POL201 October 18, 2010
Imperialism and Dependency
Critique of modernization theory – Lenin’s Imperialism. The division of world among the
superpower were complete in 1916. Monopoly capitalism is opposite of free competition. Lenin
argues that Colonialism is not only for extraction of resources, but rather to get the control of the
resources. Capitalism was already on the decline. Cheap sources of raw materials were done by
Colonial expansion – the resource extraction was the primary reason or the colonialism.
Fundamental critique of modernization theory – economic relationship, 19century, sets up the
lasting relationship of what’s happening today.
Highlight of specific parts of modernization theory for critique – built on division of world of
traditional modern society. The tradition derives modernity. Modernization theory uses tradition
as both an expression and a cause of underdevelopment. Everything that is modern is opposition
built in Tradition society: Social mobility/hierarchical rigidity, Urban/Rural, Rational
people/Irrational people. In 1959 spring, political scientists researched about traditional society
in Turkey, Turkish peasants were hopelessly traditional and very poor. Later time, the very same
society, people voted for opposite party for the modernization goods. Lerner’s theory – he turns
out to be wrong.
Lerner thought there would be transition of traditional society to modern society, for comfort and
for own modern goods. He believed on personality traits and thought this was the reason for the
How modernization theory uses the traditional theory dichotomy. It is used as a how world
develops. Early developer does it himself or herself and late developers learn from the modern
institution of the early developers. Modern human beings are rational and traditional are not
rational. By being rational, they do not engage in cultural, spiritual stuff, but believe in the
Level of Analysis: Individual countries (Unit of analysis).
Dependency Theory (Valenzuela & Valenzuela) – Development and underdevelopment emerges
simultaneously. Development of the core produces the underdevelopment of periphery. Why –
unequal terms of trade. Modernity looks different in different countries is because the core and
periphery is different. Whether they are exporters or importers of primary goods and resources. It
depends where they stand in economy. Under and both developments are both are in modernity.