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  1. 1

    Gender and development: rethinking modernization and dependency theory.

    Scott CV

    Boulder, Colorado, Lynne Rienner Publishers, 1996. v, 151 p. (Women and Change in the Developing World)

    This book presents a feminist analysis of gender, tradition, and modernity as conceptualized in modernization and Marxist dependency theories and applied by the World Bank and challenged in Southern Africa. The aim is to enlighten those who attempt to offer improvements on the two paradigms or to blend the two paradigms prematurely. Modernization theory makes "artificial" distinctions between traditional and modern societies. Modernization theory formulates a system for ensuring multinational control of trade and capital without restriction from nation states. Dependency theory offers a materialistic account of the expansion and change of capitalism and class consciousness. Women's roles in capitalist development and in revolutions are defined. This study suggests that feminist standpoint theory, such as that proposed by Harding and Hennessy, can be valuable. Social systems must be understood in terms of economic, political, and ideological systems and structures of power, such as capitalism, patriarchy, or colonialism. This author seeks to move beyond a masculine conception of modernity, development, and dependence. This study is based on interpretive analysis and implicit and contextual meanings of texts. Chapter 1 provides an overview of the book's direction and purpose. Chapter 2 discusses the two approaches of modernization theory, the psychocultural and the structural-functional. The work of Inkeles and Smith is discussed in comparison to other psychocultural approaches of Lerner and McClelland. The structural approaches of Rostow, Parsons, and a committee of the US Social Science Research Council are interpreted. Chapter 3 discusses soft-state approaches of African countries that are theorized by Hyden and others. World Bank practices are interpreted in Chapter 4. Chapter 5 focuses on Frank, Amin, and other texts on dependency theory. Challenges to dependency and counterrevolution in Southern Africa are the focus in Chapter 6. Prospects for rereading and rewriting development theory that centers on the household are proposed in Chapter 7.
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  2. 2

    Out from behind the contraceptive Iron Curtain.

    Jacobson JL

    WORLD WATCH. 1990 Sep-Oct; 3(5):29-34.

    In the early 1950s, the Soviet Union and several of its Eastern European satellites completed their transition from high to low fertility before the US and Western Europe. They did this even though there were not enough modern contraceptives available to meet the needs of its citizens. As late as 1990, the Soviet Union had no factories manufacturing modern contraceptives. A gynecologist in Poland described domestically produced oral contraceptives (OCs) as being good for horses, but not for humans. The Romanian government under Ceaucescu banned all contraceptives and safe abortion services. Therefore, women relied on abortion as their principal means of birth control, even in Catholic Poland. The legal abortion rates in the Soviet Union and Romania stood at 100/1000 (1985) and 91/1000 (1987) as compared to 18/1000 in Denmark and 13/1000 in France. All too often these abortion were prohibited and occurred under unsafe conditions giving rise to complications and death. Further, the lack of contraceptives in the region precipitated and increase in AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases. On the other hand, abortion rates were minimalized in Czechoslovakia, East Germany, and Hungary due to the availability of modern contraceptives and reproductive health services. Hungary and East Germany even manufactured OCs. OC use in these 2 nations rated as among the world's highest. East Germany also treated infertility and sexually transmitted diseases. The region experienced a political opening in latecomer 1989. In 1989, IPPF gave approximately 15 million condoms and 3000 monthly OC packets to the Soviet Union to ease the transition. More international assistance for contraceptive supplies and equipment and training to modernize abortion practices is necessary.
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  3. 3
    Peer Reviewed

    Assessment and implementation of health care priorities in developing countries: incompatible paradigms and competing social systems.

    Makhoul N

    Social Science and Medicine. 1984; 19(4):373-84.

    This paper addresses conceptual issues underlying the assessment and implementation of health care priorities in developing countries as practiced by foreign development agencies coping with a potentially destabilizing unmet social demand. As such, these agencies mediate the gap between existing health care structures patterned around the narrow needs of the ruling classes and the magnitude of public ill-health which mass movements strive to eradicate with implications for capitalism at large. It is in this context that foreign agencies are shown to intervene for the reassessment and implementation of health care priorities in developing countires with the objective of defending capitalism against the delegitimizing effects of its own development, specifically the persistence of mass disease. Constrained by this objective, the interpretations they offer of the miserable state of health prevailing in developing countries and how it could be improved remains ideological: it ranges between "stage theory" and modern consumption-production Malthusiansim. Developing countries are entering into a new pattern of public health which derives from their unique location in the development of capitalism, more specifically in the new international division of labor. Their present position affects not only the pattern and magnitude of disease formation but also the effective alleviation of mass disease without an alteration in the mode of production itself. In the context of underdevelopment, increased productivity is at the necessary cost of public health. Public health improvement is basically incompatible with production-consumption Malthusianism from which the leading "Basic Needs" orientation in the assessment and implementation of health care priorities derives. Marx said that "countries of developing capitalism suffer not only from its development but also from its underdevelopment." (author's modified)
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