As the colonial era ended and racism declined, however, we came to believe that so-called civilization could be quickly diffused to Africans in a process called "development" or "modernization." Perhaps our assumptions about becoming modern are faulty and our approaches actually contribute to Africa's problems. All sorts of Africans participated in the independence struggle against Europe, but those who gained control of the newly independent states in the 1960s and after tended to be "modern men." Adding to the internal mismanagement by African governments were sharp rises in the price of oil imports, sharp drops in the prices of exports, and global inflation. Western political and financial leaders decided on a new plan, one that would get the inefficient African governments out of the way. The lifting of government restrictions made space for new, small-scale African businesses. The prototypical conversion experience is, of course, religious, and it continues throughout Africa to this day.