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IUAES 2013: Evolving Humanity, Emerging Worlds. 5-10 August 2013.

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Evolving humanity, emerging worlds

Manchester, UK; 5th-10th August 2013

(PE20)

Globalization, emerging markets and social changes in the BRIC countries (IUAES Commission on Enterprise Anthropology)

Location Roscoe Theatre B
Date and Start Time 08 Aug, 2013 at 11:00

Convenors

Gustavo Lins Ribeiro (University of Brasilia) email
Jijiao Zhang (Insititute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences) email
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Short Abstract

BRICS scholars, especially in the social sciences, have to make efforts to establish closer relations. We will debate the insertion of the BRICS in new global flows of people, information, capital and goods, and consider the ensuing social changes.

Long Abstract

Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa make up the new and much praised global entity named BRICS. While government officials and businessmen of these countries have intensified contacts and exchanges in order to build their own geopolitical conceptions and alliances, in the academic milieu, especially in the social sciences, we still have to make efforts to establish closer relations and to share visions. This panel is a step in that direction. A good starting point would be to debate the intense changes caused by globalization processes in these five countries, also called "emerging markets" . Embedded in different locations within the world system, each one of these countries represent different histories, ethnic segmentations and possibilities of intervening in global processes. Scholars will debate the insertion of the BRICS in new global flows of people, information, capital and goods, as well as consider the ensuing social changes. Which are the new exchanges and scenarios that are shaping different social, economic, cultural and political realities within the BRICS? Which would be their role in a new and differently organized world system? What are the opportunities and problems created by the strengthening of the BRICS to different kinds of citizens in these countries? How can the social sciences, especially anthropology, contribute to these processes? Participants will consider these and other issues in what we expect to be a stimulating exchange of ideas and the beginning of a conversation that will allow for comparative studies to unfold in the future.

Chair: Gustavo Lins Ribeiro and Zhang Jijiao
Discussant: Gustavo Lins Ribeiro

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.

Papers

Being the 'R' in BRICS: Russia's solidarities and anomalies

Author: Patty Gray (Maynooth University)  email
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Short Abstract

This paper grapples with Russia's position as the only BRICS country that is not part of the South but is a member of the G8, focusing on Russia's [re-]emerging role as a provider of international development aid. It explores experiences of various players navigating this changing global terrain.

Long Abstract

In the wake of the Fourth High Level Forum on Development Effectiveness in Busan, Korea, the field of players in development has become officially more inclusive, and South-South cooperation has been embraced. But how does Russia fit in? It is not counted in the traditional donors' club; but it is also not part of the South. It is counted as one of the BRICS, but it is the only one that is a member of the G8. Like the remaining BRICS countries, Russia is emerging - or more accurately re-emerging - as a provider of international development assistance, but while Brazil, China and India have clearly signaled their intention to challenge to development status quo and demonstrate alternative approaches predicated on cooperation rather than donorship, at least some of the Russian ministries involved in cultivating its aid programme seem to be bending over backwards to conform to the traditional approach to development as exemplified by the OECD's Development Assistance Committee (DAC). Yet Russia is heir to the Soviet Union's symbolic legacy of leadership in pursuing a "non-capitalist path of development". This paper grapples with the challenges of bringing an anthropological approach to the task of understanding the experiences of various players negotiating Russa's changing role in this "new and differently organized world system". It explores the social interactions and cultural practices of Russian government ministers, NGO professionals, think-tank academics, and development agency representatives as they navigate this changing global terrain.

Cultural commodities in a new world system

Author: Juliana Braz Dias (University of Brasilia)  email
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Short Abstract

This paper addresses the insertion of the BRICS in the global market for cultural commodities, both as producers and consumers. Focusing on tourism and cultural villages in South Africa, it discusses whether intensified south-south exchanges are transforming old patterns in this market.

