Globalization I – The Upside: Crash Course World History #41

Globalization I – The Upside: Crash Course World History #41

Hi, I’m John Green. This is Crash Course
World History and today is the penultimate episode of Crash Course. We’re gonna talk
about globalization. This was going to be the last episode, but
I just can’t quit you, World Historians. So, today we’re going to talk about globalization,
and in doing so, we’re going to talk about why we study history at all. Ooh ooh, Mr. Green! Yes, Me from the Past? We study history to get a good
grade to go to a good college to get a good job — –so you can make more money
than you would otherwise make and be a slightly larger cog among the seven billion gears that
turn the planet’s economic engine, right? And that’s fine, but if that’s why you
really study history, then you need to understand all the ways that the t-shirt you’re wearing
is both the cause and result of your ambition. This t-shirt contains the global economy:
its efficiency, its massive surplus, its hyperconnectedness, and its unsustainability. This t-shirt tells
one story of globalization. So let’s follow it. [Theme Music] So, globalization is a cultural phenomenon.
It’s reflected in contemporary artwork and population migration and linguistic changes,
but we’re going to focus, as we so often have during Crash Course, on trade. So the world today, as symbolized by our international
felt melange, experiences widespread global economic interdependence. Now, of course economic
interdependence and the accompanying cultural borrowing are nothing new. You’ll remember
that we found trade documents from the Indus Valley civilization all the way in Mesopotamia. But for a few reasons, the scale of this trade
has increased dramatically: 1. Multinational corporations have global
reach and increasing power. 2. Travel and shipping are cheap and safe.
It took about two months to cross the Atlantic in 1800. Today it takes about five hours by
plane, and less than a week by ship. 3. Governments have decreased tariffs and
regulations on international trade, leading to what is sometimes called euphemistically
”free trade.” To which I say, if this trade is so free, how come BBC America is
in the premium tier of my cable package? To understand the role that governments play
in international trade, let’s look again at this t-shirt. This t-shirt, like most t-shirts
made in the world, contains 100% American cotton. And that’s not because the U.S.
makes the best cotton or the most efficient cotton, it’s because the U.S. government
subsidizes cotton production. And that’s what makes this cotton cheaper than cotton
of similar quality from Brazil or India. But in the last 30 years, the US’s share of
cotton exports has gone down as Brazil, India, and Africa’s cotton exports go up. And that
trend will likely continue as the US moves away from its expensive cotton subsidies.
In fact, these days it’s already possible to find t-shirts with Brazilian, Indian, or Ugandan cotton,
or a mixture of cottons from all around the world. But because the American government doesn’t
subsidize industry in the way it does agricultural production, the actual spinning and weaving
of the cotton takes place in lower wage countries: Mexico, Guatemala, Vietnam, China, India,
China, China, sometimes even China. And then the finished shirts, called blanks, are usually sent to Europe
or the United States for screen printing, and then sold. You would think the most expensive part of
this process is the part where we ship this across the Pacific Ocean, turn it into this,
and then ship it back across the Pacific Ocean, but you’d be wrong. Wholesale t-shirt blanks
can cost as little as $3; the expense is in the printing, the retail side of things, and
paying the designer at Thought Bubble who was tasked with the difficult job of creating
a Mongol who is at once cute and terrifying. So contemporary global trade is pretty anarchic
and unregulated, at least by international institutions and national governments. Much
of this has to do with academic economists, mostly in the U.S. and Europe who have argued
with great success that governmental regulation diminishes prosperity by limiting growth.
Now, some nations– in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa– haven’t been particularly
keen to pursue free trade but they’ve been bullied into it by larger economies with whom
they desperately need to trade. So in the past 30 years, we’ve seen all
these emerging markets lowering their tariffs, getting rid of regulation, and privatizing
formerly state-run businesses. And they often do that to appease the International Monetary
Fund, which offers low interest loans to developing world economies with the motto: Many Strings
Attached. Now, whether these decreased regulations have
been a net positive for these developing world economies is a subject of much debate, and
we will wade into it but not until next week. First, we need to understand more about the
nature of this trade. So you’ll remember from the Industrial Revolution episode that
industrial western powers produced most of the manufactured goods, which were then sold
in international markets, but you’ll also remember that domestic consumption was extremely
important. I mean, almost all early Model T’s were built by Americans, and bought
by Americans. But since the 1960s, and especially today,
former non-industrialized parts of the world had been manufacturing consumer goods– for
domestic markets, yes, but primarily for foreign ones. This t-shirt, made in China and the
Dominican Republic before being imported to Mexico and then to the United States, is a
primary example of what I’m talking about, but so is the computer that you’re watching
me on. Your computer was probably manufactured in China, but with parts from all over the
world, especially Taiwan, Japan and South Korea. And this international manufacturing is always
finding, like, new markets too. Like, Brazil, for instance, has a huge technology sector.
They make iPads there, actually. Sorry, I’m trying to play Angry Birds. But, what all
these countries have in common is that while there is a domestic market for things like
iPads and t-shirts, the foreign markets are much, much bigger. Oh, it’s time for the
Open Letter? An open letter to Cookie Monster. But first,
let’s see what’s in the secret compartment today. Oh, it’s a cookie dough flavored
Balance Bar. For people who love cookies and pretending to be healthy. Dear Cookie Monster, Here’s the thing, man.
You don’t have a stomach. That’s why when you put a cookie in your mouth, it crumbles
up and then it just falls out of your mouth. But here’s what fascinates me, Cookie Monster.
I believe you when you say you love cookies. It doesn’t matter that you can’t actually
eat cookies because where you would have a stomach, you instead have someone’s arm.
