This study identifies, delineates, and analyses an emergent global cultural dynamic: lobalization. I coin the term 'lobalization' to refer to the cultural dynamic through which locally manufactured cultural products are packaged and circulated in a locality in the guise of prestigious imported products. The theoretical significance of this study is that (i) it uncovers a new cultural phenomenon that is completely unexplored in current theories of cultural globalization and that (ii) it compels us to rethink one of the major problematics in cultural globalization: global cultural asymmetry. The practical significance of this global cultural dynamic is that 'lobal' products are beginning to diffuse broadly around the globe and that they can negatively impact on global original-brand manufacturers and local creative industries. I investigate the emergent global cultural dynamic through the case of pass-off menswear in China. Do pass-offs offer socially liberating potentials? Do they carry negative normative implications? This study approaches these questions by interpreting pass-off menswear in China as an embodiment of lobalization and by clarifying the socio-cultural implications of pass-offs through delineating them against major theoretical conceptualizations of global cultural dynamics including cultural globalization, localization, hybridity, the transnational, the translocal, the postmodern, the hyperreal, and glocalization.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Cultural Studies
- Visual Arts and Performing Arts