Imperialism in the 21st Century Archives - ROAPE
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Imperialism in the 21st Century

Discussing the extraordinary work of the Guyanese activist and historian Walter Rodney, Chinedu Chukwudinma describes how Rodney’s work remains a priceless weapon of theory and history that restores the dignity of African people. However, this blogpost takes issue with Andy Higginbottom’s review of Rodney’s How Europe Underdeveloped Africa on roape.net and argues that Rodney’s version of dependency theory presents a flawed analysis of imperialism....

In a major analysis of current developments at the level of the world and multinational market of late capitalism, Esteban Mora grapples with the phenomenon of so called ‘right wing populism’ not only in the West, but in Third World regions as well. He asks if Africa’s decades of trauma now confront metropolitan and central capitalist countries, as the road where they are heading....

Max Ajl speaks to the Marxist economist Utsa Patnaik about agrarian history and imperialism. Her work on the economic history of India and other countries under colonial rule, shows how the experience deepened food insecurity and unemployment, trends which reemerged again under neoliberalism. The interview was conducted as part of the activities of the workshop on ‘Agriculture and Imperialism’ in November 2018, Beirut, Lebanon, organised by the Thimar Collective....

In a major contribution to our debate on imperialism, James Parisot argues that the discussion has centred on a non-historical, economistic variation of historical materialism that, in reducing capitalism to the capital-wage labour relation, ends up doing injustice to the real history of imperialism and the expansion of capitalism. A full history of imperialism is also a history of capital exploiting a wide variety of racialized and gendered labour forms along a complex gradation including ‘free’ wage labourers, chattel slaves, and unpaid housework....

In a contribution to the debate on imperialism in Africa, Lee Wengraf argues that there is an urgency for left analysis on the centrality of the sharpening inter-imperial rivalry on the continent. Chinese imperialism in Africa is not identical to that of the U.S but it has been able to take advantage of the door kicked open by neoliberal deregulation and privatization promoted by the West. Wengraf argues that African ruling classes do not merely play a ‘lieutenant’ or ‘comprador’ role in a global order dominated by the West but seek to facilitate capital accumulation for their own ruling classes, a project which is both independent of yet constrained by the major imperial powers. She argues that we must turn towards the resistance of African working classes which demand our solidarity, regardless of which imperial players are involved. By Lee Wengraf In the debate on imperialism at...

In a major critique of dependency theory, Esteban Mora continues the debate on the nature of imperialism on roape.net (and specifically the blogpost by Walter Daum). He argues that while inequalities and unevenness in the world market exists, with both strong nation-states and weaker ones, this is not a division based on countries or regions, nor geography or ethnicity, but on relations of production. We must unearth the mechanisms of mutual profiting across all regions to see a class divided world market, as part of an international system of states where every single state is an agent of financial capital....

In a reply to Esteban Mora’s contribution to the imperialism debate on roape.net, Walter Daum writes that the claim that the drain of value from South to North has been inverted, reversed, or merely leveled off flies in the face of reality. Daum argues that the Northern imperialists exploit the labour and resources of the South and this is all the more true today....

Esteban Mora argues that the debate on roape.net between David Harvey and John Smith is flawed. We should not only be looking for a connection between ‘drained’ countries and countries who ‘drain’ others, but also a relationship of mutual profiting between an international bourgeoisie. Mora argues that dependency theories which underpins the debate are partial and cannot capture the totality of relationships in the international market, nor the operations of imperialism....

In a contribution to the roape.net debate on imperialism, Andy Higginbottom argues that the neo-colonial form of imperialism underpins elite corruption in the Global South. He asks if eurocentric Marxism can continue to deny the fact that capitalist imperialism involves the systemic plunder of the working class in the Global South?...

Responding to the debate on the changing nature of imperialism on roape.net, Walter Daum challenges Patrick Bond’s defence of David Harvey. Daum argues that while there is no question that the ‘East’ has gained relatively in wealth, this does not mean that there has been an epochal shift in the flow of value; it is extremely dubious that the directional flows of centuries have reversed and that the East, including China, is draining value from the West. ...