Outdated term that refers to the developed, capitalist, industrial countries with more or less common political and economic interests in North America, Western Europe, Japan and Australia. The term was first coined in the 1940s and was used during the Cold War, with the Second World referring to communist countries of China and the Soviet block. Third World referred to the less developed countries of Latin America, Africa and Asia. With the end of the Cold War, globalization and changing geopolitics, the “Three World” model is no longer relevant. Instead, some use developed world countries and developing world countries.
See Third World.« Back to Glossary Index