Globalisation Is a Euphamism for Neo-Colonialism

Topics: Capitalism, Globalization, International relations Pages: 7 (2302 words) Published: November 30, 2012
Globalisation is a euphemism for neo-colonialism. Discuss.

Globalisation is a complex and multifaceted issue (Bayliss 2008:252). However, this essay will on the imbalance between western powers and the developing world and consequential exploitation, which, rather than being condemned as neo-colonialism, is justified as globalisation. The end of colonial rule did not mark the end of the trend of economic control and exploitation of the developing world (Manzo 2009:267). The cultural, political and economic effects of globalisation upon the developing world resemble that of neo-colonial power – an inequality that is defended by the benevolence of neo-liberalism and egalitarianism of the free market. This essay will focus on the cultural and political international dominance of the west and economic partiality of globalised institutions, referring to IR theories of globalisation defending it as beneficial (Bayliss 2008:248, Pasha 2009:330) and condemning it as capitalist imperialism.

Colonialism describes a period of expansion and exploitation by European powers spanning the 15th to 20th Century, the ‘political control, physical occupation, and domination of people… and their land’ (Crawford 2002:131). Between 1946 and 1976 European powers granted independence to all their colonies. However, Horvath writing in 1972 argues that neo-colonialism swiftly followed its predecessor (Horvath 1972:46). Neo-colonialism implies that whilst post-colonial states attained nominal sovereignty within the international system, they remain dependent upon western powers and are subsequently politically controlled, culturally conditioned and economically exploited (Nkrumah 1968:x-xii). States with the ‘…outward trappings of international sovereignty’ but in reality have their ‘economic system and thus its political policy… directed from outside.’ (Nkrumah 1968:xi)

Globalization can be defined as the expansion of ‘worldwide interconnectedness’; where states integrate and supranational institutions are formed. Whilst stronger states control their involvement, weaker states are forced to integrate, being influenced rather than influencing (Bayliss 2008:255). Neo-liberalism argues integration is beneficial (Bayliss 2008:249, Sorenson 1997:10) globalization will ‘restructure the world economy without the need for interventionist policies’ creating equality within a competitive free market (Hirst 1999:134). World-system theory however, describes monopoly capitalism where rich ‘core’ states exploit ‘peripheral’ poorer states, essentially an international class system (Bayliss 2008:147, Wallerstein: 1989). Realist thought, would argue that powerful states merely use the globalised system for their own benefit (Waltz 1979). Globalization could therefore be seen as an ‘instrument for imperialism’ favoring strong capitalist states (Bayliss 2008:153) essentially a euphemism for neo-colonialism.

Democracy is promoted through globalization based upon neoliberal ideals of humanities right to ‘libertarian happiness’ (Morgenthau 1960:100). The political weight of Western thought, and the professed moral legitimacy of its international promotion highlights a neo-colonial dominance (Nkrumah 1968:ix), The Western world believes international co-operation can only safely occur between liberal democratic states (Owen 1994:96). ‘Separate peace’ (Doyle 1986:1151), co-operation solely between liberal democracies, can be seen through EU accession criteria (Europa 2010:Copenhagen Criteria) and ENP policy (DeBardeleben 2008:21) and IMF and World Bank loan policy (Cogan 2009:211). Imposing Western political principles using economic incentive. Here, humanitarian aid is a gift of neo-colonialism; foreign capital used for the exploitation rather than the development of the third world (Nkrumah 1968:x) For Western powers force is often a necessary option against illiberal states (Hoffman 1995:31) Owen 1994:97). US involvement in Afghanistan and Iraq has been...
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