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We are living in a period of globalization of communication and media cultures. Beyond national borders, new trans-national cultures are emerging, with their own distinctive practices, bodies of knowledge, conventions and lifestyles. These trans-national cultures are based on symbolic systems and conceptions of the world which overlay local and national cultures. They are rapidly becoming dominant world cultures, although this does not necessarily mean that local and national cultures are disappearing: on the contrary, new sets of relationships between the local and the global are beginning to emerge. The 'gravity' of local and national traditions, and of ethnic and social differences, continues to exist, alongside moves towards media globalisation.

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