Long Abstract

A significant part of the current global trade relates to cultural commodities, including software and information, but also fashion, tourism and the arts. The insertion of the BRICS in this section of the world market is especially interesting. The attribution of value to cultural commodities is closely related to ideas such as authenticity and difference. Until recently, the market for new and genuine cultural experiences implied specific roles related to the "west" and the "rest". The latter was seen as a source of attractive exotic products to be consumed by people in the "modern world". But what happens to this market when the world system goes through changes? The proposed paper addresses this question, focusing on tourism and cultural villages in South Africa. For a long time, South Africa has been considered a provider of cultural goods, with particular emphasis on music. Today, cultural villages still represent an important stage for ethnic music and dances. But the audience has been changing to include a significant number of Chinese, Indian and Brazilian tourists who follow new global flows. It means that historical producers of cultural commodities are turning into consumers as well. Based on fieldwork conducted in South Africa, this paper points out continuities and ruptures related to the commodification of culture, discussing whether intensified south-south exchanges are transforming old patterns and stereotypes.

Sunshades Wars: Indian economic enclave and local conflict in the Catalan coast

Author: Hugo Valenzuela Garcia (Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona)  email
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Short Abstract

The paper discusses the composition and local relevance of the emergence of newly settled Indian ethnic enclave economies in the coastal area of Gerona.

Long Abstract

Mainstream theory on ethnic enclaves was initially developed in the United States using data collected from specific minorities (Cuban, Korean and Chinese migrants) and the reevaluation of previous sociological theories (middleman minority theory and market labor segmentation theory). However, in Europe (and particularly in Spain) some authors deny the existence of ethnic enclaves due to the relatively short time of the migrant settlements and the comparatively small scale of the ethnic entrepreneurial communities (Haller, 2000; and Arjona y Checa, 2006). In less than a decade, however, the volume of immigrant populations has increased dramatically, and some of them show a strong entrepreneur character. This is the case, for instance, of the Indian community (of Sind and Punjabi origin), which has massively settled and expanded their business in different tourist localities thorough the Gironde coast (Catalonia, Spain). Both their economic strategies and the community characteristics (class and ethnic resources) respond to the definition of ethnic enclave. On the other hand, both Indian and local shopkeepers alike increasingly struggle to attract clients and maintain their income levels, suggesting a latent conflict that might readdress theoretical interpretations regarding assimilation and integration, social mobility, internal inequality and spatial concentration. The paper addresses, through the ethnographic case study of the Indian community settled in the Catalan coastal line, fundamental theoretical issues regarding the notion of ethnic.

Indians and South African Indians on BRICS

Author: Mallika Shakya (South Asian University, Delhi)  email
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Short Abstract

This paper looks into the everybday meaning of BRICS for South African Indians and the newly arrived Indians in South Africa. The paper draws on the ethnographic fieldwork done in the Vanderbijlpark industrial cluster in Gauteng province where Arcelor Mittal steel plant is located.

Long Abstract

As Europe and the United States look to the rest of the world for new market spaces, production inputs and strategic alliances, notions of BRICS, IBSA and G-20 have gained considerable currency among the global policymakers, scholars and businessmen. What do these mean hegemonically and practically for the ordinary people? How do they derive everyday meanings of changing global orders? My paper looks at the old and new trajectories of travel and migration from India to South Africa, which I consider necessarily embedded within broader political economy. In doing so, the focus of my analysis is the changing rhetoric about being Indian and being South African Indian, including the nuances of ethnicity, religion, languages and nationalisms involved in constructing such identities, and the way they relate to the channels of economic diplomacy deployed bilaterally and multilaterally. Drawing on my ethnographic fieldwork in the Vanderbijlpark industrial cluster of Gauteng province where Arcelor-Mittal steel plant is located, and aided by historical archives, policy analyses, and interviews with diplomats and ordinary citizens, this paper examines what BRICS means for Indians and South Africans beyond the strict denominations of trade and international relations.

Home Coming?: the new mobility of emigrant Brazilian Football Players

Author: Carmen Rial (Federal University of Santa Catarina)  email
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Short Abstract

The economic expansion of emerging countries has consequences in unexpected market segments. Using data from a multi-sited ethnography, this paper analyzes  changes in the flow of football "celebrities," i.e. the increased  flow  from global clubs to Brazilian-clubs in recent years, as well as the growth in transactions of Brazilian footballers in the BRIC countries, involving celebrity players in Russia as well lesser known  players in China and India. The main interest is in understanding the players’ perspective on the meaning of this two-directional mobility for themselves and their entourages.

