607 words | 3 page(s)

Globalization is a phenomenon that has connected human societies across the world across all areas – communication exchange of ideas and products. Globalization has led to rapid economic and technological advancement, as well as altered diverse cultures both negatively and positively (Mussa, 2013). The integration of western and non-western cultures is described by the concepts modernization and globalization. The Olympic Games and The spread of fast food across the world represent two transformative events that are outcomes of the globalization phenomenon. Japan and China are two non-western countries that showcase how globalization and modernism have transformed.

In China, Western fast foods have impacted culture and daily lives of the people. This impact spans the people’s view of the western culture and changes in eating habits. The Chinese people had their cultural convenience foods before the introduction advent of western fast food into the country. Western fast food chains entered into the China’s market when borders were opened by the Chinese government. The first was a KFC in Beijing in 1882, followed by McDonald’s restaurant three years later, and Pizza Hut. Western fast food businesses are now common in China; KFC is the largest fast food chain in the country and has 1,200 sites as of 2005. McDonalds had 600 locations in 2005. Fast food became more affordable for the population across the years and is accepted as part of normal daily life (theOtaku.com, 2013). Western companies incorporated traditional Chinese items or modified their western offerings with Chinese spices.

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This led to an integration of western and Chinese cuisine within the fast food industry and in the lives of the people. Chinese entrepreneurs are also creating fast food chains that are modeled after western culture (theOtaku.com, 2013). The introduction of fast foods into the lifestyle of the Chinese people has negative consequences because fast foods are not healthy. Whereas, Chinese diets used to comprise of vegetables to a large extent, this has changed to more meat, fast food, and less vegetables. From demographic evidence, western fast food and modernization are contributors to China’s rising obesity (theOtaku.com).

The influence of western fast food chains on the country’s culture based can be described as a direct influence. While the opened border was invited the economic benefits of globalization, the negative impacts of globalization is seen in fast food consumption. The influence of fast foods chains on the culture of the country can thus, be described as intentional, but with some unintentional consequences that are negative.

The Ancient Olympic Games began in 776 BC in Greece as a combination of religious and athletic festivals that were held every four years to honor Zeus. The first sports involved running as only sport and later, athletic sports as well as wrestling, horse and chariot racing. The Olympic Games have become now become a major influence on modern culture. The transformative influence of the Olympic Games can be seen in its impact on Japan, a non-western culture. The government of Japan capitalized on their hosting opportunity to implement extensive public investment and development in the construction, transportation, communications, and services industries. The GDP of the country’s increased by 10.1% to 26.1% after the Games, resulting in a total GDP amount higher than France and Germany. This established Japan as the second largest economy in the world. Before the games, the economy of the country had been very because of the Second World War in which the country was defeated (National Chengchi University, n.d.). The influence of the Olympic Games on Japan can be categorized as direct as well as intentional since the country’s government deliberately planned and achieved an economic turnaround from the event.

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