Friday, December 11, 2009

Forces in favour of diversity

Finding Globalization another interesting theme to dwell upon particularly because of the way it influences economy, politics, environment, cultures and also values.  There are phenomenally interesting fall outs of globalization and it will great to delve into them gradually.

One of the reasons why people are becoming more and more tolerant towards diversity I guess is because people are seeking tolerance from others. When a person takes birth in a village or a small town and achieves not much in life other than one's title and the legacy of prestige that comes with it, we tend to hold on to it as our sole axis of identity in society.

This identity which develops on the basis of caste, creed, religion etc allows one to have a position of authority and some significance which doesn't seem to be bestowed naturally to the individuals otherwise.

As we go from that insular state to a more broader platform of work by reaching out to other cities and also countries (by virtue of a globalized economy) we meet new cultures, new languages, new systems of understanding people. And then the problem is turned upside down. At this stage, the person doesn't enjoy the luxury of placing oneself on the high social ground but has to make oneself accepted in the new environment so that he/she could enjoy the same respect that others in that community enjoy. For a person who had a low social grounding earlier finds him/herself in a position of relief since the original definition of social hierarchy is not recognized here.

This struggle for gaining the necessary respect or seeking of acceptance in new societies allows one to become more and more tolerant  and reasonable for the simple reason that as a person who is intolerant towards others can't naturally expect others to be tolerant towards his/her own self.

This is happening more in urban areas than probably rural areas but as the country drifts towards further urbanization, we can surely assume that acceptance of diversity would only improve with time.

Social changes are always difficult to be brought about through direct routes. Legal ways also don't run too far. Its only indirect or oblique forces which tend to challenge certain notions and give us perspectives which are much broader and larger than what we hold dearly through significant period of time.

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