Glossary for Proletarian Internationalist Notes—news, reviews and analysis from a Maoist global perspective

(Unusual spellings)

Click here (if on or here ( if you were wanting to know about the unconventional spellings and words on this site (e.g., “eir,” “emself,” “ey,” “humyn,” “persyn,” and “u.$.”).

Third World

On this site, “Third World” means oppressed nations whose populations are mostly exploited workers (in the Marxist sense with capitalism) or toilers. “First World” means imperialist countries with exploiter majorities—workers who are both labor aristocrats, or professionals, and exploiters. First World countries aren’t always allies. Additionally, a minority of imperialist countries have exploited majorities; these countries still have labor aristocracies larger, more influential or more bourgeois than in Engels’ and Lenin’s times.

In cases that aren’t clear-cut, important questions involve the dominance or non-dominance of finance capital, pre-capitalist elements, satellite state relationship with a First World country, and being rich but surrounded by a vast number of proletarians who could belong to the same nation or incipient nation.

Various definitions of “First World” or “Second World” including the Soviet Union cannot apply today simply because the USSR is gone, but the theoretical content of the Theory of the Three Worlds is relevant. See a MIM discussion of the Three Worlds Theory at

There are conflicting definitions of “Third World.” However, alternative terms have clear or subtle non-Marxist economic connotations or are geographically misleading.

[This page is under construction. More entries coming.]

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