How did Russia's and Japan's interaction with the west differ from those of Latin America

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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This is a very big question that needs a more complex answer than we have space for here.

In general, both Japan and Russia tried hard to Westernize in the 1700s (Russia) and the late 1800s (Japan).  Both of these countries realized that they would not be able to compete with Western countries either economically or militarily unless they did so.  Therefore, both countries were able to eventually become more or less the equals of Western countries.

By contrast, Latin American countries did not modernize or "Westernize."  (The term "Westernization" is a little hard to use with respect to Latin America because its culture comes largely from Spain and Portugal which are clearly part of Western Europe.)  Therefore, these countries remained in something of a neo-colonial relationship with Europe.  This can be seen, for example, in the French attempt to take control of Mexico in the 1860s and the subsequent domination of Mexico's economy by Britain and the US during the Porfiriato.

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