Issues Concerning Globalization

Globalization is defined as a series of processes, including diffusion, migration, and acculturation working to promote change in a world in which nations and people are increasingly interlinked and mutually dependent. On the forefront of globalization lie economic and political forces and modern means of communication and transportation (Kottak 40). The Inuit people, whose home is part of arguably the most industrialized nation on the globe, are obviously going to be impacted by the rest of the country. There are ways that globalization have affected the Inuit both positively and negatively. For example, a major aspect of Inuit life is the environment in which they reside. Alaska, especially in the winter months, can be brutally cold. With globalization, Inuit have been able to move out of igloos and into more permanent residences, and are more capable to stay warm. They have also adopted more modern means of transportation and communication, such as the snowmobile and the internet respectively (Arnett 777). However, since the Inuit are subjected to harsher conditions in the winter, they expend more energy keeping warm and thus their environment is greatly affected (Indian and Northern Affairs Canada). While globalization has evolved Inuit ability to survive during the winter, it has also led to the environment being greatly taxed as carbon emissions are high due to the amount of energy required to live comfortably.

Despite certain global pressures that the nation has placed on the Inuit people, they are still able to maintain some traditional beliefs while simultaneously adopting some more modern trends. So, the Inuit people are still able to have their own cultural identity while also adhering to a more global one. With globalization came a lot of new opportunities for the Inuit to become more modern. For example, the more recent generations have displayed a greater interest in what is happening around the world, are fans of local sports such as ice hockey, and have left their hometowns in pursuit of greater opportunities (Arnett 777). The youth are looking to expand their horizons and to move into a more modernized direction. However, as they were raised a particular way, they still retain many of the traditional past-times and values; they continue to engage in ice-fishing and snowmobile races, while also upholding values such as reserve, modesty, and family obligations that the Inuit hold dear (Arnett 777).