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Discourse on Modernization Essay

The discourse on Modernization was resisted by the Communists led by the USSR through a policy of isolation and xenophobia. The improvement of quality of life Modernization would bring was a threat to their hold on nations. Hence it was against the best interest of Communist governments that their holdings obtain genuine modernization. One major example was the Iron Curtain. Movement of people, goods and information was severely restricted along the east-west Germany border especially during the 50s and 60s.

Starting with their refusal to accept Marshall plan aid after World War II, the nations falling under the Iron Curtain refused to have dealings with the west. By breaking contact with the West, they were able to limit the common people’s consciousness the people did not have a basis for comparison to realize how oppressive their lives really were. Another example was the foundation or support of various communist movements all over the World. Many of these organizations received financial and logistical support from the COMINTERN or the KGB.

These organizations promoted the Communist ideal often with a nationalist or self-determinist bias. They tried to disparage Western Aid as a form of Imperialism to limit modernization it their respective countries. Shortcoming of the “modernization theory”: Dichotomy of the “traditional” and “modern” 5. Cultural Imperialism The Third World in the 1960s: Stagnation of the economic development; political instability Dependency Theory: Emerged in Latin America in the late 1960s Grounded in the neo-Marxist political-economy approach

TNCs in the North exercise control, with the support of their respective governments, Over the developing countries by setting the terms of global trade ? developing nations remain “peripheral” Cultural Imperialism: The cultural aspects of dependency theory Ex: Herbert Schiller (1969) Mass Communications and American Empire US-based TNCs undermine cultural autonomy of the South US communications technology and investment, coupled with the new demand for media products, nessitate large-scale imports of US media products Consumerism is emphasized at the expense of community values


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