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The Humanities Conference 2003

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The Stripping of Ethnicity by Globalisation and Its New Pedagogy: Death or Renascence?

Ya-Hsuan Wang.

The globalisation of the world economy and of western ways of life rapidly reshaped world history as globalisation meant western globalisation (Held, 1992). This article illuminates the issues on how ethnic diversity has been affected by the spread of globalisation and by professional pedagogy in citizenship education. Interweaving philosophical argument on the declining ethnic identity with oral historical interviews practise, I disclose a dilemma between ethnic preservation and ethnic death when the trend of globalisation has become progressively shaped a modern society like Taiwan.
The empirical data also reflects how much globalisation could enrich the development of ethnic diversity, based on teachers' dialectical reflections between ethnic diversity and globalisation. I'll argue that ethnic diversity could be enriched only when the feature of ethno-cultural autonomy outweighs that of globalisation domination. If the west or one particular dominant ethnic culture keeps overwhelmingly determining the world order by way of globalisation, it could converge cultural diversity into its homogeneity rather than heterogeneity that might cause the death of ethnicity. From the perspective of localism and structuralism, I analyse to what extent native culture and social structure would cope with the universal trend of globalisation. From the perspective of cultural hermeneutics, I also argue that globalisation may nourish students with multicultural literacy and multiethnic weltanschauung if pedagogics would have been embedded with "localisation as the foundation of globalisation and globalisation as the expansion of localisation". Universality embedded with its own local culture will promote its ethno-cultural values rather than risking of ethnic death.


Ya-Hsuan Wang  (United Kingdom)
PhD candidate
Faculty of Education
Cambridge University

I am a phD student majoring in Education of Sociology in the Faculty of Education, Cambridge University, UK. I used to be a primary teacher for 7 years in Taiwan.

  • ethnic diversity, globalisation, pedagogy
Person as Subject
  • Ya-Hsuan Wang

(30 min Conference Paper, English)