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Lecture 11

Lecture 11a Hegemony II.doc

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Political Science
Todd Alway

Political Science 1G06 2013 II Lecture 11a Hegemony - Recall our lecture on Globalization from last semester - What accounts for the fact that the late 19 and late 20 /early 21th st century international systems appear to be similar on so many levels? - Is there some common cause that can explain why trade, investment, migration - all the features that we normally take to be globalization – expanded at both points in time? th th o And why the earlier period of late 19 /early 20 century “globalization” collapsed? - One possible explanation: Hegemonic Stability Theory: - One common feature of both periods of time is that the international system was dominated by one state that had an overwhelming advantage in power over all other states - Both eras have states that are Hegemonic - Thus we see high levels of international openness during the period of th British Dominance in the 19 century th - Britain was the undisputed economic and political power of the 19 century international system - Once Britain was the world’s most powerful state it began to push forward a project of free trade - However, once its preponderance began to decline (relatively speaking) the international economy seized up and the international system descended into war - Extending this correlation to the present, high levels of international openness appear to correspond with the American international dominance that began in the mid-20 centuryth - With the rise of a new hegemon, the international order seems to stabilize and a process like “globalization” can begin again - What is the status of US Hegemony? - The extent of US power along 4 different axis (Mann): - 1. Economic Power 1 - There are several aspects of the American Economy that appear to give it an unparalleled supremacy in the international system - A) The American economy is the largest in the world - Weighted by exchange rates, the US economy at $16 Trillion is close to 2x the size of it closest competitor state - B) The American dollar is the world’s de facto currency - In essence, provided that the US dollar remains the global de facto currency, the US can print dollars at will without loosing international purchasing power - C) The US has a dominant position in the construction of international economic r
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