The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers: Economic Change and Military Conflict from 1500 to 2000
Vintage Books, 1989 - Business & Economics - 677 pages
With 200,000 hardcover copies in print, this book has received worldwide attention. Kennedy explains how the various world powers have risen and fallen over the five centuries since the formation of the "new monarchies" in Western Europe.
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Agriculture remained the fundament of British wealth throughout the eighteenth
century , and exports ( whose ratio to total national income was probably less
than 10 percent until the 1780s ) were often subject to strong foreign competition
27 The second significant realm of British influence lay in its expanding colonial
empire . Here again , the overall situation was a far less competitive one than in
the preceding two centuries , where Britain had had to fight repeatedly for empire
B . Bond , British Military Policy Between Two World Wars ( Oxford , 1980 ) ,
espec . chs . 1 and 4 , is best here . 111 . R . Meyers , “ British Imperial Interests
and the Policy of Appeasement , " and W . R . Louis , " The Road to Singapore :
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The rise and fall of the great powers: economic change and military conflict from 1500 to 2000User Review - Not Available - Book Verdict
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 ... Read full review
Learning from History, July 19, 2003
Kennedy chronicles the rise of the Great Powers starting with the Ming Dynasty in China and taking us all the way to the contemporary times of the 1980s.
By analyzing world history through the prisms of economical, political, and military status of each great rising power, Kennedy fuses a theory of why certain countries throughout history (1500-present) rose to be regional or world powers and why they later collapsed.
As the other reviewers noted, Kennedy's book falls short of accurately predicting the changes that were to follow the publication date of his book (fall of Russia, Asian market crises). Nevertheless this book is a valuable historical resource.
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World Power Centers in the Sixteenth Century
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