The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers

Overview

About national and international power in the "modern" or Post Renaissance period. Explains how the various powers have risen and fallen over the 5 centuries since the formation of the "new monarchies" in W. Europe.

Explains how the various powers have risen and fallen over the five centuries since the formation of the "new monarchies" in Western Europe.

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The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers

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Overview

About national and international power in the "modern" or Post Renaissance period. Explains how the various powers have risen and fallen over the 5 centuries since the formation of the "new monarchies" in W. Europe.

Explains how the various powers have risen and fallen over the five centuries since the formation of the "new monarchies" in Western Europe.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``Kennedy, a history professor at Yale, here assesses the interaction between economics and strategy over the past five centuries,'' reported PW , concluding that ``the book is a vigorous entry in the debate over the extent to which national wealth should be used for military purposes.'' (Jan.)
Library Journal
Yale historian Kennedy surveys the ebb and flow of power among the major states of Europe from the 16th centurywhen Europe's preeminence first took shapethrough and beyond the present erawhen great power status is devolving again upon the extra-European states. Stressing the interrelationships among economic wealth, technological innovation, and the ability of states efficiently to tap their resources for prolonged military preparedness and warmaking, he notes that those states with the relatively greater ability to maintain a balance of military and economic strength assumed the lead. Kennedy never reduces the analysis to crude materialism or empty tautology. Stimulating, erudite, carefully crafted, and readable; for public and academic libraries. James B. Street, Santa Cruz P.L., Cal.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780679720195
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/28/1989
  • Series: Vintage Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 704
  • Sales rank: 128,861
  • Product dimensions: 5.17 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 1.25 (d)

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  • Posted March 31, 2012

    Useful for understanding today

    In 1999, a blog criticized Mr. Kennedy's book as being "60s apologist," because the US was not on the way down. I checked, and there's been no further activity on that blog--especially since 2001 and 2008. So, whether you are worried, or believe, that's immaterial. This is a good basic explanation of the rise and decline of empires. Read it regardless of which side of the fence you think you are, becasue education is just that: education.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2001

    Fate of an Empire?

    This book, as many other history books, constantly remind us the universal truth that a rising empire inevitably falls. Last few chapters serve as a political forecast of a possible future scenario. In any case, it will end with the demise of American hegemony followed by another powerful nation-state, or perhaps by a transnational institution that surpasses contemporary nation-states.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 1, 2000

    My children should read this!

    Kennedy's thesis is that great powers like the United States finally overreach their ability to sustain their empires, and so weaken and fall. I wish my children, who will probably be alive when the hinge of fate creaks loud and clear, would read this. Then they would understand what is happening, and perhps figure where to go and hide! The US will probably not reach beyond its financial and military capacity any time soon, even if the foolish idea that we can rescue each ethnic tragedy continues. We're too rich, too mobile and have too much the rest of the world has to have to run out of power. In fact, I would guess our destiny may lead us to union with Canada and Mexico. If we can handle the enormous cost of a union with Mexico, we will be able to snatch another century from the hands of fate. But... I greatly enjoyed this book, and was sorry when it came to an end.

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