Banana republic

A banana republic refers to politically unstable countries whose economies are monocultures controlled by an oligarchy; they are de facto puppet states.

The term “banana republic” originally referred to politically unstable Latin American countries that were heavily reliant on exporting a single low-cost commodity, such as bananas. Historically, these nations often suffered from corrupt governments, a lack of public services, vast income disparities, and social unrest.

The term was popularized in the early 20th century, primarily to describe countries whose economies and politics were dominated by foreign corporations, notably the United Fruit Company. Over time, “banana republic” evolved into a broader term, used to describe any small, unstable country with an economy dependent on a limited resource, coupled with corrupt ruling elites whose actions serve their own interests, often supported by foreign capital.

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