And that, Cookie Monster, is what makes you a beautiful symbol for contemporary consumption.
You just keep eating. Even though you can’t eat. Cookie Monster, you are the best and
the worst of us. Best wishes, John Green So, although die-hard Marxists might still
resist this, by 2012 it’s become pretty obvious that global capitalism has been good
for a lot of people. It’s certainly increased worldwide economic output. And while American
autoworkers may suffer job loss, moving manufacturing jobs from high wage to lower wage countries
allows a greater number of people to live better than they did when the First and Second
Worlds monopolized manufacturing. And while I don’t want to conflate correlation and
causation, some 600 million people have emerged from poverty in the last 30 years, at least
according to the World Bank’s definition of poverty, which is living on less than $1.25
a day. Americans can argue about whether absurdly
inexpensive clothes, shoes and televisions are worth the domestic economic and social
dislocation, but for the Vietnamese worker stitching a pair of sneakers, that job represents
an opportunity for a longer, healthier and more secure life than she would have had if
those shoes were made in the U.S.A. But, before we jump on the celebratory globalization
bandwagon, let’s acknowledge that this brave new world has some side effects. For instance,
it maybe hasn’t been so good for families, it definitely has not been good for the environment,
and also there’s a chance that globalization will spark, like, the end of the human species.
But, we’re gonna talk about all that next week. For today, let’s bring on the bandwagon
and ride straight for the Thought Bubble. So these days, people move more than they
ever have. 21% of people living in Canada were born somewhere else, as was an astonishing
69% of Kuwait’s current population. Migration has become easier because: 1. Air travel is pretty cheap, especially if
you only take a few plane trips in your life, and 2. It’s relatively easy and inexpensive
to stay in touch with relatives living far away thanks to Skype, mobile phones, and inexpensive
calling cards. Also 3. Even with increased industrialization in
the developing world, economic opportunities are often much better in wealthy countries.
Remittances– money sent home by people working abroad– are now a huge driver of economic
growth in the developing world. Like, in Tajikistan, for instance, remittances are 35% of the country’s
total gross domestic product. With all these people moving around the world,
it’s not surprising that globalization also means cultural blending. When people move,
they don’t just give up their literary, culinary, artistic, and musical traditions.
Globalized culture is a bit of a paradox, though, because some people see culture today
as increasingly Americanized, right? Like, FRIENDS is currently broadcast in over 100
countries; you can find Diet Coke for sale deep in the jungles of Madagascar; the NBA
is huge in China. There are fewer languages spoken today, and probably less cultural diversity. But on the other hand, an individual’s access
to diverse cultural experience has never been greater. Bollywood movies, Swedish hip hop,
Brazilian soap operas, highlights from Congolese football matches, these are all available
to us. Culinary cultural fusion is all the rage; more novels are translated from languages
than ever before, although few are actually read; and in the surest sign of cultural globalization,
football, the world’s game, has finally reached America, where broadcasts of the greatest
collective enterprise humanity has ever known, Liverpool Football Club, got record ratings
in 2012. Thanks, Thought Bubble. Hey, one last request: Could you put me in
a Liverpool jersey? On the pitch at Anfield? Raising the premier league trophy? WITH STEVEN
GERRARD HUGGING ME? YES, JUST LIKE THAT. OH, THOUGHT BUBBLE I LOVE YOU SO MUCH. Okay, so this all brings us to how globalization
has changed us, and whether it’s for the better. Assuming you make the minimum wage
here in the United States, this t-shirt, purchased at your friendly neighborhood e-tailer,
will cost you about three hours’ worth of work– and yes, that does include shipping.
By the time it arrives at your door, the cotton within that t-shirt will have traveled by
truck, train, ship, possibly even airplane if you opt for priority shipping. And it will
probably have travelled further than Magellan did during his famous circumnavigation of
the globe. You get all that for THREE HOURS of work; by contrast, a far less comfortable
garment several hundred years ago would have cost you ten times as much work. But these improvements have been accompanied
by change so radical that we struggle to contextualize it. Like, the human population of our planet
over time looks like this. Dang. Like, in 1800, there were a billion human beings on this planet.
And that was more than had ever been seen before. And we live more than twice as long on average
as humans did just two centuries ago, largely due to improved health care for women in childbirth
and their infants, but also thanks to antibiotics and the second agricultural revolution that
began in the 1950s, the so-called “green revolution” that saw increased use of chemical
fertilizers lead to dramatically higher crop yields. Of course, these gains haven’t been evenly
distributed around the world, but chances are if you’re watching this, you A. survived
childbirth and B. feel reasonably confident that your children will as well. That’s
a new feeling for humans. And as a parent, I can assure you, it’s a miracle, and one
to be celebrated. We study history so that we can understand
these changes, and so that we can remember both what we’ve gained and lost in getting
to where we are. Next week, our last week, we’ll look at the many facets of globalization
that aren’t causes for celebration. But for today, let’s just pause to consider
how we got from here to here, how the relentless and unquenchable ambition of humans led to
a world where the entire contents of the Library of Alexandria would fit on my iPhone along
with recordings of everything Mozart ever composed. In such a world, it’s easy to
feel that we are big and powerful, maybe even invincible. It’s easy to feel that… and also dangerous.
Thanks for watching. I’ll see you next week. Crash Course is produced and directed by Stan
Muller. Our script supervisor is Meredith Danko. Associate producer, Danica Johnson.
And the show is written by my high school history teacher, Raoul Meyer, and myself.
Our graphics team is Thought Bubble. Last week’s phrase of the week was “Crush
Those Rebels.” If you want to suggest future phrases of the week or guess at this week’s,
you can do so in comments where you can also ask questions about today’s video that will
be answered by our team of historians. Thanks for watching Crash Course and as we
say in my hometown, Don’t Forget To Be Awesome.


