Wednesday, October 28, 2009

"Cosmopolitan Communications" by Norris & Inglehart

Cosmopolitan Communications
Cultural Diversity in a Globalized World

by Pippa Norris & Ronald Inglehart

(Cambridge University Press, 2009)

446 pages


Societies around the world have experienced a flood of information from diverse channels originating beyond local communities and even national borders, transmitted through the rapid expansion of cosmopolitan communications. For more than half a century, conventional interpretations, Norris and Inglehart argue, have commonly exaggerated the potential threats arising from this process. A series of firewalls protect national cultures. This book develops a new theoretical framework for understanding cosmopolitan communications and uses it to identify the conditions under which global communications are most likely to endanger cultural diversity. The authors analyze empirical evidence from both the societal level and the individual level, examining the outlook and beliefs of people in a wide range of societies. The study draws on evidence from the World Values Survey, covering 90 societies in all major regions worldwide from 1981 to 2007. The conclusion considers the implications of their findings for cultural policies.


1. Is Cultural Diversity under Threat?
2. Theoretical Framework

Part I. Firewalls
3. Markets
4. Poverty
5. Classifying Societies

Part II. Consequences
6. Citizens: Nation and Cosmopolitan Identities
7. Consumers: Economic Values
8. Morality: Traditional Values, Gender Equality, and Sexuality and Religiosity
9. Activists: Civic Engagement

Part III. Conclusions
10. Cultural Convergence over Time?
11. The Implications for Cultural Policies

All chapters are available online on Pippa Norris's website!

Pippa Norris is the McGuire Lecturer in Comparative Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.

Ronald Inglehart is professor of political science and program director at the Institute for Social Reseach at the University of Michigan.

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