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POL201Y1 (200)
Lecture

Modernization


Department
Political Science
Course Code
POL201Y1
Professor
Sophia Moreau

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Monday September 27th 2010
Modernization
In the 1950s, for the first time, political scientists conducted research outside of Europe and
North America. Driven by 3 impulses:
1) Cold War: 2 superpowers started to divide the world into two categories (Democracy vs.
Communism).
2) Decolonization: Started in 1948 with India and from 1950s, most countries gained
independence. For the first time, there are actual politics in these countries.
3) Economic Growth: Rise in GDP worldwide. The world economy after WWII takes off. It
existed in many poor countries. Driven on changes on the ground, and produced more
changes on the ground: urbanization, literacy, political participation, media engagement,
mobility. Passing of tradition society = move from tradition to modernity.
Political scientists that went to study countries outside of Europe/ North America looked at
the world through the lens of modernization. Underdeveloped societies = tradition and
Developed societies = modernization.
Balgat: Traditional village, and may be undergoing modernity.
Traditional traits:
Isolation: people never leave the village, dont work for wages, not participants of a market
economy
Lack of information: one radio, limited access to information and is mediated
Chief: power, controls
Lerner argues that a person with a tradition mindset lacks the ability to imagine
somewhere else (lack of empathy).
Lack of toleration for difference: Chief values uniformity, resists change
Tradition stands in the way of modernization.
Grocer is in and of the market.
Modern traits:
Desire to be something and achieve something greater
Likes to travel, demonstrates the ability to imagine
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Monday September 27th 2010
Physically and socially mobile
Violates tradition so he is rejected, differences are not tolerated
Agent of change
Opposite party (democrats) promises modernity and development.
Lerner sees the Grosser as the visionary.
Modern traits: Village to the city in 4 years (Balgat and Ankara)
Transportation (road, bus)
Employed in factories in the city (waged labourers, participates in the market)
7 Grocers in Balgat
More housing (50 to 500 in 1954)
Urbanization (city expanded to incorporate people in villages)
Electricity and water
Access to information (well over 100 radios)
Political participation (voting in the 1950 election, most voted for opposite party =
democrats)
Idea of media is an important condition to modernity.
Puzzle: why did they vote for the democrat party when they have all these traditional
values?
Grocer is a modern person, has desires/opinions/ imagination/ physically, socially mobile
Lerner says that the Grocer is a prophet.
Modernity is partly a state of mind.
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