History's Greatest Conduits Shaping Globalization

Argumentative Essay
The World before the Internet: History’s Greatest Conduits Shaping Globalization

      Globalization is the new catchphrase commonly used by government, business and the media outlet to describe the increased speed in which the “world connects markets, finance, technology and telecommunications” [   (Friedman 2000) ].   Theorists describe globalization as a living and breathing entity with sovereign power over the world’s cultural, economic and political state.   Its ability to connect individuals instantaneously through popular social mediums as Facebook, email, and smart phones, add to the public’s “rock star “infatuation.   This complex “super power”   continually shapes the financial and economic   markets by allowing smaller countries, new businesses and individuals   get a piece of the pie. On the downside, this phenomenon opens the door to new threats such as super viruses, complex terrorist organizations and negative social ideals.   Thomas Friedman, New York Times columnist and prize winning author, identifies integration as the main characteristic of the globalization system. He further states, “Now all your threats and opportunities tend to flow from who you’re connected to and it is symbolized by a single word, The Web”   [ (Friedman 2000) ].
      Although the internet is the conduit that defines globalization in today’s modern world,
history shows the impact of influential conduits that defined globalization in previous centuries.   The Web is not as unique as Friedman made it out to be. Many theorists and historians claim the Silk Road or Silk Route as the first world enabler of globalization.   This ancient route “connected vast lands into a trade network that spread goods, beliefs, and technologies far from their areas of origin.   Trade along the Silk Road began around 200 BCE and continued on a significant scale until the sixteenth century CE”.   [ (University n.d.) ].   These trading routes connected East Asia to the Mediterranean,...