The very fact that Robbins notes that the television may be made elsewhere from where it is used suggests that it does. And it seems to me that part of the work Robbins is advocating, of “turning invisibly determined and often exploitative connections into conscious and self-critical ones” (3) involves a renewed consciousness of place coexisting with certain cosmopolitan and interconnected leanings. This may very well be in line with his argument. But while his focus seems to be mainly on how people can make connections across places and transcend their local interests while not forgetting their positions, I think he may ignore the fact that places are not blank spaces composed of whatever objects and images make their way in. While Robbins references “the current distribution of the world’s resources” (14), my question is how environment plays into notions of cosmopolitanism. I am specifically thinking of the phrase “global warming,” which seems to reference the need for trans-national solutions to the problem of climate change, but which glosses over specifically located effects. In an era in which our environment is increasingly coming to light as impacting our lives, and our lives as impacting our environment, how does cosmopolitanism respond to global problems that are enacted in very local ways? Is this the same as the question of laborers in different nations having sometimes oppositional and sometimes overlapping interests?
I am not sure this is so much addressing Robbin’s argument, but this was just something that came to mind as I read his discussion of place and places.