required to supply the Aztec and Inca or the kings of their respective city‐states with tribute in the form of resources, including food. But – this is not the same thing as committing almost all of the “real estate” of a country to producing things that are not going to be used locally – producing tons of sugar, for example, and raising thousands of head of cattle – all or at least the vast majority of which are destined for foreign markets. And what it meant during the Colonial period in Latin America – and what it still means today – is that all of the best land for growing things is taken up by these kinds of commercial cash‐cropping enterprises making it difficult to impossible in most cases for the indigenous people to continue practicing their traditional economies. 7 The situation concerning land began to look up for a while in some places ‐‐ particularly in association with periods of revolution in different Latin American countries – including after the Mexican Revolution of 1910. As I talked about earlier, the driving force behind the revolution, particularly in its early stages, were the campesinos (or “people of the country” that included rural native populations and landless peasants). And one of the targets of the initial uprisings in the revolution were the greedy plantation owners and government officials who had taken or otherwise acquired most of the land in the country, for things like growing sugar and running cattle, thereby making it impossible for the peasants to live off the land and maintain the economic independence of their communities – they couldn’t feed themselves because there was no land to grow crops and so had to leave to find wage labor, usually in the very places that had taken the land, like the plantations and haciendas. And perhaps the most radical change instituted by the new government, after the revolution, was a policy of agrarian (or agricultural) land reform, which involved the redistribution of land to the peasants and rural communities. 8 Under the ejido system, most of the lands were intended – and used ‐‐ to grow food, but also, at least, today, they have been used to grow some commercial crops as well. When I was doing archaeology in western Mexico (in the area in the picture in the slide), we were often working on ejido lands, and before we went in we would meet with the ejido leaders and get their permission. And although a lot of the land appeared to be taken up with growing corn and other crops for food, a lot was also under cultivation for fruit – like peaches and plums – that were destined for the large urban markets in the area.   Order Now