Transnational class formation: a view from below
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Recent analyses of globalization have given rise to rich debate concerning how best to characterize the current epoch. Much of the controversy, both at the conference on which the present volume is based and in earlier debates that are to be found in the pages of Theory and Society, Science and Society, and Critical Sociology, has focused around the hypothesis that with globalization comes the formation of a new transnational capitalist class, whose interests are represented in and organized through transnational corporations and emerging transnational state apparatuses. This thesis is largely associated with the work of Robinson (2004) and Sklair (2001). Their conclusions though have been challenged on two main fronts that are associated with world systems theory, on the one hand, and Second International Marxism (i.e. the classical texts on imperialism), on the other. At its heart, this debate is at least partly about whether globalization is best characterized as structural change or cyclical repetition. As Robinson understands and portrays globalization it is definitely the former: an international capitalist world economy has been eclipsed by a transnational globalized capitalist economy (Robinson, 2001, 2004) presided over by an emergent transnational capitalist class (TCC). These developments have entailed a rearticulation of economy and polity, whereby the identity between capitals of different origins and “their” nation-states are superseded. Meanwhile, orientation towards specific nation-states’ interests, with national programs of development, are no longer a requirement for the political organization of this class because its activities are no longer tied to specific, nationally delimited units of production, nor is the makeup of this class based on membership in specific national communities (Robinson, 2001; Robinson and Harris, 2000).
Globalization and Transnational Capitalism in Asia and Oceaia
Human Resources Management