A World to Make treats a subject that is both complex and controversial. Since the end of the Second World War, and with increasing rapidity in the 1950s and 1960s, Europe's former colonial possessions acquired independence and emerged as new states with new frontiers. That process proved to be immensely difficult both for those who had recently acquired their independence and for those in Latin America and elsewhere who had enjoyed that status for a century or longer.
Earlier paradigms of development have either broken down or have been subject to serious modification. The chemistry of development reveals itself as an unstable compound of diverse political, social, cultural, and intellectual elements, not to speak of many that remain primarily economic. The conflicts and institutional interests are so varied that any simple theory of nation building or modernization modeled on past patterns of development in the capitalist West or Communist East seem inadequate.
As editor Francis X. Sutton points out, this volume views development in its broad historical complexity, as an organizing principle of governments and international relations, as a set of ideas or ideologies, and as a series of programs and practices. Achieving such goals in a single volume required reaching being the narrow confine of developmentalists as such, to experts in a variety of fields ranging from history to education.
The work features a major study by the historian William H. McNeil on "Control and Catastrophe in Human Affairs"; D. Anthony Low on "Development Contexts"; Francis X. Sutton on "Developmental Ideology: Its Emergence and Decline"; John P. Lewis on "Government and National Economic Development"; Mohamed Naciri on "Educational Processes and Access to Knowledge"; and Paul Krugman on "Developing Countries in the World Economy." In each case, the major essay is followed by a sharp analysis and commentary. The work is of intense potential value to international economists, comparative political scientists, and those who stress the important role of volition and culture in the development process.
Francis X. Sutton is retired deputy vice president of The Ford Foundation. Since his retirement in 1981, he has served as consultant to the Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the World Bank. He is the author of The American Business Creed, and wrote the introduction to the new Transaction edition of The Ford Foundation by Dwight Macdonald.