Modernisation Of The United States

Decent Essays

Modernisation, on the other hand, is a “conceptual framework that articulated a common set of assumptions about the nature of American society and its ability to transform a world perceived as both materially and culturally deficient” (Latham, 2000). Specifically, modernisation theorists posited a sharp distinction between traditional and modern societies. They took for granted that economic development, from traditional to modern, proceeded along a single straight, unambiguous line. Finally, modernisation advocates expected that contact with vital modern societies would accelerate progress in stagnant traditional societies.
The prevailing view of modernisation was that for poor countries to achieve capital formation, productivity and consumption, comparable to those in developed countries, it was necessary to duplicate the cultural institutions of the latter. Ethnocentric ‘growth’ and development theories and the establishment of a number of global development institutions such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund propelled one another as part of the Cold War.
One of the more strongly argued positions that poor nations must emulate rich nations, was that of Rostow (1960), who later argued vociferously for intervention in Vietnam. The general proposition taken by Rostow, and others, was that in order to produce and consume like the wealthy, one had to change “traditional” cultural attributes and proceed in orderly fashion to achieve a “take-off” into sustained

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