A lot of focus regarding capitalism and globalization focuses on the reproduction of goods and services in different areas of the World for the sakes of profit. The mimicking of products and firms across borders has resulted in a 21st century landscape wrought with copyright and property disputes, on both the philosophical and physical levels. What Mike Davis really gets at in his article “Fear and Money in Dubai” is the less publicized notion of the reproduction of the ideals of capitalism. By focusing on Dubai, a city-state that has (somewhat ironically) built a market made up of industries that have commodified the ideals of capitalism, Davis is able to highlight the degree to which these ideals have influenced the cultures of communities around the globe.
Paradoxically, Dubai’s economy is driven by global capitalist consumer culture, which in turn has created a culture of consumerism within Dubai. By adopting gigantism as a economic philosophy, Dubai has magnified not just the scale of its industries, but also the degree to which consumerism influences the local culture. The result is an environment in which elites and those of high socioeconomic status are able to flourish, while the majority of the its citizens are forced to compete with the full force of global capitalism in their own backyard. Dubai has also created an environment that Auge would likely define as a non-place. By attempting to recreate the most profitable features of different regions around the world, the way Davis depicts Dubai’s cultural landscape draws comparisons to that of a mall.
The biggest (and most alarming) implication of Dubai’s hyper-captialist market is that the large amount of profit the city-state is able to generate will eventually incentivize other economies to replicate Dubai’s ideals, in an attempt to gain some of the tourist market share. A world in which the cultural effects of hyper-capitalism are increasingly concentrated on a global scale is a world with an increasingly exploited lower class and magnified economic inequality.