21st century

Our research cluster analyzes the specific features of contemporary globalization, emphasizing the social forces, fields, and trajectories that are shaping our world today.

Areas of Research

Gender and Islam research area image
Gender & Islam
human rights protest sign
Human Rights
Media and culture research area image
Media & Culture
Political economy research area image
Political Economy


  • WHAP! lecture series logo
    EventsFebruary 2018
    Jan Nederveen Pieterse lectures at CalArts on the salience of, and the forces impinging on, contemporary art in the present phase of globalization. The talk is hosted by the CalArts School of Critical Studies WHAP! Lecture Series.
  • Transnational Hollywood poster
    EventsDecember 2017
    A collaborative gathering of film industry leaders and prominent scholars to discuss the transnational circulation of talent and motion picture content, and the making of international co-productions.
  • Craig Calhoun photo
    EventsNovember 2017
    In this lecture, Craig Calhoun will discuss populist movements as responses to failures of large scale systems of societal integration, and failures of elites to lead in full consideration of all citizens.


a global studies journal

still from the Saudi film Wadjda (2012)
February 22, 2018

[I]f it seems a particularly dark moment in the realm of explicit politics, the tacit politics of popular culture offer perhaps a more hopeful if contradictory blend. For media globalization has engendered a complex play of integration and differentiation, of dominance and resistance, and of nationalist authoritarianism and post-national solidarities. Popular media are therefore a central resources for imagining the diverse publics of today and tomorrow.

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