March 3, 2009

Globalisation & Diversity – week 2

Response to:  Historical Components of Globalisation -
Carry out some research, and identify 3 significant issues that affected the growth of globalisation, and explain why. Pick issues that occurred before 1946…

Three related, significant issues prior to 1946 that contributed to the growth of a globalised world, or the ideals of such a world from a democratic, western perspective were: The Atlantic Charter (August, 1941); The United States of America’s (USA) declaration of active participation in World War II (December, 1941); and, the United Nations Declaration (January, 1942).

1) The Atlantic Charter, signed by Franklin D. Roosevelt (President, United States of America) and Winston S. Churchill (Prime Minister, United Kingdom) outlined eight principles “on which they base their hopes for a better future for the world” (Rosenman, n.d.). Two of those eight principles concerned global trade, economy and social conditions:

Fourth, they will endeavor, with due respect for their existing obligations, to further the enjoyment by all States, great or small, victor or vanquished, of access, on equal terms, to the trade and to the raw materials of the world which are needed for their economic prosperity;

Fifth, they desire to bring about the fullest collaboration between all nations in the economic field with the object of securing, for all, improved labor standards, economic advancement and social security. (Rosenman, n.d.) [italics added]

The seventh of the eight principles concerned global travel, or what could be viewed as a linking of all nations: “Seventh, such a peace should enable all men to traverse the high seas and oceans without hindrance” (Rosenman, n.d.).

2) The USA’s declaration of war in December, 1941, after the bombing of Pearl Harbor by Japan was a significant turning point in World War II that ultimately resulted in the USA emerging as an active world power. Up until that point, the USA had endeavoured to remain neutral, as it had done in World War I, only to be drawn into active involvement later in each war through hostilities against its people or territories. Even though President Roosevelt had drafted the principles of the Atlantic Charter it is perhaps questionable as to whether the USA would have actively sort their implementation had they not played an active part in World War II and remained neutral:  history perhaps indicates this view through the drafting of the League of Nations from President Woodrow Wilson’s ‘Fourteen Points Speech’ in 1918 towards the end of World War I which the USA then declined to become a member of due to what has been termed “isolationist” persuasions in the US Senate (Beck, 2003-2005; HistoryLearningSite, 2000-2008).

3) The United Nations Declaration was signed by President Roosevelt, Prime Minister Churchill, Maxim Litvinov, of the USSR, and T. V. Soong, of China on January 1, 1942 (UN, 2005-2006). The first clause of charter of declaration stated that “the signatory nations had subscribed to a common program of purposes and principles embodied in the Joint Declaration of the President of the United States of America and the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland dated August 14, 1941, known as the Atlantic Charter” (UN, 2005-2006). The United Nations as a global body officially came into existence on 24 October 1945 (UN, 2005) representing 51 nations; today virtually every nation is a signatory to the United Nation’s objectives to promote global “Peace and Security, Economic and Social Development, Human Rights, Humanitarian Affairs and International Law” (UN, 2000-2009).

Toward those aims, the formation and continuation of The United Nations seeks to bring the world together as a unified, globalised entity; a difficult challenge it would appear based upon the democratic foundations of the original Atlantic Charter, however the third principle of that charter, stating “they respect the right of all peoples to choose the form of government under which they will live; and they wish to see sovereign rights and self government restored to those who have been forcibly deprived of them” (Rosenman, n.d.) ideally should enable non-democratic governments to live side by side with [western] democratic ideals.


Beck, S. (2003-2005). Wilson and the League of Nations: World Peace Efforts Since Gandhi. Retrieved March 3, 2009, from http://www.san.beck.org/GPJ21-LeagueofNations.html

HistoryLearningSite. (2000-2008). USA 1918. Retrieved March 3, 2009, from http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/america_intro_1918.htm

Rosenman, S. (Ed.) (n.d.). Public Papers and Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt, vol.10 (1938-1950), 314. Retrieved March 2, 2009, from http://usa.usembassy.de/etexts/democrac/53.htm

UN. ( 2005). History of the United Nations. Retrieved March 2, 2009, from http://www.un.org/aboutun/unhistory/

UN. ( 2005-2006). United Nations Declaration. Retrieved March 2, 2009, from http://www.un.org/aboutun/charter/history/declaration.shtml

UN. (2009). History of the United Nations. Retrieved March 3, 2009, from http://www.un.org/english/

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