Culture is another area of complex controversies with globalization. Competing perspectives about how globalization affects cultures revolve around the debates of cultural homogenization versus cultural diversification. The optimistic view of cultural globalization is that cultural diversity focuses on freer cultural exchanges with broader choices and enrichment of learning from different traditions. People have greater choices of globally produced goods, in addition to local offerings, without being bound by their geographical location.
Furthermore, not only is cultural diversity diminished but cultural quality is as well with mass produced goods being directed toward a common denominator. The criticisms are related to a sense of “Americanization” of the world, rather than globalization. The process involves a sense of far-reaching, anonymous cultural imperialism. Debates from each perspective are intense with substantial evidence that also reveals complex ties to social and political dynamics within and between national borders.
Cultural globalization continues into the foreseeable future with many more controversial dynamics related to three important issues: 1) the impact of extractive industries on the socio-economic, cultural exclusion and dislocation of indigenous peoples and their traditional knowledge; 2) international trading of cultural goods and knowledge; and 3) inflow of immigration impacts on national culture, which creates a tension between a sense of threat to the national culture and migrant demands for respect to their traditions in a multicultural society.