Who makes our T-shirts and our cell phones? What happens to those items once we donate them or throw them out? Why is a teenage girl in Cambodia paid 25 cents to sew a piece of clothing that will sell for over 50 dollars in the United States or Norway?
Just three hundred years ago, the world was not a vastly unequal place. Some countries were wealthier than others, and people in cities usually fared better than people in villages, but we did not see the wide gaps in health, wealth, education, and life expectancy between “the West” and “the rest.” Today those gaps are so pronounced we can hardly imagine a world where they did not exist. But how did it come to be this way? And what impact does living in such an unequal world have on both the “haves” and the “have-nots”?
This class is an introduction to globalization and global sociology. We’ll study the history of globalization post-1492 and then look at many facets of modern-day globalization including foreign aid and foreign debt, immigration, climate change, and the ethics of tourism, with a special focus on the internationalization of the computer and garment industries.
This course will utilize materials from the following EdX MOOCs: Global Sociology, Global Inequality, Global Social Change, and Globalization: Past and Future. Students may wish to co-enroll in those courses for free, but this is not required. Note that the Rise Out course contains materials not included in the EdX courses and has been adapted for high school students who have not previously studied sociology or economics.
Instructor: Laura Fokkena
Suggested age range: 13+
Outside work: 1-2 hours of reading and video homework per week.
When & where: Fridays at Voyagers in Chelmsford (directions) from 1:30-2:30, Feb. 8-May 10, 2019. No class Feb. 22 or Apr. 19.
Fee: $200 for the semester, which includes a non-refundable registration fee of $10. There will be at least one required $2.99 YouTube movie rental. Please read our media policy. $10 discount for Voyagers members. Payment plans available. Fees waived for families with financial need. (Waivers and payment plan information.)