 The majority of these payers come from low income families and attend evangelical churches. I also found that these immigrant athletes are increasingly younger. I conclude that the constant change of employer (club or global club), countries and the large number of ‘repatriates’ characterise this migratory movement as a circulation. It is what the players call ‘rodar’, cast positively as an opportunity for amassing experience. This circulation takes place in protected zones, where a banal nationalism (Billig, 1995) is constantly activated. Even after obtaining legal citizenship, they continue to be seen and to perceive themselves as foreigners. In this case, therefore, nationalisation has a strategic purpose (Sassen, 2008). I conclude that these players cross geographic borders without really entering the countries, because their borders are not national but those of the clubs.

Long Abstract

The economic expansion of emerging countries has consequences in unexpected market segments. Using data from a multi-sited ethnography, this paper analyzes  changes in the flow of football "celebrities," i.e. the increased  flow  from global clubs to Brazilian-clubs in recent years, as well as the growth in transactions of Brazilian footballers in the BRIC countries, involving celebrity players in Russia as well lesser known  players in China and India. The main interest is in understanding the players' perspective on the meaning of this two-directional mobility for themselves and their entourages.

 The majority of these payers come from low income families and attend evangelical churches. I also found that these immigrant athletes are increasingly younger. I conclude that the constant change of employer (club or global club), countries and the large number of 'repatriates' characterise this migratory movement as a circulation. It is what the players call 'rodar', cast positively as an opportunity for amassing experience. This circulation takes place in protected zones, where a banal nationalism (Billig, 1995) is constantly activated. Even after obtaining legal citizenship, they continue to be seen and to perceive themselves as foreigners. In this case, therefore, nationalisation has a strategic purpose (Sassen, 2008). I conclude that these players cross geographic borders without really entering the countries, because their borders are not national but those of the clubs.

"Pattern of Pluralistic Unity of the Chinese Nation" in Chinese Modern Nation-Building Process and its Significance

Author: Yanzhong Wang (Insititute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences)  email
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Short Abstract

This paper describes how the theory of “pattern of pluralistic unity of the Chinese nation”came into being and its basic content. By making comparative analysis with western nation-state theory, it points out not only an inclusive, realistic and scientific theory, but also rooms for further improvement.

Long Abstract

This paper describes how the nation-state theory of "pattern of pluralistic unity of the Chinese nation", put forward by Chinese scholar Professor Fei Xiaotong in the end of 1980s, came into being and its basic content. By making comparative analysis with western nation-state theory, it points out not only an inclusive, realistic and scientific theory, but also rooms for further improvement. With the rapid development after China's adoption of opening-up policy, it remains a challenge for Chinese national theory to be accepted in the world, for Chinese national concept to fall into international norms, and for academic research to maintain an appropriate level of openness and independence. In this sense, it's important and urgent to further enhance dialogues, exchanges and cooperation between China and international communities of ethnology and anthropology, and the whole humanities and social sciences as well.

De/re/construction of Shikumen "Houses with Stone Gate" as an emerging heritage industry in Shanghai

Author: Ho Hon Leung (SUNY College at Oneonta)  email
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Short Abstract

This paper examines the large scale of displacement of Shikumen residents in Shanghai in the last twenty years in relation to the challenges of maintaining and reconstructing the people and place identity.

Long Abstract

This paper examines the large scale of displacement of Shikumen residents in Shanghai in the last twenty years in relation to the challenges of maintaining and reconstructing the people and place identity. Shikumen is one of the kind housing style that hybridizes the Western influence and Chinese traditions. Eighty-eight percent of the Shanghainese lived in it in the 1950s, half of the municipal population still do so in 1990s. However, in the course of Shanghai "re"-development after China adopted an open door policy in the 1980s, Shikumen neighborhoods have been destroyed to yield spaces for gentrification and green space. Studying the complexity of the people and place identity through this emerging heritage industry will yield excellent theoretical debate on place-based identity of the people and the place.

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.

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