Chapter 4: Economic Structuralism: Global Capitalism And Postcolonialsim

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Major Assumptions

Why can't so many 3rd world countries develop?
-must understand the global context that actors interact within.
Level of analysis is global (or world capitalist)
Stress the importance of historical analysis- must understand the evolution of capitalism to understand the curret structure
The distribution of weath leads to uneven development between NOrth and South
Economic factors are crucial in explain the world ssytem

Similarities with other Paradigms
Shares with Realism

Greater emphasis on the importance of the system level
Differ on Ontology: (polarity vs core periphery)
Shares with Liberalism

Politics depends on economics
Similar with liberalism: states are not autonomous
emphasizes Socioeconomic or welfare issues
Key Questions in Economic Structuralism

How and why did capitalism form in Europe?
How did capitalism expand outward?
How has capitalism changed over the centuries?
What are the relations between North (First) and South (third) worlds?

Intellectual Precursors in Economic Structuralism
Karl Marx
Humanity's growth would eventually lead to a society he called communistic
Expanding captial can eventually lead to war because of overconsumption by workers, overproduction, and oversaving by capitalists
"Imperialism: The Highest Stage of Capitalism" Capitalism leads to differnt stages in growth: uneven development
Emphasized political voluntarism. argued that ideas could overturn historic blocs through counter hegemony
Karl Marx

History is the story of class conflict
Changes in modes of production leads to changes in social relations (ancient, feudal, captialist)
Capitalism was a necessary stage before socialism
According to Marx, Capitalism

Consists of market exchanges
Labor as a commodity and means of production in private hands
Dependency Theory

Mainly latin american scholars- tried to explain why development didn't take off in the 3rd world.
Questioned benefits of free trade (commondities exchanged for manufacturers)
Interdependence is really just dependency for developing nations
Domenstic forces are also important- National bourgiouse ally with capitalists to exploit their owncitizens
The capitalist world system seeks to understand ___

the entire global political-economic system
Tries to understand the fate of al the world regions within the context of political-economy
Capitialist World System based on writings of _______
Immanuel Wallerstein

World Systems Theory
Provides technology, manufacturing, banking, finance, and other advanced industry and service
Provides raw materials, such as lumber, minerals and commodities
A mix of production activities, including light manufacturing, and serves as an investment outlet for core countries when wages get too high
World Sytems Theory= Main operating priciple

"global capital"

World Systems Theory

the lack of an overarching system makes it impossible for anyone to regulate capitalist mode of production
inability to regulate capital leads to a global division of labor

Emphasizes economic, political and cultural aspects of de-colonialization (neo-colonialism)
Highliights the importance of race, culture and ethnicity in understanding anti-colonia structures
-how do we define imperialism? Is the US an imperial power?
Examples of postcolonialism
Aligned movement and New International Economic Order (NIEO)

Is dependency a cause of underdevelopment or an affect of this condition?
Is capital the main casual variable in understanding IR?
Is economic structure emphasized too much?
Is dependency of the south based soley on oppression of the North?

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