The Modernization of Spain: The Imperialism and Dependency Thesis

Author: José Casanova

October 1, 1982

In "The Modernization of Spain: The Imperialism and Dependency Thesis," published in the journal Telos, José Casanova compares and contrasts the two major economic models to the growth in Spain’s economy in the 1980s. Casanova explains, through the writings of several others, that both the Imperialism and Dependency Theories prove inadequate in explaining the rise of Spain’s economy, particularly criticizing Marxist explanations. Instead, Casanova argues for a more nuanced approach combining the two views, stating that Spain was indeed exploited for cheap labor, but the end result turned out to be mutually beneficial, helping push Spain to become more developed. In addition, Casanova notes the non-economic causes behind Spain’s first economic collapse and eventual recovery, such as the formation of the Catholic organization Opus Dei and the natural benefits of geography, which helped lead to Spain’s economic boom. This essay was published in the journal Telos.

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