My interpretation of Laura Parisi's article, "Transnational"
Laura Parisi, a feminist scholar delves into America's almost obsession
with internationalization. She examines if it's interests are genuine
or a plan to validate it's own Western ideologies throughout the world. The
text seems to suggest that the reason this country has such a high regard for
globalization is because of an underlying self-interest. She discusses the importance of transfeminism ,how it fits into the conversation and what transnationalism really is. She talks about an intersectional world in practice not in theory, much how America brands it and how Americans perceive it. And finally Parisi explains why words like transnational, international, and globalization have been used interchangeably and dephifers the differences between them.
Trans and Inter
I wanted to first point out the differences between transnational and international. I believe I'm still using them like their synonymous. According to Parisi, who studies international relations, says, "international refers to the particular historical, cultural, political, and socio-economic locations and practices of states, and how these factors shape relations and the interactions between states." She also clarifies, "transnationalism points to the emphasis on flows across borders (of capital, people, environmental processes, etc.) and the differential impact of these processes." I feel like I struggled to grasp the difference between transnational and international because my understanding of international was being abroad. Parisi explains why the term international is misrepresented in postsecondary education.
It seems that there is emphasis on the teaching and theory of transnationalism than the practice. This forces us to rethink intent. It reminds me of the way in which New
York is a melting pot and
is marketed as such, people from all over flock to New York because there's so many "blended" cultures. It can be debated if New Yorkers are unified or just coexisting, so the question is, do we know each other's culture or know of each other's culture? And I think at the core that's what Parisi is interrogating. What is the point of cross cultural studies if we're not actually understandingone another as individuals?
"Is the university's emphasis on global citizenship merely a marketing ploy to prey on a (Western) desire for otherness and the consumption of knowledge?" And are we in Women Gender Studies then simply reproducing and supporting hegemonic and imperialist notions of Western citizenship through the internationalization of our own curriculum?" This quote is so loaded, and even harder to process without the familiarity of the language or a disbelief for the concept(s) under microscope. The question(s) are multi-layered and force the reader to investigate their understanding of diversity.
The logic is, we live in a world with billions of people which consist of different cultures, you must be prepared to communicate with at least half those people, to effectively navigate in the world. The assumption is schools are the central point to teach student how to be prepared by exposing them to those billions of people and their cultures. That is the theory. In practice, Parisi is proposing that the United States is unintentionaly projecting its practices as a means to dominate through educating students for world readiness.
This text can challenge our in classroom discussions because it will force all of us to question our own intentions beyond society and our family's expectation for high education. It will bring into question if how we achieve our goals is an intersectional failure. For example, it will defeat the purpose to be want social, political, and economic empowerment for all but to create an organization that teaches a disenfranchised group how they should go about achieving social, political, and economic empowerment. It's important that we're cognizant of the perception of role reversal because our education may put us in a different class bracket
Parisi, L. (2010). Transnational. Retrieved November 15, 2016, from John Jay Digication.