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AftershocksGreat Powers and Domestic Reforms in the Twentieth Century$
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Seva Gunitsky

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780691172330

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691172330.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PRSO for personal use.date: 24 June 2022

Introduction

Introduction

A Century of Shocks and Waves

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 Introduction
Source:
Aftershocks
Author(s):

Seva Gunitsky

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691172330.003.0001

This introductory chapter sets out the book's purpose, namely to offer an explanation for the timing, intensity, and content of regime waves during the twentieth century. The central argument is that abrupt hegemonic shocks—moments of sudden rise and decline of great powers—act as powerful catalysts for cross-border bursts of domestic reform. These intense geopolitical disruptions not only alter the global hierarchy of leading states but also shape the wave-like spread and retreat of democracy and its rivals. As a result, the volatile evolution of domestic regimes during the twentieth century has been closely linked to sudden tectonic shifts in the structure of global power. The remainder of the chapter defines the meaning of hegemonic shocks and how shocks lead to regime waves. An overview of the subsequent chapters is also presented.

Keywords:   democracy, democratization, regime change, political change, twentieth century, hegemonic shocks, domestic regimes

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