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Chapter 1

POLB90H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 1: Infant Mortality, Tongues Untied

Political Science
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POLB90 – Week 1 – Howard Handleman: Understanding
The Untied Nations and other international organization have reached the
consensus on the term less develop countries (LDCs) that does not hold the
normative aws of “underdeveloped”, “third world” or developing”
Argument: There are enough commonalities among “third world” countries to
make that conceptually useful
While some Third World countries are underdeveloped in all major aspects of
modernization, others are far more advance in some aspects of development
than others
Economic Underdevelopment
GDP has a negative correlation with poverty in LRDs, but this correlation is
NOT absolute
Countries with growing GDPs (China, India) have a substantial amount of
poverty. Generally, income is more equitably distributed among advanced
industrialized nations, though not always.
oThis is why per capita income might not always give a complete picture
of a country’s economic state
Human Development Index (HDI): a composite measure of school
enrollment, adult literacy, life expectancy, and per-capita income (GDP).
Many consider this to be the best single measure of nation’s quality of life.
Social Underdevelopment
The Third World has enjoyed considerable social development in the past 40-
50 years; improved literacy, health care and sanitation -> reduced infant
These rates are still very high comparatively
Argument: If LDCs are to modernize and develop economically, politically,
and socially, they must extend and improve their educational systems;
+literacy -> +democracy
Political Underdevelopment
Political Development: involves the creation of specialized and
di9erentiated government institutions that e9ectively carry out necessary
functions, such as collecting tax revenues, defending national borders,
maintaining political stability, stimulating economic development, improving
the quality human life, and communicating with the citizenry.
Political scientists argue that governments must be responsible to a broad
segment of society and respect the population’s fundamental freedoms and
Political development does not necessarily entail democratization; it
could be under an authoritarian regime (ie populist)
To be considered democratic, governments should be
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