The colonial powers grew rich exploiting Asia, Africa, and Latin America according to A. Hobson and Frantz Fanon.
Many Latin American Marxists breathed new life into these ideas with their theory of dependency.
They argued that the poverty and under development of the South were the result of exploitation by the industrialized nations in the modern era.
Poor countries produced cheap raw materials for wealthy people and were conditioned to buy expensive manufactured goods.
The dominant and sub ordinate of master and peon were interdependent.
A combination of factors led to the great gap between the richest and poorest nations, ranging from colonial systems that limited economic development to the wealth creating effects of continuous technological improvement in the developed countries since the Industrial Revolution.
In the face of bitter poverty, unbalanced economies, and local elites that were generally more concerned about maintaining their own expensive living standards while catering to Western interests, people of the developing countries had anger and frustration.
Our planet is more complex than simply two economic camps, a North and a South.
There were different classes of nations in terms of wealth and income by the early 1990s.
The former Communist countries of eastern Europe formed a middle-income group, as did the major oil-exporting states.
Latin America had a wide range of national per capita incomes.
South and East Asia has some of the largest and fastest-growing economies as well as the highest standards of living.
The supposed clear-cut split between the rich North and the poor South was broken down when global differences in culture, religion, politics, and historical development were added.
The solidarity of the South was fragile due to the ideas of some Third World intellectuals and their supporters.
A continuation of global collective bargaining seemed more likely than an international class war.
The process of global bargaining is shown in the recurring international debt crisis.
Many developing countries had to import oil because of the economic problems of the 1970s and early 1980s.
Poor countries were forced to borrow quickly from the wealthy industrialized nations due to growing unemployment, unbalanced budgets, and large trade deficits.
By the early 1980s, most of the debt could not be repaid because it was short-term.
By 2005 the world's poor countries were spending more on debt repayments than on health care.
Debt relief was made a major goal by the United Nations in 2000.
Pressure on global resources is caused by efforts to bring living standards in developing countries to those in rich industrialized countries.
The map shows the gap in wealth between the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.
The two small island nations of Japan and the United Kingdom have more wealth than all the nations of the Southern Hemisphere combined.
The relative size-ratios on the map will change as market capitalism expands in China, Vietnam, and other Asian countries and in Latin America and Africa.
One of the highest per capita GDPs in the world can be found in tiny Iceland.
The mass movement of people from rural areas to cities has had the greatest impact on communities.
The consequences for life on earth are profound, and there are many reasons for this migration.
After 1945, cities in Africa, Asia, and Latin America expanded at a rapid pace.
In a single decade, many doubled or tripled in size.
There is a tremendous historical change in rapid urbanization.
The general growth of population in the nations was important.
Urban residents gained from a medical revolution that provided improved health care but only gradually began to reduce the size of their families.
The pressure of numbers in the countryside encouraged mil ion to go to the nearest city.
Rural migration has accounted for more than half of urban growth.
The desire to find a job was another factor.
The majority of industrial jobs in the developing nations were in cities.
Industrialization was only part of the urban explosion.
Many were pushed because they found it more profitable to produce export crops and because newcomers to their operations provided few jobs for agricultural laborers.
Even though there are no industrial jobs available, the cities are still looking for work.
There was a lot of migration that was seasonal or temporary.
Many young people left home for the city to work in construction or serve as maids, expecting higher wages and steadier work and planning to return with a modest nest egg.
Many young people were attracted to the cosmopolitan lifestyle of the city.
The industrialized countries mirrored many of these developments.
Because of industrialization in Europe and North America in the 19th and 20th century, people were drawn to urban areas.
More Americans were already living in cities by 1920.
The late twentieth century saw a repeat of the problems that had arisen in the cities of Europe and North America in the early twentieth century, but on a larger scale.
Urban social services were at risk of being overwhelmed by rapid population growth.
Running water, paved streets, and police and fire protection were not always available in new neighborhoods.
In the early days of European industrialization, there was a lack of Sanitation in the poor sections of town.