  1. Eamonn Geraghty says:

    Eww a Liverpool fan

  2. Andrei Burluc (student) says:

    8:20 is that just PewDiePie?

  3. MasterVDrumming says:

    “China, India, China, China, and sometimes even China”

  4. Joseph Hargrove says:

    I liked the silent plug of the Tyrell Corporation. I just wish I could afford one of their replicants. 😉

    richard hargrove

    Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it.
    — Andre Gide

  5. Trump2020 says:

    It is now 2019. Update plz… lol

  6. Mary Pulling says:

    what is globalization tho 🙂

  7. Kim Larkin says:

    Lol sherlock is in this video

  8. fcuking Sg Invain says:


  9. Prithvi Prakash says:

    John Green is a Liverpool fan?

  10. Kevuilón says:


  11. Keeniah Gilchrist says:

    This is real good to learn

  12. KDMainia 07 says:

    Why my teacher make me watch this 7 years later?

  13. Ashley Joseph Marcelle says:

    Lol this guy loves Liverpool

  14. Kiven Lim says:

    9:05 He said the f word xd

  15. Shubham Mittal says:

    Local awareness common awareness basic awareness are must always also….. Be real be practical..

  16. Shubham Mittal says:

    Aaam baato, aam cheezo, mulbhoot baato chezzo, najdeeki batoo ka pta hona bhut bhut jyada jrrori h..

  17. Nikolay Nikolov Valkanov says:

    Who is in charge of CrashCourse?

  18. Nazik Adam says:

    Nah. I am using my phone to watch this.

  19. Califul Dance says:

    Where's australia on the international felt melange. Did you forget about us aussies too?

  20. Jake Potts says:

    Ew Liverpool

  21. John Yohann says:

    We need APATHY! I know it sounds weird, but if everyone were relatively apathetic, there'd never have been wars, murders, or violence. I don't mean apathetic in the sense of not even writing letters to the gov't, or voting. But in the sense of always weighing both sides, and not letting emotion takes us away from moderation, toward extremism. We all contributed to the world situation, in varying degrees. And too many chiefs spoil the soup. Politicians know what's going on- they're consulted by experts, and the public, from both 'sides' all the time. All the good that's been done has been by collaboration. The bad, due to the opposite.

