Dependency Theory After Fifty Years

The Continuing Relevance of Latin American Critical Thought


This book received the Libertador Prize for Critical Thought (2018), demonstrating a renewal of interest in Dependency Theory. That conception initially included distinct forms of Marxism, liberalism, and developmentalism that should be differentiated, despite sharing the same name. The later retreat of that approach contrasts with the growing present-day relevance of its postulates; Latin America bears the effects of dependency even more acutely than in the past, making it imperative to understand the logic of its peripheral subordination. Dependency Theory in its original form is insufficient for explaining contemporary reality; it must be updated to interpret the current modalities of dependent capitalism. This book offers analytical clues to that reinvention.

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Claudio Katz is a research professor at the University of Buenos Aires in Argentina. He is the author of numerous books and articles on economics, politics, and Latin American society. His views are synthesized in Neoliberalismo, neo-desarrollismo, socialismo (2015, Batalla de Ideas).

part 1
1Marx and the Periphery
 1  Cosmopolitan Socialism

 2 Rebellions and Rethinking

 3 Slavery and Oppression

 4 Democracies and Communes

 5  A New Paradigm

 6 Convergence and Cleavages

 7  Exogenous and Endogenous Causes

 8 Liberal Interpretations

 9 Varieties of Eurocentrism

 10 People without History

 11 Nations and Nationalism

 12 State and Progress

 13 Legacies

2Underdevelopment in the Classical Marxists
 1  Justifications for Colonialism

 2 The Revolutionary Position

 3 Rights to Self-Determination

 4 Pillars of Anti-Imperialism

 5  Uneven Development

 6 Stages and Imperialism

 7  The Function of the Periphery

 8 Accumulation by Dispossession

 9 Uneven and Combined Development

 10 Challenges and Extensions

 11 Enduring Concepts

3Center and Periphery in Postwar Marxism
 1  Deindustrialization and Surplus

 2  Stagnation and Domination

 3  Polemics with Liberalism

 4 Amin’s Five Theses

 5  World Value and Polarization

 6 Unequal Exchange

 7  Dependency and Socialism

 8 Collective Imperialism

 9 Mandel’s Perspective

 10 Bifurcations and Neutralizations

 11 Imbalances and Fluctuations

 12 Socialist Convergences

part 2
4The Rise of Dependency Theories
 1  Socialism and Liberalism

 2  Developmentalism and Marxism

 3  The New Categories

 4 Subimperialism and the National Bourgeoisie

 5  Theories and Particularities

 6 The Metropolis-Satellite Perspective

 7  Two Different Approaches

 8 Development and Dependency

 9 Theoretical Confusion

 10 An Illuminating Debate

 11 Socio-liberal Regression

5Critiques and Convergences
 1  Functionalism without Subjects

 2  Mechanical Exogenism

 3  Problems of Pan-Capitalism

 4 Methodological Singularity?

 5  Perspectives on ‘Popular Unity’ in Chile

 6 Endogenism: Traditional and Transformed

 7  Agreement against Post-Marxism

 8 Return to Dependency

 9 The Opposite Path

 10 Theoretical Synthesis

 11 Methodological Convergence

 12 Assessments and Declines

6Dependency and World-System Theory
 1  Cycles and Hegemonies

 2 Orders and Hierarchies

 3 Relationship to Dependency Theory

 4 Convergences and Separations

 5  Convergent Concepts

 6 Systems or Modes of Production?

 7  Terminal Crises and Social Subjects

 8 Two Views on Long Cycles

 9 Discrepancies on Socialism

 10 Anti-imperialism and National Traditions

 11 Only Now Is It Possible?

 12 Political Strategies

7Three Stages of the Metropolis-Satellite Perspective
 1  Variety of Approaches

 2 Controversies over Colonization

 3 More Elaborate Answers

 4 Commercial Capitalism

 5  Political Simplifications

 6 The Turn toward World-System Theory

 7  Debates over the Proletariat

 8 Long Transitions

 9 The Missing Subject

 10 Debates over the East

 11 Problems with ‘Asia-Centrism’

 12 Misunderstanding Capitalism

 13 Contemporary Influences

 14 No Response to Dependency

8Anti-dependency Arguments
 1  Reformulating the Same Approach

 2 Interdependence?

 3 Simplified Comparisons

 4 Stagnationism?

 5  Monopolies and the Law of Value

 6  Underdevelopment as a Simple Fact

 7  Classifications and Examples

 8  Argentina as a Developed Country?

 9  Political Challenges

 10 Marx, Lenin, Luxemburg

 11 Mythical Proletariat

 12 Globalist Socialism

part 3
9Subimperialism i Review of a Concept
 1  Foundations and Objections

 2 Evaluation of a Concept

 3 Another Context

 4 Economic Interpretations

 5  Reformulation of a Status

 6 Controversial Extensions

 7  Misunderstanding a Category

 8 Comparison with Semi-Colony

 9 Dogmatic Inconsistencies

10Subimperialism ii Current Application
 1  The Main Prototype

 2 An Adventurous Experiment

 3 An Uncertain Reconstitution

 4 Co-imperial Appendages

 5  Contrasting Situations

 6 Peculiarities of Another Power

 7  Empire in Formation

 8 Another Variant in Formation

 9 Is Brazil Subimperial Today?

 10 Comparisons with Other Cases

 11 Controversies over Application

 12 Reconsideration and Usefulness

11Insights and Problems of the Super-exploitation Concept
 1  Logic and Interpretation

 2 Compatible Objections

 3 Low Value of Labor Power

 4 Statistical Irresolution

 5 The Centrality of Transfers

 6 Dependency without Super-Exploitation

 7 Variety of Uses

 8 Super-exploitation with and without Marx

 9 Absence of Fordism

 10 Where Is Exploitation Greater?

 11 Current Applications

 12 A Tentative Model

 13 Controversies over the Extension of Super-Exploitation

12Similarities and Differences with the Age of Marini
 1  Productive Globalization

 2 Exploitation and Industrial Remodeling

 3 The Crisis of Capitalism

 4 Imperial Reformulations

 5 The Collapse of the ussr and the Rise of China

 6 Polarities and Neutralizations

 7 Diverse Inequalities

 8 Internationalization without a Political Counterpart

 9 Problems of Transnationalism

 10 Semi-peripheral Reordering

 11 Extent of Subimperialism

 12 Global South?

 13 Renewing Dependency Theory

13The Dependent Cycle Forty Years Later
 1  Tensions and Crises

 2 Industrial Regression, Obstruction to Consumption

 3 Effects of Extractivism

 4 Cycle and Crisis

 5 The Contrast with Korea

 6 Other Interpretations

 7 Other Comparisons

 8 Relation with China

 9 Geopolitics, Classes, Governments

 10 Determinants of Dependency

 11 Reasons for Reconsideration

14Dependency and the Theory of Value
 1  Causes of Unequal Exchange

 2 The Extent of Globalization

 3 Productive Globalization

 4 The Meaning of Intensified Labor

 5 Monopoly and the Duality of Value

 6 Misunderstanding Underdevelopment

 7  Raw Material Cycles

 8 The Reintroduction of Rent

 9 Imperialist Rents

 10 International Rent

 11 Forced Incompatibilities

 12 The Contrast with Venezuela

 13 Totalizing Visions




All interested in the contemporary economic and political reality of Latin America and anyone concerned with theoretical debates on the underdevelopment of the peripheral countries.
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