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The H-Word: The Peripeteia of Hegemony

A fascinating history of the political theory of hegemony
Few terms are so widely used in the literature of international relations and political science, with so little agreement about their exact meaning, as hegemony. In the first full historical study of its fortunes as a concept, Perry Anderson traces its emergence in Ancient Greece, its rediscovery during the upheavals of 1848–9 in Germany, and then its chequered career in revolutionary Russia, fascist Italy, Cold War America, Thatcherized Britain, post-colonial India, feudal Japan, Maoist China, through to the world of Merkel and May, Bush and Obama. The result is a surprising and fascinating expedition into global intellectual history, ending with a strong political statement about the present.

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  • Perry Anderson and Suleiman Mourad: Islamism and the Contemporary Arab World

    At no other time has the image of Islam gained so much public attention. Yet, this image is replete with misinformation and ignorance about the theology, history and practice of Islam.

    In the Mosaic of Islam Perry Anderson and the acclaimed historian of Islam Suleiman Mourad aim to introduce the long history of Islam and its reception, from Muhammad to the present, in an open and accessible manner. In this extract from the book, Anderson and Mourad discuss the antagonism between Shiʿis and Sunnis, the causes and effects of the Arab Spring, Israel's place in the Middle East, and the history of Pan-Arabism.



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  • Predator Drone: American Foreign Policy Under Obama

    Perry Anderson's analysis of Obama's foreign policy was first published in New Left Review in September 2013 and forms a part of American Foreign Policy and Its Thinkers



    Democratic takeover of the White House in 2009 brought little alteration in American imperial policy. Continuity was signalled from the start by the retention or promotion of key personnel in the Republican war on terror: Gates, Brennan, Petraeus, McChrystal. Before entering the Senate, Obama had opposed the war in Iraq; in the Senate, he voted $360 billion for it. Campaigning for the presidency, he criticized the war in the name of another one. Not Iraq, but Afghanistan was where US firepower should be concentrated. Within a year of taking office, US troops had been doubled to 100,000 and Special Forces operations increased sixfold, in a bid to repeat the military success in Iraq, where Obama had merely to stick to his predecessor’s schedule for a subsequent withdrawal.

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Other books by Perry Anderson