Taking Back Control?

Taking Back Control?:States and State Systems After Globalism

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Taking back control? States and state systems after globalization.

The era of hyperglobalization once hailed as the 'end of history' was characterised by boundless capitalist expansion. The neoliberal revolution gave rise to a politics of scale aimed at the centralization and unification of states and state systems: the replacement of national with global governance or, in Europe, of the nation-state with a supranational superstate, the European Union.

The 'New World Order' proclaimed by the United States in the wake of the Soviet collapse proved to be ungovernable by democratic means. Instead, it was ruled through a combination of technocracy and mercatocracy, failing spectacularly to provide for political stability, social legitimacy and international peace. Marked by a series of economic and institutional crises, hyperglobalization gave rise to various kinds of political countermovements that rebelled against and ultimately stopped the upward transfer of state authority in its tracks.

This book analyses the ongoing tug-of-war between the forces of globalism and democracy, of centralization and decentralization, and unification and differentiation of states and state systems, and how they are tied to the advance of global capitalism and the prospects for its social and democratic regulation. Exploring the possibility for states and the societies they govern to take back control over their collective fate, the book is an attempt at a renewed theory of the state in political economy. Inspired by the work of Karl Polanyi and John Maynard Keynes, it discusses the potential outlines of a state system allowing for democratic governance within and peaceful cooperation between sovereign nation-states.

Reviews

  • The most interesting person around today on the subject of the relationship between democracy and capitalism.

    Christopher Bickerton, University of Cambridge
  • The most interesting person on the most urgent subject of our times.

    Aditya ChakraborttyGuardian