Sociology Index


"As long as imperialism exists it will, by definition, exert its domination over other countries. Today that domination is called neocolonialism." Che Guevara, Marxist revolutionary. The term neocolonialism is used by post-colonial critics of developed countries' involvement in the developing world. Neocolonialism critics argue that existing or past international economic arrangements created by former colonial powers were or are used to maintain control of their former colonies and dependencies. Critics of neocolonialism contend that multinational corporations continue to exploit the resources of post-colonial states, and that this economic control inherent to neocolonialism is akin to the classical, European colonialism practiced from the 16th to the 20th centuries. Cultural Colonialism, importation or continuation of cultural mores or elements from former colonial powers may be regarded as a form of Neocolonialism.

Neocolonialism may simply refer to the involvement of powerful countries in the affairs of less powerful countries, especially in modern Latin America. Neocolonialism implies a form of contemporary, economic imperialism: that powerful nations behave like colonial powers of imperialism. Neocolonialism, the Last Stage of Imperialism (1965) is self-defined as an extension of Lenin's Imperialism, the Last Stage of Capitalism (1916), in which Lenin argues that 19th century imperialism is predicated upon the needs of the capitalist system. "In place of Colonialism as the main instrument of imperialism we have today neo-colonialism. Neocolonialism, like colonialism, is an attempt to export the social conflicts of the capitalist countries."

The result of neocolonialism is that foreign capital is used for the exploitation rather than for the development of the less developed countries of the world. Investment under neocolonialism increases rather than decreases the gap between the rich and the poor countries of the world. The struggle against neocolonialism is not aimed at excluding the capital of the developed world from operating in less developed countries. Neo-Colonialism, The Last Stage of Imperialism. Thomas Nelson & Sons, Ltd., London (1965). International Publishers Co., Inc., USA (1966).