Underdevelopment and Dependancy

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  • Underdevelopment and dependancy
    • Slavery and colonialism
      • Over a 200 period (1650-1850) western countries Britain, Netherlands, French and Spanish shipped over 9 million for slaves to work on cotton and sugar farms
      • Colonies were exploited for their cheap food, raw materials and labour
      • Tribes and social groups went to war as colonisers paid some to maintain social control
    • Neo-colonialism
      • Frank noted that new forms of colonialism have appeared that are more subtle but equally destructive as slavery and colonialism
      • Developing nations are still dependant for their export earnings upon a small number of cash crops or raw materials
      • Tariffs can be imposed onto developing countries which makes home-grown goods cheaper meaning people are less likely to buy food from other countries
      • Bakan refers to how TNC's are "institutional psychopaths" and that are programmed to exploit and dehumanise people for profit
        • Some TNC's like Exxon have been accused of funding military coups to gain financial access to countries that initially refused entry
    • World Systems Theory (Wallerstien)
      • There are three types of capitalist zone, core, semi-periphery and periphery
        • Core is MEDC's, semi-periphery are NIC's and periphery are LEDC's
        • This system will lead to the commodification of everything, the de-skilling of the rich and a polarized global class system
        • The core are supplied with raw materials from the others and give them back in the form of consumer goods
        • However some have said that it is too economistic and forgets other aspects such as culture and politics
    • Solutions to dependancy
      • Roberts and Hite argue that there are two sets of views when it comes to ideas for fixing these situations of dependancy
        • Underdevelopment is not a phase but an inescapable position, that the entire capitalist system only functions by exploiting people
          • One solution to this is by adopting a "isolationist" policy, such as the former socialist/communist nations like China and Russia
        • The other is that ISI, Import Substitution Industrialization (aimed at producing consumer goods than just the raw materials) can transform economies
          • Green notes that once the South American countries undertook ISI, Latin America's industrial output went up six times
      • Criticisms of dependancy theory
        • Role of homegrown elite
          • Poor governance and corruption by this elite kletocracy is partly responsible for the poor condition of many African countries now
        • Defining dependancy
          • Frank called things metropolises and satellites by this theory Canada and Taiwan are satellites of the US
        • Roberts and Hite - Frank fails to junstifiy why there have been increasing levels of exploitation over the years


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