  22. vickie the dickie says:

    8:25 oh honey, brazilian soap operas are a LOT less brown than THAT

  23. Badal prakash says:

    Your map of INDIA is incomplete!

  24. STEVEN LAW says:

    bollywood is garbage

  25. zPhokus says:

    This guy is a freaking nerd

  26. Kannan Ravinther says:

    Nice to know about is actually a great way to know how a particalar product is manufactured in different countries..and also the increase in technology has brought the price reduction of transport,connectivity with loved ones and also greater opportunities in developed countries.

  27. Richard Guo says:

    Excuse me guys, what's the meaning of "cookie monster"?

  28. jaafar ameen says:

    Make an episode about saddam hussain raise to power

  29. Vincent van Gaalen says:

    boy, there is a phenomonon called breathing you know

  30. R Jay says:

    9:04 Go Blues!

  31. Kylie Perlow says:

    Studying for the test tm, gonna fail

  32. LissaAnn Castro says:

    someone pls define globalization in two to three sentences and give me an example for my exam 😭❤️❤️

  33. Connor Fogleman says:

    stevie g!!

  34. Zach Mazur Lazur says:

    Love the vids. My teacher made me watch this and assure questions though so make it shorter.

  35. Scaredy Cat says:

    preparing for an ap test tomorrow lmaoo

  36. NotFakeNowTake yt says:

    I built my computer

  37. N Marrs says:

    And yes that does include shipping.

  38. Nolan 320 says:

    my computer was manufactured in my own home 😉

  39. Sabrina Mitchell says:

    I used to watch these episodes for fun, not for school… luv the old days

  40. Harper Clarkson says:


  41. Noah Saldivar says:

    Who else is watching this in class because their teacher told them to?

  42. Brett Thielen says:

    hahah liverpool are not winning the premier league

  43. Soccerates 8 says:

    He says he's a Liverpool fan but he wore a United jersey in one of the previous episodes

  44. Joey says:

    funny and useful. thank you

  45. Aidan Hennes says:

    Who’s watching in world studies?????

  46. Elizabeth Elk says:

    Binging these to study for AP exams lol

  47. AJ Papakee says:

    He said “from here (natives/indigenous peoples) to here (America)” lmao John green you should know best of all people, it’s called white supremacy and “”divide and conquer””

  48. Eric Pinteralli says:

    10:22 tHeSe GaInS hAvEn'T bEeN eVeNlY dIsTrIbUtEd ArOuNd ThE wOrLd

  49. Vikeing Blade says:

    Hey, I'm reading "Bajo en la Misma Estrella" ahora mismo…

  50. el leider says:

    Got to have that Fault in Our Stars reference 🙂

  51. Nora O says:

    If I get a 5 on the AP test I will buy all of John Green's books 5 times each.

  52. salma the steam engine says:

    angry birds haha

    what a simple time

  53. Cassidy Micah says:

    My Honours World History class has watched your videos at the end of the year as a recap of everything we have learned. These videos have been incredibly concise and helpful to studying for our final. They are funny and interesting, but still teach us so much in the span of around 10 minutes. We have loved it!! Thank you so much!!

  54. Eli W. says:

    Talks about cultural blending and access to diverse cultures but doesn't mention kpop. I thought you were better than this, John.

  55. Mezzo Forte says:

    Chelsea is better

  56. The Krusty Kebab says:


  57. ๔єlคภєy says:

    AP test in 8 hours…

  58. Nolan Clous says:


  59. M Nix says:

    You need to up date this. Things sure have changed

  60. Dixie Hamilton says:

    Globalization is actually self destructive

  61. suruchi sharma says:

    I am gonna use that last phrase "also dangerous " in my answer tommorow.THANKS FOR THE KNOWLEDGE

  62. Olivia says:

    If I get a 5 on the AP tomorrow, I'll buy that shirt.

  63. X X says:

    Hoping Liverpool beats Tottenham. -Gooner

  64. Erich Kruger says:

    this is one of the only times I ever have disagreed with john. capitalization is a social construct that does more bad then good, and makes the rich richer and the poor poorer. and if you've noticed, the sneaker workers in Vietnam are not suddenly rich due to capitalism's rise. the average income of workers in Vietnam is 150 us dollars a month. as i, i have to disagree on this one.

    but i love crash course so keep making these great educational videos:)

  65. Kevin McMahon says:

    Trump and other leaders are now realizing that Globalization is bad for the home town economy. Big business has moved their call centers, factories and labour intensive industries to the 2nd and 3rd world. Since 1995 vast amounts of money have gone into those economies a lifted those populations into the low and middle class. There is less poverty in the world, generally. Wages growth in the 1st world has been stagnant.

