A reading list for Anthony

Sam Pawlett rsp at SPAMuniserve.com
Mon Nov 27 19:33:54 MST 2000




> ! Colin Leys, Rise and Fall of Development Theory, Indiana (Leys is a
> critic of dependency theorists, according to Sam Pawlett.)
>

"It is becoming clearer that "underdevelopment" and "dependency" theory
is no longer serviceable and must now be transcended. The evidence for
this (a) theoretical repetition and stagnation in the literature on
underdevelopment and dependency theory (udt), (b) the existence of
fundamental problems of analysis which udt cannot solve, or even
formulate, and central problems of development strategy which are linked
with these and about which udt is either silent--or ambigious. (c) an
evident lack of practical impact in favor of thepopular forces in the
struggles in the third world countries, but on the contrary, a marked
tendency for the underdevelopment/dependency "perspective" to be
co-opted by developmentalists allied to international capital." Colin
Leys. Underdevelopment and Dependency. Critical Notes p29. in
*Neo-Marxist Theories of Development* ed. Limqueco and Macfarlane.JRL of
Contemporary Asia 1983.

Leys raises interesting and important questions. I would note that his
critique is limited to one book by Frank, Wallerstein and Amin only. The
latter two are not usually considered dependecistas.

Stagnation in the literature could be evidence of either a degenerating
research program or a convergence on truth. Leys really has nor right
saying there is stagnation in the literature when he gives no evidence
of having read any of it. In any case, dependence today must take into
consideration the  debt dependence and the dependence on portfolio
investment that peripheral countries must deal with. Walden Bello,
William Tabb and Michael Hudson have done fine research on what
dependence and imperialism means today. There is also an article by
B.Surin on the Cultural Logic website that discusses dependence and
global finance. Dependence  must also take into consideration the
economic growth of the Asian tiger economies as well as Chile, which
according to some dependenct theories should not have experienced
economic growth at all. I think some of the central insights of the
dependistas remain valid today.

There is by now a ton of literature. Books I would recommend are
Cristobal Kay *Latin American Theories of Development* Routledge !995,
Ronald Chilcote, Theories of Development.1988 and Jorge Larrain,
Theories of Development.Pluto.1991. All these authors take into
consideration the theories of non-english speakers ,primarily Spanish
and Portuguese, that have not been translated.

A good but dated anthology is "Intro to Sociology of Developing
Societies" ed T.Shanin and H.Alavi. MR PRess 1983. It has Brenner's 1977
NLR article.

A magesterial work sympathetic to world system theory and dependence is
Michael Hudson. Trade, Developement and Foreign Debt.  2vols. Pluto.1991
Also the work of Harry Magdoff. Imperialism From  Colonization Today.
Magdoff is always great and usually right.

Sam Pawlett







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