I want to build a fantasy world with 21st century cultural, economical and sociological levels.
Sociologically and economically speaking, what were the requirements for our world to become what it is today? More specifically, I'm looking at the western capitalist society.
Our world didn't become like it is today by mere coincidence. Our state of globalization, consumerism and capitalism is a direct byproduct of the Cold War, which is itself a direct byproduct of WW2, a direct byproduct of WW1, caused by imperialist desires at the end of the 19th century, caused by... Well, I guess you get the point.
If I want to build a world that behaves similarly to ours, what are the events (wars, uprisings, economic systems, inventions) that must happen so that society is driven in this direction?
The technological level here should preferably be around the early Renaissance, but I'm aware some modern technologies (such as flight and the Internet) are seminal for our society, so I'm willing to handwave them into magic.