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Globalisation, Infrastructure, Ideology


NB: The language of instruction of this course is English, but the communication in class will be held in Dutch. Examination will also be in Dutch unless the exam board has decided differently upon explicit request of the student.

Admission requirements

Only the following categories of student may register for this course:

  • Students enrolled for the BA programme “CA-DS” at Leiden University

  • Pre-Master’s students who have completed the Admission procedure for the Master’s CA-DS and have been formally admitted to this course as part of the Pre-Master’s programme.

Please see the "Registration" instruction below.


This course examines global connections through the flows of ideas, people and things facilitated by the built networks and infrastructures that facilitate or obstruct their movement. Such infrastructures, whether in the form of technology, material culture, policy regulations, or social networks all involve economic, political and cultural processes shaped by existing power structures. They are simply media via which ideas, people and things move, but are also objects which mean different things to different people. Instead of looking at ‘the global’ and ‘local’ as fixed divisions we shall examine how the movement of capital and ideas, people and commodities, operates at multi-scalar levels and how it strengthens or weakens social inequality, the supremacy of states and markets and the boundaries of cultural identities and nationhood. How do these flows offer channels to understand how ideologies are shaped based on class, gender, ethnicity and so forth, and how are power relations reinforced? How do international and state institutions formulate and regulate policies of improvement and empowerment? What forms of infrastructure contribute to shaping the landscape of people’s everyday lives? How do different social groups frame their movements to embrace, negotiate or counter the introduction of various ‘projects of improvement’ and what strategies do they undertake to deal with existing modes of government and control?

Keywords: globalization; power structures; nationalism and nationhood; governance and sovereignty; migration and citizenship; cultural heritage

Course objectives

Students who follow this course will develop:

  • a firm foundation in anthropological and sociological theories related to the various key concepts discussed in the course.

  • academic skills necessary to analyse processes of global-local interaction, the movement of ideas, people and things through different types of borders and boundaries and modes of government and resistance

  • research skills and methodologies within the framework of global ethnographies knowledge to connect issues that are politically relevant and urgent in the current world situation with local day-to-day events,

Time table

Please see the Faculty website

Mode of instruction

10 ECTS = 280 study hours (sbu)

Lectures (12 x 2 h = 24 uur / 36 sbu)
Written asssignment ca. 3 pages (24 sbu)
Literature ca. 1300 pages (220 sbu)

Assesment Method

Assignments and final exam. Registration for final exam in Usis is obligatory.
Only the final grade gets registered in Usis.


Blackboard registration is obligatory; the module will be available aroun th estarting date of the course Blackboard.




Registration in Usis is obligatory for lectures (H) and the final examination (T) for all participants. Please consult the course registration website for information on registration periods and further instructions.


Dr. Ratna Saptari