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Whither Globalization? An Interview with Roland Robertson,’ Special section on Global Culture Revisited, Theory, Culture & Society Annual Review, 2020 Vol. 37(7-8)

Mike Featherstone, editor, Theory Culture & Society (TCS), Professor of Sociology in ICCE invited Professor Roland Robertson to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the TCS special issue on Global Culture.

In this interview to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Theory, Culture & Society special issue on Global Culture, Roland Robertson reflects on his long involvement as one of the major theorists of globalization. He recounts how in his early years as a sociologist there was strong resistance to thinking beyond the nation- state society. He comments on the emergence of the field of transdisciplinary global studies, the concern with global culture and his own attempts to extend the concept of globalization by developing the term glocalization. He also discusses the present Covid-19 pandemic and ends with a number of reflections on global history.

Professor Roland Robertson

Roland Robertson is Distinguished Service Professor of Sociology Emeritus, University of Pittsburgh, USA; Emeritus Professor of Sociology and Global Society, University of Aberdeen, UK; and Distinguished Guest Professor of Cultural Studies, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China. His authored books include International Systems and the Modernization of Societies (1968); The Sociological Interpretation of Religion (1970); Globalization: Social Theory and Global Culture (1992); and Globalization and Football (2009). He has edited a significant number of books, including European Glocalization in Global Context (2016). He is also the author of many journal articles and book chapters on social and cultural theory and glocalization/globalization.

Mike Featherstone is a Professor of Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London. He is founding editor of the journal Theory, Culture & Society and the Theory, Culture & Society Book Series. He is editor-in-chief of the journal Body & Society, author of Consumer Culture and Postmodernism (2nd edition 2007) and Undoing Culture: Globalization, Postmodernism and Identity (1995). He is editor of over a dozen books and author of numerous journal articles and book chapters on social and cultural theory, consumer culture, globalization, ageing and the body.

These articles are part of the Theory, Culture & Society special section on ‘Global Culture Revisited’, TCS 37 (7–8), December 2020.

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