Susan Jappie has written a great review of Fouskas and Gökay’s The Fall of the US Empire: Global Fault-Lines and the Shifting Imperial Order in A World to Win, summarising the authors’ key contentions and laying out their prescription for a world order defined by its socialism, environmentalism and redistribution of social power. She opens by saying:
The authors of this timely book on the possible outcomes of the present economic, political and environmental crises, take an original approach to the question of a power shift from West to East. They examine the historic underlying causes, which they characterise as tectonic plates. This concept is a way of looking at social and class struggles within a complex mixture of structures.
Following this initial appraisal, Jappie emphasises the authors’ position that US dominance is fairly recent, and that long before even European ascendancy, the Middle East, China and India were key imperial powers. On the current pendulum swing in economic power from West to East, she notes:
Now China is taking back control by seeking knowledge of technology and building its own industries, as well as raking in vital raw materials in exchange for financial support in many countries. These include deals with Brazil and Russia for oil and Australia for minerals. India has shown its independence from the US by ending the ‘weapon-dollar regime’. Between them India and China have a combined population of one third of the world total and are becoming world leaders in the software design and mass manufacture of global IT as well as co-operating in military matters.
Jappie concludes with the authors’ call to understand the failures of former superpowers such as the USSR, – with its military industrial complex – as well as the need for qualitative changes in the world economy, and a clear envisioning of the choices necessary to make such change a reality.
The full review can be found on A World to Win, here.
Global Fault-Lines and the Shifting Imperial Order
Vassilis K. Fouskas and Bülent Gökay
Looks at the debates amongst critical theorists about the decline of US power.
“A major addition to the literature on the decline of US hegemony. Avoids cheap polemics and shows balanced, even prudent, judgement. In addition, it offers a sophisticated survey of grand theories of capitalism including those of Fernand Braudel, Immanuel Wallerstein, Giovanni Arrighi, and Robert Brenner.” – Professor Donald Sassoon, Comparative European History, Queen Mary University of London
“It is widely agreed that the current crisis in the capitalist economies is the worst since the 1930s. But in this timely book, Fouskas and Gokay suggest that the financial disarray reflects the beginning of the end of the US Empire and a decisive shift of power to the ‘Global East’. Their argument is both stimulating and challenging.” – Michael Newman