The Contemporary Period. 20 th and 21 st Centuries General Themes of the Period. Adopted from lectures by Peter N. Stearns. new themes in the contemporary period. The 20th and early-21st centuries are usually divided into three phases.
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20th and 21st Centuries
General Themes of the Period
Adopted from lectures by Peter N. Stearns
The 20th and early-21st centuries are usually divided into three phases.
It is important to remember that the contemporary period is still a recent one in world history; some of the details have yet to be worked out, and some of the new themes have yet to be fully established.
During the 20th and early-21st centuries, change in gender relations took certain clear directions.
In the early-21st century, the West still possessed the greatest military power in the world as a whole. But the capacity of the West to move almost at will militarily had been curtailed by the second half of the 20th century.
We also see decline in the West’s capacity to control most of the rest of the world directly through colonies and colonial administrations.
6. In future centuries, people may see the fundamental innovation of the contemporary period as the beginning of humankind’s conquest of outer space.
7. The altered nature of war and military technology in the 21st century.
8.massive global population increase. This population growth carries over into other features that begin to reshape the world.
9.the steady acceleration of communication and transportation technologies.
The contemporary period continues elements inherited from the Long 19th Century, but.
The world economy reveals both continuity and change in world history between the Long 19th Century and the contemporary era.
Core characteristics can still be identified in the 21st century in much of Western Europe and the United States.
A few societies did not display core characteristics in terms of export/import but managed to maintain fairly high standards of living. These societies fit a semi-core definition.
Peripheries were still characterized by relatively weak governments and continued to export cheap goods, such as lower-level manufactured products. Some of the locations of the periphery shifted.
While continuity in world economic relationships exists, there are clear beginnings of efforts to move away from this framework in several ways.
The most striking shift in the contemporary period was the entry into the core of Japan, followed by other parts of the Pacific Rim, including South Korea and Taiwan.
The more durable efforts to adjust to the world economy in ways that complicate the core-periphery relationships fall into several categories.
Another method used to escape peripheralization was to seize on one particular good that was either valuable or could be produced in newly efficient ways and translated into exports; the most obvious case in point here is Middle Eastern oil, initially a peripheral product.
The third method to break out of peripheralization was to develop a few sectors in which an economy could begin to compete with the core—by exporting processed goods on a worldwide basis.