  66. illiterate thug says:

    Still no prem for the scousers, eh?

  67. Chris Van Bekkum says:

    Mostly a transfer of wealth from industrial , to developing countries.

  68. sharma sharma says:

    kya khaya tha bhai etni jldi bolra h … centre fruit h kya samne

  69. gurkdoinwork says:

    S/O Liverpool FC winning UEFA championship yesterday

  70. Rudy Lowery says:

    globalization is all about the sodomising of the world's population spreading degeneracy and then slavery

  71. Shreeya Mittal says:

    Nope, I didn't, actualy.

  72. Van Radosevich says:

    My advise: pass the test and then do your own research. This stinks of indoctrination. He leaves out that the global elites are leaving the borders undefended to allow illegal immigration. They are driving open borders illegally and without democratic consent. Of course, you already know this. Only 1.2 % of viewers even had an opinion.

  73. Lee-Anne Castle says:

    Do you not breathe?

  74. Adrienne Vance says:

    In no way is globalization a good thing, only an idiot liberal would believe this garbage

  75. Taras Gogol says:

    Sorry @guys_who_watch_it_only_for_AP_exam, but I think the real joy of this content is available only for free curious audience 😉

  76. Srisha V says:

    y'all IB/honours exams are gonna be the death of me

  77. A A says:

    Ok, I saw David Tennant. Ok. Ok. Ok.

  78. Alex Rator says:

    This t shirt tell one message: the mongols are the exception

  79. Alex Rator says:

    China, China, China, China… Made in China

  80. Time Keeper says:

    Useless talking fast with superficial information

  81. Lewis Kenny says:

    Here’s a like just because of you’re love for Liverpool! 👍🏻

  82. Charlie Snodin says:

    Liverpool way

  83. 67NewEngland says:

    10:04. – How does improved healthcare for woman during child birth effect us living longer? I can see it effecting the world population, but life longevity?.

  84. Rif malik says:

    So, what did we learn today?

  85. C Trevor Manika says:

    You speak too fast. Due that I have yo listen to this atleast 3 more times to actually get a thought on what you’re trying to say.

  86. That Asshole says:

    Football = AFL

  87. Debi Kinman says:

    Almost a cartoon.

  88. zubi afridi says:

    Ur materials and knowledge are superb, but please speak slowly. Only native speakers can easily understand what u say. Others face problems😑😑

  89. PancakeNinja6 says:

    Watching for an AP summer assignment in 2019. I remember watching it with my brother when it came out.

  90. Teresa Riegg says:

    What is an example of globalization

  91. Matt Edwards says:

    The very entry to this video made me shout yaaas

    Your researchers are incredible and do a brilliant job. You present incredibly up to date academic information in a very very accessible format. It's brilliant.

    (The world banks definition is very very warped though and I'd love to see some more criticism of these institutions)

  92. pompeius magnus says:

    Great video. Will there be an update for 2019?

  93. private name says:

    Globalization is a way for US companies to find the cheapest labor pools, replacing the American worker. This is how the rich get richer.

  94. Waqar Sheikh says:

    bro i want to listen more about globalization of politics, in the contemporary era, economics is the offshoot of politics, make a vid cuz I love to listen you.

  95. מתן דרעי says:

    "All over the world" *points on 4 countries in East Asia

  96. IntermediateJesus says:

    As a Scandinavian I can say that yes America we see everything you do and you affect us deeply on a personal level.
    Yet we are powerless to affect you in any way. It's really frustrating.

  97. Wynton McCurdy says:

    You could have the cartoon’s hair style but you couldn’t give Pharaoh brown skin???

  98. Insert channel name I says:

    My AP Human Geography teacher sent us this link to watch for homework.

    The fact that he watches crash course makes me unreasonably happy

  99. Ardita Mekuli says:

    what's the significance of globilization?quickkk I need it for my hw that's due soon!!!!

  100. Heather B Wallace says:

    You speak terribly fast, difficult to follow without intermittent pausing and replay. Although most of your videos are old, for any new ones, could you please adjust your pace. Your knowledge and delivery are virtually impeccable, your videos/channel/subscribers won't suffer if you slow it down a bit and increase video length by 3-4 minutes. Thanks !

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