The Crisis Of The Why Nations Fail

2183 Words Jan 28th, 2015 9 Pages
1. According the “Why Nations Fail” (Acemoglu and Robinson, pp. 13-16), the encomienda was an institution in colonized Latin America beginning in the 16th century in which Spanish conquistadors obtained labor and wealth from the indigenous population. The encomienda served to organize people in a way that would make them functionally owned by the powerful leader who had imposed the system. This form of slavery was done under the guise of an exchange, for the Spanish agreed to share Christianity with the natives and it was designed to benefit them solely. This perpetual arrangement helps to explain some of the inequalities we see today in the world. Modern countries where the encomienda was once dominant remain substantially more poor than countries that did not have it in their pasts. States such as Bolivia and Peru basically had large amount of resources taken out of them, and they did not receive anything in return. Although this happened long ago, the people of these nations are still witnessing the consequences of the encomienda.

2. Path dependency is the idea that a country’s history will impact its future. Institutions often retain some influence for long periods of time, and they can determine how a state will operate. In the course of events, a country would experience multiple leaders and regimes, but persistent factors such as the stability and centralization of the country will play a role in where the same state heads. Some factors will become more or less…
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