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There are few ideas more contested than development, which involves a complex history of competing understandings of terms as varied as progress, geopolitics, gender, culture, and environment. There is general consensus that the development era began at the end of World War II and was tied to European Reconstruction and shifting geopolitics. Colonialism had been the central organizing practice prior to this period and was gradually receding with the increasing independence of former colonial outposts. Colonialism involved the political, economic and spatial control of various regions for the benefit of colonial empires. The colonies were established for the removal of raw materials and human labor, while being promoted as part of a larger imperial mission. In an example of this sentiment, writer Rudyard Kipling argued ...

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